By Elaine Campbell
Gary Cox, above, points ACC Flea Market shoppers to the tasty treats at the Top Dog table during last year’s event.
Although “Top Dogs” sounds like the name of a rock group, it’s actually the name of the St. John Animal Care Center’s own dedicated catering team.
Headed by former ACC Board of Directors member and talented chef Jennifer Troisi, Top Dogs turns out delicious food for sale during many of the ACC’s fundraising events.
Attendees at last year’s “No Fleas, Please” flea market may remember the warm, mouth-watering pulled pork sandwiches piled high on soft bulkie rolls and topped with crunchy homemade coleslaw.
Top Dog team member Craig Roub entertained the crowds by circulating through the fair grounds selling potato chips while dressed in drag from the flea market clothing table.
The previous year — ACC’s third annual flea market — saw the introduction of Top Dog with Gary Cox parading the fair grounds dressed in a large sandwich board listing the lengthy Top Dog menu of hot dogs!
Different gourmet toppings such as Dijon mustard and caramelized onions were featured appropriately for different dog breeds. The Dijon/caramelized onions were billed as the French Poodle while chili, cheese, and jalapenos topped the Mexican Chihuahua hot dog.
Top Dogs’ unique and tantalizing feature of the year is usually kept as a secret until flea market day. And this year is no exception.
Everyone is waiting until the big day to find out what Troisi’s team has created. Flea market day will be Saturday, October 22, at the Winston Wells ball field in Cruz Bay. Hours are 10 a.m. until 4 p.m.
A few of the ACC’s furry friends will be on hand at this year’s event as well. The ACC will host a pet adoption during the Flea Market so shoppers can pick up a new pet along with that gently used bookcase.
ACC officials will also be offering information about animal abuse and neglect as well as the ins and outs of responsible dog ownership.
Flea Market shoppers will also get a chance to see some canines in action as the local K-9 Unit is set to make a demonstration during this year’s event.
The usual wide selection of furniture, books, children’s toys, kitchenware, tools and sports equipment will be on sale. Every penny earned goes towards providing food, medical care, and shelter to the island’s homeless cats and dogs.
And this year the shelter is housing a very large number of adorable kittens for adoption.
For anyone who hasn’t visited the shelter, it’s the small building painted in bright Caribbean colors located on the right side of the road en route to the Elaine I. Sprauve Library. Bring your donated goods to the shelter, each Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. For more information call Sally Nelson at the shelter at 774-1625.