There was no shortage of family fun to be had in Natchitoches Saturday, May 14. The Natchitoches Farmer’s Market hosted the Hope for Paws “Who Let the Dogs Out?” The event was intended to raise funds for the organization’s mission as well as show off some dogs who are looking for a home.
As market goers shopped and enjoyed entertainment from the riverbank stage, local public officials were participating in some watery fun for a very worthy cause. The Farmer’s Market sponsored a dunking booth in which local officials, politicians and civic leaders could be dunked by softball wielding citizens with proceeds going to help this worthy group with its mission. Mayor and First Lady Williams, Sheriff Capt Jesse Taitano, Councilwoman Rosemary Washington Elie, Police Chief Nikeo Collins, NSU’s Van Erikson, and City Marshal Randy Williams were joined by several city officials and civic leaders in taking turns in the booth. Noted local musician Johnny Earthquake, otherwise known as Rodney Harrington in his day job, took a turn, luckily not affecting his playing and singing abilities. Mayor Williams led the watery lineup, experiencing his first of many dunks at the hands of Wayne Halm. Natchitoches’ youth sports programs are producing some serious talent and it was on display as young men and women gave the dunking booth a workout.
The prospect of dunking one’s beloved proved to be an irresistible temptation for several spouses. Mayor Williams may have to find a spare bunk in the fire house after dunking his wife. Jesse Taitano fell victim to former NSU athlete Haley Taitano who showed she has not lost a step. Police Chief Collins fell victim to both his wife and son. Mrs. Jan Harrington quickly sent her husband to a damp fate and then gave Hope for Paws a generous donation so that others could keep the softballs flying and her husband soaking.
Westin Key sent the most people into the tank, while Capt Taitano was the most dunked with the soggy Johnny Earthquake a close second.
The Natchitoches Parish Journal would like to commend the men and women who were such good sports by taking a turn in the booth. The fundraiser garnered well over $1,100 which will be put to good use through the Hope for Paws organization by helping animals throughout the parish find a good home.