Cascades Humane Society has three new attractions in store for their annual fundraiser, Paws in the Park. The event is traditionally a 1.3 mile dog walk-a-thon through Cascades Falls Park (dogs and strollers are welcome). New this year is a 5k run in addition to the walk. The 5k will be chip timed by the Michigan Running Foundation and all finishers will get a special Paws in the Park medal. “Awards will be given to the 3 top runners in each age group, both male and female. CHS will also be celebrating the canine participants, with top dog awards given to the first 3 dogs to cross the finish line,” states Heather Leszczynski, Executive Director. Registration for the run also includes a Paws in the Park 2019 T-shirt. The 5k will start at 9am and race packets can be picked up the night before from 5-7pm at CHS or at Cascades Falls Park at 8am the day of the fundraiser.
Another exciting new feature is the presence of the Ultimate Air Dogs (UAD) – the premier dog dock jumping organization. “They draw a huge crowd at every festival or event they attend, and we are looking forward to seeing the dogs in action” Leszczynski says. “Ultimate Air Dogs is distance jumping, when dogs run down a dock and jump into a pool. The distance is measured from the dock closest to the waters’ edge to the base of the dog’s tail” explains Leszczynski. It is showcased in different rounds called ‘Splashes’. Leszczynski assures that dogs of all sizes and breeds are welcome to try this sport, as long as they can swim well. There will be three ‘Splash’ times (10am, 11:30am and 1pm) and you can enter your dog into one or all of them. Cost is $20 (pre-register or $25 the day of) per “Splash” and includes two tries and practice right before your paid ‘Splash’ competition time. UAD will award the top 3 dogs in each division after the third ‘Splash’. You can also opt to just let your dog practice in between ‘Splashes’ and not compete for $20 per day. “We are excited to have this new event at Paws in the Park and encourage people to try it. Or, just come to watch, it will surely be a lot of fun to see!” says Leszczynski. To learn more about this fun event or to register your dog, go to: http://www.ultimateairdogs.com/event-info/2019/PawsInThePark.php.
Lure chasing is technically not new to Paws in the Park, as for the past several years Janette from Dog Works Grooming and Boarding has set up her lure system for owners to try their dogs at this fun activity. This year there will be a competition to see which dog can run the fastest after the lure. Dogs will not run at the same time, but against the clock! The winner in each class (small, medium, large) will earn a certificate and a special goodie bag.
Paws in the Park is not just for dogs, however, and families can come to enjoy the festivities with or without the family canine. The Detroit Circus is back for their third year, with acrobats and aerial artists performing in three free shows. Also in line with the carnival theme and atmosphere will be carnival games, food for purchase, vendors to shop, a photobooth, dunk tank, face painting, and balloon twisting. Tickets for some of the carnival activities will be available for purchase the day of the event (Ticket prices are: $1/ticket or 20 tickets for $15 and 40 tickets for $25.). “While it’s all fun and games the day of, there is a serious side as this event was created as a fundraiser to help support the homeless animals in our care”, reminds Leszczynski. “Events, along with individual donations, business sponsorships, and grants keep CHS open, as we do not receive any funding from the government or state and national humane societies. Every dollar counts!” Leszczynski urges.
“How can people help? Register for the walk or the run and start your own fundraising page! Update your page with why you want to help CHS and share it with your friends and family on social media. This peer to peer fundraising is a large part of what makes Paws in the Park successful and every dollar donated goes a long way to providing the care that every animal deserves” says Leszczynski. CHS will recognize the top individual fundraisers and top fundraising team at the event and after on social media and their website. Other incentives also apply to fundraisers, you can learn more about them on the CHS Paws in the Park website.
Registration is $30 for adults and $20 for children until the day of the event, which is then $35 for adults and $20 for children. Like the run, the walk registration includes a 2019 Paws in the Park T shirt. Learn more at www.chspets.org/pip19.
About Cascades Humane Society
Cascades Humane Society connects animals in need with people who care by providing pet adoptions, lost and found reports, a pet food assistance program, low cost spay/neuters, feral cat program, educational outreach and Paw Playground – Jackson’s only public, off-the-leash dog park. A 501(c)3 organization, CHS relies primarily on the generosity of individuals, foundations, corporations and special events to support their services and programs. CHS receives no funding from federal, state or county government, or other national or state humane organizations.
CHS is located at 1515 Carmen Drive south of I-94’s Exit 141. For more information call (517)787-7387, go to www.chspets.org or visit us at 1515 Carmen Drive, Tuesday through Saturday from Noon until 6:00 p.m.