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Wednesday, Jul 30, 2014
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Annual Bark in the Park a downtown day for dogs

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Cotanchobee Park is going to the dogs Saturday.

Paws of all persuasions and their owners will take a stroll to raise money for programs and services of the Humane Society of Tampa Bay.

The 27th annual Bark in the Park begins at noon Cotanchobee Fort Brooke Park in downtown Tampa.

Participants and their canine pals will walk a 1-mile course along the Hillsborough River. For $25, individual walkers can participate, or they can create a “pack” of two or more, including four-legged companions, for $50.

A $25 donation is asked for attendees who are not walking; children are free.

Registration for walkers is open through the beginning of Saturday’s event at the park and online at www.barkintheparktampa .com.

The family-friendly event also will feature live music by Halcyon, food trucks and a beer garden. For kids, there will be arts and crafts and face painting.

And for the pooches, there will be dog-costume contests, a doggy-fun zone with a maze, doggie pools, paw print stations and more.

Residents interested in adopting a dog are encouraged to attend. The Humane Society of Tampa will have adoptable pets on site as will several rescue groups with breed- specific dogs including Rottweilers, golden retrievers, pit bulls, pugs and more in need of forever homes.

Bark in the Park is one of the Humane Society’s largest fundraisers, said Ornella Varchi, special events coordinator. The money goes toward programs and services that help animals up for adoption.

Last year, more than $89,000 was raised. Organizers hope Saturday’s event surpasses that amount.

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