The sun gleamed in the warm autumn sky, the creative juices for costuming flowed and the canines came out in droves. This was, indeed, a dog day delight.
A picture-perfect day marked by temperatures in the 70s and an impressive turnout of four-legged participants made the 10th Annual Spooky Pooch Parade on Saturday afternoon, October 21, memorable for canine and human guests alike. Nearly 350 pooches – the most in recent years – participated in this fun-filled event, and an estimated 2,500 people gathered in and around Kauffman Park in Downtown Lakewood for the festivities.
Sponsored by Discount Drug Mart and presented by LakewoodAlive, the Spooky Pooch Parade featured mutts and pure-breds, lap dogs and large canines, and a wide assortment of clever costumes adorned by both humans and their furry friends. Prizes were awarded to winning pooches as selected by a panel of judges, with the winner of Best in Show receiving one year’s worth of free dog food courtesy of Pet’s General Store:
- Best in Show: Spaceship & Martians 2. Cinderella 3. Peacock
- Best Pooch & Child: Where The Wild Things Are 2. Skeleton 3. Robin Hood & Maid Marian
- Best Pooch & Adult: Up The Movie 2. Bert & Ernie 3. Bathtub
- Best Pooch & Group: The Wizard of Oz 2. Pirate & Shark 3. Gondola
- Spookiest Pooch: Beetlejuice 2. Spider 3. The Addams Family
The event kicked off with a festival in Kauffman Park, where attendees enjoyed music, food, kids’ games, entertainment and vendors, many of which were dog-related. LakewoodAlive thanks the 35 vendors who participated. New activities at this year’s festival ranged from canine caricatures and “paw readings” by a dog psychic, to contests involving “musical sit” and peanut butter eating.
Festivities continued with the much-anticipated parade, which saw a sizable sea of costumed canines march along a route that included a stretch of the Detroit Avenue Business District in Downtown Lakewood. Spectators cheered and judges cast their votes as participating pooches strutted their stuff and delighted the crowd.
“The Spooky Pooch Parade represents a doggone good time and prime opportunity to showcase Downtown Lakewood’s vibrancy, yet this popular community event would not be possible without the tireless efforts of our volunteers,” said Ian Andrews, Executive Director for LakewoodAlive. “On behalf of our entire organization, thank you to the many volunteers who helped make the 2017 Spooky Pooch Parade a tremendous success. In particular, thanks to the Kauffman Park Friends for their assistance and to the City of Lakewood, which provides day-of event services ranging from police presence to park maintenance.”
The 10th Annual Spooky Pooch Parade was generously supported by the following sponsors:
Title Sponsor: Discount Drug Mart
Top Dog Sponsor: City of Lakewood
Dedicated Dog Sponsors: Dog Life in CLE | Inn The Doghouse | Lakewood Animal Hospital | Pet’s General Store | The University of Akron, School of Social Work, Lakewood Campus
Poochy Sponsors: Diana M. DeCesare, Remax Beyond 2000 | Men’s Cuts | Panera Bread Catering