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We are introducing a brand new series of Photo Essays! Have a look at amazing Photo Sets all shot by talented photographers. Explore the vibe of the city, its hidden treasures, meet the Torontonians! This time, let's have a look at Toronto through the lens of Stephen Oung!
Celebrating our best friends, Toronto surely knows how to show some doggie love! Since its launch in 2003 in the hip Distillery District, Woofstock has become the largest free outdoor festival for dogs and their owners, and an amazing experience for everyone who's thinking about getting a puppy. Over the weekend of June 8 and 9, Woofstock celebrated its tenth annual canine street fest, and we were there!
The St. Lawrence Market Neighbourhood has become the festival's newest location, providing enough space for the event to welcome more than 300,000 dog lovers with their loyal furry companions. One of the biggest food markets was just steps away when you needed a break or a delicious snack in between events, or you could visit the dog-friendly Sunday Antique Market for some shopping. Restaurants and coffee houses along the streets leading to Yonge Street all took part in the festivities, opening up their patios to our four-footed friends. You could see strangers talk to each other and pet each others' dogs in the streets, sharing their stories. If you were looking for a special something — only the best service for your pooch — there was the amazing opportunity to check in to the luxurious Fairmont Royal York Hotel in the heart of the city. For these two days, there were no barriers — not a single "No Dogs Allowed" sign. Shopping for a designer piece or diamond pet accessories, tasting some gourmet treats, or relaxing in a spa after a long and exciting day? Woofstock offered everything you could think of to make your dog happy.
Every year, the program features something fresh and quirky, as well as a large number of dog shows and contests with such adorable names as "Yappy Hour" serving "Wooftini" cocktails in the park, a "Dogglegänger" contest searching for dog celebrity doppelgängers and the long-awaited Woofstock Fashion Show, where everyone brought their best dress to impress. Fashion-forward pooches of all shapes and sizes and pedigrees showcased the latest trends in canine couture. The highlights of the whole festival were the Ms. and Mr. Canine Canada and the Stupid Dog Trick Contest that encouraged visitors to exhibit the most unusual talents their dog has. You and your pet had a chance to be recognized by international scouts as Canada's next (doggie) top model and shine in upcoming Pedigree commercials! Not bad, is it?
Apart from being able to see the most beautiful or most exclusive dog breeds all in one place, you could get useful information on what's best for your pooch, check out the latest trends in dog food (yes, apparently the bio food trend is hitting the shelves with your dog's snacks too!), and chat with other dog owners for good advice. Another year, another success!
Contact: 416-234-WOOF (9663)
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Meet the Photographer
Stephen is a freelance photographer currently based in the City of Toronto. He has lived in Germany and Japan, and has used photography as a means of sharing his view of the world to others. He loves traveling and photographing everything, particularly cultural and special events. All his work and travels can be found here on his impressively extensive flickr portfolio.