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FurFest 2018 to showcase Kingsport's dog park

Valerie Lick • Jul 2, 2018 at 1:51 PM

KINGSPORT — Fun Fest’s block parties are going to the dogs! Well, at least one of them is.

FurFest 2018, one of the many block parties happening across Kingsport during the week before Fun Fest, is an opportunity for dogs and dog owners to check out the Kingsport Dog Park for free. The party for pooches will take place on July 7 from 5 to 8 p.m.

Johnnie Hennessee, special events organizer for the dog park, is coordinating FurFest for its third consecutive year.

“We’re showcasing our dog park, letting people and their dogs try it out,” she says.

However, FurFest also gives Kingsport’s dog lovers (and dogs) an opportunity to meet one another: “We also really want to help dog owners — and their dogs — connect.”

FurFest grows every year as more vendors, events and pups join the fun.

“It’s really growing,” says Johnnie. “We actually had to expand it to to three hours this time because there’s so much going on.”

More than 20 organizations and vendors will appear at FurFest, offering food, fashion and fun for Kingsport residents and their fluffy friends. Various businesses will offer all-natural dog treats, and Harpo Hot Dogz of East Tennessee will offer food for human attendees. Belly Rub Boutique offers the latest in bandana, leash and collar fashion, while Handbags 4 Hounds sells gently used handbags to benefit local shelter animals. Many other East Tennessee businesses will attend, including Diamond Images Photography (for dog owners who want to get a professional picture of their “diamonds in the ruff”).

Working dogs will also make an appearance; the Kingsport K9 Unit will demonstrate their dogs’ skills and duties at 6:30.

For those who don’t have a dog, PetWorks, Sullivan County Animal Shelter and Unicoi County Animal Shelter will attend FurFest with adoptable dogs. The event will also help dog owners keep their pets healthy and safe by offering $10 rabies vaccinations through the Family Pet Veterinary Clinic and $20 microchipping through PetWorks.

The Kingsport Dog Park, located at 800 Granby Road near Hunter Wright Stadium, is a 3.5-acre park featuring a dog playground; two dog swimming pools; a large dog area; and an area for small, old, or feeble dogs. Membership is $20 a year, and dog owners with proof of applicable immunizations may apply for membership during the event.

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