Dogs dress up for charity

MT Cup, dog owners raise money for local animal shelter

A chilly Wednesday evening on the MT Cup patio was filled with the sounds of barking dogs and Halloween music such as the "Monster Mash."

Dogs dressed in costumes, including a lobster in a pot, a hockey player and a bagel with cream cheese, walked one-by-one in front of four judges, audience members and their owners.

The display was part of MT Cup's inaugural "Howl-oween" Dog Costume Contest. Approximately 25 people and 12 dogs participated in the competition.

The winning dog, a 3-year-old Labrador named Darby, was dressed as a hula girl.

Senior urban planning major Allie Antico said she was walking Darby in the show for fun and to help support Animal Rescue Fund.

"I think it was a fun event," Antico said. "[ARF] is a good program, and I am happy that I got to support it."

Howl-oween, organized by MT Cup Manager Aron Fenton, was created to help support ARF, a no-kill animal shelter in Muncie.

"We chose a dog costume contest because we thought it would be a fun way to celebrate the holiday season with a twist, as well as help support a local charitable organization in ARF," Fenton said.

ARF founder Terri Panszi said the organization works to relieve animal cruelty, abuse, neglect and overpopulation.

The contest was able to raise $78 for ARF. The cost to participate was $5 per household (up to two dogs) in advance and $5 per dog at the door.

ARF staff member Melissa Blair said in addition to the Howl-oween Dog Costume Contest, ARF does many fundraisers with the community. It holds events such as "Mutt Strut," a walk on the Cardinal Greenway, and "Bow-Wow Boogie," a doggie dance, she said.

Fenton said he hopes to continue Howl-oween in the future.

"Given the response this year and the time we threw it together, I would definitely anticipate this to happen in the future and hopefully similar events for other organizations as well," he said.


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