by Dennis Dalman
Pets and their owners will soon get together, celebrate, have fun and walk for a good cause at the 27th annual Woofstock Companion Walk 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 12 at Wilson Park.
The event is the biggest annual fundraiser for the St. Cloud-based Tri-County Humane Society, which serves pets and people in Stearns, Benton and Sherburne counties. This year’s fundraising goal is $55,000, which is $5,000 more than last year’s total.
Organizers are seeking the following to make the event a success:
- Participation as a fundraiser via a fundraising Facebook page. To find out how to do that, go to www.givemn.org/organization/Tri-County-Humane-Society-1. Then sign up for a new account in the upper right-hand corner of the page.
- Gift certificates to local restaurants and merchants to add to prize packages for the top walking fundraisers.
- Any items, including pet supplies, that can be placed in the silent auction.
- Food and refreshments.
- Exhibitors, especially of pet-related products, who can exhibit their wares and maybe give free samples, although sales are not allowed.
- Sponsors, either businesses or individuals, who can get recognition in return for their sponsorship support. Sponsor levels range from $500 to $1,500.
Anybody who would like to give any of the above should call Marit Ortega of the humane society at 320-252-0896, ext. 14. The deadline for donating prizes and silent-auction items is Tuesday, Sept. 2.
On the day of Woofstock, the 5k walk will begin at 10 a.m. Registration will begin at 9 a.m.
Starting at 9 a.m. and until 2 p.m., there will be games, arts and crafts, face-painting, food, a silent auction, animal demos, exhibitors, music, a free bouncy house for kids, human jousting, a dunk tank and plenty of dog runaround time in the dog park next to the Mississippi River in east St. Cloud.
Back by popular demand is a hot-dog eating contest and costumes contest, both of which involve pets and people. There will be $50 prizes for the winner of the hot-dog contest, for best-dressed pet and for best-dressed person. Typically, people and pets show up for the event in tie-dyed clothing, headbands, peace signs, beads, moccasins and other hippy-like paraphernalia common in the mid- to late-1960s.
Registration for both events is encouraged via the Tri-County Humane Society’s Facebook page.
Last year there were 500 pet lovers and more than 300 pets at Woofstock, whose tie-dyed theme was inspired by Woodstock the famous music event of 1969.
Tri-County Humane Society Director Vicki Davis is hoping this year is even more successful than last year’s Woofstock.
“It’s been a record-breaking year of successes, and I want so badly to be able to keep that trend going,” Davis wrote in her fundraising letter. “Year-to-date we are celebrating an adoption rate of 94 percent. That means 94 percent of the animals we get in are getting fixed and adopted. Being an open-admission shelter means we take in animals that are unadoptable, too. That said, 94 percent is remarkable. Right now we’re treating a dog for heartworm, scheduling an amputation of a dog’s leg because of a bad birth defect, and more things like that every day. Now it’s your chance to give and let live!”
People can donate in person at the shelter or online at givemn.org/fundraiser/give-and-let-live55b7ce3adcOc3.
People can also donate by writing a check to “Tri-County Humane Society” and sending it to 735 8th St. NE, St. Cloud, MN 56304.
For more about the event and its needs or to donate, go to email@example.com.