Monday, February 15, 2010

It's HERE!

Had a great day today at WKC. Met a lot of wonderful people, and had some fantastic interviews. Here's an early morning picture from Monday morning.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

A Bite of the Apple

If you're coming to NYC for WKC, or if you just want to read a wonderful article on places to see and things to do in NY, look at the current issue of Dog News. Matt Stander has an article titled A Bite of the Apple. This has become an annual tradition, and if you are formerly from NYC as I am, you'll read this article and feel as if you're there. You'll certainly start wishing you could hit some of the restaurants and see the sights of NYC again!

Official Viewer's Guide to WKC show

Schmitty the WeatherDog! Arf!

My Other Life--the Automotive Industry

Thought you'd like to see what else I do so I can support my dog habit! Haa haa!

This is one of a series of interviews I shot at the SEMA Show in Las Vegas in 2009. In addition to writing for Dog News, I also write for Bobit Business Media, particularly for their publications directed to the automotive accessory industry. Hey! Maybe one day you'll see me with David Frei doing dog shows!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

WKC Monday judging

Monday's panel includes Andrew Brace in Ring 1. As a highly regarded judge who has judged 'round the world, he certainly is not to be missed if you have some time in the morning.

Here's his website:

More Weather News--Wednesday 1:30 PM

It was just announced that Interstate 81 from the Maryland border to Rt. 80 (this would be around Hazelton, PA) is closed. Rt. 78, which runs east/west to the PA/NJ state border is closed, as is Rt. 83.

Those of you traveling by car to NYC may want to be aware, and check conditions before you set out.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Weather Alert

Of course it's the lead-up to Westminster. What would you expect other than a weather surprise! Click here to see the National Weather Service report.

The good news? It will warm up on Friday and Saturday. In my opinion, there's nothing more beautiful than NYC after a storm passes. The weather often gets crisp, clear, and wonderfully refreshing. Let's hope so!

A different Westminster Twist

In case you're curious--here's what the Vegas oddsmakers are saying about the Westminster Kennel Club show:

Click HERE

A Few Westminster Tips

After speaking to a lot of people I'll be interviewing, I have learned many of them haven't been to Westminster before, much less NYC. So, here are a few valuable tips:

If you're traveling by car, and you have a choice, take the smallest car you own. Parking is astronomically high in NYC, and they manage to find all kinds of ways to upcharge you. Minivans are considered "oversized" and you can easily double your parking fee. Additionally, it's easier to squeeze through Manhattan streets and park in tight spaces with a smaller car. Use public transportation wherever you can.

It gets HOT in Madison Square Garden. Although it may be brutally cold outside in NYC, it will be HOT in the Garden. Plan accordingly. Wear some layers, but remember that you will also have to either carry the stuff around or find a place to stash it. The benching area is a madhouse.

This is a holiday weekend. Expect a larger than normal crowd on Monday. What is usually a slow shuffle through the benching area will probably be reduced to a crawl. Find alternate ways to move around the Garden if you have to be anywhere.

Food is expensive at the Garden. Don't expect gourmet cuisine. Hot dogs are about the best you'll find and you will wonder why a hot dog costs as much in MSG as a filet mignon costs at home. It's because this is The Big Apple and they charge you a lot because they can. If you're showing, and will be in the benching area, pack plenty of bottled water for yourself and your dog. Otherwise, be prepared to pay about the cost of a bottle of fine wine for a bottle of water. Bring some snacks, too.

If you're showing, you're going to have to pass through quite a bit of security. Make sure you have your entry paperwork with you. DO NOT lose your papers. You will have to have your entry ticket to GET YOUR DOG BACK OUT when you leave. It is an arduous climb to get up the ramps and into the freight elevator to take you to the benching area. Once off the elevator it is a haul to get to the benches. You will be lugging all your stuff. Carry only what you need. If you have a dog that needs grooming, you cannot set up your grooming table in the benching area. You must set up in the grooming area. It will be crowded. If you're polite, you will generally find someone who is willing to move over a bit to give you some space. Expect to be cramped. Do your best.

In the benching area, you will want to be careful not to leave your dog unattended. Your fellow exhibitors may be willing to help keep an eye out, but don't depend on it. There will be massive crowds of people who come in just to look at the dogs. It's fun, but it's hectic and you must keep the safety and well-being of your dog foremost. You cannot have chairs in the aisles of the benching area. The best you can hope for is to perch yourself on the edge of the benches. If you're fortunate, exhibitors may not show up and there will be open spots beside you. You will want to claim one of these right away (VBG) as they can become a comfortable nesting spot. You will get very tired. You will decide the most wonderful thing in the world is simply a place to sit down. For most of this day, your world becomes quite small.....

Above all, have fun. If you can do so, wander the benching area and ask people to show you their dogs. You will see some of the "best of the best" here. This show is unlike anything else you'll ever attend.

Westminster Kennel Club


America's first AKC Champions Only dog show opens Monday, Feb. 15 and continues through Tuesday, Feb. 16.

Without a doubt, the Westminster Kennel Club show is the premier dog show in the sport. Preceded by days of social events, it is truly a celebration of the sport of purebred dogs. A whirl of receptions, dinners, gala balls, along with peripheral dog shows provides the fancy with plenty to do. Many who attend include several days of plans for sightseeing and exploring New York City's restaurants, museums and attractions.

Certainly, more than anything else this week underscores something about the sport of purebred dogs: It relies on the interpersonal relationships of people. Many of the social events are held in conjunction with charities such as Take the Lead, and Angel on the Leash. The efforts made by Westminster Kennel Club members behind the scenes in many charities to benefit not only dogs but people as well speaks highly of the caliber of the sport.

So, join me this week as I begin my journey to Westminster Kennel Club, not as an exhibitor, but as a journalist who loves dogs, shows dogs (my Cairn Terriers), and knows the sport of purebred dogs. I'll be writing for Dog News as well as a number of newspapers during the upcoming week. Stay tuned!