Charlie The Dog may have been dressed as sidekick Luigi from the Mario Bros. video games, but Sunday he took the spotlight at the Spooktacular Howl’oween Pet Parade in Glen Cove.
Charlie, who came with his friend Baxter, posing as Mario, won the award for “Best Smile.”
The event was arranged by Darcy Belyea, parks and recreation director for the City of Glen Cove. Belyea, 47, worked with Susan Tripp, Debbie Moran and Angie Colangelo for a month to create the event.
Pet owners strutted down Highland Road with their four-legged friends. The parade stopped every so often for owners to adjust their squirming pets' costumes.
Families hoisted their pets up to judges as if they were presenting Simba before Pride Rock.
The parade contest had 10 different prize categories (with prizes and trophies donated by Petco), professional pet photography, pet sketches and opportunities to adopt pets from the Glen Cove Animal Lovers League.
Those who adopted pets were given two months of free scooping donated by Scoopy Doo, a dog waste removal business.
Glen Cove resident John Florentino, 53, was smiling from ear to ear while his dog, Sparky, dressed as a squirrel, panted.
“It’s awesome,” Florentino said. “It’s so much family fun, and it’s so much animal fun. It’s a great way to spend a Sunday.”
Pet owners could also get their pets licensed at the event.
Glen Cove Mayor Ralph V. Suozzi handed out trophies to the winners of each category.
“It really took off,” Suozzi said about the event. For next year, he said the city may build a dog run by the animal shelter.
“It was a great event for the first year, and I hope they have it next year,” said Glen Cove resident James Greenberg, 38, who attended with his dog, Morty, and his two children, Ariana and Sean.