Grab your leash and treat your pooch to a tail-wagging good time at Volunteer Wheeling’s inaugural FidoFest!
The event kicks off this Saturday, May 6 at the Fitzsimmons Family Dog Park from 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. The day will begin with the unveiling of a new art installation featuring artwork created by residents of their pets at a Paint Your Pup Paint and Sip hosted by Volunteer Wheeling earlier this year. The pieces from this event have been digitized and printed on large vinyl canvases to line the fence of the dog park.
In addition to the reveal of Wheeling’s newest public art installation, there will also be food trucks, a dog costume contest, a dog-themed vendor market, demonstrations, a pet adoption station, and an impressive lineup of dog-themed raffle baskets that were generously donated by several local businesses. The event is free and open to the public.
To commemorate the occasion, Mayor Glenn Elliott read a proclamation at this week’s City Council Meeting declaring that May 6 be recognized as “Wheeling Dog Day.” In his remarks, he noted the steps that the city has taken to become a more dog-friendly city, highlighting the accomplishment of opening three new dog parks across the city during his time in office. Mayor Elliott also cited new state legislation that was recently passed which grants certain businesses the ability to allow pets inside their establishments. The mayor will be in attendance at FidoFest this Saturday to provide remarks at the opening ceremony and serve as a judge in the dog costume contest.
The schedule of events for FidoFest is as follows:
- 11 a.m. – Opening Ceremonies
- 11:30 a.m. – Pet Costume Contest (sign up ahead of time here!)
- 1 p.m. – Wheeling PD K9 Demonstration
- 1:30 p.m. – Ohio County Sheriff K9 Demonstration
- 2 p.m. – Upper Ohio Valley Obedience Training Club Demonstration
- 2:30 p.m. – Jill Robbins Trick Dog Demonstration
- 3:30 p.m. – Raffle Basket Drawing
Opening ceremonies and the pet costume contest will be held at the center stage, located near the basketball court. All demonstrations will be held in the roller hockey rink. Vendors will be located along the basketball court and will feature a variety of dog-focused vendors, including Petco, Bandyanas, Zeb’s Barky Bites, Merk & Co., Mia’s Cuts and Cuddles, The Spotted Hound, Kandoodles, The Snotty Pooch, Happy Wags, Upper Ohio Valley Obedience Training Club, Canine Frency Versatility Training, Diamond Collar, Ohio Valley Pet Crematory, Park your Paws Mobile Dog Grooming, Road Home Animal Project, Janet Pissos, JoAnn Davis, and Samaritan for Pets. So Nuts 4 Donuts and the Wood Fired Pizza Company will have food available for purchase during the event
FidoFest will kick off at the Fitzsimmons Family Dog Park in East Wheeling at 11 a.m. with the public art reveal. All dogs are asked to be leashed while outside the fenced-in dog park. All owners assume responsibility for their pets as Volunteer Wheeling, Wheeling Heritage and the City of Wheeling are not liable for any damages or incidents that could occur.
FidoFest is generously supported by Dirty Paws, the event’s Alpha Dog Sponsor. The Wheeling Visitors and Convention and Visitors Bureau is the event’s Man’s Best Friend sponsor. Additional sponsors include the Dog Park Community Fund, Panhandle Cleaning and Restoration, Bark Box, and Wheeling Volkswagen Subaru.
Learn more about FidoFest by visiting wheelingheritage.org/fidofest, or by following Volunteer Wheeling’s Facebook page.