Mardi Growl Dog Parade Grand Marshals Announced

Communications Director

Kristin Farley
(865) 215-2589

400 Main St., Room 691
Knoxville, TN 37902

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Mardi Growl Dog Parade Grand Marshals Announced

Posted: 01/25/2008
University of Tennessee mascot Smokey - both the blue tick coonhound and the human version - will be grand marshal for the first ever Mardi Growl Dog Parade in downtown Knoxville on Saturday, February 2.

The costume parade for dogs and their owners kicks off at 10 a.m. in Market Square and ends at the future site of the City of Knoxville's new downtown dog park on the southeastern corner of Summit Hill Drive and Central Avenue.

The event aims to raise awareness of the new downtown dog park and proceeds from the event will go to support animal adoption efforts of the Young-Williams Animal Center.

Participants will receive a doggie goody bag and a royal court consisting of the most fabulously costumed dogs will be selected.

There will also be grooming and vaccination stations on the site as well as food vendors.

"Smokey is the perfect mascot for our first Mardi Growl," said Madeleine Weil, deputy director of the city's Department of Policy and Communications, "and we're very grateful to the University of Tennessee's Cheerleading program for agreeing to take part in our parade."

Earlier this month Smokey claimed his third national title as nation's top collegiate mascot in the past nine years choreographing and performing a winning routine at the Universal Cheerleading Association National Championships in Orlando.

UT's live mascot, Smokey IX, is the latest in a line of blue tick hounds that have led UT's football teams onto the field at home and represented its athletic program since 1953.

The Mardi Growl Dog Parade is being presented by PetSafe Village and Invisible Fence Brand and is being produced by the City of Knoxville.

Early registration is $5 and ends on Jan. 26.

Late registration and day of parade registration, which begins at 9 a.m., is $8.