More than a dozen decked-out dogs and their proud owners converged at the Narrows Botanical Garden Harvest Festival on Oct. 10 for the Canine Costume Contest, a staple of the annual Bay Ridge festival.
Pomeranian Gia Marie and her owner Victoria Viscardi won Best In Show for their homemade “jewelry box ballerina” costume. The pair have won a prize each of the four years they have entered the contest, but Viscardi said they’re not just in it for the glory.
“At the end of the day its just having fun. Gia loves dressing up and when we can make people smile that makes me smile,” Viscardi said.
But more than good fun, the event was also about helping rescue animals.
Part of the money raised at the costume contest was donated to Love Wanted, a volunteer organization in Bay Ridge that helps find homes for abandoned cats and dogs.
Prizes were awarded for “Best Traditional Costume,” “Best Homemade Costume” and “Best Coordinated Dog and Owner Costumes.” Laura Marmo of Bay Ridge teamed up with her Chihuahua-Dachshund “Chiweenie” mix Batman for their Pope-and-nun costume and took home the prize for best coordinated costumes. It was Marmo’s third win at the contest.
The Narrows Botanical Garden Harvest Festival is in its 20th year and has featured the Canine Costume Contest for the past 17. Money raised at the Harvest Festival goes towards maintaining the garden.