Event Articles Archives
The Montgomery County Humane Society pulled out all of the stops Saturday evening as they hosted their annual Love Ball at the Hyatt Regency Bethesda – and it had all the makings of a spectacular event! This Gala is held annually to celebrate all of the compassionate work of volunteers and all animal-lovers, in saving homeless dogs, cats, rabbits, birds and other animals every year.
Everyone was in their best cocktail attire and many arrived with a dog, or two. The festivities began with a cocktail reception and an opportunity for guests to view and bid on numerous products and services, ranging from artwork to vacation trips, that had been donated by local and national companies. A very talented caricaturist was also on hand to draw portraits of people and their dogs.
Dan and Kelly Blankfeld arrived with Anna a, 14 year-old Pit Bull, who was representing the “pack” of the Blankfeld’s three dogs, two Pit Bulls and one Boxer Bull Mastiff. This was the second year that Kelly has served on the Love Ball committee as the person in charge of the auctions.
Another early arrival to the Gala was Ellie Slotkin who brought Lexi, a Malti-Poo. She explained that shortly after moving to the DC area with her husband three years ago she was interested in volunteering with a charity, so she did some research on non-profit organizations and found the Humane Society. Ellie remarked, “Everyone that I met at the MCHS from the Volunteer Coordinator to the Events Coordinator was wonderful and easy to work with, so I decided that this would be my number one charity, and the one for which I would volunteer my time”
Ellie went on to say, “My major responsibility as a volunteer was to gather many of the silent auction items from area businesses. We were very fortunate this year that many local businesses in Montgomery County were extremely generous in donating items, from restaurants to hair salons. In my opinion I think that the auction looks even better than ever before – one of the most exciting year’s we’ve had yet. The MCHS also has a new Special Events Coordinator, Juliana Willems, who is wonderful and our committee has been just outstanding.”
Petros Voskerchian one of the evenings honored guests arrived at the Hyatt escorting Friend, an Australian Shepherd who had been rescued by the Humane Society. Petros was being honored at the evenings ceremonies as the number one Veterinarian.
Debra Robinson and her boyfriend Jody Kenote attended the Love Ball with Debra’s 5 year old, “son” Benji. Debra explained, “I first saw him at the house of a friend who was a breeder and Benji was very shy and had a big head. I didn’t think anyone was going to take him. My friends kept on saying to me that with my lifestyle I couldn’t possibly handle a dog. But, every time I went over to my friend’s house Benji would walk over to me and tug on my heartstrings, so I decided to take him home.” Debra chuckled as she said, “I’m eventually going to have a Bark Mitzvah for Benji”. Jody added, “Me and Benji get along great”. Debra is an avid animal advocate and dog-lover and was quick to add, “Eventually I would like to buy some land in the country and rescue dogs”.
Among the many other guests that attended the Love Ball Gala with their dogs were Leslie Casaya with her Pomeranian Sophie, Vickie Quezada with her 83 pound, Pit Bull Labrador mix Chino, Pat Culpepper with Lily a 10 year old, Standard Poodle, Mitzy Harp and Sarah Yassin with Bridget Victoria, Cathy Corbin with her Yorkie, Lilly, and Tony and Sherri Bruno who had traveled from Philadelphia with Seamus and Profittarollie.
Once everyone was in the ballroom this year’s emcee Sue Palka, FOX5 weather forecaster kicked off the evening with opening remarks, and was followed by Cris Bombaugh, President and CEO MCHS, who recognized and honored individual attendees for their devoted work. She also gave her heartfelt thanks on behalf of the Montgomery County Humane Society to all who worked tirelessly throughout the year in their efforts to rescue and save the lives of thousands of animals in need.
The Montgomery County Humane Society is the largest animal welfare organization in Montgomery County, providing shelter and care to thousands of homeless animals every year. They offer a full range of services including foster care, rescue network placements, adoption counseling, behavior seminars, bereavement support, humane education, community outreach, volunteer training and much more. The Love Ball is one of MCHS’ biggest fundraisers, with proceeds supporting all of these vital programs and services.
For more information visit their website at…
With a laid-back ambiance and warm, friendly atmosphere the Doggy Happy Hour at Jackson 20 Restaurant stands as one of the most popular in the metro DC area. Set within the confines of the inner courtyard of the Hotel Monaco in Old Town Alexandria, this doggy friendly happy hour is both cozy and inviting. The large red-bricked area provides just the right amount of space for dogs and people to mingle freely, and enjoy the company of other dogs and their human companions. There are ample tables with very comfortable chairs and even a few couches on which to relax, sit back and enjoy the open-air. By 6:00 pm on warm, sunny days the courtyard is bustling with people unwinding from their workweeks. Plenty of parking is also available in either the underground parking garage below Market Square (adjacent to City Hall) across the street or on neighboring streets.
