June 16th, 2015– it was a BEAUTIFUL day for Pet ‘Tales’ in the Park! Thanks to a grant from Kansas Wildscape, we were able to host this Outdoor Kansas for Kids event (visit Kansaswildscape.org to find more O.K. Kids events & info on the WildLifer Challenge). We had 43 kids in attendance (plus at least 10 adults attending), and we had seven dogs & two kittens there, as well!
We set up four stations in the Macksville City Park, and we are SOOOO THANKFUL to the many volunteers who made this program possible. Laura Stimatze, local 4-H Dog Club leader brought along her faithful four-legged friends to teach the kids about dog etiquette (how to approach dogs & safely interact with them), dog grooming (Pookie loved her brushing!), & obedience training. The dogs showed off their good manners & even some tricks.
The Pawnee County Humane Society representatives, Reva & Chasitty, brought along four dogs & two kittens to capture many of the kids’ hearts! They urged participants to spay & neuter their pets & to get them micro-chipped. They told how to adopt animals at the center, & they told kids how THEY can help the critters by bringing pet toys, blankets & food when visiting PCHS.
The third station was in the Shelterhouse, where kids made dog treats to take home. They measured & stirred & rolled to make No-Bake Peanut Butter Pumpkin balls. The balls were then either taken home to refrigerate/freeze to give to pets, or some were donated by the caring kids to send to the PCHS (maybe Jack, Bruno, Rizzo & Hershey got to eat them! 🙂 ) At this station, kids also learned what ‘people foods’ can be harmful to your pets.
At the final station, up in the Band Shell, kids learned about the WildLifer Challenge (they especially liked the idea of climbing trees, fishing & getting covered in mud!). We showed them some new Mutt-i-gree books from the library, purchased thanks to a collection development grant from the State Library. These books are for all ages, & they listened to Buddy Unchained as they ate snacks. We concluded this station by ‘digging’ for T-shirts, & singing the song “B-I-N-G-O.”
Thanks again to all the helpers listed above, plus: June, Debbie, Eileen, Debbie, Emily & Jacob. Thanks also to the Summer School teachers for bringing their kids, and to all who attended. Kids were able to GET OUTSIDE, learn a lot, & even take home bubbles & incentives to encourage them to continue playing outdoors. It was definitely a Tail-Wagging– Kitten Purring, Good Time! 🙂