Fundraiser for Local Animal Shelters Will Feature Pet Costume Contest, Food Trucks and More

WEST ORANGE, N.J.,  – Meet adoptable dogs, cats, puppies and kittens while supporting local animal shelters and rescue groups during the second annual “BARKtoberfest.”  The event is scheduled for Sat., Oct. 21 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Turtle Back Zoo in West Orange, a facility of the Essex County Parks Department. BARKtoberfest will take place at the Zoo’s Berson Education Center, located at 560 Northfield Avenue. Attendees are encouraged to bring their dogs in costume for a chance to enter the “Best Pet Costume” contest.

Last year’s event raised more than $3,300 for participating animal shelters and rescue groups.

Area animal shelters and rescue groups expected to participate include Friends of the Livingston Animal Shelter, Brendan’s Meadows Rescue, Rescue Haven Foundation, Greyhound Friends of New Jersey, Purrfect Pals, Wise Animal Rescue, People for Animals Spay/Neuter Clinics, Sedona Shepherd Sanctuary, Newark Associated Humane Society, and Emerald City Rescue. PSD Rescue – which provides food, care and shelter for street dogs living in Punta Santiago, an area of Puerto Rico impacted by Hurricane Maria – will be collecting bed sheets, flashlights and batteries (size C and D) at the event.

Livingston-based Eastman Companies  and The Shoppes at the Livingston Circle are once again lending their support by sponsoring the Pet Photo Booth & Costume Contest. For a $2 donation, attendees can have their pet’s photo taken and entered in a contest on The Shoppes at the Livingston Circle’s Facebook page. Friends, family and members of the community will be able to vote for their favorite costume, and prizes will be awarded for first, second and third place.

The day’s events also will include food trucks, entertainment, local vendors, and animal enrichment and education tables. Sponsorships are available. For more information about BARKtoberfest, contact Andrea Caserta at andreazoologicalsociety@gmail.com.