On this Thursday evening Amy Knebel and her husband John who just six months ago moved from Chicago to Alexandria, arrived at the happy hour with Lou Lou Maybelline. Amy explained, “Lou Lou was adopted when she was around 10 weeks old from the Anti-Cruelty Society in Chicago. She had been one of the dogs moved out of shelters in the central Midwest to make room for dogs being moved north, after they had been left homeless as a result of hurricane Katrina”.
Lou Lou had been sent to Chicago with her mother and sibling puppies after being rescued from neglect on a farm, and Amy mentioned that she and her husband adopted her on the same day that Lou Lou’s siblings were also adopted. “She started positive reinforcement training shortly thereafter and because she has such an easygoing temperament her trainers recommended that she become a therapy dog”, added Amy. So Lou Lou was trained in specific skills that she would need as a therapy dog, enabling her to visit patients in Chicago area hospitals. She also received additional, specialized training so that she could work with patients undergoing occupational therapy.
After moving to the metro DC area, Amy involved Lou Lou in working with Pets on Wheels, an organization which coordinates bringing loving pets on visits with residents of area nursing homes and assisted living facilities. In addition to being a therapy dog Lou Lou is quite talented and knows a number of tricks including giving “high-fives” (see photo), praying, jumping up and off of things, balancing on her hind legs, taking a bow, and posing for pictures.
Another person at Thursday’s happy hour was Randy Plante with his dog Oliver. His tradition of going to the happy hours began in the summer of 2002 when a flight attendant friend invited him to one. He found that he had such a great time that he eventually began hanging out with people who have dogs – and because he had so much fun, he decided to adopt. So he researched various rescue groups, visited a number of shelters and eventually saw Oliver’s picture on PetFinder.com.
At that time Oliver was being sheltered at the Washington Animal Rescue League and after going through the adoption process Randy brought him to his new forever-home. Randy exclaimed, “Adopting Oliver was one of the best decisions I ever made”. Randy, a former Air Force pilot, was so inspired by the experience that he decided to write a book about searching, finding and adopting Oliver. The book entitled “My Wingman Oliver” is currently being printed and will be available soon.
Also making an appearance this evening, as well as at every doggy happy hour was Charlie, a very friendly Bichon Frise, who serves as the Director of Pet Relations at Hotel Monaco Alexandria. Woods Morrison, Restaurant Manager, pointed out that, “Charlie is responsible for making all of our four-legged guests feel welcomed and comfortable”.
Restaurant 20 will be hosting a Doggy Happy Howl-o-Ween party on Thursday, October 27th. This Happy Hour will benefit the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria and has in years past been attended by hundreds of people and their dogs, decked out in some highly creative costumes.
Be sure to get there early if you want to enter your dog in the contest because the number of entrants is restricted to the first 50 who apply. For more details on the contest see the Jackson 20 link below.
Prizes will be awarded for:
- The Most Glamorous Get-Up. Prize: Overnight stay at a Kimpton New York property
- The Best Dressed Couple (pet/owner costume combo). Prize: Overnight stay the Hotel Palomar Philadelphia
- The “Top Dog” Award (best overall costume). Prize: Overnight pet package stay and dinner at the Hotel Monaco Alexandria and Jackson 20 Restaurant.
Jackson 20: An Alexandria Restaurant Celebrating Modern Tradition
Located in the heart of Old Town Alexandria, Virginia, Jackson 20 is at once elegant and casually comfortable, contemporary and rooted in tradition. Our namesake, President Andrew Jackson, was legendary for his hospitable nature – he was the first U.S. president to invite the public to attend the inaugural ball. True to this spirit, Jackson 20 is a convivial and popular gathering place. Here you’ll find a welcoming atmosphere and fresh, inspired American regional cuisine.
Jackson 20 Restaurant and Tavern
480 King Street
Alexandria, VA 22314
Phone: 703 842 2790
The Washington Humane Society (WHS) held their annual DC Walk For The Animals this past Saturday, October 15 in Adams Morgan and surpassed their fundraising goal of $55,000.
The day began very early for WHS volunteers, setting up registration and vendor booths, signage, an agility course, games, and a stage for the day’s contests. By late morning the park was teeming with activity as hundreds of dogs and owners mingled in front of various booths, and strolled across the playing field.
Daniel D’Eramo and Michael Triebwasser, WHS Humane Law Enforcement Officers were on hand to help educate people about animal welfare, and about the services that their office provides. Michael explained, “We are alerted to situations of animal abuse by the general public and work closely with District Police to conduct investigations and rescue animals in need”. These cases range from situations in which dogs are denied adequate shelter, to animals who have been starved, to biting incidents, to cases of a much more egregious nature.
The Master of Ceremonies for this year’s event Will Thomas, weekend anchor with Fox 5 News arrived with Lex, a long-haired, mini- dachshund. This was Will’s 5th year participating in the event and one of his duties as the emcee was to preside over contests that included Best Dressed Dog, Best Dog/Owner Look-a-Like, Musical Sit and Best Trick. Remarked Will, “My favorite is the owner and dog lookalike contest, and it’s surprising that sometimes there really is a resemblance.” He added, “We’re also here to thank the sponsors and to raise, much-needed funds for the Washington Humane Society.”
