A film festival about cats? Look for a star turn by this unusual NC museum.

A film festival about cats? Look for a star turn by this unusual NC museum.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (LaVendrick Smith | The Charlotte Observer) - The first-ever New York film festival devoted specifically to cats is happening in December, and so it's only fitting that an unusual North Carolina museum about house cats will be featured.

If you're a cat-lover who happens to be in New York next month, the NY Cat Film Festival is on Dec. 9, and features 12 short films designed to celebrate the "mystique of felines," according to the event.

Among the many films is a 12-minute documentary called "Little Works of Art" about the American Museum of the House Cat, a new museum in western North Carolina that is considered to be one of two in America honoring cats.

The museum opened in April in Sylva, about 160 miles northwest of Charlotte. It features more than 10,000 artifacts about the house cat collected over 30 years by the museum' creator, Harold Sims. Artifacts range from art from as early as the 1800s, to antique toy cats.

Proceeds from the museum go toward running Sims' no-kill animal shelter in Cullowhee.

"I think the cat's a beautiful animal, and every cat is unique — there's no two that are exactly the same," Harold says in the documentary. "They're really little works of art with feet running around your house."

Other films featured in the festival include one about a professional cat groomer, and another about a feral cat colony in southern California.