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Do-Dah is a Parade with a Purpose

Do-Dah.kids.blogWhen the MMFA moved from downtown Montgomery to the Blount Cultural Park in 1988, the staff began preparing for a park-and-art-centered outdoor event—a plan that came to fruition 18 months later as the Flimp Festival on May 5, 1990.  We introduced the Do-Dah Parade as a central part of those early Flimps, and it grew to include a diverse assortment of wonderful pets in costume, and some adventurous owners who dressed up as well.

Do-Dah.Lennox.blogThe original Do-Dah parades were eventually discontinued, however in 2014 a number of factors led the Museum to revive the Do-Dah tradition.  First, the Hannah Daye Ridling Bark Park opened in 2013 providing dogs and their families a safe place to play.  Then, in 2014, the Museum entered into a partnership with the Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts to present the annual Flimp Festival, and we jointly approached the Montgomery Humane Society (sponsors of our Bark Park neighbors) to re-institute the Do-Dah tradition.  Our goals were to incorporate the BTW students as co-organizers and participants, and to bring greater visibility to the efforts of the Montgomery Humane Society to find loving families for shelter dogs. We continued this new tradition of Do-Dah at this year’s Flimp, and we are delighted to report that our participation grew.Do-Dah.awards.blog

About fifty amazing dog and their human companions gathered on a perfect May morning to strut their stuff, and compete for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd-place gift cards generously donated by
Pet Supermarket.  The Parade was led by Jazz band musicians from BTW, and our judges, Alabama News Network anchor Tim Lennox and Museum Director Mark Johnson, awarded prizes to winners who achieved the most creative costumes and ensembles.   Students from BTW escorted 10 costumed dogs from the Montgomery Humane Shelter in the Parade, and later presented them to potential adoptive families in the adoption tent from 11 A.M. to 2 P.M. The folks at For Healthy Pets provided gift packets of healthful and tasty products for adopters that day.

Do-Dah.pup.blogWe appreciate all the participants who made this second revival of the Do-Dah Parade and Adoption Event a great success—musicians, parading dogs and people, judges, and volunteers.  We particularly thank the BTW student escorts, and the volunteers from the Montgomery Humane Society who took such good care of the shelter dogs for the day.  Finally, we again thank our sponsors Pet Supermarket, For Healthy Pets, Barking Lot Grooming Salon, and Groomin’ Tails Pet Salon for their sponsorship of prizes for the Do-Dah Parade, and for contributing to the on-going welfare of pets in the Montgomery area.

Margaret Lynne Ausfeld
Curator of Art