Categories: Volunteers

Dogs get Valentine cleaning

Every dog has its day. For many local dogs, that day is a Saturday two weeks from now.

The Humane Animal Rescue Team (HART) is hosting a Valentine’s Day Dog Wash to clean up your canines and raise much needed funds for their work. The local non-profit organization rescues stray, abandoned and unwanted dogs from rural areas, including First Nations, surrounding Edmonton and provides them with medical care. It also co-ordinates foster homes and adoptions into permanent homes and promotes outreach programs for responsible pet ownership and prevention of cruelty to animals. It has rescued more than 750 dogs in need since it first started operations in 2003.

“We rescue abused, unwanted dogs. The SPCA covers most of Edmonton but we get the rural areas,” explained Ashley Brown, public relations co-ordinator, adding that it’s also run entirely by volunteers so all funds go straight to the work.

The event takes place on Saturday, Feb. 11 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Dirty Dog Spa, 10019 167 Street in Edmonton. A $30 donation gets your pooch a spa quality bath, blow dry and nail trim, plus a treat bag and a bandana.

HART is also hosting an adoption event today in St. Albert at Paradise Pets located at 580 St. Albert Trail, next to Visionary College and Farlie Travel. Call the store at 780-459-6896 for details.

For more information, call HART at 780-455-4278 or visit www.humaneanimalrescueteam.ca.

Special Olympics scarf update

After some residents at North Ridge Lodge put their scarves on the table three weeks ago, it seemed like a light finally came on for the larger project.

Representatives from the local organizing committee for the Special Olympics Canada Winter Games have been trying to amass 2,500 of the knitted art creations as unique mementoes to give to each athlete, coach and volunteer. It is meant to symbolize Canada’s support and celebration of its Special Olympians.

But by the end of the first week of January, they only had 362 scarves in total and the deadline was set at Feb. 1.

Now, the deadline has been bumped back to Feb. 27, the day before the Games start. Kathy Manchak, the director of events and hospitality for the games, says that there are now 29 days to the deadline and she estimates that the tally now stands at approximately 1,000 thanks in part to a donation from Chateau Mission Court.

“It’s just terrific!” she exclaimed. “I’m really getting pumped about it!”

She added that she’s picking up a few hundred more on the weekend. All this time, she has been also receiving scarves from across the country and around the world, including Japan, thanks to a free networking website called Ravelry.com that advertised the project.

Anyone can help contribute to the effort by knitting or crocheting a winter scarf in the Games colours of blue and off-white with a little red.

Trish Henley, program co-ordinator at Chateau Mission Court, explained that some of that facility’s residents (along with some staff members and other volunteers) worked with diligence and dedication to their craft in creating 57 scarves, all of which were handed over on Thursday.

“There’s a big feeling of accomplishment being part of this project,” she said, characterizing the contributors as “gung ho”.

The Special Olympics Canada Winter Games take place in St. Albert and Jasper from Feb. 28 to March 3.

For more information on the games or the Scarf Project, call 780-458-4564 or visit www.stalbert2012.ca.

Scott Hayes: Scott Hayes joined the St. Albert Gazette in 2008. Scott writes about the arts, entertainment, movies, culture, community groups, and charities. He also writes general news, features, columns and profiles on people.