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Pet event draws two-, four-legged crowd

PAWS volunteer Kerri Holmberg (left) holds adoptable dog Dakota and volunteer Kris Keller (right) holds adoptable dog Jazzy at the third annual St. Croix Petapalooza Sept. 30 at Warren Township park near Roberts.

It was a pleasant day in the park with nice weather, food, games and dogs everywhere.

Around 50 to 100 people and their dogs came to the third annual St. Croix Petapalooza, according to Protective Animal Welfare Society of Western Wisconsin (PAWS of Western Wisconsin) President Shar Patnoe. She said that is around twice the attendance of last year's event.

"Everybody was pretty busy," Patnoe said. "I was in charge of the dog games, so that was about every half hour I had a game, so I didn't get much rest."

The event featured the "Olympup" games, competitive games that dogs could compete in such as bobbing for hot dogs, a treat toss and a stinky shoe pile game in which a dog treat was put into one shoe in a pile of stinky shoes. The dogs were timed to see how quickly they could sniff out the treat.

While Patnoe said running the games and the event kept her and volunteers busy, it was well worth it.

"We couldn't have done the event without our volunteers," Patnoe said. "Everybody had great volunteers and the public too helped support us."

"I'm sure that we have made a number of new friends and volunteers," Patnoe added.

Several area non-profit organizations had booths at the event including: Helping Hands for Pets, Gregory's Gift of Hope, CatTown Rescue and St. Croix Animal Friends. Patnoe said these groups told her they thought the event went very well.

There were several adoptable dogs at the event including Jazzy, a four-month-old puppy, and Buttercup (called Lilly by her foster home), a 1 year-old Lab.

All in all Patnoe said the event was a success, and there will be a 2013 Petapalooza.

"We're counting on it," Patnoe said.

Gretta Stark

Gretta Stark has been a reporter for the River Falls Journal since July of 2013. She previously worked as a reporter for the New Richmond News from June 2012 to July 2013. She holds a BA in Print and Electronic Media from Wartburg College.

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