Montgomery's mutts out for a strut
Festival celebrates man's best friend in Bethesda
This story was corrected on May 24, 2011. An explanation follows the story.
Downtown Bethesda was brought to a "paws" as dozens of dogs took to the streets for the sixth annual Strut your Mutt Dog Parade and Festival on Saturday.
A parade of pooches stretched down Woodmont Avenue as judges were on the lookout for the dog with the best mutt strut and best parade outfit. Organized by the Bethesda-Chevy Chase Rotary Club, the festival also included contests, activities and exhibitors.
After the parade, dogs were brought to the stage to win prizes in other categories such as best tail wag, best kisser and best singer.
Peter Alterman of Potomac and his two keeshonds Tasha and The Dread Pirate Roberts were picked as the best celebrity look-alike. The judges thought the pair of fluffy gray dogs resembled Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen.
"We won't tell him he was confused with a girl," Alterman says of the dog he calls Pirate for short.
About 120 people registered their dogs to participate in the parade for $25, says festival chair Cindy Bertaut. She estimates that twice as many people attended the festival without registering.
Last year, the event raised $15,000 for the Bethesda-Chevy Chase Rotary Club, but early totals from this year put their earnings closer to $10,000, Bertaut says.
"It's a fun event. We do make some money, but I think we gain more in the community," Bertaut says.
Correction: The original version of this story incorrectly spelled keeshonds.