DOGS AND PEOPLE ENJOY CARNIVAL-THEMED LI-DOG POOCH-A-PALOOZA FUNDRAISER AT THE PINE GROVE INN!

Photo Credit: Laura Pea Photography

Check out our Pooch-a-Palooza video for great shots of people and pups enjoying the event!

It was a hot and sunny June day, but that didn’t stop more than 90 people and their dogs, including Cody (above) from joining LI-DOG for Pooch-a-Palooza—LI-DOG’s carnival-themed summer fundraiser at the lovely Pine Grove Inn in E. Patchogue. The restaurant, which is located on the banks of the Swan River, generously donated their big outdoor lawn and brick-lined patio for the June 23rd event.

The event, one of LI-DOG’s most important fundraisers of the year, was a success and a lot of fun. Proceeds from the event support LI-DOG’s work to get access to parks and beaches for Long Island dog owners and their dogs, including their latest significant win—NYS Legislature Overwhelmingly Approves Legislation to Allow Dogs in NYS Parks! The legislation is now awaiting the Governor’s signature.

Given the forecast for hot and sunny weather, kiddie pools and a splash pad were set out near the banks of the river to keep the dogs cool, which several dogs clearly appreciated. For their human parents, there were tables with umbrellas, tents, and cool drinks with doggie themes like Beagle Mary’s, Tom Collies and Chi Wa Wa’s (margaritas, of course!).

The restaurant also created a special menu for the pups, including grilled chicken with veggies and rice, and beef sliders.

In between bites of coconut shrimp, chicken wings, and other tasty dishes, LI-DOG’s guests could compete in the Biggest/Silliest Lap Dog contest—always a fan favorite–and Musical Sit and Stay. Prizes were given for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place.

Congratulations to our winning Lap Dog contestants–Toby, Max, and Meadow in the small/medium dog category and Milo, Carter and Jeddy in the medium/large dog category! Congratulations also to the pups with the best Sits and Stays—Monte, Cinnamon and Logan!

For their more studious pet parents, there was a Name the Breed game and Guess How Many Dog Treats In the Jar. More than a dozen pet parents won free raffle tickets for the Novice version of Name the Breed,  while Raquel R. was the sole winner of the Expert version. Liam, one of our new volunteers, won the jar full of dog treats for his pup!

Guests could also visit the Arf-Cade and take a chance on winning small bags of dog treats, human goodies, and dog toys, on the Prize Wheel and Plinko board, while LI-DOG volunteer Lawrence Herman serenaded them on the ukelele.

Many people and their pups stopped by the Kissing Booth or stepped into the gazebo, which was brightly decorated with a Happy Day theme, to take fun photos of themselves and their dogs.

Meanwhile LI-DOG volunteer Debbie DeVirgilio helped pet parents and their pups create frameable works of art featuring their pups’ paw prints at the craft station.

More than a dozen businesses and individuals generously donated to our raffle and more than 15 of our guests won baskets! Thank you to the following sponsors: Bark Box, Brutus Bone Broth, Barks BakeshopClovis Point Vineyards, Emily’s Trims and Treats, Farmina Pet Foods, Great South Bay Brewery, Jones Natural Chews, Laura Pea Photography, the Nassau SPCA, Rachel the Dog Trainer, Take Two Brewery and Veterinary Emergency Group—Carle Place.

Plus, Alan Meschkow donated a custom pencil sketch of the raffle winner’s dog and his wife, Gail, made a beautiful handknit sweater and hat set for a lucky pup and pet parent.

Congratulations to all our raffle basket winners!

Photo Credit: Laura Pea Photography

This year, for the first time, LI-DOG also invited Special Guests to add to the fun. On hand were: Yorkie911 with adorable, adoptable pups; Barks Bakeshop with delicious doggie treats; Emily’s Trims and Treats had pet toys and accessories on offer; Farmina Pet Foods was handing out goody bags and specialized pet nutrition plans for attendees; while Rachel The Dog Trainer answered our guests’ training questions.

Also invited as a Special Guest was Laura Pea Photography who took wonderful photos of our doggy and human guests, volunteers, and the winners of our contests and raffles. To see all of Laura’s terrific photos from the event, check out her blog at: https://www.laurapeaphotography.com/blog.

To get guests into the party spirit, DJ Mike Kaplow provided music from the 60s, 70s and 80s plus commentary on the goings on at the event. LI-DOG Board Member Peggy Heijmen served as M.C. and helped guide our guests through the games, announced our winners, and kept the event organizers on schedule!

“We are extremely grateful to the management and staff of The Pine Grove Inn for their generosity in donating their beautiful outdoor space for our fundraising event and for their enthusiastic and creative participation in making the event fun for our human and canine guests!” said LI-DOG President Ginny Munger Kahn.

“We had a great time and we hope everyone who came with their dogs did, too,” said LI-DOG Events Chair Joann Garguola.

The event would not have been possible without our volunteers, she added, thanking Abby and Liam, Debbie, Donna, Judy, Lawrence, Lynn Kay, Matt, Melanie, Raquel, Sabina, Scott and Sharon.

Also, a special thank you to our fellow LI-DOG Board members who helped judge the contests, sell raffle tickets, set up, break down, and fill in wherever we needed them:  Barbara, Chris, Kelly, Liz, and Peggy.

“Great job to everyone,”  said Joann. “We look forward to doing this again at our Howl-o-Ween Pawty at the Pine Grove Inn in October!”

To see more photos from Pooch-a-Palooza, go to:

LI-DOG on Facebook

Or check out Laura Pea’s blog

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