“Pet-Topia” Welcomes All Breeds to Assist Animals & Artisans


dog petopia
Photo Credit: “Pet-Topia”

It’s more than a dog-and-pony-show, it’s a field day for animal lovers to enjoy with their furry family members.

Humans can sign up to have their lil’ critters’ claws trimmed by a professional in exchange for a charitable donation, they can also consult with “pet whisperer” Dr. Brandy Howe, peruse the hand-made creations of several roving pop-up artists, and grab a bite to eat.

There’ll be both human and non-human goodies.

There will also be prizes and giveaways, and a generous soul might even take home a new four-legged friend!

“We have a soft spot in our hearts for the endearing eyes and loyalty of animals,” said Theresa Martin, Co-owner of Kharma Life Center and Co-founder of what is now the quarterly Moonlight on Melrose artisan round-up held in the parking lot of the Campbell Place retail plaza. “This neighborhood has a high pet-to-people population and we want to support that.”

Martin is hosting “Pet-Topia” for the second time along with Worx Hair Salon owner Elli Edgar, who also owns Painted Ladies Tattoos. All three businesses have storefronts at Campbell Place, and have once again teamed up with Wag N’ Wash Natural (Pet) Bakery (down the street) to host a gig that makes all walks of life feel welcome.

“Pet-Topia was our most successful event last year,” she said. “Last year we had mostly dogs but this year we hope for more variety.”

The event is a themed version of what Martin and others would like to become a regular and expansive “Melrose Third Thursday” street event between area merchants. “The idea was that (Third Thursday) will grow beyond our parking lot,” Martin said. “Merchants could stay open late one night a month for people who don’t normally get to see what’s here.”

This Thursday will be the longest day of the year, and there won’t be any moonlight. Still, Martin said she has high hopes for success. “We want at least 75 people and their pets to come and support the vendors who don’t have brick-and-mortar space.”

All About Animals Rescue will be accepting donations and hosting pet rescue adoptions on-site.  There will also be giveaways, a charity doggie-kiss booth, and face painting. Short-Leash Hot Dogs will be grilling, as well as other mobile treats. Water, shade, grass, and a place to escape into air-conditioning will also be provided to keep everyone safe and comfy.

In addition to craft artisans, the following vendors will be on site:

  • Recycled City
  • Rolling Rack Botique
  • My Bazaar Car
  • Hatton Pet Photography
  • Phoenix Pride
  • Haus Panther (designer cat gear)
  • Sunrider Vitamins

“I think (the motivation) is because we’re all pet lovers,” Edgar said. “But the truth is this is about business too.”

Edgar echoed Martin in her hopes that Melrose area business owners and residents come  meet and greet their neighbors, and support the artisans who travel around the valley to sell their home-made goods.

“It would be competition if I sold hand-made soaps,” Edgar said with a smile. “But, I don’t sell hand-made soaps.”

Edgar recently lost her 18-year-old “weiner dog” Dolly-Molly-Mae to old age, but plans to bring the rest of her canine family: Billy-the-Kid, Tito-Diego, Frieda-Maria-Christina, and Gracy.

“This is a real community,” she said about Melrose. “That’s why we love being here.”

There is no cost to attend Pet-Topia, and several activities will be donation only. Edgar suggested bringing $20 for food, drinks, and to buy a gift-able from one of the vendors, each of who pay a small fee to set up shop.

Pet owners are asked to clean up after their loved ones.