By Janet McAfee

The 4-legged guests will happily trot down the red carpet into the Renaissance Esmeralda Hotel ballroom on July 18, grateful canines who love nothing more than an outing with their humans.  They sit alongside the beautifully decorated tables and scan the Tribute book to see if their human entered their photo.  The Pets on Parade luncheon and fundraiser is one of the rare occasions when you can bring Benji inside a fabulous hotel dining room to participate in the fun, food, and festivities.

You are invited to attend the 17th annual Pets on Parade luncheon (POP).  This spectacular Coachella Valley event brings us a break from the July doldrums, provides some exciting entertainment, and raises funds to help two worthy local charities helping animals.

The Pets on Parade luncheon benefits two 501(c) (3) nonprofit organizations every year.  This year the Pegasus Therapeutic Riding selected Loving All Animals, the organization I work with, as their partner organization to participate in and benefit from the proceeds.  I am honored to receive the Circle of Life Award this year for my work rescuing and rehoming dogs from high kill shelters, and for my weekly articles in the CV Weekly Magazine about these wonderful animals and their unconditional love.

Andy and Marilyn Gladstein, founders of a new organization, Dogs for Our Brave are recipients of the Hallmark Award.  This amazing group provides service animals to our wounded combat Veterans, rescuing the dogs from shelters, training them to perform needed tasks, and following up with veterinary costs and support.

Pegasus Theraputic 2Pegasus Therapeutic Riding President, Lori Sarner, created this magical event 17 years ago.  Pegasus was a winged divine horse in Greek mythology, a symbol of inspiration and miracles.  Today Pegasus Therapeutic Riding creates miracles in the lives of disabled children and adults, providing healing interaction as they learn to ride and experience caring for the magnificent horses.  Many people with physical disabilities lack muscle tone, and equine therapy helps them develop muscle tone, balance, and coordination.

Over 200 riders with disabilities receive services every week from Pegasus.  Riders come from Angel View Crippled Children’s Foundation, Desert ARC, United Cerebral Palsy, the Autism Foundation, and Special Education multi-handicapped classrooms.  Those with emotional disabilities gain confidence as their bodies meld with the horses.  This equine therapy provides needed physical exercise and important socialization.  The horses are all rescues.  Read more at

Lindi at POPPictured here is Lindi Biggi, President and founder of Loving All Animals with her dog Bugsy, honoree at last year’s POP event. (photo by Alexis Hunter)  Lindi is planning more surprises for attendees at this year’s event and states, “My enthusiasm is that POP includes children, horses, dogs, cats, and birds and brings together people of all backgrounds to support and celebrate them.”  A special table at POP will host many of the local animal rescue groups with their adoptable dogs.

Popular Radio Host at Sunny 103.1 FM, Dan McGrath, will host the event.  Dan and his wife Regina adopted 3 rescue dogs from Loving All Animals.  The story of these 3 special dogs will be featured in this column next week, includes the “tail” of how Eddie Money worked his way into their hearts.

The live and silent auctions contain 150 exciting items.  You will have the chance for BRUNCH WITH THE LEOPARDS where you dine at the Commissioner’s House at The Living Desert.  Consider bidding on the limousine trip for brunch at the LEGENDARY FOUR SEASONS RESORT IN SANTA BARBARA.  If organic transit is your preference, place a bid on the eco-friendly solar-powered ELF Egg Trike.  Everyone gets 4 free photos with your pet at the Casino and Parties photo booth.

Event Co-Chair Robin Montgomery describes what it is like to attend POP, “The bragging is outrageous.  The partying is contagious.  This is the biggest event of the summer.  We are so proud to have Loving All Animals as our partner this year.”

This luncheon is about celebrating the love we all have for our pets.  Cost is $70 per person, and tickets can be obtained at  The dogs give Pets on Parade a “5 Star Woof”!

DATE:  Saturday, July 18

TIME:  11 am to 2 pm

WHERE: Renaissance Indian Wells Resort, 44400 Indian Wells Lane

COST:  $70 per person