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Pugs have grand time, humans ditto

CHESTERTOWN - The annual Halloween Pug Parade & Party this last weekend in Chestertown was not only a lot of fun in its newly expanded format, but a lot of fun, organizers and attendees said.

The event, held over three days in observance of its 10th anniversary, was a considerable success, event planner Pam Morin said Tuesday.

She said that 153 pugs, and 15 other canines of various breeds registered for the event.

Friday night's Pug Rescue Benefit Party Pug featured 87 puppies strutting across the stage in a fashion show and 53 humanoid attendees.

Saturday's Paw Parade, in which pugs strutted down Main St. to the Chester Municipal Center, also was a great success, Morin said.

The pugs proved both their patience and their culture tendencies, she said, as eight of them accompanied 50 people to watch the film "Hotel For Dogs" in a special presentation at the Carol Theater downtown.

Traveling farthest to attend were two pugs Popeye and Olive Oyl, with their human companions Juan Galan and family, driving from Coral Gables Fla. The Landon Hill Bed & Breakfast accommodated the clan for the weekend.

Not only did a variety of local businesses benefit from the event, but the dog owners got a good taste of the amenities and friendly spirit prevailing in Warren County, Morin said.

Although dogs and their owners came from as far away as Florida, Connecticut and New Jersey, about 80 percent hailed from within two hours' drive - including the hometowns of Gloversville, Hudson, St. Regis Falls, Albany, Caroga Lake, Plattsburgh, and Ballston Spa.

Ten retail vendors and four food vendors had booths, and appeared to conduct reasonable business, she said.

One highlight of the weekend, was that it was the 10th wedding anniversary of the Pug festival's founders, Kim and Bob Olden, the same span of time the Pug fest has been thriving, Morin said.

Another standout was the baking contest, won by Deborah Ciccarone of Cossayuna with her Pumpkin Cheesecake, topped with candied walnuts and caramel sauce.

"The event was fun and joyful," Morin said. "It was a lot of fun all weekend - the weather held, but of course it's all about the pugs, and they had a grand time."

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