Saturday, June 11, 2011

Bark In the Park

This morning Alfie, Charissa and I enjoyed a visit to Springfield's Bark In the Park, a fun event for dogs and their people benefiting the local dog park.

On the way, I enjoyed stopping by some of the Master Gardener demonstration gardens.  I'm trying to learn more about gardening in this zone, in hopes of having my own garden soon!

Alfie in a down stay in front of a colorful bed of flowers
Okay, okay, I'll pose in front of the flowers...

We weren't really sure where to go at first so I let Alfie lead, figuring he'd sniff out the excitement sooner than we could.  Sure enough, as we topped a little hill we saw it all set up...a bunch of vendors, a stage, some music, and a whole lot of dogs of all different shapes, sizes and colors.

a big shaggy black-and-white dog stands waving his tail and panting
Shaggy dogs...

close-up of a red and white Cavalier King Charles Spaniel's face
...silky spaniel dogs...

...sweet dogs!

There was a little talent show where people and their dogs were going up on stage to perform, but apparently not too many had signed up so one of the organizers went out looking for participants.  On the spur of the moment, Charissa and Alfie joined in too.

It was so fun watching the dogs on stage...I don't think any of them quite did what their handlers wanted right off, but hey, it was a crazy distracting situation!  They were all having fun and that was the main thing!

A fluffy white mountain of a dog sits and smiles and offers a paw to his handler
Love that smile...

a big muscular tan dog stands on his hind legs, reaching up for his handler's hand
And this guy was a real ham too!

Alfie on stage with Charissa, prancing and wagging
Alfie's turn!

When Alfie and Charissa got up on stage he looked out on the audience and had his usual "ohhh...cute..." effect on the crowd.  Major distraction!  He didn't do what Charissa wanted right at first so she improvised, having him "stand high" and finishing by putting him in a down stay, sprinkling treats around, and having him "leave it."  That is not a trick per se, just good doggie behavior, but it got an approving round of applause from the onlookers!

All in all it was just a lot of silly fun and a chance to meet a bunch of new friends.  Cool!

After all that excitement Alfie was pretty worn out on our way back to the car.

Alfie and me walking back through the park; he's on a very loose leash, panting, ears and tail down and relaxed...looks tired!
Think I'll go home and take a nap!


Becky said...

Oh Alfie it sounds like you charmed the crowd. How fun.

Jan said...

What a fun event and a chance to look cute.

Lisa, Ellie and Hosta said...

Oh, that sounds like a grand ol' time! Looks like you had so much fun!