About 7,000 dog lovers are expected to turn out for the fourth annual Howl-O-Ween Fest Oct. 27 in the master-planned community of Bridgeland.
The festival features a handful of events for visitors and their canines, ranging from trick-or-treating to a dog fashion show. One of this year’s main events is sculptor Alfred Paredes from Villafane Studios who will carve pumpkins into 3-D works of art.
“We have never stumbled across anything this unique,” said Lona Shipp, marketing manager for Bridgeland. “Even though it’s not dog-related, they have embraced the theme of the event. Alfred [Paredes] has been practicing in L.A. where he lives on some dog-inspired pumpkin [carvings].”
In addition, artist Anat Ronen will create a dog-inspired work during the festival, Shipp said.
Although most of the activities at Howl-O-Ween Fest are free, some will require a small donation to benefit several participating animal rescue groups.
“This is a huge way for them to recruit and adopt,” Shipp said. “That’s a big focal point of the day.”
While the popularity of food trucks has mainly stayed within Houston’s inner loop, 12 will be at this year’s Howl-O-Ween Fest. Coreanos Houston Food Truck, Custom Confections, Grill ‘em Girls, Happy Endings, Kona Ice, Papa John’s Pizza, Texas Best Snowballs, The Golden Grill and The Lunch Bag are a few of the trucks that will be serving up food all day.
“Instead of having a couple caterers, we can offer 10 or 12 different types of food,” Shipp said. “We’ll have the standard burgers and hot dogs, but other [trucks] will have Asian-infused tacos, gourmet grilled cheeses or other things you wouldn’t typically be able to enjoy at a fair or festival.”
Other festival events include a dog fashion show and costume contest, a farmers market and pumpkin patch, a performance by the Houston Canine Frisbee Disc Club, a Splash Dogs dock-diving competition, street performers, trick-or-treating and pet vendors. In addition, The Foundry Church hosts its annual fall festival during Howl-O-Ween Fest featuring bounce houses, games and activities.
“I think this event is important not only to the Cypress area because it helps build a sense of community, but because there are so many dog lovers out there and it provides [a way] for those families to come and bring their dog out to enjoy an event like this,” Shipp said.
All dogs must remain on leashes during the festival, be up to date on vaccinations, wear a rabies tag and be on good behavior. The event runs from 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Oct. 27 at Bridgeland’s Oak Meadow’s Park.