Frankenmuth events kick off holiday weekend

The unofficial start of summer will be kicking off with the Frankenmuth Dog Bowl and Balloons over Bavarian Inn.
Published: May. 26, 2023 at 10:54 PM EDT
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FRANKENMUTH, Mich. (WNEM) - The unofficial start of summer will be kicking off with the Frankenmuth Dog Bowl and Balloons over Bavaria Inn.

The world’s largest Olympic-style festival for dogs will begin Saturday morning, May 27 at the Frankenmuth River Place shops.

“We’ve got a doggy invasion as tens of thousands of people and many, many thousands of dogs come to compete over 25 different events and activities on Saturday and Sunday,” said Michael Zehnder, the chairman of Dog Bowl 2023.

Some of the events and activities include disc dog competitions, a pet parade, the annual Canine Cruise on the Bavarian Belle River Boat, and the best costume contest.

“This is little Sanford Reign. He’s over 2-years-old, he’s a multi-poo, and he loves all dogs, big and small. So, he’ll take on the Great Danes and the little Chihuahuas,” said dog mom Kathy Reign.

All dogs are welcome to have some tail-wagging fun at Saturday’s festivities.

“Sanford going to participate in the small dog race, and I think he’ll also participate in the pet parade. So, it’s only our second year coming, but it’s a wonderful event,” Reign said. “I mean, he gets to sniff at least a hundred dogs and enjoy the day.”

It’s not too late to sign your dog up to compete this weekend.

“Many welcome new competitors or novices. They can try their paw at dock dog diving or disc dog events. There’s wiener dog races, 25-yard and 50-yard fun run races,” Zehnder said. “Some of the registrations can be made online or in person depending on the event.”

The fun started Friday night with Balloons over Bavarian Inn, featuring 25 hot air balloon pilots from across the country.

“After the flight, the pilots will land, and half the balloons will come back. We’re going to stand the balloons up at dusk and make these balloons glow and light up,” said Shawn Raya with Balloons over Bavarian Inn.

All of the fun runs from Friday through Monday morning, and all events are free. Your dogs are welcome but must be leashed.

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