TUPELO, Miss. (WKRG) — Pets will continue to be part of the fun at this year’s Tupelo Elvis Festival, which has transitioned to a virtual event to allow safe participation due to coronavirus. As the birthplace of Elvis Presley, Tupelo, Mississippi has enjoyed celebrating its hometown legend each year with various festival activities. With the inclusion of the Virtual Elvis Pet Parade, sponsored by Dilworth Small Animal Hospital, animal lovers can enjoy what has become a festival favorite, while pet owners can compete for $1,000 in cash prizes.
From chickens to chihuahuas, from Siamese cats to Shetland ponies, the Virtual Elvis Pet Parade is open to pets of any kind, with virtual participation making it even easier for pet owners from across the nation to participate, noted Dr. Laurie Dilworth, owner and medical director of Dilworth Small Animal Hospital since 1997.
“Transportation for larger pets might have been an issue for previous live Elvis Pet Parades, but virtual participation will allow owners to photograph or video their pets wherever it’s convenient,” said Dilworth.
Competition events include:
- Elvis World Tour: Pets that are dressed like the King and photographed at famous locations around the area (or across the world!) can compete for a chance to win a cash award of $100.
- Elvis Look-A-Like: “Elvis impersonators are nice,” noted Dilworth, “but Elvis ‘pet-personators’ get the biggest applause.” One cash award for $100 will be accorded the best pet Elvis look-a-like.
- Pet/Owner Look-A-Like: Pet owners can show their love with look-alike appearance, from stylish to comical. The winning twinning entrants will receive a $100 cash award.
- Best Costume: From Vegas era jumpsuits to Jailhouse chic, there’s no limit to the creativity allowed in this competition, with the winner receiving a cash award of $100.
- Fan Favorite: Facebook “likes” will determine the winner of this cash award of $100, allowing participants’ family and friends to help bring home the win.
- Judges’ Choice of Best in Show: In addition to the Best In Show trophy, the winner of this award will receive a cash award of $500.
The competition will be held on Saturday, June 6 from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Participants must register through www.tupeloelvisfestival.com, which will provide a link to the Dilworth Virtual Elvis Pet Parade Facebook event page where participants can upload their pet’s photo or video to be judged. A $10 registration fee is required, with all proceeds supporting the Tupelo-Lee Humane Society. Judges will announce the winners on Sunday, June 7 at noon on the Dilworth Virtual Pet Parade Facebook page. Cash awards will be distributed via VISA gift cards.
For more information about registration or participation, see www.tupeloelvisfestival.com.