By: Megan Bormann
Sunday, August 14 was a beautiful Sunday for live horse racing, but also it was the perfect day for the wiener dogs to take to the track. In the last special dog race day before the Bark in the Park Championships, the wiener dogs donned their silks and lined up in the gate to try and claim their spot in history. More than 9,000 people came from far and wide to see these hounds get their paws dirty on the Canterbury Park track. With Kevin Gorg on the mic, it made for a Wiener Dog Day no one will ever forget.
Many wiener dog owners wait all year for the chance to be selected for the races and each dog must fit a certain criterion in order to compete. First, all wiener dogs must be purebred, and if they’re mixed with another breed, it cannot be a breed that gives the dog clear physical advantages in the race. They also have to be healthy, have all their vaccines up to date, and be able to be sociable and sportsmanlike with their competitors. No trash-talking (or barking) allowed. Well, maybe a little.
Notable winners from this year’s competition include:
Heat 1: #1 Phoebe (Amaris Estrada), #7 Charlie (Eleanor Erickson)
Heat 2: #5 Archie (Abbey Fossand), #6 Griffey (Noel Gageby)
Heat 3: #8 Mercury (Heather Meyer), #1 Keetza (Paul & Tiffany Leschin)
Heat 4: #2 Tiegie (Trena Larson), #9 Vinny (Chris Olson)
Heat 5: #3 Pearl (Chayse Ludowese), #6 Piper (Jennifer & Kyle Sorensen
Heat 6: #12 Barnaby (Mira Stanevic), #11 Dottie (Sally & Cory Nordmeyer)
These pups will be advancing to our Dog Race Championships on September 4, where they will face off against the Bulldogs, Basset Hounds, and Corgi winners from this summer in the Battle of the Breeds.
Special events like this one are what sets Canterbury Park apart from other entertainment venues. What a lot of people don’t see is the time and energy the Entertainment Interns at Canterbury Park put into the Wiener Dog Races, in fact, all special dog race days. Weeks prior, dogs need to be organized into heats, odds are calculated, race analysis is written and sent to the printer, owners are contacted, and so much more. Mara McNaughton, the intern who had the biggest hand in Wiener Dog Day reflected, “The wienies were a great addition to the track on Sunday. They are definitely an athletic breed.”
Overall, the success of the day is a testament to the hard work and dedication of interns like Mara and the rest of the hardworking Canterbury Park employees and leaders who help make events special for all racegoers.