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December 5, 2007 > Santa Paws brings the parade back to Hayward

Santa Paws brings the parade back to Hayward

By Anuja Seith
Photos By Courtesy of the City of Hayward

It is time to dress up your bunny, kitty, dog, or goat for Hayward's Pet Parade. The pet parade is an age old tradition which dates back to 1925. The Lions Club organized this event for families to enjoy until the 1950s when it disappeared from the local landscape. But as Christmas essence fills the air, Hayward's Animal Shelter and Downtown business improvement area is reviving this custom with a new Santa Paws Parade to be held this year on Saturday, Dec. 8. The Santa Paws Parade was created to bring fun and community involvement of parades held in the past; to help create connections with one another - and with the animals. Santa Paws invites big or small well behaved pets to join in the festivities of the holiday season.

This parade is not only a pleasurable experience that gives pets and pet owners a chance to spend some memorable moments together, but also promotes a humane cause, making people cognizant of the animal shelter and volunteer openings and adoption opportunities for homeless pets. Some of the shelter's homeless animals will be at the Santa Paws Parade to find a new home. The parade is also expected to increase visibility of downtown as a fun place for families, spread awareness about retail opportunities and promote the Farmers' Market held on Saturdays from 9 a.m. - 1 p.m. on Main Street between A and B Streets.

This happy event will rejuvenate the spirit of bygone days with contests like "Best Dressed Pet" and "Best Holiday Dressed Pet." Owners can also bring their pets to participate in the category of "Just Plain Cute Pet" as well. An "on wheels" competition will stir imaginations with the Holiday Pet Float, in which pets will ride in decorated wagons or strollers. For those who believe that "like attracts like," the Look Alike contest, will match costumes and/or looks between owners and pets.

Holiday time is also the perfect time to pamper your pets at the Santa Paws Parade pet boutique. And, to complete this exciting holiday event, the Santa Paws Parade will also set aside an area for picture perfect memories of this special season.

Santa Paws Parade
Saturday, Dec. 8
9:00 a.m. - 10 a.m. (Registration)
10 a.m. Parade
Tickets: $12 per pet, or $ 17 for two or more
City Municipal Parking Lot 2
Foothill and "B" St., Hayward
(510) 583-4000

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