This weekend marks the return of two more-or-less yearly events to the Lincroft campus of Brookdale Community College — the Monmouth County SPCA Dog Walk and Pet Fair and the Brookdale Guitar Show — both of which had their origins in the generally cooler months and have since relocated to rank among the favorite rites of spring on the Greater Red Bank Green.
Strutting its stuff this Saturday, the 23rd annual celebration of man’s best friend returns to the Great Lawn and walkways of BCC for a five-hour festival that runs from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Co-sponsored by Red Bank Veterinary Hospital, it’s a benefit for the programs and services of the Eatontown-based MCSPCA, the centerpiece of which is a “Paws for a Cause” walk that offers pets and some 2,000 expected human handlers a choice of trotting a half-mile or one mile course, as a fundraising vehicle that includes a noon-hour presentation of awards to the top go-getters of 2017.
Pups and people are invited to “walk the walk” throughout the duration of the event, which boasts a slate of activities for adults, kids and canines that’s bolstered by a Vendor Alley, adoption and microchip clinics, a 50/50 raffle, food trucks, face painting, “pupparazzi” photos, and even a “Canine PUPtials” wedding chapel.
There’s live entertainment as well, highlighted by event perennials the Wag, whose infectiously perky brand of “powerpup pop” has set happy tails a-wag at many a MCSPCA happening. Prior to heading out on a West Coast tour in May, Brian Ostering (bass, vocals), Alicia Van Sant (keys, percussion, vocals) and Don Lee (guitar, vocals) reconvene on familiar turf for several sets of tunes that take place from event start time through 1 p.m.
Also on the day’s program are a doggie agility demo (11:30 a.m.), a Canine Cutest Tricks Contest (12:45 p.m.), an Alumni Parade for MCSPCA pooches (1:45 p.m.), and two demonstrations (11 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.) featuring Monmouth County Sheriff’s Department officers with their K-9 deputies Tango and Ari.
There’s still time to make a pledge and qualify for fundraising prizes, with the cutoff deadline at 12 noon on Thursday, April 27. Admission to the MCSPCA Dog Walk and Pet Fair is free of charge for spectators, and all proceeds will be dedicated as always to providing care and finding “forever homes” for the thousands of homeless animals that pass through the MCSPCA’s shelter every year. There’s a rain date of next Saturday, May 6.
Take it here for a complete schedule, as well as details on registering as an individual or team, sponsoring a walker, or donating to the MCSPCA’s programs.
• Then on Sunday, the Guitar Show returns (after a one year hiatus) to the Brookdale Recreation and Events Center at BCC for the 19th edition of the fundraiser fair benefitting listener-supported Brookdale Public Radio station 90.5 The Night.
Between the hours of 10 a.m. and 5 p.m., the inside and the outside of the BREC building will be the setting for an expo that promises “more than 50 high-quality vendors selling incredible vintage and brand-new guitars,” along with artist-friendly clinics on topics that range from the creative process (with Out and About Radio’s James Dalton), to setting up your guitar (with staffers from Raritan Bay Guitar Repair).
Naturally, there’s also plenty of live music on site and under the tent — headlined by three Jersey-fresh, guitar-centric acts: alt-rock/pop unit Skyeline, Shore-based the Foes of Fern, and RedRightReturn (fronted by “resident avant garde diabolist” Chris Buono).
Go here for full details on scheduled acts, clinics and more — and here to reserve advance admission ($10; $12 at the door; discounts for BCC students, station members or those bringing a guitar to sell or trade). Kids ages 12 and under are admitted free, and an additional $10 donation to Brookdale Public Radio gets entry to a drawing for a guitar signed by members of Bon Jovi, with the winner announced on the Guitar Show’s Facebook page this Saturday at 8 p.m.