Kirsten Stade was an early arrival along with Sandy a 10 month old Pit bull puppy and a prospective adoptee. Kirsten volunteers with WHS and stated that Sandy had been very stressed out living at the shelter, so she took her in as a foster dog to live with her other foster dog, as well as her senior dog. Kirsten explained that Sandy is being trained with positive reinforcement and doing very well. One often hears of the deep compassion felt by those who strive to help less fortunate animals, and she explained her own motivation in part by saying, “My goal is to rescue as many dogs and save as many lives as possible.”
Danny Allgeier a resident of Van Ness in DC was at the Walk for some outdoor fun and socialization with Sprout, a prospective adoptee at WHS. Danny, a dog-lover, doesn’t have one of his own because of the rules of his apartment building, so he lives a bit vicariously by volunteering once a week at one of the WHS shelters. Danny typically helps to clean out the stalls, walk the dogs, and show potential adopters in search of a dog. Danny said, “It’s a pretty good setup. The dogs in the shelter are always happy to see me and I’m very happy to see them as well.”
The socialization in the ball field actually was an integral part of the DC Walk For The Animals, and provided the rallying point for the subsequent one-mile procession through the surrounding neighborhood. And by the time it had begun everyone appeared to join in the spirit of the moment – for this very worthy cause.
This year’s DC Walk for the Animals proved to be a tremendous success for the Washington Humane Society, and over $56,000 was raised. Top fundraisers included:
- Julie Conway ($7,435)
- Andrew Weinstein ($4,375)
- Jennifer Sullivan ($3,025)
- Lisa LaFontaine ($2,515)
- Carrie Mathuran ($1,570)
- Christine Nassikas ($1,125)
- Diana Rock ($1,030)
- Margaret Milroy ($1,010)
- Angela Younger ($860)
- Stacey Lipscomb ($815)
The Washington Humane Society (WHS) the only Congressionally-chartered animal welfare agency in the United States, has been the area’s leading voice for animals since 1870.
As the only open-access shelter in the Nation’s Capital, the WHS provides comfort and care to nearly 30,000 animals each year through its broad range of programs and services including sheltering, adoption spay and neuter, CatNipp, Humane Law Enforcement, lost and found, human-animal therapy programs and Humane Education.
Throughout the years, the organization has helped spearhead new legislation to protect the animals that live in the nation’s capital. In the 1960s and 70s, WHS helped DC create laws to prevent animal hoarding, and better health standards for pet shops and medical research clinics.
WHS operates two shelter locations: their private shelter at 7319 Georgia Avenue NW, as well as the District of Columbia Animal Care and Control Facility (under contract by the Department of Health) at 1201 New York Avenue NE. The organization’s administrative offices are located at 4590 MacArthur Boulevard, NW. WHS has nearly 100 dedicated employees, 22 distinguished members on the Board of Directors and more than 300 active volunteers.
For more information on the Washington Humane Society please visit their website at http://support.washhumane.org/site/PageServer .
Thousands of people attended Clarendon Day on Saturday, September 24, a beautiful fall day, as Wilson Boulevard was lined with booths of all kinds adjacent to, and stretching beyond the Metro station. People were strolling up and down the street stopping to sample food, inspect crafts and artwork, learn about various health related topics, and keep abreast of the latest in County civic and road-building affairs, as well as bank financial services. There even were booths for shoulder/back massages, and a chance to grab “floating” dollar bills in a plexi-glass enclosure….
Thousands of people and numerous canine companions attended the 4th Annual Wags ‘N Whiskers event on Saturday, September 17th in The Village at Shirlington. The festive atmosphere was highlighted with pet contests, exhibitions, portraits, food and drink, and so much more. And, Rescue and Shelter groups were also there with dogs, providing their tireless support to find these canines “forever homes”. Dogs of all sizes, colors and breeds appeared to have a good time mingling with one another – in a virtual sniffers paradise. Here’s a sampling of those who attended….
The annual BlogPaws Conference was held this past weekend at the Sheraton in Vienna, Virginia and it proved to be an event filled with a lot of pet-related fun and inspiration. The conference was attended by pet-lovers from all over the country who also have a passion for blogging on various pet topics. More than 350 attended the 3-day event. (See photos in the Event section on the Home page). A number of workshops were given on aspects of pet blogging, and keynote speaker presentations included one given by the heroes of “Rescue Ink”.
Greyhound Pets of America, a national, non-profit is devoted to the adoption of those greyhounds who no longer participate at racetracks throughout the country. Greyhounds are gentle and loving – and make excellent pets in qualified homes.
The Northern Virginia Chapter of this organization regularly holds “Meet and Greet” sessions at the following locations throughout northern Virginia. These sessions afford you the opportunity to learn about greyhounds, and how to adopt one.