The Marshall County Humane Society is encouraging community members to bring their furry, four legged friends down to Centennial Park on October 1st for Bark in the Park. This annual event for dogs and their owners is an afternoon full of activities and contests where funds are raised to assist MCHS with operational costs.
Marshall County Humane Society Director Nancy Cox said that money raised by events like Bark in the Park assist the Humane Society in some major ways.
“It goes into our general fund” she explained, “we depend on fundraisers to keep our lights on, to get dogs medical attention, to keep our heating and air conditioning going and to keep our animal control vehicle going.” People will be able to pledge the day of, or pledge sheets are available for pick up at various vet clinics, grooming salons and the shelter.
According to the director, the event has been running for ten to eleven years. She said there are typically around 75 dogs who participate. In the past they’ve been able to raise three to four thousand dollars from generous pet owners who come out to the park.
Cox said she made sure to check the weather and she expects it to be a lovely day for the fundraiser. Registration starts at 1 p.m. at the friar pavilion by the tennis courts in Centennial Park. Any amount of money can be pledged but donations of $25 or more will grant you an event t-shirt to commemorate the day and show your support for the local humane society.
Cox said that contests will commence at 2 p.m. Prizes can be won for various things such as having the most pledges and the owner look-a-like contest. Dogs can compete to see who wins the titles of best costume, best trick, most vocal and cutest puppy under 6 months with large and small breeds judged separately. An agility course will also be set up in the dog park between 1 and 2 p.m and people can walk around the park trails with their pooches.
Cox said they suggest that all animals be up-to-date on vaccinations and rabies shots. They ask for pet owners to refrain from bringing females who are in season. All dogs are expected to be friendly towards people and other animals and should be restrained on a working collar and leash. Cox said she considers this a good way to raise funds while having fun. The event will wrap up around 3 p.m. Turn your October into Dogtober this Sunday at Centennial Park.