Tag: bark in the park
On an August night 16 years ago, Chicago White Sox fans were given the unprecedented privilege of bringing their dogs to a baseball game.
Five hundred seats in the bleachers were set aside for fans with dogs. A “doggy comfort area” was set up with sod, fake fire hydrants, and water stations. Vendors with dog treats patroled the area, and the Humane Society was invited to bring along and feature some adoptable pets.
That — the first “Dog Days of Summer” promotion at New Comiskey Park — sold out, as it would every year during the reign of Rob Gallas, former senior vice president of marketing and broadcasting for the Sox.
In a comprehensive article on dogs and baseball on ESPN.com, Gallas credits the “great creative department” he had with coming up with the idea, which stemmed from the fact there was a kennel at New Comiskey, where fans could lodge their dogs during the game.
“We thought, ‘How about if we allowed fans to bring their dogs out to a game?’” said Gallas, now the vice president and chief marketing officer of the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago.
This season, 16 major league teams are hosting dog days, with some holding multiple events. The Pittsburgh Pirates lead the pack, with eight Pup Nights at PNC Park .
Major as it is becoming in the major leagues, inviting dogs to the ball park have become even more of an institution in the minor leauges, with nearly 50 teams having dog-friendly promotions this season.
While the major leagues take credit for doing it first, the concept was most supported, refined and popularized in the minor leagues. (We’d suggest dog-loving fans and humane societies probably did their fair share of pushing, too.)
The Inland Empire 66ers in San Bernardino, Calif., hold “Man’s Best Friend Mondays.” The Greensboro Grasshoppers hold two ”Bark in the Park” games, and the neighboring Winston-Salem Dash are having five “Pups in the Park” games this season. The Lehigh Valley IronPigs hold two ”Dog Days at the Park.” In Albuquerque Isotopes hold “Bark in the Park,” and the Jupiter (Fla.) Hammerheads have the “Dog Days of Summer.”
In Colorado Springs, where the Sky Sox have hosted Bark in the Park since the late ’90s, and up to 250 dogs can be accommodated in a grassy area down the left-field line, says Jon Eddy, the team’s director of marketing and promotions.
“Frankly, what amazes me is, as a pet owner my entire life, how incredibly well-behaved these pets are on a consistent basis,” said Eddy.
Meanwhile, back in the majors, while the White Sox got the ball rolling, the Cubs still haven’t caught on. Wrigley Field doesn’t allow dogs, (although there is a dog park not far away, called Wiggly Field).
After the White Sox first allowed dogs in 1996, the Montreal Expos followed, in 1998. A year later the Minnesota Twins invited dogs into the Metrodome. Today, The Cleveland Indians have Puppypalooza. The St. Louis Cardinals have Pooches in the Ballpark. The Kansas City Royals have Bark at the K.
At San Diego’s Petco Park, where the Padres play, up to 500 dogs can be accommodated in the annual Dog Days of Summer promotion that includes a pregame “tail” gate party.
And in Oakland, the Athletics’ Dog Day at the Park attracted about 750 dogs — an unofficial record for a major league game.
As the ESPN article concludes, “Baseball is just better with a friend, even a furry one.”
Posted by jwoestendiek July 12th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, bark in the park, baseball, chicago white sox, dog days of summer, dogs, dogs and baseball, dogs in the park, greensboro grasshoppers, major league, major league baseball, minor league, pets, promotions, pups in the park, rob gallas, winston salem dash
It still only exists in artist renderings, but another step toward building a dog park in North Carolina’s Tanglewood Park will come this weekend, with a Saturday “Bark in the Park” festival aimed at raising money for the project.
The Humane Societies of Forsyth and Davie Counties are sponsoring the event — Saturday (Oct. 1) from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Activities will include a Doggie Jog, a Blessing of the Animals, expert advice from local vets and professional trainers, a mobile doggie spa, agility demonstrations and contests.
Local adoption and rescue agencies will also be on hand with adoptable animals.
The proposed dog park will be located on 2.3 acres in the park’s northern end, near the intersection of Clemmons and Harper Roads.
The Forsyth CountyCommissioners voted to approve the park in July, but with the caveat that it be completed by 2012.
Plans for the park include separate large and small dog lots, an area for obedience classes, watering stations & pet waste valets, an area to hose off dogs, and some type of water feature so the dogs can cool off during the warmer weather, according to the Dog Park at Tanglewood website.
The group has raised about $20,000 of its $150,000 goal, and it continues to seek funds, services and materials from individuals and businesses.
One huge donation came from Vulcan Materials Company, which contributed $11,000 worth of construction materials.
