Rain Doesn’t Dampen Fido Follies; Children’s Art Show Always a Hit

Story and Photos By Nichole Richardson

Bruno, a pirate-dressed Bulldog owned by Heather Buchanan, won for Best Trick.

This year’s Fall Festival hosted two more crowd favorites: The Fido’s Follies and the Children’s Art Festival are always among the crowd favorites at the Old Town Fall Festival.  This year was no exception as both  were held at the east end of St. Francois Street and brought in crowds, despite the rainy weather.

Timber, a Huskee with owner
Ward Yeomans

Fido’s Follies is the annual dog show where proud owners bring their pooches to compete against one another for winning titles, and the Children’s Art Festival allows the community youth to get a chance to put their creative skills to work.

Biscuit with owner Glennon Grubb

Although it was raining, owners and dogs alike lined up to compete at 3:30 for the chance to win plaques, ribbons, and trophies in the Fido Follies

The free event was hosted by Terrie Bert, owner of Baronwood Kennels, and was open to any vaccinated and licensed dog. Canine contestants were judged in seven categories: Best Costume, Best Trick, Hairiest, Largest, Smallest, Best Kisser, and Crowd Favorite.

Judging was done by veterinarians Nick Toepke of Howdershell Animal Clinic, Theresa Terry Bremmer of Cross Keys Animal Clinic, and Denny Moore of Mallinckrodt.

As a corporate sponsor and ten year organizer, Terri Bert, could not have been a more fitting emcee. “I have been in business for 48 years boarding, training, and grooming dogs and I absolutely love them,” said Bert.

Winning dogs were given plaques, ribbons with medals, and the crowd favorite was presented with a trophy. This year’s winners were as follows:

Best Costume and Best Kisser: “Angel,” a stylish sun glassed Chihuahua owned by    Charlene Collins (bottom left photo)

Smallest: “Chi Chi,” a Chihuahua owned by Kim Tidwell (top left photo)

Hairiest: “Winston,”an Old English Sheepdog owned by  MaryKay

Largest and Fan Favorite: “MooMee”a pink swimsuit-wearing Great Dane owned by Lynn Schenle

Best Trick: “Bruno,” a pirate-dressed Bulldog owned by Heather Buchanan (see page 16 photo)

Although this year’s contestants were well behaved, the City has had several mishaps when it comes to this event.

“Last year we had a Golden Retriever take a ball from the baby pool and never give it back and a two year old child ate a Pup-Peroni treat. We just laughed so hard!,” recalled Bert.

Children’s Art Festival

Next door to the popular dog event, and in front of Florissant City Hall, was the Children’s Art Festival, chaired by Janice Nesser representing the Art Department at St. Louis Community College-Florissant Valley. This event used to be a photo exhibit called “Art at the Shrine” located next to the Old St. Ferdinand Shrine, but moved  last year to bring in more participants.

Florissant Valley’s Art Department partnered with the Women’s Caucus for Art to put on a great Children’s Art Festival for 2012. Different Florissant Valley clubs set up booths for children to do various crafts; such as creating Halloween masks, painting fall scenes, making Origami cranes, Spin Art, tattoos, and more.

Most community booths were free to participate in while others cost $1, with all proceeds benefitting the various Flo Valley clubs.

“It’s a nice way for the College to be active and involved in the community,” said Nesser, “And many people don’t realize Flo’s Art Department is nationally accredited. Washington University and Maryville are the only other two, so we really have a gem here on Pershall Road.”

Regardless of what was visited this Fall Festival, everyone can agree it was a huge success that benefited the community and brought joy and laughter to all.

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