Animal Society award goes to Charleston County Park and Rec

  • Friday, March 21, 2014

The Charleston County Park and Recreation Commission (CCPRC) received the inaugural Community Ambassador Award Feb. 27 from the Charleston Animal Society (CAS) for its role in helping the rescue organization become the first “No Kill Community” in the southeastern United States.

CCPRC was recognized at the 140th annual meeting of the CAS for its dedication to pets and their owners. CCPRC Superintendent of Administrative Services Kevin Bowie along with other staff members accepted the award on behalf of the organization.

“The CCPRC has been there every step of the way promoting healthy lifestyles between pet owners and their pets,” CAS Chief Executive Officer Joe Elmore said. “And, more importantly, providing numerous opportunities to engage those lifestyles, acting as a leader for other organizations and businesses in our community.”

“We are very proud to have been chosen for this award,” said CCPRC Executive Director Tom O'Rourke. “Pets and the people that own them represent a significant part of our parks and programming. Our pet programming also allows us to educate the community about the relationship between them and the wildlife habitats that inhabit our parks. Our pet-related programming will only increase in the years to come.”

CCPRC will continue to support pets and pet owners at Pet Fest from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. March 22-23 at the Mount Pleasant Palmetto Islands County Park. Admission is $8 per person. Children 12 and under, Gold Pass Members, and leashed pets all enter for free.

Now in its 11th year, the festival was created as a fun way to showcase area pet rescues and vendors and hosts more than 4,000 people and 1,000 dogs each year. The event will include rescue groups and adoption centers, K9s in Flight Frisbee dogs and dock diving, pet contests, jump castles and activities for children, food and beverages, live music, and more.

Some other offerings by the CCPRC include the Smart Puppy Class; Pups, Yups and Food Trucks; Dog Day Afternoon; and Yappy Hour. Leashed pets are also allowed in many of the county's parks and dogs can enjoy a place just for them at the off-leash dog parks located at James Island County Park, Palmetto Islands County Park and Wannamaker County Park.

“The Charleston Animal Society was apparently impressed with our pet emphasis, but I can assure you that we are equally impressed with the Charleston Animal Society,” said O'Rourke. “This is one partnership that we see continuing well into the future.”

Any interested volunteer is encouraged to email eguerrero@ccprc.com. For more information on CCPRC or Pet Fest, call 843-795-4386 or visit www.charlestoncountyparks.com.

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