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By Margaret Toal
For the Record 

West Orange marks spring with Bark in the Park, clean-up

 

Last updated 4/18/2023 at 8:43pm

Molly dressed with a garland of rosebuds for her portrait, while the younger Davvers opted for a trendy tie. The two pooches have been at the West Orange Animal Shelter and may be still up for adoption on Saturday at Bark in the Park. Retired WO-S communications teacher Lacey Gunn Hale is the volunteer photographer for the shelter.

West Orange is having a special spring weekend with a citywide clean-up plus a chance for people to help clear out the city's animal shelter.

The residents-only clean-up will be from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. behind the West Orange Volunteer Fire Department building.

Bark in the Park, a festival to show off dogs available for adoption, will be Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Alford-Seal Plaza park next to city hall on Western Avenue.

For the city clean-up, residents may take their metal trash, green wastes, and discarded appliances to unload or place at the special dumpsters by the fire station. Appliances with freon must have the gas removed and tagged by someone qualified to discard the waste. Hazardous wastes like tires, paints, batteries, and insecticides will not be accepted.

People taking debris and wastes to the dumpsters will be checked for a proof of West Orange residency and show a photo ID.

This will be the third year for Barks in the Park, which has grown each time. Saturday's event will include several vendors, including some with baked goods plus Big Daddy's food truck. Kids will have a chance to play on inflatable bounce sets and get their faces painted. Music will be provided by a professional DJ.

But most importantly, the West Orange Animal Shelter, along with volunteers, will show off the dogs available for adoption. However, families need to realize they will not be able to take their new pet home on Saturday.

Every family will be screened before they are allowed to take a dog home. They will be able to fill out an application at the park, then they will be contacted to get their new family member as early as Monday afternoon. The adoption fee is $50.

Shelters across Southeast Texas have been full as unspayed and non-neutered dogs roam and reproduce, leaving unwanted puppies left at the shelter, or worse, dumped in a rural site.

The West Orange shelter has a variety of dogs of varying ages. Sometimes owners cannot keep the dogs any longer because of housing or health. Or perhaps the owner dies and none of their friends or family want the adult dog.

Lacey Gunn Hale, a retired West Orange-Stark communications teacher, has been volunteering as a photographer for the animal shelter. She takes portraits of the dogs dressed up and smiling as they pose, hoping to get a real home.

In addition to seeing the dogs up for adoption, people attending the festival can help the shelter take care of the unwanted and abandoned pooches.

The shelter will be collecting donations during Bark in the Park. Requested items include bleach, puppy pads, Odeban, cat litter, paper towels, small and medium blankets that may be gently used, collars of all sizes, leashes but no retractable ones, and dog biscuits. The shelter is also asking for dog foods like Purina One canned and dry, other premium dried foods, or Pedigree canned foods.

 

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