The weekend of October 20th and 21st was the time of the annual Pet Fest in Old Town Spring. Visit their website here for more information on the town. The brief description as read on their website is as follows:
“Old Town Spring is a quaint turn of the century town composed of shops, restaurants, museums, and art galleries. You will find a variety of antiques, collectibles, clothing and accessories for the home and gifts for all occasions.
Located near the original rail yards built-in the early 1900’s by the Great Northern Railroad, our Victorian-style shops have character which adds to the nostalgic feeling of having “stepped back in time.” Some of our shops occupy buildings constructed in the early 1900’s for the then booming railroad town.”
I honestly haven’t visited many shops in that area but the ones I have are really pretty cool. From homemade goods to vintage clothing can be found within walking distance. This area also has some great restaurants.
To finish setting the scene: Old Town Spring is approx 30 minutes north of downtown Houston TX. Harley and I live in Spring but I guess you could say we live in “new” town Spring. Ha!
(Harley can sure make em smile.)
Back to the Pet Fest. You can read the history of the festival by clicking here. Their website states:
“PetFest was started by Different Strokes Pet Boutique in 2001 as our way to give back to the pet community for their loyalty to our business. The emphasis was on adoptions, education and fundraising. We started in the parking lot of Creekside Plaza in Old Town Spring with only about 10-20 rescue groups, a few vendors and with one person organizing it. About 5 years ago, Old Town Spring approached us about making it a town event. We took over the town and we have grown immensely over the years. In 2010, we had 70+ rescue groups, 50+ vendors, and gave back almost $13,000 to 15 lucky groups. We still emphasize adoptions, education and fundraising but in a much grander scale with approximately 10 amazing committee members helping to put on the event voted as the “Best Pet Event” in the Houston area in a poll by Houston PetTalk Magazine.”
(Even lizards enjoy themselves!)
Harley and I have attended this festival for the past 3 or so years. We love it. REally it’s just an excuse to get out and be seen. 😛 The festival web site lists all the rescues and vendors that have booths. Anything from pet jewelry to custom leashes to pet houses to pet proof carpet and then some are there. Anything you can think of that is pet related. Anything. Just look at their list of booths! I personally loved the booth that made pet beds out of crates, boxes, old TVs and just about anything else you can think of.
One of my favorite things to watch is the Heart of Texas Dock Dogs. Basically it is getting dogs to jump off a pier into a body of water. A dog wins by the distance they jump. You can read more under the Dock Dogs 101 tab on their website. I love dogs. I have 3. All are around 15 years old so they don’t get around as much as they used to but I watch these dogs run and jump into the water and I remember a time when my dogs were younger and used to run just out of sheer joy. They also have an event where the dog is supposed to jump as high as they can to get the toy. I cannot believe how high some of these dogs can jump. Just amazing.
It is so fun to just walk around and meet people. Of course the vendors in the booths all assume that because I bring a large bird I do not own a dog or cat. (As a reminder I have 3 dogs and 1 cat.) I was going to make a shirt that said “Please don’t ignore me, I do own and dog and cat.” but at the same time it also served as a way to stay away from the “salesman” type that wanted you to buy everything they had to sell. A lot were interested in us or at least wanted to see Harley up close. Of course Harley loves the attention.
(Harley does like to make out with strangers.)
If there was one draw back I would say the fact that we were almost the only birds there. Houston is home to the Nation Parrot Rescue & Preservation Foundation and they host a weekend of seminars annually. You can read more about them here. I don’t know why they wouldn’t have a booth or share a booth. I do feel they need to get the word out about bird care and bird rescues. I would even help!
(I believe her name was Rain.)
So small compared to giant Harley. Despite there only being two birds we had a great time. Got to meet so many people and see all kinds of pets. One person brought their micro pig! I love to see not only us make people smile but see people light up when you talk about their pets.
I found out that a hedgehog has venom in their quills. I never knew that! I still want one despite the pain.
Of course there are too many cute dogs to show you. Click the links below and see the poodles that were shaved and painted for the festival theme!!! We had a great time. Can’t wait for next year.
You can see all the pics from both days of the festival here and here
(The theme was Peace Love and Paws and this hippy was from the Houston Area Ferret Rescue Group.)
I hope you all are having a great Fall. Harley and I sure are!!! When is the next festival?
Jim & Harley