Howl-O-Ween event held at St. Mary’s Park
Saturday was a “pawsome” afternoon to celebrate Howl-O-Ween on Elm Avenue.
At noon, costumed dogs and their families gathered at St. Mary’s Park for the first event hosted by the City of Monroe Parks and Recreation Department and Scally Waggs Doggy Bakery and Pet Supplies, 44 W. Front St.
“I’ve seen the different pet events in other communities and when the city asked us to do something, I thought it would be great to do it around Halloween,” said Scott Kegerreis , owner of Scally Waggs.
Owners with their cleverly dressed dogs, some as princesses, pirates or pumpkins, paraded onto the stage as a panel of judges tallied their votes.
First prize went to Nancy Wain of Monroe and her 9-year-old corgi, Denali. Dressed in royal blue, the duo paid tribute to the late Queen Elizabeth II, Britain’s longest-reigning monarch.
“It’s the first time we’ve done something like this,” Wain said. “My husband Terry is half English and we honor the Royal Family.”
Seven-year-old Noah Smock and his dog, Winston, a 7-month-old schnoodle, took second place. Smock dressed as a ghost and Winston was a ghost hunter.
“You can’t tell, but I’m smiling,” Smock told the judges as he adjusted his mask.
Third place went to Haisley Harris and Zoey, a chiweenie, cross between a chihuahua and a dachshund, dressed as a red bat.
The 3-year-old superhero attended the event with her “Pawma”, Sharon Flowers from Monroe.
“I’m Haisley’s grandmother,” Flowers said. “But she calls me ‘Pawma.’ She always called me that.
A second competition invited all the costumed dogs to parade on the stage. Prizes were also awarded.
The two-hour event included the opportunity to take fall-themed photos and meet with representatives from Therapy Dogs International Council 307 and Project Second Chance Monroe. The program matches at-risk youth with abandoned dogs.
Amy Bacarelli of Monroe said the group was there to raise awareness of Project Second Chance’s Woof Lodge. Scheduled to open later this year, the organization’s new home will be located in the former Jefferson Schools Administration Building, 2400 N. Dixie Hwy.
Kegerreis and his wife, Ally, along with their 2-year-old Great Dane, Waggs, handed out 300 homemade pumpkin-flavored treats for the occasion and invited those in attendance to experience the town’s new self-service dog wash. shop.
Since the dog wash opened less than two weeks ago, Kegerreis said more than 40 dogs have been washed.
“It works like a car wash. You walk in, put in your money and choose a shampoo. It applies the shampoo and pulses it on the skin in order to clean it,” he said. “It actually makes a better cleaning job than if you scrubbed it.”
Then the dog’s coat is rinsed before applying the conditioner followed by a second rinse before using a hair dryer. Owners can also bring their own towels and shampoo.
“The dogs are doing really well. It usually takes about ten minutes,” he said.
Kegerreis said he had planned to offer self-service laundry when the store opened, but the challenge of having a wet dog smell in competition with the bakery prevented him from implementing the service.
“I negotiated with the city to get the property that’s between us and the next building, and I was able to do that and have an addition built so we could add the service,” he said. “It’s attached to the building with its own entrance, but it’s closed enough that there’s no wet dog smell.”
The self-service dog wash can accommodate dogs ranging in size from a Chihuahua to a St. Bernard.
On Saturday, Tina Russeau from Monroe brought her 89-pound American Bulldog, Bowser, for a bath. It was the first time Russeau had used the self-service dog wash.
“I walk past here every day on my way to work and saw the sign and thought we’d give it a try,” Russeau said. “It costs $10 for 10 minutes, but you can pay for more if you need it. It worked really well and it’s much easier than giving him a bath at home.