Darlene Wendels / The Collegian
Otto, a miniature schnauzer dressed in a pirate costume for the annual Whitie’s Pets Pooch Parade on Saturday.
Tower District hosted the 8th annual Whitie’s Pets Pooch Parade on Saturday, uniting dog-lovers across the city.
The event also hosted a canine carnival and costume contest with prize categories such as “best dog costume” and “cutest dog.”
One of the dog owners, Becky Case, enjoyed seeing all of the dogs participating in the parade and hoped her “Game of Thrones” themed costume for her dog, Scout, would win the costume contest.
“Just to see all the dogs here and people together for an event like this is awesome,” Case said.
Another owner, Tyler Lester, was hoping to win the “best dog and owner costume combo” with his dog Daisy.
“I used to live in Tower and always came to this event but never had a dog,” Lester said. “Then I got a dog and came back. I’ve always enjoyed this event, and it’s fun to be a part of it.”
Contestants and onlookers; like Debby Maryily, saw this event as a great way for their dogs to socialize.
“It’s not just good for Tower [District], but it’s good socialization for the dogs,” Maryily said. “It’s the first event where a part of, and we’re excited to support the Tower District.”
“I heard about this event and wanted to come down here and socialize,” dog owner Cassandra Capriotti said. “I came to socialize and they’re [my dogs] here to hide behind my legs.”
“I love that it brings dog owners together, and I’m happy to bring out my dogs for them to socialize,” dog owner Rebecca Krantz added.
One thing to note is the amount of creativity contestants put into their costumes, from movie to circus themes, as one contestant Cisco Mendez did with his dog.
“I do clowning for a local circus group and perform around town,” Mendez said. “It’s nice to see the community come out in support and see people dressed up.”
Another contestant, Darla Lawrence, had a costume designer help out with her “Lone Ranger” themed gown along with her Tibetan terrier, Brandi.
“My girlfriend is a costume designer who helped me out; and I thought it would be fun, ” Lawrence said.
In all, nearly $2,000 in prizes such as dog food, treats and gift certificates were awarded to winners of the contests.