“ Our First Community Pack Walk Recap!”
“Our First Community Pack Walk Recap -April”
It’s been just over one week and we are finally putting together a blog on the first ever Solgave Animal Solutions “Community Pack Walk” held at Gulley Park in Fayetteville, AR
You found out what we hoped it would be, was designed to be, in the first blog “And They’re Off…” but we did not know until the day of the event what it would truly turn out to be.
Sunniva and I had quiet hopes it would be 10-15 people so that we could mange it, not be too nervous and anything over that was going to be a pleasant surprise! As the final week approached, the curiosity and sheer numbers of people that appeared to be coming overwhelmed us!
My guess as of the night before the event was anywhere from 20-75 people and 30-90 dogs. Based on our sign in sheets, and best guesses it looks like we had around 50 people and at least 60 dogs in attendance. 60 dogs in attendance!!!!!
We got there an hour early to meet our friend Jon from Joey’s Dog Bakery as he had the vendor tent, table, and bags we were going to use because for his generosity!
As the time slowly slipped away I was worried he might have had an accident or a flat tire! Probably 20 very early people gathered around and since our tent and expo area was not set up we just mingled together and met the dogs and rescues that were showing up one by one.
Then the message he was close! The anticipation and heart beat was racing now! Instead of one hour we had 15 minutes at best, but we knew we could do it!
A friend of mine who showed up early with her dog for the walk helped us get the tent up in record speed and with a crowd now gathering we were hitting the 10AM time point.
“Sunniva” I yelled!! “Yep, it’s time” she hollered back.
6 months of planning, a dream of ours that incorporated a unity of a random mix of the 43 shelters in Northwest Arkansas and the ability to get dogs outside in their natural environment where they could more easily get adopted was finally coming true! We wanted like-minded people and their 4-legged friends to experience the true “Pack Walk” energy. We wanted clients that had issues with dogs before to see how they’d do in public. We wanted you to connect with your dog outside and get in the habit of walking!
I started the introductions and we got to hear from several local shelters and rescues about who they are, what dogs they brought, where their rescue is located, etc. They were so wonderful in spirit, information, and energy!
Springdale Animal Shelter had two in attendance, Fayetteville Animal Shelter had two in attendance, we had Old Man’s Riverfront Rescue, Maverick’s, Pit Bull Ambassador of NWA, Tailwaggers, and I be forgetting somebody. We had one who broke her hand the day before or 7 would be the total of rescues and shelters at the first walk! Not bad!
We’re looking to add 2 vendors (4 total) and 2 more rescues to the second to keep this train moving.
After introductions were over I sent Sunniva out to lead the way and 60 dogs and close to 50 people went in unison around the trail with no problems! The “pack energy” was fantastic! The weather held out great!
Jon, Catherine, and I worked frantically to get bags ready with gifts in them, prepare for the giveaways that Joey’s Dog Bakery had and have our final words ready as they came around the corner to finish!!!
I had goosebumps to see them coming in with big smiles on their faces.
“We’ve never had so many shelters or rescues working together for the common good” one person anonymously said. Many host their own events but our hope was to see them get to promote their own events, and use this 12 times a year concept to realize what we all have in common is a love of animals, and desire to get so many adopted that need forever homes.
I have not been around long enough to know if this is true, but we were so excited to see so many big and small rescues/shelters that were there for one common theme. To help show some wonderful adoptable dogs in the real environment and create some unity in this amazing network of 43 shelters and rescues that exist in NWA!
I just found yesterday WE HAD ONE ADOPTION FROM THIS EVENT! We waited till this blog to announce it officially but that is amazing!
Remember that dogs in their natural environment act differently than they do in cages so we believe that this 12 times a year (monthly) concept that is held in different spots each month can continue to help educate/inform/and advocate adoption of so many wonderful dogs held in so many wonderful organizations care.
We learned a lot during this first one. We learned that you guys care!! We learned the public is curious about what a “Community Pack Walk” means. We learned that the dogs can walk in one direction to show us the energy of pack mentality and that if we keep walking in one direction we have balance, trust, and respect!
Our next event will be in Bentonville. Details are going to be in the new event page we created and we expect more people, more dogs, and more stuff to give away! Stay tuned and tell your friends!
This dream of ours has already came true to see the first one as such a success!
There will be more details soon, but one cool thing we are working out the fine print is ONE FREE YEAR OF PET SITTING if you make all 12 events. A contest to add even more spark to a cool event. These monthly walks will include sunrise events, dress up events, fall hikes in Devil’s Den and some in bad weather so prepare for some rain gear days!.
We’ll bring food to some events, and ask you to bring snacks to others! We’ll make sure our pooches have water if a creek is not nearby and we’ll always strive to have more laughs, more fun, and more people as we grow month to month in this unique concept that NWA is embracing and showing not just the region, but the country, that our “Community Pack Walk” is not a one and done concept, but a growing event to challenge, unite, and connect us through the power of those amazing dogs.
Let’s get 3-5 dogs adopted at the next ones and push towards 100 dogs! We are crazy enough to think that with everyone’s support and energy we can do just that. Until the next month…..
https://www.facebook.com/events/185300984951446/ is the link to our Event page! Join now and stay up to date on announcements coming out soon!