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Dog wash benefits St. Mary’s expansion

Published: Tuesday, March 4, 2014 9:50 a.m. CDT • Updated: Tuesday, March 4, 2014 10:07 a.m. CDT
(Doug Oleson – doleson@shawmedi)
Tammie Cross of Huckleberry's Pet Parlor calms Hans, a Great Dane, as he waits his turn to be groomed.
(Doug Oleson – doleson@shawmedi)
Sophie and Lulu wait their turn to be groomed at a charity dog wash to support St. Mary's School's building fund.
(Doug Oleson – doleson@shawmedi)
Huckleberry's Pet Parlor owner Jenny Kingren trims the nails of Willie, a 6-year-old cockapoo.

SYCAMORE – Willie is a 6-year-old cockapoo who, according to his owners, loves the snow.

“He’s a snow dog,” Michael Taylor of Cortland said. “He likes to roll in the snow.”

Willie was one of 48 local dogs registered to participate in a Charity Dog Wash and Bake Sale at Huckleberry’s Pet Parlor in Sycamore last Saturday to benefit the building fund at St. Mary’s School in Sycamore. Although many of the dogs’ owners are parishioners of St. Mary’s, some were regular customers and others came in because of the benefit.

Huckleberry’s owner Jenny Kingren, who is also a member of the church, said it was the first time she has held a benefit like this. The school and church are trying to raise $850,000 for expansion.

“My son is in first grade at the school, and I thought, ‘What can I do to help?’” Kingren said. “It’s kind of like a car wash, only with dogs.”

In the first phase of expansion, Kingren said the church added on to the preschool, kindergarten and first grade classrooms. Now, it wants to expand its seventh and eighth grade classrooms and add a science lab. All of the day’s proceeds went towards the project.

At the fundraiser, local canines were treated to a bath, blow dry, brush out, ear cleaning and nail trimming. When they were all finished, Kingren presented each animal with a bandanna in the school’s colors. While most dogs were on their best behavior, a few became a little unnerved by unfamiliar barks.

To help the cause, Kingren said all her employees volunteered to work.

“We like it because we know it’s important to our boss,” Tammie Cross said. “She’s a good boss, so we don’t mind helping her out.”

“I can see myself doing this again,” Kingren said. “Maybe not this year, but next year.”

To donate to the building project, contact the church at 815-895-5215.

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