Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Tupelo: Where even pets love Elvis

Bruno in Pet-Owner Look-a-like category
There's a buzz in Tupelo, Mississippi, every June, and it owns a distinct Elvis vibe. The first weekend in June means Elvis Festival time, with live concerts, an Elvis Tribute Artist competition and a pet parade and pageant.

Yes, even the pets love Elvis in Tupelo.

The annual event raises money for the Dilworth Small Animal Hospital in town and winners walk away with a cash prize, trophy and gift bag.

This year's Elvis Pet Parade and Pageant was hosted by Memphis Jones, a regional celebrity that kept the audience in stitches and the event concluded with a performance by Elvis Tribute Artist Brandon Bennett, the 2008 winner of the "Ultimate Elvis Tribute Artist" contest.

But the stars were the pets and those the animals had on a lease. Carolyn Smith and her dog, Bruno, at right, were dressed in khakis to represent Elvis' army years — not to mention she has two children in the navy. "Thank you for your service," Jones said to Bruno as he paraded across the stage.

One adorable girl and her dog wore Hawaiian attire to represent Elvis in his film, "Blue Hawaii." There was a miniature Doberman wearing bell bottoms, tiny dogs with velvet guitars and sideburns attached and one dog who wore sunglasses without minding, pausing on the stage as if to pose, which brought the house down. He took away the Elvis lookalike category.

Here are a few of the photos:

Best Elvis lookalike category winner
Best Costume Winner


Most Unusual winner - this boy brought a stuffed turtle.

Best in Show winner. 
Cheré Dastugue Coen is a travel and food writer from South Louisiana who appreciates the weird and wild side of life. Write to her at cherecoen@gmail.com.

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