21st Nov 2022
As we enter this week of Thanksgiving, we've turned the spotlight on me...which I have to admit felt a bit self-serving as I began writing this piece but it's all in the name of promoting a cause I've been passionate about for years, the Scituate Dog Park.
When I'm not developing social media campaigns or writing blog posts for Workspace, I'm doing it for Friends of Scituate Dog Park (FOSDP). As a longtime member of the Board, I have been the President for the past three years and Chair of Fundraising for the past six. October is always a busy month for us as we host multiple events around Halloween….or Howl-oween as we prefer to call it.
On October 15th, we held a Cleanup Day at the Scituate Dog Park. Over a dozen people of all ages, along with many Board members, volunteered to tidy up the park so dogs and their owners would have a clean, safe place to play and socialize. While visitors to the park do an outstanding job of cleaning up after their pets, New England weather and invasive weeds can really make it a mess. Fortunately, the volunteers had tons of energy and enthusiasm and the park looked amazing when we finished. In addition to donating their time, many of the volunteers also made donations to FOSDP to assist with ongoing maintenance. Visitors who arrived at the park, unaware that it was cleanup day, also made donations as a show of gratitude and support. What a great community!
The timing of Cleanup Day was planned in advance of the following week’s event, a Howl-oween Dog Costume Contest. It seemed like a no-brainer to reach out to Workspace@Shipyard member Side By Side Pet to see if they would like to collaborate. I offered them the opportunity to have a table at the event so they could promote their all-natural healing dog food and treats. The collaboration was a win-win as Side By Side donated items to FOSDP for prizes and was able to distribute free samples and product information to the event attendees. Over 20 dogs participated in the contest. Prizes were awarded to both large and small dogs for Best Costume, Funniest, and Scariest but all of the entries were doggone awesome if you ask me. (Sorry, I couldn't help myself.)
Finally, after a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic, the South Shore's premier Halloween party to benefit the Scituate Dog Park was resurrected. FOSDP was thrilled to bring back the Howl-oween Party Fundraiser at The Barker Tavern. This event has always been our biggest fundraiser of the year. Side By Side offered products for this event as well. They graciously donated a Starter Kit for the raffle and treats to include in the sWAG bags. All who attended had a hauntingly good time and we raised nearly $6000! The funds will go towards the completion of our original vision – the creation of a separate park exclusively for small dogs. This brings me to the highlight of the event. I was able to announce that we have raised enough funds to have the small dog park built in the spring/summer of 2023!
It was a pleasure to work with the other FOSDP Board members and volunteers organizing and participating in all of these events. The dog park community is very passionate and friendly. Like the community at Workspace, lasting friendships are made there and people are always willing to help each other out. What made the effort I personally put into these events even more gratifying was being able to include a valued Workspace member in a way that enabled their business and a small, local non-profit to each benefit from the collaboration. When your work and passion collide, wonderful things do happen.
If you have a dog and haven’t visited the Scituate Dog Park yet, I urge you to go. It is located at 167 Driftway in Scituate and is free and open to the public from dawn until dusk.