New Yorkers Celebrates Halloween with Third Annual ‘Doggie Costume Contest’

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November 2, 2021

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(NEW YORK) — A costume-clad crowd gathered on Little West 12th Street in New York City’s Meatpacking neighborhood Saturday to watch the third annual “Doggie Costume Contest” in celebration of Halloween.

After a brief introduction from the event’s MC, festively dressed participants and their four-legged pets lined up along the cobblestone road for their turn to walk the runway for a panel of three judges.

Sarah Lee, James Dinh and Tofu show off their Teletubbies costumes.
[Credit: Sophie Andreesen]

Sisters Charlotte and Alea Abrams showed up with 2-year-old Rosie, an orange and white corgi noted as contestant 129. While waiting for their number to be called, they discussed how they landed on their idea of “peas in a pod.”

“It took us about an hour to make,” Charlotte said, matching her pup in a green T-shirt with three fabric circles lined down the front, while her sister interpreted the theme by wearing various shades of green. “We looked at what clothes we currently owned and went to Goodwill to get the rest. It was either a cactus or this.”

Participants walked the stage to the sound of cheers and barks from the crowd. Though the sky was gray, the show offered a break from thunderstorms the day before.

Sarah Lee and James Dinh, opting for the theme of Teletubbies, carried their 3-month-old Pomeranian named Tofu as they exited the stage.

“It was really fun,” Lee said after debuting the costumes. “We wish we had a more festive costume; everyone really outdid themselves.”

The two had found out about the event online and registered Tofu through the corresponding Eventbrite link.

When asked if they would participate next year, Lee said “yes” without hesitation. However, she added that next time they would come “better prepared.”

Second place winners, “The Royal Family”
[Credit: Sophie Andreesen]

After the final dog walked the stage, it was time for the judges’ deliberation. Notably, only first-time judge and local fashion influencer Courtney Quinn was dressed for the occasion, wearing an orange tulle dress accompanied with monarch wings and butterflies in her hair.

Once a decision was reached, the judges made their way to the stage while the crowd listened intently for the results.

“It was incredibly difficult,” said Bryan Reisberg, carrying judge Maxine “The Fluffy Corgi” on his back. “Everyone showed up. The enthusiasm was top notch. We appreciate all the costumes, but there were a few that had a little bit of extra sauce.”

The third-place winner was a golden retriever dressed as a chef. “We thought it was really fun and it was a whole cohesive team,” the judges said.

Second place went to a pooch and owners who chose the theme “the royal family.” The judges described the costume as “relevant, fresh and chic.”

And finally, taking first place was Harper, a 7-month-old mini goldendoodle, with owners Julie O’Donnell, Liam, 12, and Audrey, 9, all dressed as the Ghostbusters.

The four entered the stage to give a final walk for the crowd and collect their prize, an overnight stay at the dog-friendly Gansevoort Hotel. Each winning team also received a black canvas tote filled with treats from local restaurants and businesses in the neighborhood. 

“We didn’t think we were going to win,” O’Donnell told The Click. “It was a big surprise. We’re very excited.”

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