The 2nd Annual Lakeshore PAWS Costume Parade was a fun and wonderful event aimed to raise awareness for homeless dogs. On that warm Saturday in October, families and friends came out to support Lakeshore PAWS Dog Rescue. The event started off with a parade around downtown Valparaiso. Afterwards, a costume contest for the dogs was held at Central Park Plaza where several winners were announced. Lakeshore PAWS Costume Parade brought a lot of awareness to the community about dogs that are still seeking homes. Many dogs were adopted that day, but also a lot of fun memories were made by families and friends.
The Director of Lakeshore PAWS, Jeanne Sommer, explained why this event is so great for dogs and the community.
“A lot of people like to dress up their dogs” Sommer said. “It’s an opportunity for everyone to bring their dogs out, get the exercise, and interact with other dogs.”
Owners not only dressed their dogs up in Halloween costumes, but their children as well. Lots of cute and scary costumes were seen that day. The judges had a challenge to pick between the scariest, funniest, and most creative costumes. There were several winners announced at noon, and the lucky winners were amazed by the lovely prizes. Sommer also gave more details about some important sponsors.
“Healthi Paws and Edible Arrangements provided the certificates for the prizes,” Sommer acknowledged. “So that the two-legged friends can get a treat as well.”
The costume contest and parade were great ways for community members to participate in fun activities, but also to reach out and donate money for a good cause. Sommer described how this event brings a lot of awareness every year.
“We have some dogs and puppies that need to be adopted. This event brings awareness that a lot of dogs need homes.” Sommer explained. “So instead of shopping try to adopt.”
The volunteer and Junior PAWS Coordinator, Pam Snow, helped explain why Lakeshore PAWS exists.
“The mission of Lakeshore PAWS is to find homes for all of the homeless animals in Northwest Indiana,” Snow stated. “Because they deserve it.”
Lakeshore PAWS also made sure to teach community members of little things they could do to help. Kristin Wesse, a volunteer, brought an important message for everyone to hear.
“I can’t stress enough to spay and neuter your dogs” Wesse stated. “There are too many dogs that need shelters, and all of these dogs need homes. If you can come and adopt one, do it. If you can volunteer that is good as well. Any little bit helps.”
A fellow attendee, Nicole Marvin, brought her family and dogs out to the costume parade for the first time. Marvin described why this event wasn’t just great for dogs, but also great for people, too.
“It brings everybody out and everybody gets to meet different people” Marvin said. “Especially the dogs really get help. It’s fun for the kids. You might come across a dog that you think is cute, and hopefully get it adopted.”
The Lakeshore PAWS Costume Parade was the perfect event for the dogs, but also for the people. There was no better way to bring awareness to homeless dogs today than this event. The event attracted many people, whether they were dog lovers, supporters, or families looking to adopt a dog. There was fun for everyone and the dogs enjoyed showing off their costumes too!
As Sommer stated, “Adopt, don’t shop.”
We can all learn something and reach out to help our animal community.
To learn more about Lakeshore PAWS or to adopt a dog, visit http://www.lakeshorepaws.org/