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BRUNSWICK -- A fundraiser set for later this month at the Brunswick Rec Center has been canceled amid criticism and a protest threat from animal lovers.

The Donkey Ball event on February 19 would have featured a basketball game with players riding donkeys.

Some viewed the event as fun and creative. Others viewed it as cruel and inhumane and a petition was started to cancel the event and gathered hundreds of signatures.

The event aimed to raise $13,000 to pay for after-prom party events for high school students.

The company hired to put on the fundraiser has been in business for nearly a century. Supporters said they were convinced by the company's literature that the animals would be treated humanely.

Animal rights supporters disagreed and had planned to protest the event had it gone forward as planned.

In making the cancellation, the Brunswick Post Prom Committee, in a statement, cited the the growing intensity of the protest threat. and concern for the safety of students and staff had the event continued.

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