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The race is on: Wiener Dog Derby today at Civic Center

By Staff | Mar 24, 2012

Thousands have turned out to have their dachshund race or just watch the fun, at the annual Wiener Dog Derby.

The event will be held this year on Saturday, March 24, at the Lee Civic Center.

“This is our third year for the event,” said Florida Wiener Dog Derby Inc. president Doug Dailey. “We are a non-profit, State of Florida corporation with the goal to raise funds for non-profit organizations in our area.”

He also runs local Doug Dailey Investigations.

There will be food, vendors, animal welfare agency representatives and more there.Dailey will race his own dog Tex.

“He enjoys it,” said Dailey. “He will be racing in the Adult Classic. Something new we have this year is that we are having the Bark Network coming down in order to video the derby.”

The Bark Network has been on Animal planet, and their pieces have gone national. It video also will be on barknetwork.com.

Gates will open at 10 a.m. Pre-registration closed early this week, and pre-race calling will begin at 10:45 a.m. with races starting at 11:00. There is no charge for admission.

“We’re asking anyone in lieu of admission to bring a pet food item for donation,” he said.

There will be a parking donation of $5 at the Center.

“These races are a lot of fun,” said Tanya Jones, secretary of the organization. “And you meet a lot of nice people.”

“North Fort Myers Honorary Mayor Al Giaclone will help with the welcome,” said Dailey. “He will proclaim the day as Wiener Dog Day in North Fort Myers.”

“You never know what the dogs will do,” said Lead Race Officer Gene Lust. “We’ve got race entrants from as far away as Fort Worth, and several from the Orlando and Tampa areas.”

There are also many North Fort Myers and Cape Coral entries as well.

You can bring any dog with you to enjoy watching the races, as long as they are leashed, with a current rabies proof from a veterinarian, and can safely enter the gate. Safety is a top priority, officials said.

For more information view floridawienerdogderby.com or email info@floridawienerdogderby.com. The Lee Civic Center is located at 11831 Bayshore Road in North Fort Myers.