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Goldenfest returns Nov. 14

By Staff | Oct 8, 2021

A huge pet fair, GoldenFest XI, is coming up this fall in Southwest Florida. 

Hosted by Golden Retriever Rescue of Southwest Florida, the festival will be held at the Shell Factory & Nature Park in North Fort Myers from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 14.

GoldenFest events include vendors, exhibits, pet portraits, dock dog diving, obedience, flyball and agility demos, K-9 demos, live music by the Long and Short Trio featuring Jim Visone, Bill Metts and Bruce Gallant, a doggy garage sale, refreshments, a Santa Paws photo booth, a huge raffle, and silent auction, and much more.

In attendance will be hundreds of goldens rescued by GRRSWF over the years. The rescue, founded in 2009, recently celebrated the arrival of its 1,000th rescue, Sydney, from South Korea.

“We are so proud of all the pups and all the families we have helped in the last 12-plus years,” said Dennis Guyitt, vice president of GRRSWF and GoldenFest XI coordinator in a prepared statement. “GoldenFest is our chance to show our friends in Southwest Florida the best of what we do.”

There will also be a reunion tent for the golden retrievers GRRSWF has rescued from South Korea. Since 2015, the rescue has saved 68 goldens from that country to raise awareness about the dog-meat industry that still exists in some parts of the world. The group has also rescued three goldens from Iran and two from China as part of its international mission.

“This will be our 11th annual GoldenFest, postponed in 2020 due to COVID-19, and it should be our best yet,” Guyitt said. “We are adding new events like obedience, agility and flyball demonstrations, pony rides, live music, on-site food and beverages, plus continuing with our fan favorite — dock diving. This is the best and largest dog event of the year.”

Additionally, the event will feature representatives of the North Fort Myers Fire Control District displaying equipment and vehicles. The Lee County Sheriff’s Office will bring local hero K-9 Deputy Chance to meet the public and will be doing K-9 demonstrations. Vendors include a huge variety of pet-related businesses, services, and vendors.

The Shell Factory is at 16554 N. Cleveland Ave. in North Fort Myers.

All breeds of well-mannered, leashed dogs — especially golden retrievers — are invited to attend with their owners. Admission and parking are free.

For more information, visit www.grrswf.org, email info@grrswf.org or call 239-369-0415.