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Art, Philanthropy and Fun Combined at West Hartford’s Dog Walk 2022

A real dog greets 'Daisy' at the launch of Dog Walk 2022. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

A dozen artistic dogs were unveiled in West Hartford’s Blue Back Square and the Center on Wednesday at the launch of Dog Walk 2022.

‘Hope’ has a bejeweled bee on its nose. Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

By Ronni Newton

Dog Walk 2022 is now underway in West Hartford with the unleashing Wednesday of a dozen artistically decorated pups that will use their canine appeal in a “FUNdraiser” that will assist a variety of local charities.

The dogs – each of which has been appropriately and creatively named – are as unique as their artists, sponsors, and the causes they promote.

The event was attended by many of the artists as well as sponsors and representatives of the beneficiary charities, and as each dog was unveiled, it became clear that photographs can’t do justice to the overall impact and the special touches added by the artists – like the luminescence of Kelly Kelly’s mosaics on “Blossom,” the jeweled bee on the nose of the sunflower-covered “Hope,” created by Christine MacClintic, or dozens of tiny objects that adorn the body of the “I Spy” dog created by artist Michelle Hawran.

One of the dogs has two completely different sides, and each second look at any of the dogs reveals something previously unseen.

Hartford HealthCare’s dog “Healer” looks like an actual yellow Lab therapy dog – which in intentional, “Major” looks like a military dog, and some visiting canines may be be apt to think other of sculptures are real life dogs. “Banksy Bowwow,” however, is perhaps a bit too abstract to be mistaken as sentient.

Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

All dogs are in the “stay” position atop a platform that also includes signage with their artist statement, and a QR code that will allow for direct donation to the chosen nonprofit, which receives 100% of the proceeds.

UDOLF Properties is the overall presenting Dog Walk sponsor, in collaboration with 2020Media. The dog names and their sponsors, charities, and artists are listed below:

  • Superdog (Uberdog): West Hartford Animal Control and West Hartford Dog Park Coalition; Artist Shane Hickey
  • Banksy Bowwow (Modern Tire): West Hartford Art League; Artist Sam Ferri
  • Major (WTNH): APK Charities; Artist Bryan Wziontko
  • Daisy (Sheehan-Hilborn-Breen Funeral Home); FIDELCO; Artist Amy Casazza
  • Healer (Hartford Healthcare): HHC Therapy Dog Program; Artist Joanna Cistulli
  • Treat (GYL Financial): Jewish Family Services Food Pantry; Artist Emma Huntington
  • Blossom (Robin Gebrian): Ron Foley Foundation; Artist Kellly Kelly
  • I Spy (PeoplesBank): West Hartford Community Interactive; Artist Michelle Hawran
  • Hope (Daley Moving & Storage): Animal Welfare MacCallum Fund; Artist Chris McClintic
  • Max (Jeff Hodges Landscaping): Shelters by Jesus Inc.; Artist Sarah May
  • Kohana (Goff Law): Rainbow/A Better World Adoptions (Ukraine); Artist Shane Hickey
  • Augie Doggie (2020Media/We-Ha.com/Turley Publications): The Bridge/Children’s Charity Ball; Artist Linda Bilodeau

More information about the dogs and their creators, the artist statements, sponsors, and beneficiaries can be found on the PDF below.

Representatives from Hartford Healthcare speak about their sponsorship of ‘Healer’ and plans to use the funds raised for a therapy dog. Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

‘Treat’ benefits the Anja Rosenberg Kosher Food Pantry. Artist Emma Huntington designed the dog, which is sponsored by GYL Financial Syneries.. Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

Banksy Bowwow’s urban style was created by Samuel Ferri and benefits the West Hartford Art League. Modern Tire of West Hartford sponsored the dog. Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

Stacey Dresner of 2020Media unveils ‘Hope.’ Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

From left: Tom Hickey of 2020Media, artist Bryan Wziontko, and APK Charities Board member Kevin Dowd at the unveiling of ‘Major.’ Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

‘Blossom’ wears a mosaic coat created by artist Kelly Kelly. The dog is sponsored by Robin Gebrian and supports the Ron Foley Foundation. Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

‘Superdog’ is sponsored by Uberdog, and supports the West Hartford Dog Park Coalition. Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

‘I Spy’ many. unique objects on this dog by artist Michelle Hawran that supports WHCI. Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

‘Augie Doggie’ by artist Linda Bilodeau has a foster dog theme and supports The Bridge and Children’s Charity Ball. Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

‘Kohana,’ sponsored by Goff Law, has a rainbow theme on one side and a Ukraine flag on the other side, and supports A Better World Adoption Agency. Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

‘Max’ stands in front of the library sign. Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

‘Healer’ looks like a live therapy dog. Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

Artist Christine MacClintic with her dog, ‘Hope,’ sponsored by Daley Moving and Storage and benefitting the MacCallum Family Fund for Animal Welfare. Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

Uberdog owner Dan O’Brien shares his reasons for sponsoring a dog. Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

Dog Walk 2022. West Hartford. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

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