This weekend, more than 80 local businesses in Downtown Franklin will open their doors to pets and those who love them. Created in partnership with Downtown Franklin Association, City of Franklin, Nashville Civic Design Center, Williamson County Animal Center, Williamson County Convention & Visitors Bureau, and Mars Petcare, these organizations are partnering to host a community event that celebrates the launch of the city’s “Pets Welcome” business pilot program, which will test and evaluate the benefits of having pets in more places – including increasing social connections, a stronger sense of community and even contributing to customer loyalty.
The “Pets Welcome” business pilot is helping to bring to life Mars Petcare’s BETTER CITIES FOR PETS™ program, which aspires to build “pawsome” pet-friendly communities by supporting shelters, homes, businesses and parks, creating a model of what a pet-friendly city could look like. Franklin serves as the perfect setting to test out the positive impact of pets in more places, as a growing, community-driven city on the outskirts of Nashville. The business pilot runs through the end of the year, with participating businesses sporting easy-to-spot “Pets Welcome” window signs and water bowls set out for visiting pets.
To kick off the pilot at the community celebration, people who love pets can:
• Support homeless pets at an adoption drive, hosted by Williamson County Animal Center. Through Dog Walks for Donations, on Friday 2-4 p.m., participants can walk adoptable dogs and for every 10 minutes walked, $100 will be donated to WCAC in support of their capital campaign.
• Receive care and safety tips for pets in the home from behavior and nutrition experts from Mars Petcare. To commemorate the day, people can hop in the photo booth with their pets to get a free printable photo to take home with them.
• Visit the businesses participating in the pilot program, pick up some pet-themed giveaways and partake in “yappy hour” events at participating restaurants from 4-6 p.m. on Friday. The fun lasts all weekend with a dog-themed film at the Franklin Theater on Saturday at 10 a.m.!
• Experience an innovative dog park created by Nashville Civic Design Center where cities can create more park space in urban areas by turning unused concrete space into pet-friendly green space. The park features innovative materials, designs and feedback boards to collect public input–even a hydration station for thirsty pups!
WHEN: Friday, June 16, 2 p.m. – 6 p.m., welcome remarks begin at 2:20 p.m.
Saturday, June 17, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.
WHERE: Downtown Franklin Square, on 3rd Avenue by City Hall