Mardi Growl ’22: Fun for pets and their people

The winner! This little canine giraffe took first prize in the costume contest at Mardi Growl this year.

I had my doubts a few years ago when Mardi Growl, the fun fundraiser for Young-Williams Animal Center, moved at the city’s urging, from Market Square where it always had been to World’s Fair Park. But, let me tell you, World’s Fair Park is the right place. There’s room for multiple vendors, more space for the animals (and humans) and plenty of room to grow.

It also allows for other events — like the Winter Farmers’ Market — to take place on Market Square. In short, a win-win.

Young-Williams Animal Center’s mission is to lead the community to end pet homelessness, promote animal welfare and enhance the human-animal bond. It is the official animal shelter of Knoxville and Knox County.

Mardi Growl fell on a beautiful Saturday earlier this month. The temperature was 77.

Cute little rainbow!

I think I know who was competing in the “Vol Spirit” category!

Oscar, Meyer and Frank won in the “Dog Pack” category.

Kim Hansard and Marc Anthony from Star 102.1 were the energetic emcees.

But I noticed the most activity seemed to be at the adult beverage tent where there was always a line!

Janet Testerman, CEO of Young-Williams Animal Center, spent most of her day replenishing the supply of beer by driving this vehicle to her car to go on repeated beer runs.

Erin Donovan keeping the beer on ice!

A sometimes painful job!

Dino Cartwright, right, after serving satisfied customer, Dr. Anthony Wilson.

Joey Creswell was handing out beverages as fast as he could!

Amy Styles was helping out. So was Mitchell Moseley, but I don’t seem to have a photo of him, darn it.

Love the shirt!

This poor little doggie pooped out.

Janet took refuge in the ice chest!

Not sure exactly what was going on here!

Another good T-shirt! But that’s a funny looking dog!


As a University of Georgia grad, I was automatically attracted to the red and black attire in this picture.

Chris King with his niece, Hope Smiddy, holding Cuddles.

South Knoxville residents Kermit and Macy (as Shaggy and Scooby Doo) with their humans, Caraline Demirjian and Lorena Hubbard (as Daphne and Velma).

Then, I started seeing Moxley Carmichael folks! Here are Allie Clouse and Alex Owens with Fritter. Allie works at Moxley Carmichael.

Moxley Carmichael’s senior web developer, Chris Weathers, with his girlfriend, Gabriella Chapman. Her dogs are Gracie and Nugget. His is Apollo.

Apollo is a Cleveland Browns fan. (Chris’ father, Curtis Weathers, played for the Browns.)

Moxley Carmichael CFO Shaun Fulco, left, with her son, Jacob Sercovich, and his wife, Marcella, and son, Grayson.

Janet Testerman and Young-Williams’ Community Cats program specialist Kit Major with a lovable friend.

I love Corgies.

A happy threesome.

Janet and her mother, Janet Testerman Crossley.

“I would have to say this was the best Mardi Growl on record,” the younger Janet said. “The weather was the magic maker.”

We will end with a snippet of the music of K-Town, who performed throughout the day.



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4 Responses to Mardi Growl ’22: Fun for pets and their people

  1. Shaun Fulco, on March 21st, 2022 at 2:20 pm said:

    What a fun day! Grayson making his Blue Streak debut. Yay!

  2. Cynthia Moxley, on March 22nd, 2022 at 8:06 am said:

    It was fun! The Blue Streak welcomes Grayson!

  3. Jim and Michell Clayton, on March 22nd, 2022 at 11:02 am said:

    Mox, What a strange looking dog with the long snout! Very funny! I know the owners enjoyed the attention their pet received. What a great party! You too are amazing and mean so much to Knoxville.

  4. Cynthia Moxley, on March 22nd, 2022 at 11:12 am said:

    Thanks so much, Jim and Michell. For your kind words – and for all you do for Knoxville.

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