With wagging tails and soggy kisses, the stars of Citizens for Animal Protection's "Under the Big Top" benefit easily captivated the 250 animal-lovers who filled the Bayou City Event Center for the casual summer bash.
Be it the oh-so-elegant Russian wolfhound answering to "Astor," the trembling chihuahuas (one named Bruiser) or the playful terriers, the pooches on parade were nothing less than heartwarming. Even a few felines, safely transported in their custom baby carriages, joined the barking fray. And did we mention Iggy the Iguana, who despite his menacing appearance proved to be quite docile?
CAP regulars Alex Martinez and David Arpin, accompanied by their uber-animated miniature poodles Pablo and Pedro, shared the joy as did other contestants in the pet/owner costume competition. Bonnie Goodrich, C.C. and Duke Ensell, and Cindy Childress with her cat were among those strolling the catwalk, no pun intended.
It was the ever-creative Carolyn St. Clair who swayed the judges with her colorful circus costume theme with her Cavalier King Charles spaniels, Tallulah and Spencer.
Five-star animal lovers Bruce Padilla and Shelby Kibodeaux chaired the sellout event that raised $145,000 for the pet shelter. Joining them as honorary chairs were Elizabeth and Alan Stein, Laura Stein, and Jacob Stein. The evening's success was due in large part to premier sponsor David Huntington, who with his wife Yanira and their son, Nicolas, were part of the pet parade.
Linda Lorelle served as emcee introducing the line-up of honorees including Big Top honor Michael Hoctor and Mr. Magoo Trapeze Award honoree Greg Miller. Honorees taking bows included Dr. Roland Maldonado, Jo Lynn and Gregg Falgout, Charlene and Charles Signorino, and the Huntington family.
The lively bunch included 2017 chairs Marion and Austin Cornelius, plus Cappy Munzer, Connie and Sheriff Ron Hickman, Karen Deguerin and Peter Remington, Rhonda and Alan Howells, Jennifer Roosth, Kelly Anzilotti, Hershey Grace and John Moritz, Ed McMahon, Francie and Mike Willis, and Casey Curry and Carl Hahn.