Created 2-Nov-12
22 photos

More than 200 people and about as many animals showed up Oct. 2 in the parking lot of St. Francis of Assisi Church in Torrington for the parish’s first Spirit of Saint Francis Festival. More than a dozen vendors, exhibitors and artisans pitched their tents at 10 a.m. Events included demonstrations by Bowwow University Dog Obedience School, Canine Sports Agility Training, East Coast Assistance Dogs Service, Torrington Police Canine Unit and more. Pets included Nigerian dwarf goats, fish, hamsters, a gecko, rabbits, cats and dogs – mostly dogs. A pet parade and blessing culminated the afternoon activities, presided over by Father Christopher Tiano, Pastor of the Torrington Cluster of Roman Catholic Parishes. After a vigil Mass, a festival dinner was served, followed by a raffle drawing. (Photos by Jack Sheedy)
Heidi Grisé of Simsbury poses with Sydney, age 18 months, a miniature goldendoodle.Vendors and tent shelters.Father Christopher Tiano, Pastor of the Torrington Cluster of Parishes, announces the schedule of events.Ed Heslin of Ashford mans the table outside of the Connecticut Humane Society bus. Inside the bus are pets in need of adoption.Father Christopher Tiano, Pastor of the Torrington Cluster of Parishes, sprinkles holy water on people and their pets.Kathy Foster watches over Isabella, left, and Snowy, Nigerian dwarf goats.Tara Shaye Lynch, 9, Little Miss Litchfield County, poses with her 5-month-old Golden Retriever, Louis, in front of a statue of St. Francis of Assisi.Father Christopher Tiano gestures as he gives a guided tour of the inside of St. Francis of Assisi Church in Torrington.Scaline, a gecko owned by Kate Boland, 10, daughter of Elizabeeth Boland, cantor at St. Francis Parish.George Zhin of Torrington with Lili, a 1-year-old dachshund.Little Bear, a hamster owned by Ann Kratzer.Pets and the people they own form a parade to the front of St. Francis of Assisi Church in Torrington for the blessing of animals.Pets and the people they own form a parade to the front of St. Francis of Assisi Church in Torrington for the blessing of animals.Dogs lead the parade toward the blessing of animals.Pets and the people they own form a parade to the front of St. Francis of Assisi Church in Torrington for the blessing of animals.Torrington Police Officer Justin Deloy of the K-9 unit puts 6½-year-old German Shepherd Brodie through his paces.Sister Angela Marie Castellani, left, and and Regina Cochran, Franciscan Sisters of the Eucharist from Meriden, relax at their vocation information table.Joel Pelletier, a parishioner at St. Francis of Assisi Parish in Torrington, entertains during the festival.Gil, the beta fish owned by Kate Boland, 10.

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