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Woof Stock bringing national attractions to Chestertown

Woof Stock bringing national attractions to Chestertown

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CHESTER  James Bond can run a 350-foot obstacle course in 10 seconds, Lee Rebalko said, boasting about the talents of his 3-year-old Boston terrier, a “genetic freak.”

Rebalko founded Doggie Fun Zone, a roving, patented obstacle course based in Florida that sends dogs on an agility and lure chasing course longer than a 300-foot football field, motivating almost any dog to run up, jump over and fly around anything in its way as it focuses on a twitching lure.

“As long as a dog has a chase drive, it’ll fly through the course,” said his wife, Ruth Rebalko, who travels with him and James Bond along with their Jack Russell terrier, Jem.

Any dog can partake. The fee is $10 per dog for two times around.

The interactive chasing game for dogs travels the country — the next stop will be Santa Monica, California — and is in Chester this weekend for Adirondack Woof Stock, a new event modeled after larger dog-centric, Woodstock-themed events in the U.S. and Canada. Nothing like it has ever come to the Adirondacks before, said Cindy Mead, secretary for the Tri-Lakes Business Alliance.

On Friday afternoon, the Millerton, Dutchess County-based Hudson Valley Dock Dogs were getting ready for a weekend-long dock diving competition with $1,500 worth of prizes at stake.

The rig with the 40-foot dock and 40-foot diving pool was driven in from Ohio.

There are three different disciplines, said club Vice President Bill Gleason, including “big air” (long jump), “extreme vertical” (high jump) and “speed retrieve” (speed swim).

He said 75 to 100 dogs are pre-registered and expected from Canada, New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, Connecticut and Maine.

“It’s a regional-type competition,” he said.

Gleason also noted that dogs that don’t want to compete can try it for $15. The competition will go in waves from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. People can still register their dog on-site to compete if they get in before the next wave.

“All dogs have an equal shot at winning a prize,” Gleason said, as the competition awards $75 for each of five tiers for dogs that jump 10 feet or fewer, all the way up to dogs that jump more than 23 feet in the “big air” event. At 3:30 p.m. Sunday, the top 30 dogs will perform in each category.

There’s also the disc competitions with the Beantown Disc Dogs, of Massachusetts. Professional disc handlers will be on hand for demonstrations and tips.

There is no admission fee for Woof Stock. Charges vary for different activities, and there will be pet adoptions and microchipping available, along with almost any dog-related vendor (about 30 total) imaginable. A sampling includes a dog communicator, dog reiki, locally made dog treats and dog collars adorned with gemstones. Also, there will be free continuous outdoor music, dog talent shows, raffles with prizes like flea and tick medication, police K-9 demonstrations and animal blessings several times a day.

Woof Stock is located in the field behind the Chester Municipal Complex on Route 9 in Chestertown. Events run from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday with a 7:30 p.m. Woodstock Revisited concert ($20 a ticket) at the Carol Theatre, and from 9 a.m. to 3 or 4 p.m. Sunday.

Follow Amanda May Metzger on Twitter @AmandaWhistle and read her blog at poststar.com/app/blogs.

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