Hens invite hounds to the roost

Four-legged fans can accompany owners to night at park


Along with cheering, attendees at Tuesday’s Mud Hens game might hear a few barks but hopefully no growls.

One of the most popular promotions in Fifth Third Field history is making a comeback for the first time in nearly 10 years. Dog owners and their four-legged friends are invited to the park for “Hens and Hounds Night,” presented by The Blade.

Tickets for dog owners are $9 each, and tickets for dogs are $7 each. Proceeds from dog tickets will benefit the Toledo Area Humane Society and the Lucas County Dog Warden’s Cutie’s Fund, said Mike Keedy, manager of special events for the Mud Hens.

Fans with four-legged friends will enter Fifth Third Field through the Center Field Gate near the corner of Monroe Street and St. Clair Street. All dogs and owners will be seated in the Home Run Picnic Terrace, which is Sections 120, 121, and 122. Seating is general admission.

The event, once called “Pooches in the Park,” was popular in 2004 and earlier until the team received a letter from the Minor League Baseball office in St. Petersburg, Fla., warning the club of liability issues of having dogs at the ballpark.

“We were able to resolve those issues, and we’re really excited to bring the event back,” said Mr. Keedy, who plans to attend the event with his dog, Bomber, a long-haired Chihuahua. “We hope to do it annually from here on out.”

In previous years, the event generated $2,000 for the benefiting charities. Cutie’s Fund, one of the two charities this year, helps dogs with high-cost medical needs at the Lucas County Dog Warden’s Office.

Volunteers from the Toledo Area Humane Society, will be there to assist dog owners and provide temporary “dog-watching” services when it is necessary, said Cyndi Condit, the group’s marketing and special events manager.

Water stations, minipools, and designated restroom areas will be in the dog-friendly Home Run Picnic Terrace sections. The first 500 dogs will receive Mud Hens bandanas, Mr. Keedy said.

Ticket holders wishing to take their dogs to the game who already have seats in locations outside of the dog-friendly sections are encouraged to exchange their tickets to Sections 120, 121, or 122. Dogs will not be permitted outside of the designated sections, he said.

Only well-mannered and well-behaved dogs will be allowed. All dogs must be on a 6-foot or less leash. No retractable leashes will be permitted. There will be a “doggie restroom” on St. Clair Street, and pet owners will be provided with disposable bags.

To purchase tickets, call 419-725-4367 or order online at mudhens.com

Contact Tanya Irwin at: tirwin@theblade.com, 419-724-6066, or on Twitter @TanyaIrwin.