In case you haven’t heard, Dogtoberfest is fast approaching! Join us Sunday, October 26, from noon-4 p.m. at the Carl & Mary Koehler History Center, 615 First Avenue SE in Cedar Rapids. A mere $5 admission is your ticket to live music by local musicians, appetizers and a silent auction packed with terrifically terrific items. Irish Jam will perform from 1-2 pm and guitarist Craig Erickson and violinist Natalie Brown will share the stage 2-3 pm.
All proceeds support Dogs Forever Safe Place, a state-licensed adoption guarantee dog shelter on Cedar Rapids’ southwest side. We receive no city or state funds and depend on private donations and fundraisers like Dogtoberfest. We are a volunteer-run organization, so all dollars raised go straight to help homeless dogs.
Silent auction items are still coming in, but here is what we have as of 10-8-14.
- Walking Tour of Cedar Rapids by historian Mark Stoffer Hunter ($150 value; $40 min bid) Donated by historian Mark Hunter
- Earl May gardening package ($52 value; $10 min bid) Donated by Earl May on Collins Road
- $40 gift certificate from Bliss Salon in Cedar Rapids ($40 value; $15 min bid)
- Dogs Forever original shirt, “Manners Are for Poodles” (choice of size) and DF’s humorous “Good Dogs Gone Bad” book ($28 value; $10 min bid)
- Snowmobile Jacket, FXR size Youth 12, also used as a winter coat ($130 value; $40 min) Donated by McGrath Powersports
- Park Farm Winery, $50 gift certificate to a wine tasting ($15 min bid) Donated by Park Farm Winery.
- Red Frog, 2 $10 gift cards ($5 min bid)
We also have items coming from Clarion Hotel, Buffalo Wild Wings, Cibo Fusion, Starbucks, Bushwoods, Petco, Pizza Ranch and more. Check back soon for more information.
Dani Aldrich organized The Amazing Irish Race eight years ago as a fun event she could enjoy with her friends. After the 2008 flood hit, she decided to charge an entry fee and donate money to flood organizations. A few years later, she decided to shift their focus to animal rescue groups. This year Dogs Forever was selected as the beneficiary of their race.
The race has grown from 36 people its first year to 200 people this year, which included 40 teams of five people each. The concept behind the event includes teams completing a challenge at the starting location. Then they received a clue in which they used to determine where they needed to go in order to complete their next challenge. Teams did 10 different challenges along with two “detours.” One of those detours included each team member picking up an item to donate to Dogs Forever.
This year’s route started at Noelridge Park and ended at Jersey’s in downtown Cedar Rapids. Woody, one of Dogs Forever’s dogs up for adoption, also made an appearance at the beginning of the event and made quite an impression on all the teams. Dani mentioned this was one of the best ways she has ever started the event. Participants donated 30 jugs of laundry detergent, 30 jars of peanut butter and two tubs full of dog toys and treats to Dogs Forever. In addition, a portion of registration fees was donated to Dogs Forever ($1,175) while some runners donated their winnings. To cap it off Tiffany Hermsen, one of the volunteers for this event,passed around a boot to collect additional donations as well. We are overwhelmed at the generosity of everyone involved with this event.
Thank you also to the Dogs Forever volunteers who helped out at the race and transported donated items to Safe Place: Michele Means, Kathy and Mike Couse, Lisa Sparrow, Kathy Frieden and Jim Edmunds. On behalf of Eastern Iowa’s homeless dogs, woof! Thanks!