The project also received proceeds from a recent ”Pups in the Park” night at Winston-Salem’s minor league baseball park, home of the Dash.
Posted by jwoestendiek September 29th, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, bark in the park, davie county, dog park, dog park at tanglewood, dog parks, dogs, donate, forsyth county, fund raising, humane society, north carolina, pets, project, tanglewood, winston-salem
Ace and I finally got around to doing one of the things that was on our to-do list during our travels — attend a Minor League baseball game.
Across America, dog-friendly baseball games are growing more popular. For several years, many Minor League teams have been sponsoring them, and the big leagues are starting to catch on. At least 15 Major League ballparks are holding dog-friendly games this season.
Just 30 minutes down the road, in downtown Greensboro, the stadium was a gem, the traffic was non-existent and parking was plentiful (and only $3).
Those are some of the reasons I find Minor League baseball so much more of a pleasure: The prices, for tickets or concessions, aren’t exorbitant. The crowds aren’t huge. The fans aren’t obnoxious. It’s just much more laid back.
On Tuesday night, the tickets were $6 each, and a “pooch pass” ran $3. Beers were $1, hot dogs, too. There was no extra charge for the sunset.
Everybody seemed happy, at least on Natty Hill, the grassy knoll in left field set aside for fans bringing their dogs.
What I liked best about it was seeing so many people bonding with their dogs, and bonding with other people’s dogs, and bonding with other dog’s people.
Minor League baseball, particularly on dog nights, offers a sense of community — something that seems to be fading away in America. We’re more connected than ever, thanks to gadgetry, but somehow more insulated, too. We’re “communicating” more than ever, but not saying much at all.
The Greensboro Grasshoppers, the Delmarva Shorebirds, the Bowie Baysox, or the Toledo Mud Hens (and we’ve got to mention the Reno Aces) may not be the solution to that, but it’s nice to have a venue where you can look a person in the eye and exchange words.
Or, if you prefer, spend some time quietly connecting with your dog.
Either way, the dog’s there for you — whether you want to meditate or congregate.
In my book, when it comes to being social, a dog is much better than a BlackBerry or cell phone, Facebook or Twitter or Match.com — for the connection you make with a dog is much more clear and pure and genuine.
If dog nights at the ballpark weren’t already win-win enough, they also raise money for local shelters and rescues. All “pooch pass” fees at the Grasshoppers’ Tuesday night game went to Red Dog Farm, an animal rescue network based in Greensboro.
The Grasshoppers were holding two dog-friendly games a season, but this year dropped down to one.
We missed out on the pre-game doggie festivities, as Ace felt the need to make his mark on the streets of downtown Greensboro. Even though parking was right across the street, it took us more than 20 minutes, with his frequent stops, to get to the gate.
One inside the stadium, he stopped to meet some of the adoptable dogs Red Dog Farm had brought to the game. At first he had to check out every dog he encountered — and there had to be over 100 at the game — but eventually he became more selective.
Sitting on a grassy hill in left field — filled with people and dogs — proved a little problematic for him, as he kept sliding down. But we spent most of the time wandering around — me hydrating on $1 beers, Ace patronizing the many bowls of water placed about.
One red bucket in particular intrigued him. He thought he saw something at the bottom of it, and repeatedly submerged his entire head in it, not realizing all he was seeing was the raised surface at the bottom of the bucket.
A crowd gathered to watch and take pictures.
During nine innings of baseball, I answered the question, “What kind of dog is that?” 36 times; the question of how much he weighs at least a dozen; the question of how he got his head all wet about 10.
Back on our blanket on the hill, we enjoyed a sunset on one end of the stadium and, as the game came to an end, watched the moon rise like a pop fly over the other.
We’ll close with a baseball trivia question: Who was the first canine ever ejected from a baseball game?
Answer: Yogi Berra, a mascot for the Greensboro Grasshoppers. He was showing his ball retrieving skills between innings in a 2009 game (despite a stomach virus) when he stopped for a bowel movement on the field (an event noted in news reports and memorialized on YouTube). The home plate umpire, apparently offended by the act, ordered him ejected.
Posted by jwoestendiek June 15th, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: ace, allow, allowed, america, ball park, ballpark, bark in the park, baseball, bonding, communicating, community, connecting, dog friendly, dog's country, dogs, dogscountry, events, grasshoppers, greensboro, insular, insulated, major league, minor league, north carolina, road trip, social, socializing, society, sports, stadiums, teams, travels with ace, winston salem dash, yogi berra
Tillman, the California bulldog who has been recognized as the world’s fastest skateboarding canine, is visiting New York for Saturday’s “Bark in the Park” — an event where Mets fans can attend a game with their dog.
