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Dogs, people get their kicks at Fun Day in Shippensburg

June 02, 2008|By JENNIFER FITCH

SHIPPENSBURG, Pa. - Linda Asper cried with happiness as her vehicle crested a hill on Britton Road, revealing a scene of hundreds of people and their dogs participating in activities at the park below.

Asper was returning to the third annual Furry Fun Day after taking one of her dogs home and picking up the other at noontime.

Sunday's event developed through six months worth of efforts by Asper and a handful of other volunteers with Kindly Canines. The organization, which split proceeds from Furry Fun Day with area shelters, uses therapy dogs in several settings, including nursing homes, libraries and schools.

"This is a recruiting event for us. We've been talking to people all day today," Asper said.

Six hours of contests and games drew record crowds to Furry Fun Day. Dogs competed in ice cream-eating and limbo contests. They donned costumes for a parade.

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Booths offered dog treats, services, clothing and caricature art.

"The blessing of the dogs was great," Asper said. That was done by Pastor Lenore Hosier from St. Paul United Methodist Church in Chambersburg, Pa., she said.

"It's fun," Ashley Kauffman said.

Kauffman, of Waynesboro, Pa., brought an English bulldog and miniature Australian shepherd. The bulldog clearly enjoyed soaking in one of the many baby pools set up for canine refreshment.

So did Jelly, a Jack Russell mix from Shippensburg. The wiry terrier stood in one for upward of 10 minutes and moved on to another.

"It's a great place to bring your dog and meet other dogs," said Connie Frey, Jelly's owner.

"It just sounded like fun for all the dogs. He likes to meet all of them," said her 13-year-old son, Luke.

Luann Filer dressed her Rhodesian Ridgeback mix in camouflage with pink tones.

"When I take her on walks, she wears clothes," said Filer, of Shippensburg.

Filer joined family at Furry Fun Day, returning after enjoying the event in 2007.

"There's a lot of little neat things like raffles and dog treats," she said.

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