Dogs, cats and more showed up Saturday, Aug. 25, to the Trestle Inn Saloon for the seventh annual "Finn-Minster Dog Show."
More than 20 dogs entered the seventh annual fundraiser for the Lake County Humane Society. Categories included "Cutest Dog," "Ugliest Dog," "Best Smile," "Best Trick" and "Best in Show." There was even a category for "Best Human Trick."
The Trestle Inn, a small outpost about 20 miles from Finland on Cramer Road, is known for odd and entertaining events that draw people from all over the area. There was even one dog, Mazel Tov, from Flagstaff, Ariz. He had been staying in Finland for a few days with his owner, Even Hawbaker, and they decided to make the trip out to the Trestle for the event.
Tom Kingston, the master of ceremonies, welcomed the crowd and explained the competition, comparing it to its more famous inspiration: the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show.
"This is similar to what you'll see in New York City at the Westminster," Kingston said.
Owners and their pets paraded through the parking lot in front of the panel of judges, a trio all wearing buttons explaining that bribes are not only accepted at the Finn-Minster, but encouraged.
Sue Rian, owner of the Trestle Inn, said pets - dogs in particular - have always been close to her heart, so she wanted to do something to help animals in Lake County. Over seven years ago, Rian's aunt, Carol Bergeson, gave everyone $20 on her birthday and told the recipients to give it to charity.
Instead of just donating the money, Rian had another idea.
"I bought a box of hot dogs and started a dog show," she said.
Over the course of about an hour, the event raised more than $1,800 through registration fees, a silent auction, hot dog sales and bake sale. Judges even raised $166 in bribes for the LCHS.
Memorial Pet Walk on Sept. 9
The Lake County Historical Society will host the sixth annual Bev Bright Memorial Pet Walk at 1 p.m. Sept. 9 at Lakeview Park in Two Harbors. The fundraiser helps the LCHS's spay and neuter program.
The shelter spays or neuters all pets that are brought in before they are adopted. Animals are also vaccinated when they arrive at the shelter.
The walk is in memory of Bev Bright, an LCHS member who served as treasurer for six years until her death in 2012.
Leashed dogs are welcome at the event, but owners must provide proof of updated vaccinations.
For more information, go to the LCHS's Facebook page, call the shelter at 218-834-5806 or pick up a pledge sheet the shelter.
The LCHS is open Monday to Friday from 9-11 a.m.; Saturday from 1-3 p.m.; and Wednesday from 4-6 p.m.