October 2, 2013

Shannon Springs goes to the dogs

Jessica Lane, Staff Writer,
The Express-Star


Halloween isn't just for humans anymore. Man's best friend is invited to put on his or her best paw forward in a doggie costume contest at 3 p.m. this Saturday. 

The contest is part of Friends Fur Change first annual Bark in the Park from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Oct. 5 in Shannon Springs Park. 

Those who don't have a dog to dress up for the contest need not despair. There will be plenty of shelter dogs on offer that will do just about anything–including playing dress up–to find their forever home. 

The goal is to get as many shelter dogs adopted out as possible, Fran Morris, Friend Fur Change, said. 

Adoptions are free at the event. Most of the dogs are spayed and/or neutered, have their shots and are microchipped or will come with a voucher to be spayed/neutered at a later date. Each dog will also come with a free bag of food and a free grooming, Morris said. 

To adopt, adoptees will need to bring their driver's license and fill out some paperwork, Heather Witt, Friends Fur Change, said. The City of Chickasha is funding the adoptions, Witt said. 

Friends Fur Change are excited about their first event to promote the adoption of shelter animals. Bark in the Park is also a fund raiser for Friends Fur Change. There will be a bake sale and Friends Fur Change t-shirts for sale. 

"It's our first one and we're really excited about it," Morris said. "We've put a lot into it." 

Potential adoptees are encouraged to get to know the dogs at the park and even take them for a walk, Morris said. 

There are a lot more activities at the Bark in the Park. 

Every hour, on the hour Rebekah and Sarah Willoughby will sing "Oklahoma Strong" at the Shannon Springs Amphitheater. 

Families can bring out the whole family–including their four-legged children–for pet portraits with a festive backdrop. The prints will be mailed to the patron, 8 x 10 photos are $10. 

Patrons can even smooch a pooch at the pet kissing booth. "There will be a dog that really likes giving kisses," Witt said. 

Other attractions include face painting, dog grooming booths, pet portraits, vendors, K-9 police dog demonstrations, a bouncy house, hotdogs, drinks, clowns and more. 

All dogs in attendance must be on a leash and up to date on their shots, Morris said.