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'A lot of good dogs' at the First Annual Eastmoreland Dog Show

by: JANE A. KENNEY - The dog which won the most impressive ribbon, and then went on to take best of show, was an English Springer Spaniel named Joey - shown here in front of the new Reed Performing Arts Center building with his owner, Ellie B., and his awards. He was a rescue dog from a shelter, she said.A brief but vigorous downpour in the midst of the “First Annual Eastmoreland Dog Show” failed to dampen the enthusiasm of the large crowd for the scores of dogs competing in four juried categories: Strangest-looking, cutest, most impressive, and “dog looking the most like its owner”.

Held under a big tent in the Reed College quad, as part of the Community Day activities to celebrate Reed’s new Performing Arts building, the dog show was organized by Steve Baker of the Eastmoreland Neighborhood Association – and emcee’d by Bert Sperling, a former ENA President, and an Eastmoreland author and the creator of “BestPlaces.net”.

“There are no bad dogs,” observed Sperling. And it was true. The dogs brought to the show from neighborhoods near and far were remarkably well-behaved, with only an occasional growl or bark.

Portland City Commissioner Steve Novick appeared and spoke briefly at the dog show, identifying himself as proud owner of a Corgi.

Susan Bragdon of Eastmoreland brought her two dogs to the show, and entered her small, wiry, very cute, but with a pronounced overbite, mixed-breed named Wallace into the “strangest-looking” competition. “Wallace was a mistake that happened at the neighbors’,” she smiled.

Wallace lost that contest to Stitch, a Mexican hairless dog with skin like a pygmy pig and looking a little as if his breed might have once been bred for meat.

Next came the “cutest dog”, which drew several dozen contenders to the stage – so many that Sperling had to speed things along. The dog chosen as cutest, a Welsh Terrier, definitely deserved the honor as, on stage with tail wagging, he barked back at the applauding crowd. The winner of the “most impressive” ribbon, and also named “Best of Show”, was an English Springer Spaniel named Joey, presented by his young owner, Ellie B. As the large crowd drifted away, one of the organizers remarked that the number of entrants had exceeded the most optimistic expectations – 100 numbered entry placards had been prepared, and in the end quite a few entrants had to compete onstage without a number, because the placards had run out well before checking everyone in. “But it will be even better next year!”