(April 20, 2003) -- About 1,600 paws pounded pavement on Easter Sunday as roughly 400 costumed dogs took their owners for a stroll in the 3d annual Belmont Shore "Haute Dogs" Parade.
LBReport.com posts a large gallery of digital pix below.
The event is a delight created and organized by Justin Rudd, a LB promotional maven, dog beach advocate and internet whiz. The "Haute Dogs" parade may be the only Easter Parade anywhere on the planet to feature dogs. On April 18, Mr. Rudd was on Jay Leno's NBC show to discuss the event.
A LB resident since 1995, Mr. Rudd hails from Alabama (hence the "haute" dog handle, pronounced "hot"). After the 9-11-01 terrorist attacks, he helped organize the candlelight vigil at LB's World Trade Center that drew a crowd estimated at 5,000.
In June 2001, Rudd persuaded City Hall to let dogs play on a LB city beach for the first time in more than 30 years. He is responsible for organizing a monthly "Haute Dogs on the Beach" event.
On www.hautedogs.org (one of Rudd's several web sites), he explains that his Haute Dog organization uses "educational outreach and events...to help inspire a better understanding and appreciation of dogs, dispel damaging myths, encourage responsible ownership practices, and offer practical adoption and rescue opportunities."
The haute four legged friends assembled at Livingston Park with their two legged chums, then made a 12 block tour of Second Street between Park and Nieto Aves.
Mr. DeMille, I'm ready for my close-up. KCOP-TV (UPN 13) photog and reporter get the shot.
Other outlets spotted: KCBS-TV (2), KNBC-TV (4), KABC-TV (7) and KVEA (52).
Shirley Vaughn (blue denim top) of Friends of LB Animals helps register participants.
KABC-TV (7) photog gets a shot.
Puppies rescued from a local shelter.