Pets take a bow: Film festival, art show highlights dogs, cats and more.
It might be a teddy bear hamster, for heaven’s sake, but it is fuzzy and waddles so funny.
It’s your pet and you simply love it.
You love the dog that greets you at the door, then races around the house like a maniac just because you are home.
You laugh at the cat that sits on the back of the couch taking playful swipes at anyone who dares pass.
You smile over the rabbit that wiggles its nose in a funny way, or the turtle that does ... nothing, really.
All pets are special, from those with particular breeding to those with more mysterious and perhaps dubious ancestry.
October is Adopt a Shelter Dog Month and to honor shelter dogs as well as other beloved pets, the Roice-Hurst Humane Society has organized a couple events for people to unabashedly indulge in their affection for pets.
The Bow Wow Film Festival film tour will stop in Grand Junction for showings at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 1, at Avalon Theatre, 645 Main St.
And then on Friday, Oct. 7, the exhibit “Art Unleashed” will open at both the Western Colorado Center for the Arts (The Art Center), 1803 N. Seventh St., and Five60 Salon & Spa, 354 Main St.
The Bow Wow Film Festival was founded by Boulder resident Susan Kelley. In its first year, 2015, Bow Wow was shown in 25 places, and “right now we’re sitting at 30” showings for 2016, Kelley said.
The festival’s quick rise in popularity was one of the reasons Sharon Currie-Mills, a board member with Roice-Hurst, found it while searching for a film to screen as a fundraising event for the shelter.
Currie-Mills was thinking along the lines of “Old Yeller” or “Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey” when Bow Wow popped up in an online search.
“It was a crazy happenstance,” she said.
And it was made even better because all proceeds from the local event will go to Roice-Hurst. “The film festival is really philanthropic,” she said.
Bow Wow’s films are fun, happy and kid-friendly, so families can feel welcome, Currie-Mills said.
“So many people have this common bond of loving their pet. No matter what background you come from, no matter where you are in your life, you can celebrate that love,” Kelley said.
“It’s all about celebrating that human canine bond,” Kelley said of the festival’s 17 films, including “one gratuitous cat film” titled “Didja.”
There are adventure films such as “Ace & the Desert Dog,” which follows a man and his dog on a 60-day backpacking trip. The red-rock views in this film are spectacular, Kelley said.
And there are more sedate films such as “Project Unconditional,” which is “all about the special love of older dogs,” said Kelley, who wants those who attend the festival to leave feeling inspired and educated.
“It’s a very joyful collection films,” she said.
Even if you don’t have a dog right now or are simply an animal lover, you’ll enjoy the festival, she said.
Likewise, animal lovers will enjoy “Art Unleashed,” Currie-Mills said.
“I’ve always wanted to do something artsy” related to pets, and now seemed a good time, Currie-Mills said.
So after consulting with The Art Center, a call was made to area artists for pet-related art. Currie-Mills thought they would get maybe 25 submissions.
Instead, they received more than 140 submissions and selected 100 to be shown in the exhibit that had to be expanded to two locations to accommodate all the paintings, photos and three-dimensional pieces.
“We were blown away,” Currie-Mills said.
The majority of the pieces are for sale, with a portion of the proceeds going to Roice-Hurst.
“Art Unleashed” will open at both The Art Center and Five60 Salon & Spa on what happens to be First Friday and the start of the new Downtown Art Festival, set for Oct. 7–8.
A First Friday reception is planned for 7–9 p.m. Friday, Oct. 7, at The Art Center. “Art Unleashed” can be viewed through Oct. 29.
Currie-Mills hopes animal lovers will come to both the art exhibit and the film festival to celebrate pets and the way they snuggle or jump into our lives, from a dog or cat to a teddy bear hamster.