“He loves New York,” Tillman’s owner, 40-year-old Ron Davis told the Daily News as the bulldog showed off his skills in Tompkins Square Park. “There is a lot of concrete for him to do his thing.”
The four-year-old, 60-pound English bulldog — deemed the fastest skateboarding dog by the Guinness Book of World Records — set the world record in 2009 by rolling 100 meters in 19.6 seconds.
He’s named after the late NFL star and U.S. Army Ranger Pat Tillman.
The fast-rolling bulldog will be among the canines attending the Bark in the Park game at Citi Field, in which the Mets play the Atlanta Braves.
For the event — the successor to “Dog Day at Shea” — the Mets set a limit of 500 dogs, and doggie tickets usually sell out quickly. Human tickets are $40 and doggy tickets are $10.
Profits from the sale of dog tickets and a portion of the human ticket benefit the North Shore Animal League.
Posted by jwoestendiek April 21st, 2010 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animals, bark in the park, baseball, bulldog, dog, dog day at shea, english bulldog, major league, new york, new york mets, news, pets, skateboard, skateboarding, tillman, video
With Michael Vick’s return to the NFL this week, and all the bitter and sickening emotions it evoked, I thought we could use some slightly more upbeat and dog-friendly sports news:
More than 700 dogs and their owners showed up for the Brooklyn Cyclones “Bark in the Park” Game.
The Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals and the Brooklyn Cyclones hosted “Bark in the Park” on Wednesday — an event that drew more than 6,000 guests at KeySpan Park, where the Cyclones fell to the Vermont Lake Monsters.
But it was still a victory — eight dogs from Animal Care & Control of NYC and Animal Haven were successfully adopted to new homes.
In addition, many pet-owners took advantage of the low-cost microchipping services held the day of the event. “Maddie,” the 6-foot not-so-miniature schnauzer mascot for Maddie’s Fund, entertained the families and the Cyclone’s players.
“Wednesday night’s event drew more fans that brought their dogs than the previous two years, so it appears that the event is growing. We can’t wait to enhance the event next year in conjunction with the Brooklyn Cyclones’ 10th anniversary,” said Steve Gruber, communications director of the Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals.
The Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals, Inc., founded in 2002 and powered by the pet rescue foundation, Maddie’s Fund, is a coalition of more than 160 animal rescue groups and shelters that are working with the city of New York to find homes for dogs and cats.
(Photo by Rick Edwards, courtesy of the Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals)
Posted by jwoestendiek August 29th, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adoptions, animal care & control, animal haven, bark in the park, baseball, brooklyn, cyclones, keyspan park, maddie, maddie's fund, mascot, mayor's alliance for animals, minor league, new york, new york city, rescue, schnauzer, shelter, vermont lake monsters
The Baltimore County Humane Society’s most ambitious celebration of dogs ever is just four days away — DogFest 2008, a day-long event that will see an an anticipated 3,000 or more humans and their dogs descend on Shawan Downs in Cockeysville.
Saturday’s fest combines two former humane society events into one.
“The community is very familiar and supportive of our past events called Bark in the Park and Paws on Parade,” said Andrew Levine, DogFest coordinator. “However, these grew into such large events that we needed to expand to a larger location and merge them together.”
Bark in the Park includes games and contests for dogs, with events like “Dog Bowling,” ”Musical Sit & Stay” and contests for ”Best Kisser” and “Best Tail Wagger.”
Paws on Parade is a 1 1/8-mile course owners can walk with their dogs around the Shawan Downs track. The entry fee for the walk is $30 per person.
Also new this year is the “5K-9 Fun Run,” where owners can run a grass track with their dogs, with prizes going to those who collect the most pledge money for the run.
If that’s not enough, the eventn will also feature, Poe, the Raven’s mascot, Ravens cheerleaders and a classic car show, all included in the admission price.
“The event is really a big celebration for dogs because they bring so much happiness to their owners and families,” Levine said. “They are so loyal and dedicated to people and are considered as family members in most households.”
The festival’s purpose is to raise funds for the organziation and raise awareness. Local animal rescue groups will be on hand promoting pet adoptions.
The entrance fee, if you are not participating in the Paws on Parade Walk or 5K-9 Fun Run, is $20 per carload. Dogs on leashes are welcome. Retractable leashes are not permitted.
For more information, visit www.dogfest2008.org
Posted by jwoestendiek September 30th, 2008 under Muttsblog.
Tags: andrew levine, baltimore county, bark in the park, cockeysville, dogfest, humane society, news, paws on parade, shawan downs