Attend a Furry Friendly Event: Action-Packed Fun + Exercise with or without your Pup!

7th Annual Fast and Furriest 5K Run + 1-Mile Walk is Ahead for Your Best Friends

236504It’s said some of our most precious gifts we place in museums or vaults; others we take for walks. It is a very unique walk and run for dogs and people I want to share with you.

I think most dogs and pet people find ways to make friends. This observation is based on a recent dog park visit when I met a pet owner and her pooch visiting for the first time. Her dog, Hank, was met with wagging tails. Hank’s mom just moved from Atlanta. Other pet parents learned Hank came into her life in college and has been a constant companion through moves, break-ups, and celebrations including the recent job promotion to Saint Louis. Hank is helping her meet new people and learn about their new home.

Hank and his owner exercise together. I mean serious running. Hank is a Whippet, a superb athlete as well as a gentle companion. Several of us want to make sure Hank can stretch his legs in an upcoming event to help homeless pets.

The 7th Annual Fast and the Furriest 5K Run and 1-Mile Walk will be Sunday, April 26th at Tower Grove Park. The run is unique because it offers Hank and his owner the opportunity to take part in a professionally-timed race together. There are not many across the nation. Others will take part in the walk at a leisurely pace with our dogs. This is an event not only for athletes, but the entire family. Fast and Furriest also offers a children’s fun area, vendor booths and food trucks.

FF_Runner-Dog‘Pooch Poker’ is new to the annual fun-fest. Event organizer Robin Wood of the Animal Protective Association of Missouri (APA) says the game is open to anyone registered for the one mile walk: “Walkers will be dealt playing cards at stations along the 1-Mile Walk route. Players with a winning hand receive a prize at the end of the walk!” Hank and his mom are planning to run and walk with some members of the dog park community.

Animal lovers and APA supporters who can’t participate in the walk or race can still pitch in by fundraising with individual fundraising campaigns. Proceeds from this event will benefit the APA’ s mission of bringing people and pets together, advancing humane education, and creating programs beneficial to the human-animal bond.

You can learn more about this non-profit event and many other exciting community programs underway at the APA Adoption center at http://www.apamo.org/donate/fast-

and-the-furriest/ FF-group-336x223

Civic and Community Connections at APA Adoption Center Improve Lives of People and Pets

10440678_796489223779881_6550008399635534847_n You expect to see pets at the APA Adoption Center. But often it seems there are as many smiling faces of people there as eager animals waiting for a home. The APA welcomes civic, community, school and scouting groups almost every day. No matter your age, there is always something new to learn about pets, animal legislation, safety and the therapeutic value of animal visits to hospitals and health care facilities. It is exciting how many animal lovers want to reach out and support animal programs and pet initiatives.10860847_10153132346084184_3833746411222779365_o

Many visitors to the APA adoption facility not only take away new experiences and knowledge they leave contributions behind. For example, scouts take classes to learn about animal care and safety and get experience making pet beds and toys. Civic and school groups who come for tours and classes often bring collected donations of household items and craft supplies needed by the APA. In the APA education room where parties, craft classes and safety education sessions are held you will find “sit-upons” and pet toys made by local scouts.

1962588_796617773767026_3786104654545183798_n“Our community and civic partners are crucial to bringing people and pets together. From our toddler classes and scouting programs to the senior adults we depend on; age is not a barrier in making a difference for pets and the people who love them, “explains Jennifer Blome, Director of APA Humane Education.

IMG_4335If you are coming to the APA you will find another community connection in the lobby. April Showers, the Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri’s community service program has a collection bin near the front door. The Girl Scouts largest community service project, April Showers, provides personal care items to those in need and teaches scouts the importance of giving back.

11054375_796617727100364_6108358309687484906_nItems needed for the April Showers Collection Drive include soap, shampoo, toilet paper, deodorant, toothpaste, toothbrushes, mouthwash, feminine hygiene products, facial tissue, disposable diapers, baby wipes and first aid supplies.
The APA also has a donation wish list you can find online at http://www.apamo.org/donate/wish-list/volunteers at carnival

Small Business Sponsoring Baseball Sweepstakes: Enter to Win!!

One small business located in the heart of Cooperstown, New York is baking up sweet treats and doing a lot for the community at the same time. Founder Pati Gradi found a way to build her business and help help an important community resource at the same time.  Cooperstown Cookie Company™ products are made in cooperation with Pathfinder Village, a Cooperstown residential community dedicated to adults and children with Down syndrome.  The Cooperstown Cookie Company is committed to building awareness of and support for Pathfinder Village as the bakery grows.

You have an opportunity to get involved with this exciting enterprises. Cooperstown Cookie Company is offering one winner and a companion the Ultimate Cooperstown Baseball Weekend. The sweepstakes package features a luxury two-night stay in Cooperstown, 2 tickets to the Worlds Series Gala at the National Baseball Hall of Fame, meals at Cooperstown’s leading restaurants, and gifts from select Cooperstown retailers. You can enter online through August 31, 2009 at www.CooperstownCookie.com.

 

Love to Connect Online & Social Media: But What About Privacy?

I was working on an article last week about unusual marketing in public restrooms. I posed the question to my Facebook friends asking the most unexpected place they’ve found an ad. It was an immediate and varied response including some perspectives and experiences I was able to use in the article.

I am new to Facebook, but I am eager to share by participating in conversations online, getting opinions, sharing experiences and catching up with people who are very important to me—but I don’t see on a regular basis. This has been a great joy connecting with people where miles and time have come between us. I have been surprised at how the joy and satisfaction of these relationships springs to life online.

The biggest surprise has been the new and rich ideas I am enjoying as a result of my new and what some might call, “friendsters” I’m meeting online. I am discovering new ideas and perspectives as I share my experiences and ask questions. For instance, a new Facebook friend who has a cleaning business focused on public buildings has a perspective on what many business owners do wrong to turn off people who visit their facilities. I know I have in the past made some judgments about a business based on a visit to their restroom. It isn’t just cleanliness, but strong air freshener or even questionable colors, in a restroom can change the way visitors view a business.

At a time when we are all trying to do more with less to succeed in a down economy, I realize great ideas can come from anywhere. I’m excited to connect and talk with close friends and

those I don’t know well, but are willing to share their thoughts and perspectives with me. My employer, SBTV.com has an online community especially for small business owners, self-employed, and aspiring entrepreneurs where you can connect, blog, podcast, and find resources online to grow and promote your business.

With all the ways to collaborate and collaborate online, more of us are sharing our lives with people who are further removed from our daily lives. I was wondering about the loss of privacy as we reach out into the world to connect and share. What do you think? Do you manage your social media to protect your privacy? Or are you bravely entering the wide new world of social media with abandon? Please let me know what you think and what you are doing. I’d also love to hear some of the memorable conversations or ideas you’ve learned or come across via social media.