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There will be more than fruit, vegetables and pies at the Saint Michael’s Farmers Market on Saturday, October 5. There also will be a lot of pets being blessed by Saint Michael and All Angels’ priests.

The annual Blessing of the Animals is being held in conjunction with the farmers market from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. in the church’s north parking lot at Douglas and Colgate.

“The farmers market has become a Saturday morning favorite of the neighborhood with a lot of shoppers bringing their pets,” said Bob Dannals, the church’s Rector. “So, we decided to make Blessing of the Animals a community event this year offering blessings to all of the neighborhood pets.”

Several area pet-oriented businesses will provide free animal-care tips including Billi Bonze Pet Grooming Boutique and Lucky Dog Barkery, and the SPCA will have foster puppies and kittens to begin the adoption process. Author Jennifer Pickens will autograph her book, Pets of the White House, and artist Teresa Persons will have several of her pet portraits on display. A photographer will snap a picture of each pet being blessed, which will be emailed to its owner. All pets — dogs, cats, hamsters, gold fish, even horses — are welcome. They need to be on a leash or in a cage.

In addition to the blessing the pets, the church’s Parish Nurse Ministry and the American Red Cross will conduct a blood donation drive as well. The Red Cross bloodmobile will be on site from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Anyone wishing to give blood can register online at using the sponsor code Saintmichael.

“This is another opportunity for our neighborhood to get together, enjoy each other’s company, and celebrate the many blessings we receive from our pets,” Fr. Dannals said.

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