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Attendees to the Bark for Life fundraiser at Decarsky dog park visit with a vendor at the event.

The Bark for Life fundraiser made a triumphant return to Decarsky dog park in 2021, exceeding previous efforts and raising nearly $30,000 for the American Cancer Society at this year’s event held on Sept.11.

Attendees received free swag bags, while also getting a photo op with their four-legged friends and a chance to visit with sponsors and vendors – including a number of animal-based nonprofits.

Bark for Life event chair Jennifer Minette noted that all the money raised from this year’s event ($28,000) will go toward local programs and services tied to cancer research.

“We continue to put this event on because the fight against cancer is not yet won. The funds raised at this event are vital to cancer survivors and their families. We also believe it is important to honor our canine caregivers and this event does just that,” Minette said. “We believe the event continues to receive support because our community is full of passionate cancer fighters who realize the battle against cancer can only be won when a community comes together.”

This is the third year the Bark for Life event has been held in Derby since its relaunch, with 2021 being one of the most successful iterations. Bark for Life was able to bring in $52,000 combined in the previous two years the event was held locally.

Given the support of Derby in allowing the event to go on, Minette is hopeful that will continue to boost the mission of the fundraiser.

“In my opinion, Bark for Life and our partner event Relay for Life, not only serve as fundraisers, but also as sources of hope,” Minette said. “There’s this undeniable sense of community at our events and it gives those who have been touched by cancer comfort and hope in the fact that we are working toward a world without cancer.”

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