ALEXANDRIA, Va. (WUSA) - More than 350 walkers, many accompanied by faithful canine friends, spent a brilliant autumn Sunday taking part in the Alexandria Shelter Walk for Homeless Animals.
The event, which filled the streets of Old Town, was held by the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria (AWLA), and presented by Fusion Meetings and Events. It raised more than $24,000 that will go directly to the support of the animals residing at the Vola Lawson Animal Shelter, and go toward the League's life-saving programs for pets throughout the region.
Many of the adult and youth walkers started preparing for the event almost two months ago, in the August heat. Before Sunday's walk, many had already raised funds and support, including organizing teams of families, friends and coworkers to walk together. Dogs were the star attraction, and seemed to enjoy the crisp fall weather and spirit of togetherness as much as their human companions.
The competition among fundraisers yielded a big winner, the Lyles-Crouch Lions team, a group of industrious elementary school students who held bake sales and raised more than $4,000. At the Walk, the Lions were spotlighted for their dedication, appearing on stage where the rest of the walkers applauded their success. They also received a Party Boat Prize package.
The Walk's success brought a boost to the AWLA which works to prevent animal homelessness with spay and neuter assistance, behavior and training help, and humane education programs. Special, fun events such as Sunday's Shelter Walk provide fun ways for the community to help animals in need.