Diverse menagerie expected for Petfest
As part of the Olde Pickerington Village Petfest in downtown Pickerington Friday, Sept. 7, a cavalcade of pets, along with their their owners, will get the chance to strut their stuff at the event's Pet Parade.
According to event co-chairwoman Deblin Jennings, as long as a pet is "pet and people friendly," it can join the parade.
Based on previous years' participation, Jennings said she fully expects a diverse menagerie of animals, birds and reptiles to parade through the streets of Olde Pickerington to the delight of the viewing gallery this year.
"In the past we've had alpacas, rabbits in strollers, and somebody brought a calf," Jennings said.
"Last year we had a turtle and hermit crabs," she said, adding however, the majority "are cats and dogs."
The Petfest will held from 6 to 8:30 p.m. on West Columbus Street, which will be closed to vehicular traffic.
The Pet Parade will start at 7:15 p.m. in the grassy area beside 80 W. Church St.
"We walk from Church Street down to Cross Street, then up West Columbus Street," Jennings said.
She said the Petfest is an "amazing and fun" event in which people (and animals) of all stripes can take in the sights.
"People bring their dogs and just sit and watch the parade," Jennings said.
"They just like watching it, but you don't have to have a pet to enjoy (the festivities)," she said.
Pet-related vendors and organizations will line the West Columbus Street offering up products, services and information.
Jennings said the event is very educational "... for those who don't have a pet (because) you can learn about all the different breeds, how to take care of them and the costs."
She said the Fairfield Area Humane Society is expected to bring several dogs that are eligible for adoption in order to introduce them to potential owners.
"People can't actually get a dog (right away) because (the Humane Society) doesn't want an 'impulse adoption,' but they can get the process started," Jennings said.
Co-chairman David Huskey said the events usually draw a substantial crowd of both animal owners and curious onlookers.
"We generally average 300 to 400 (people)," Huskey said.
"Over the last several years that seems to be the consistent number, so we're hoping for the same this year," he said.
Huskey said a healthy mix of both non-profit and for-profit enterprises participate in the Petfest.
"It's a well-rounded event," he said.
Vendors and organizations slated to appear at the Petfest include Diley Hill Animal Emergency Center, Scentsy Wickless Candles, Just Stains and Odors, PetZercize, Amazing Green Carpet Clean, Aroma Pets, Fairfield Area Humane Society, Heart of Ohio Ferret Association, Friends for Life Animal Haven, Cheetah Coalition Photography, LuvPup Pet Sitting and Training, Farmers Insurance, Dharma Dogs, and Food Pantry for Animals Pickerington.
Huskey said the Petfest has become a popular annual community event that is entertaining for humans and non-humans alike.
"It's a nice family gathering," he said.
"It's a good opportunity for the kids to have fun and the parents to take some pictures.
"It's geared towards families, included the four-legged members."
Parking will be available behind the buildings on West Columbus Street to the east and also Victory Park.
There is also parking along East Columbus Street and City Hall.
Pet owners must have their pets on a leash at all times, and they are expected to clean up after their pets.
Water and bags for waste cleanup are to be provided by the owners.
More information about the Petfest can be found at pickeringtonvillage.com.