KV were able to fund the dog show this year thanks to a grant they secured for a three year arts project in the area. In addition to the dog show they aimed to bring artists and performers to create things of interest for the local residents and all also inform attendees of the opportunities to get involved over the three years of the project that includes the launch of the local radio station on FM.
By the time of the show beginning we had a range of contributors, community artists, puppeteers, drumming ensembles, guitars groups, local artisan producers, radio producers, toileteers(supplied by The Bakery- a nearby community arts organisation) refreshments and donkeys! all ready to make the day happen. Crucially we had a team of twenty volunteers to support the general running of the day, registering entries for the dog show, picking up litter, stewarding the site, I could go on but enough to say that without a lot of these unsung tasks being done such events do not happen. Many of these volunteers were, I’m proud to say, were from our dog walkers group and had been involved from the early planning stage of the project.
So to the day itself; the weather could not have been kinder and we saw the park transform over the next couple of hours. It’s amazing how a bit of brightly coloured tentage and cheap bunting is set off by the rich green grass and other foliage to great effect. Carol Ann has become our regular photographer at the project of late and her pictures capture really we the friendly vibe we created. The itinery for the day was as follows, from midday, in the show ring we had the dog show part one, performances and dog show part two, best in show, raffle, ending at 4pm. The other activities and stalled operated throughout the period.
We had our own stall were we were selling raffle tickets, cheap squeaky dog toys, homemade dog treats, capturing messages for our beloved pets on camera and generally promoting our activities. It proved popular and at one point when I was visiting the stall to say hi I was given the hard sell by a young lady with a painted face who was helping out to buy some raffle tickets for us.
Everything went more or less to plan and as one of the stewards on the day I was able to rove around the site seeing how all the interweaving parts of the whole were being appreciated by the punters who were local people who know a good day out in a local green space with your neighbours, at an affordable price is an all too rare occasion. Again the pictures of the day capture the fun being had better than any words but as we reflect of the legacy of the event, whether by reminisces of varying happenings on the day, funny anecdotes, suggestions for improvements next time, consultation sheets completed, radio jingles produced we can be clear that we are on the right track when investing our time an energies into this festival and future ones.