Visit Mutt Strut next Sunday

Published 9:11 pm Saturday, April 29, 2017

Local humane society supporters will strut with their mutts and have all sorts of other dog-gone good fun during the society’s biggest fundraiser of the year.

The ninth annual Suffolk Humane Society Mutt Strut is set for 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. May 7 at Bennett’s Creek Park.

“We don’t receive any financial assistance from any organization,” said Rhonda Jones of the Suffolk Humane Society. “We function totally on donations and fundraisers like this.”

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The day will be filled with activities, fun and excitement for dogs and their human companions. The highlight of the event is the pledge walk.

“That’s our biggest way of raising funds through the event,” Jones said.

The pledge walk will kick off at 3 p.m. with a blessing of the animals by the Rev. Eileen Walsh. James Tackeberry and his competitive dogsled team will lead the walk, as long as it isn’t too hot for his dogs to be outside.

Fun for dogs will include a dog talent contest, replacing the dog costume contest of past years. “If your dog has a great talent, come and bring them for that,” Jones said.

Returning are the popular Frosty Paws eating contest and the Race the Wind contest, where the fastest dog wins.

A lure coursing demonstration, in which dogs chase after a white toy, will also be held.

“It is amazingly fast-paced, and the dogs love it,” Jones said. “They have the best fun.”

Human children will be able to enjoy activities including the Triple T tumble bus, face painting and a balloon artist and magician.

Adults will have fun with a cornhole tournament, which costs $25 for an individual or $40 for a team. The winning team will get a cornhole set.

Craft beer and food concessions will also be available. Vendors and a silent auction will be available for the grown-ups to check out. Many, but not all, of the silent auction items are dog-related. Many local rescues will have information and dogs available for adoption.

The band Rio will entertain throughout the event. Demonstrations on dog obedience and agility as well as by the Suffolk Police Department’s K-9 unit will take place.

Leading up to the event, local veterinarian offices will have a “Vet Challenge,” competing to see who can sell the most paper cutouts of mutts for a donation at their offices.

“They’re kind of in competition with each other to see who can raise the most money that way,” Jones said.

Jones said the society is looking forward to seeing hundreds of humans with their mutts at the event. It is free to attend, and a mutt is not required.

Bennett’s Creek Park is located at 3000 Bennetts Creek Park Road. For more information, visit