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Monday, May 26, 2014

Woofstock 2014

This past weekend the four of us attended Woofstock. We hadn't attended the past couple years because the previous venue was too crowded and it was a nightmare to navigate with Mike's wheelchair and Gimli in such close quarters with other festival attendees, their dogs and random people walking through the festival. Yes, friends, the last Woofstock used to be held on city streets that were roped off to cars, but not people. This year, however, they moved the venue to a large park near Lake Ontario.

I was up early on Saturday to walk the dogs and make breakfast. We left around 8.45 and I was convinced we'd be stuck in traffic on account of the intense construction happening on the major arteries heading into downtown Toronto. We arrived just after 10, (when the festival opened), and we were lucky to secure a parking spot, only because it was an accessible spot. In the parking lot, there were no other spots available.

In retrospect, this was a major problem plaguing Woofstock this year. According to Google maps, there were two lots available this year for patron parking. However, by the time we arrived the lots were either near or at capacity. Patrons were parking on the street and possibly parking on side streets further away and walking. For a festival that expects large throngs of people, this didn't work out too well. I don't know if the venue will change again next year to accommodate the parking situation.

We first went to the picnic area to sit and let the dogs sniff around and absorb the atmosphere. We've found that if we can let them slowly acclimate to the area, they are less hyper and less crazy. After a few minutes, we were off!

We started going up and down the rows, looking at each booth. Mike had Gimli and I had Merida. Gimli handled Woofstock better than years past. He was much calmer when meeting dogs, sniffing snouts and butts like nothing! He also pulled off his signature "pray and wave my front feet", which earned him plenty of "Awwws" and cookies. He knows how to work a room, that's for sure!

Merida was struck with sensory overload. She was calm and happy to meet everyone, but everywhere she turned there was someone or something or a dog that she had to meet. I had to keep her on track else we'd still be there standing in the park meeting everyone and everything!

Another reason we went to Woofstock was to finally join the local corgi meet up. We've wanted to attend other meetups, but our schedules always clashed. We turned the corner and spotted a group of corgs in the distance and we bee-lined for them. It was neat to see our corgis interact with the other ones. It was almost a feeling of, "hey, you're my size and you look like me!".

At one point, one of the corgis decided she'd had enough and snuck under Mike's chair to escape the heat.

Gimli, as you can see was not impressed by this behavior. As soon as the dog left, Gimli planted himself firmly under the chair.

After the corgi meetup, the four of us roamed around a bit more then decided to head home. We didn't make out with much loot this time around. Even just after opening, the lines to take pictures and get free items were too long, so it wasn't worth standing around.

By the time we arrived home, we had two tired corgis. This picture was taken about 10 minutes after we came home. Both are still wearing bandanas and they don't care.

While at Woofstock, we were asked a multitude of questions about corgis. I'm afraid I didn't do the "Lesser Corgi Society" much good, but it's hard to extoll only the bad things about these dogs. Of course these two put on their cute faces and smiled and wiggled and hammed it up for everyone they met. If I even tried to state the truth about corgis, they'd have called me out as a liar.

All in all, a good day. The jury is still out on if we'll attend the Winter Woofstock this year.

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