By JOHN KLINE
THE GOSHEN NEWS
Halloween went to the dogs in Bristol Saturday afternoon as area residents converged on the Elkhart County Humane Society for the annual WoofOWeen costume party and Red Barn sale.
Located at the Human Society complex, 54687 C.R. 19, Bristol, the annual WoofOWeen party invites Human Society supporters to dress up their pooches in fanciful costumes in the spirit of Halloween. Attendees can mingle with other pet lovers and get their pictures taken with their dressed up dogs for a fee, the cost of which is then donated to the Human Society.
In addition to the dressed up dogs, visitors also have the chance to shop the Humane Society’s Red Barn, which is stocked with all manner of first and second hand items donated by community members with the goal of raising additional funds for the society.
“The dogs can come dressed up with their owners,” said Red Barn Sales Manager Sally Christeon. “We have picture taking, and I think they take donations for that. Then we also have the Red Barn, which is open twice a month, and that’s basically a perpetual garage sale. We have made a lot of money for the Humane Society off the donations from the public. All the money we make stays at the Elkhart County Humane Society. It goes nowhere else. So it’s just a fun day.”
In addition to the festive atmosphere, Christeon said WoofOWeen is also a great opportunity for people to view the many animals the society has up for adoption.
“They can just come and wander around, the dogs can visit, and it’s just a nice day for the people to see the dogs and cats and animals we have here,” Christeon said. “And of course, we’re always happy to see an adoption come out of that as well.”
WoofOWeen regular Carole Mitchell of Goshen decided to check out Saturday’s event with Chachi, her Chinese Crested chihuahua.
“He’s a prison dog today,” Mitchell said with a laugh. “We like to support the Humane Society, so we like to come out and spend money, and it’s just fun for us and fun for the dogs. We try to make it every year. I know we’ve done it for the last several years at least.”
Michigan animal lover Apiffany Ryno, dressed as Pebbles from the Flintstones cartoon, was a first-time attendee to the party Saturday with her pooch, Clyde, dressed as Dino the dinosaur.
“My mom lives here, and she told me about this event, so we decided to come and check it out,” Ryno said. “I’m really passionate about dogs and other animals, and I think they should all have a loving home, so I just wanted to come out and support it and donate.”
Nancy Kline, a fellow manager of the Red Barn from Bristol, also decided to take a break from her sales duties Saturday for a little doggy dress up.
“I’m here with Kiki, a mix, who’s dressed like a devil, and Susie, a Papillon, who’s a fairy princess today,” said Kline, who also happened to be sporting a festive witch costume of her own. “It’s looking like a great turnout today, and it’s a great day for it, clear blue skies and not too cold. So we’re really happy with how the day turned out.”
For more information on the Elkhart County Humane Society or to make a donation, call 574-848-4225 or visit www.elkharthumanesociety.org.