Dive into the sandy shores of Jupiter Beach, Florida, where golden retrievers reign supreme! In this heartwarming JAR exclusive, we chat with Charlotte Hertz, the organizer behind the "Jupiter Golden Jubilee" – a beach event November 3-4, 2023, that celebrates golden retrievers while raising awareness and funds for the Golden Retriever Lifetime Study. From its inspiration in Dewey, Delaware, to the BBQ fun in the sun, we uncover how this jubilee combines play, community support, and a noble cause, all under the warm Florida sun. (Editor's note: This interview has been lightly edited for clarity.)
From Dewey to Jupiter: The Jupiter Golden Jubilee finds its roots in events like the Dewey Golden Jubilee in Delaware and the New England Jubilee in Vermont. Inspired by the camaraderie and joy these gatherings brought, Jupiter's jubilee was born to spread the love in Florida.
Supporting Canine Health: Beyond the beach fun, the jubilee is dedicated to supporting the Golden Retriever Lifetime Study. With over 3,000 "heroes" (dogs involved in the study), this research aims to uncover factors contributing to canine diseases, especially cancer.
Local Love & Contributions: Community businesses, from Park Ave and Grille to local breweries, play a crucial role in the jubilee's success. Their donations and support not only enhance the event experience but ensure profits can be channeled to aid the Golden Retriever Rescue of Mid-Florida.
Q: Can you share the history and inspiration behind the Jupiter Golden Jubilee?
A: Before moving to Florida in 2016, I lived in Maryland and regularly attended the Dewey Golden Jubilee, which began in 2013. I watched this grow from 100 to over 400 dogs over the years. It was always such fun for the dogs but also a chance to meet new friends. In 2016, the New England Jubilee was started on Dog Mountain in Vermont. After attending both, I decided to begin a third Jubilee in Jupiter to share the fun of the other Jubilees.
Q: How does the event contribute to the Golden Retriever Lifetime Study (GRLS)?
A: The event is both a fundraiser as well as awareness campaign for the study. When participants register, they have the option to donate to the study. The study's purpose is to identify the nutritional, environmental, lifestyle, and genetic risk factors for cancer and other diseases in dogs. This is done with the assistance of vets, owners, and the "heroes", which is what we call the 3000+ dogs involved in the study.
Q: What activities and amenities can attendees expect during the Jubilee?
A: Jupiter Dog Beach is an amazing 2.5-mile off-leash dog beach. We meet for playtime at the beach in the morning. Later that afternoon, we have a catered barbecue and raffle to raise money for the Golden Retriever Rescue of Mid-Florida. Juliette Valle, Miss Florida, will be performing a special tribute to our GRLS "heroes".
Q: What safety precautions are in place to ensure both humans and dogs have a great experience at the beach and the BBQ?
A: Golden Retrievers are very social dogs and generally get along well with each other. Owners should bring water. We ask that owners leash the dogs if they are not in control at all times. Hand sanitizers are at check-in tables for humans. We have the assistance of the local Junior ROTC Naval and Marine cadets available to help assist participants. We ask as a general rule, if your dog isn't feeling well, please consider keeping them at home. Their well-being is our top priority.
A: The Breweries have generously made donations to support our dinner. Park Ave has priced the food so that we will still have profit to give to the Golden Retriever Rescue of Mid-Florida. Without this support, we wouldn't be able to donate any profit. Beaux Biscuits, a local dog bakery, has donated cookies for our goody bags.
Q: Can you tell us more about the raffle and how the proceeds will benefit the Golden Retriever Rescue of Mid-Florida?
A: Raffle items are donated throughout the year. We have beautiful prints by Tom Mosser, best known for his "Goldens at the Museum" prints. There will be a variety of baskets full of treats for the dogs and their owners. Holiday Inn has donated two nights in Juno Beach. High Tech Plumbing and Air services and Orvis Quilted covers are just a few of the items available. The proceeds go to help the Golden Retriever Rescue of Mid-Florida provide medical care, force-free behavior modification training, a home-based foster care environment, adoptions, and community education outreach programs.
Separate from the raffle, but most appreciated, has been an annual donation to the rescue from Schumaker Subaru of West Palm Beach.
Q: What advice would you give to someone attending the Jubilee for the first time?
A: Bring plenty of fresh water. Try not to let your dog drink the salt water. Excessive amounts can lead to intestinal issues. A bright-colored bandana is helpful for keeping track of your dog. Limit the beach experience to two hours, especially if they are in the water a lot or it's hot.
Q: Do you have any tips for dog owners who want to participate but are not part of the Golden Retriever Lifetime Study?
A: Donate to the study! Everyone is welcome at the Jubilee, and although this is a free activity, a minimum $10 donation is recommended.
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