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Posted on: September 27, 2016


Event will highlight pet rescues and the Passaic County Sheriff’s K-9 Division

(Passaic County, NJ) – The Passaic County Board of Chosen Freeholders, in conjunction with the Passaic County Sheriff’s Office and Friends of Passaic County Parks, Inc. will be hosting the first annual “Paws in the Park” on Saturday, October 8th from 10am-3pm at Goffle Brook Park in Hawthorne, with a rain date of Sunday, October 9th.

The “Paws in the Park” event will focus on local pet rescues and shelters, and the proceeds from the event will benefit the Passaic County Sheriff’s K-9 Division. Paws in the Park will provide resources and entertainment for current pet owners as well. This will include demonstrations from the Passaic County SPCA and Sheriff’s K-9 unit, a blessing of the animals by Father Mark from St. John’s in Paterson, pet contests, and raffles.

Discounted micro-chipping will be available from 12pm-2pm, and will be administered by Dr. Gordon of Oakland Animal Hospital and Dr. Voynick from The Pet Stop on News 12. The micro-chips will be supplied by the company “Home Again” and the registration fee for the first year will be waived. The micro-chips will function normally without the annual registration, but the renewal fee entitles the owner with free poison control services and up to $5000 in pet insurance for the year.
“The recent controversy surrounding a local pet store reminded all of my colleagues of the importance of helping raise awareness and funds for animal shelters and rescue groups,” said Freeholder Sandi Lazzara. “This event reaffirms the county’s commitment to advocate on behalf of homeless pets.”

Goffle Brook Park in Hawthorne is a county owned park, which features a dog run. In preparation for the event, the fence was upgraded, the mulch was replaced with a cushioned track mix, and dog playground equipment was placed inside the dog run.

Paws in the Park is being sponsored by several local organizations. This year the event is being sponsored by the Passaic County Education Association, TD Bank, ATON Computing, Mike’s Feed Farm, J&B Pet Supplies, Packanack Animal Hospital, United Federated Systems, the Hawthorne Teacher’s Association, and Oradell Animal Hospital.

The Alex and Ani store in Ridgewood is not sponsoring the event, but is holding a fundraiser for the Sheriff’s K-9 Unit. On Sunday October 2nd from 2pm-4pm, 15% of the proceeds from items bought in their store will be donated to the Sheriff’s K-9 Division. During the fundraiser at the Alex and Ani store, several Sheriff Officers and their K-9s will be greeting people as they enter the store.

"I want to thank the Passaic County Freeholders for sponsoring the Paws in the Park program,” said Sheriff Richard H. Berdnik. "The Sheriff's Office K-9 Division will use the funds raised from the program to help with expenses that help support the important function of the unit. The K-9 Unit is one of the first line of defense in our battle against drugs and violence."

The Passaic County Sheriff’s K-9 Division has a memorial dedicated to K-9s that have either retired or fallen in the line of duty. Currently, 43 names of K-9s need to be added to the memorial. The proceeds from the event will go towards adding those names, as well as supplies and training for the K-9 Division. As an extension of the event, the Freeholders are offering Memorial Bricks for civilians to purchase which will also benefit the Sheriff’s K-9 Division. The bricks will be placed around the current K-9 Memorial at Lambert’s Castle, and will grow into a Memorial Pet Garden. This bricks will allow people to honor their personal pet, or businesses can sponsor a brick as a donation.

Information on Memorial Bricks, as well as a full schedule of events can be found at www.passaiccountynj.org/PawsinthePark.

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