These dogs are special (I know, all of us dog owners think our dogs are special, and they are!) -- but these dogs are particularly special.
Cricket is a therapy dog. She works with seniors at a local residence for women located near the Hawthorne Hotel.
Black Magic is a rescue dog. He spent the first 8 months of his life in deplorable conditions in another state, until Sharon Shea rescued him. He was so poorly treated, living in a hole in the dirt, cowering from everything and everyone, you would not be able to recognize him as the same dog today. He is even partially blind from all the dirt that was lodged in his eye. But thanks to Sharon, he is well, and on his way to being a happy dog.
As Sharon was walking these two special dogs around downtown Salem, she began to get asked "so when are they getting married?" This innocent question sparked an idea, and the idea was bantered around the places Sharon went, including "Living with Pets" owned by Nancy Ripa, on Pickering Wharf.
One thing led to another, and plans were actually hatched for this bit of fluff. Nancy volunteered to outfit Cricket and Black Magic, the wedding was planned, a date chosen, invitations sent (especially to the women that Cricket visits as part of the therapy work she does), and then I found out about it.
Well, no wedding is complete without a honeymoon, so I volunteered to host the happy couple in our pet-friendly suite here a the Hawthorne Hotel. And of course, the arrival had to be done in style, so we pressed upon the limousine service that handles our wedding packages for us, and Ludwig's Limousines graciously agreed to provide the limousine for their ride from their home on the other side of the Common to the Hotel.
When Steve arrived with the lucky "couple" he even got out the "red carpet" so their arrival would be complete. (He confessed to me later that he had never seen anything like it, but he was smiling broadly and enjoying every minute, from what I could see! He even had his own camera out for some photos.
The happy couple enjoyed their meal from our "Doggie Room Service Menu", and they especially enjoyed their welcome gifts of "Hawthorne Hotel" squeaky bones, as you will see in the video that I am including with this blog post -- it is on YouTube, to make it easy for anyone to see:
Arrival at the Hawthorne Hotel for the Honeymoon.
Steve from Ludwig Limousines was professional to the max. Limo was provided courtesy of Ludwig's.
Cricket's train was three feet long, and she was such a good sport about it all. I know my dogs would have been busy ripping it to shreds if their places were reversed.
The doggie wedding cake was provided by Nancy Ripa of Living with Pets, who also made the wedding dress, and provided favors for the canine guests.
Cricket (the bride) and Black Magic (the groom) were intrigued by the balloon arch, also provided by Nancy at Living with Pets.
Steve, the chauffeur, even brought in the dog's luggage.
One of the doggie guests came in his own "tuxedo"!
Cricket pronounced the cake Excellent! She especially enjoyed the pink and blue dog biscuits that were the decorations on the cake.
She wasn't too sure about sharing the cake with her groom, but handler/owner Sharon Shea had a way of convincing them to share.
Our own Nathaniel's server, Judy, went to the wedding on the beach with her granddaughter, and was really happy to be able to have her photo taken with Cricket when she arrived for her shift on this afternoon.
While we often hear from brides that they want to be the ONLY bride in the hotel at any one time, this bride seemed to enjoy the fun of the doggie wedding couple's arrival in the hotel at the same time she was leaving to get married. No ego there! She even directed her photographers to take some shots of the dogs for her album. And you can see her attendants were getting in on the action as well.
The couple's trousseau including their matching pajamas were of interest to Cricket. Or was it the squeaky toys they packed to make their honeymoon night especially fun?
They even brought a book about their breed, Schipperkes. Maybe they are studying up for a family to come?