MARINE CORPS AIRSTION IWAKUNI, Japan --
Station residents gathered at the Active-Duty Fund Drive Dog Parade at Penny Lake on Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan, April 1, 2017.
The Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society held the event to bring the community together and increase awareness of its fund drive.
“It was mostly to get the word out,” said U.S. Marine Corps 2nd Lt. Scotti Culton, Headquarters & Headquarters Squadron representative for the Active-Duty Fund Drive. “Altogether we’ve raised $34,000 for the month from H&HS alone.”
Eleven dog owners registered for the event and walked from Penny Lake to the harbor gate and back.
Participants were given prizes for the best dressed pup.
“We had a super patriotic dog, a shark and Stitch was here as well,” said Culton. “I have a dog back home but unfortunately I wasn’t able to bring her, so being around dogs again was great.”
Baskets of treats and toys were given to the dogs who finished the walk first and who had the best costume.
“We’ve seen a lot of dogs on base,” said Culton “I am an avid dog lover, so I wanted to get as many people as possible out here to have a really fun time.”
The parade helped participants and their dogs bond by giving them a bigger purpose to come together with other dog owners.
“I was so excited that there was an event put on for dogs,” said U.S. Marine Corps Capt. Kassia Regehr, a participant in the parade. “I know Ozzy is the best part of the day for me and I want to share that with people who aren’t able to have a dog.”
Culton said they hope to keep this event running annually, increasing the number of dogs each year.
“It’s just a fun event,” said Culton. “Marines don’t really get to see animals. They can come out here, be a spectator, pet dogs and have fun. It’s also a way to get info out there to people who may not know about NMCRS.”