Furry Friends Gather For Fun At Paws In The Park


This past weekend, the Warsaw community came together for the first-ever Paws in the Park event located at Drake Harbor and the Community Building.
Hosted by a coalition of local animal welfare organizations, including Meow Mission, Stover Animal Rescue, Pawsibilities are Endless and CATS Assistance Team Sedalia, the event was a furry flurry of fun and philanthropy.

An array of agility courses and carnival-style games were designed and set-up especially for our four-legged friends. Highlights of the day included a costume contest, a walk-a-thon, pet-related food vendors, and the opportunity to snap photos with your pet. Not to mention, the water features, caricature artist sessions by Linda Hoover from Sedalia, MO, dog demonstrations, obstacle course, silent auction and trick dog demos by a dog named "Chance" with Gentle Souls Dog Training.

Attendees also enjoyed a variety of activities, from a pulled pork lunch and food vendors nestled in on Drake Harbor.

All proceeds from the event are being split between the participating rescues/shelters and MEOW Mission supporting their vital work in spay/neuter programs, pet food distribution, emergency medical care and foster cost assistance.

Feedback from the event has been overwhelmingly positive, with many participants and their pups already looking forward to next year's event.

"Plans are in the works for not just an annual return, but also potential spring and fall editions," MEOW Mission's Lynette Stokes said. "Stay tuned and follow Meow Mission on Facebook for updates and how you can contribute to the cause."

The park was alive with excitement as dogs of all shapes and sizes showed off their skills on the agility course and strutted their stuff in the costume contest.

The Lickable Art and bobbing for hot dogs was a success with tails wagging and tongues lolling as pets and their owners made their way around the park, all in the name of a good cause.

The event wasn't just about the activities. Attendees also enjoyed water features to keep the pups cool in the summer heat. Dog demonstrations provided both entertainment and education, showcasing the incredible abilities of our canine companions.

A silent auction, along with items for sale and free giveaways, added to the excitement, with all proceeds going towards a noble cause. The generosity of the community shone brightly, with sponsors stepping up to support the event.

"Thanks to the overwhelming support, the event raised a total of $2,724, with expenses totaling $753," Stokes stated. "Each participating rescue organization will receive $493 to support life-saving procedures for cats and dogs in need. The success of Paws in the Park was made possible by our AMAZING volunteers and the dedicated committee members from Pawsibilities are Endless and CATS Assist."

Mike and Donna Guy, originally from Blue Springs, found the Paws in the Park event exceptionally well-organized, allowing their 13-year-old rescue dog, Beemer (Westie-Poo), who usually struggles with anxiety at crowded events, to actively participate.

"The event's thoughtful layout and spaced-out stations enabled Beemer to engage in his favorite activities, such as peanut butter licking and character painting, without feeling overwhelmed. This careful consideration for canine anxiety allowed us to thoroughly enjoy the festivities for three hours with Beemer, marking a significant and enjoyable departure from past experiences," the Guy's said.

For those who wish to contribute to this ongoing effort, donations are welcome via Meow Mission on Facebook, where additional information can also be found.

Stay tuned for announcements about next year's event and more. We can't wait to see you and your furry friends again for another awesome day in the park!