Fun Stuff from this year's National Specialty
hosted by the BMDCA & Heart of Michigan Bernese Mountain Dog
and held in Frankenmuth, Michigan, May 1-6, 2006
Our beloved Pat Long, known to so many of you from
Berner-l and previous Specialties,
this year kicks off this page with with some observations from
this year's Specialty,
What we Drive!
Just some of the license plates spotted at this year's Specialty,
pic. courtesy of Mary Rogers
Pat and Joye captured at the Specialty by Lynne
"Home at last, not caught up yet, but getting there!
Got to the show site on Sunday, and bag stuffing was just getting
started. Oh, my, word. The STUFF they had acquired for those bags!
They had definitely outdone themselves on that one, and it took well
over 3 and a half hours to stuff bags! I got pulled off to help with
stuffing the registration envelopes, and then had to leave to make an
airport run to pick up Sherri Venditti. (I think she had the official
Trip From Hell that day! But at least we could give her door to door
service for the end of it.) I got back just as the stuffing completed.
Monday was registration, Joye and I worked most of the morning,
then Ann Skinner joined us, and Flash hung out as well. Every now and
then Flash decided to take a cruise outdoors, and you talk about
determined! What a character! I had to leave to go check on a site for
doing photos, and Joye and I came within a whisker of having the week
off! Thanks to the support and determination of Maria Crifasi and
Janice Parky, and a wonderful hotel staff, that did not happen. The
room we got for photos was the honeymoon suite, and we did want to use
the Jacuzzi in the room for "Berner Bubble Bath" photos -
but never found the right Berner Babe!
The next four days Joye and I did photos, and we always have fun
doing those. Even as far from the show site as we were, we did about
50 sessions, and I haven't added the total yet, but it's over $3000 -
all for Berners! The digital worked out well, and many people were
generous with the donations and gave more than the $50 requested. I'll
have to post some of my favorites somewhere.
(Ed. Here's a start, Pat!)
Christy and Butch Leone's crew.
Thursday night was the Berner-Garde Auction, and the goal was to
have fun raising money for the new DNA Bank that is about to get
started. The contract is in the final stages and should be signed soon
- more on that later! Lori Jodar was the chair for the auction, and
insisted on having proper Vannas. She did my makeup, and teased my
hair - and Lynne Hawkinson even wore a skirt!!
Pat & Lynn captured by Karen Connors
The highlights of that evening for me were seeing
Margie Reho win the carving by Gale Werth - and then announce that it
was a carving of her girl, Gita, who had been the one videotaped to
help convince the AKC to lower the obedience jump height for the
And of course, the other highlight was when I got the winning
bid for an escort to the Judges' Dinner on Saturday. The bidding was
fierce for David Denis, but I won!
Friday morning was a scramble, non-stop photos and we had to end
and be out of the room by noon. Given the hotel's willingness to
accommodate us, we wanted to make sure the room was freed on time! It
was nice, Joye had the afternoon off to do shopping, and I caught up
on some other things. That evening was the General Meeting, and I was
honored to present the Winston Neff Award for Berner-Garde - to
Elizabeth Pearson. I'll share the speech next.
Saturday I got up nice and early to make sure our seats were
still where we had left them the afternoon before, and I happened to
notice that one person was trying to get the hospitality set up all on
his own! I cannot remember the name, it was Fred or Frank (I am
horrible with names and have to hear them a million times before I can
remember!), but the people who were supposed to be doing it from the
regional clubs never showed up, and he was doing it all himself. So
from 6 - 8, I helped set up, make coffee, refill water containers,
make coffee, refill water containers, make coffee, you get the idea.
It was COLD.
Ringside was a lot of fun on Saturday. It was COLD. We all had
on as many layers as possible, people had down comforters, blankets,
you name it! The poor BMDCA booth, Vicky Hall and Dottie Schulte were
trying to close down to get to watch the show, but were selling
anything warm faster than they could put more out! Those ladies needed
some help! I saw people helping them out off and on all week, but you
talk about hard workers, and they never did get to see any of the
By midday, the sun had come out, and layers were peeled off. The
sunscreen showed up (THANK YOU Barb Lindman!!), and sunglasses were
definitely needed. Watching Mary Alice make her decisions, well, all I
can say is better her than me! There were so many wonderful dogs in
the ring, and how she winnowed them down, I just don't know. But she
did find some magnificent dogs, and used all of the Award of Merits -
well deserved each and every one!
But then, it was time for The Date! David Denis showed up at my
door carrying a beautiful wrist corsage, and a small ring sized box,
and a lovely bottle of white wine, called "Cheap White Wine".
He was dressed to the 9's, well, the 1969's that is! His clothes would
have made Austin Powers quite proud, with the green and yellow striped
jacket (with purple lining). But the true topper was the Scottish tam
with red hair fringe - and Joye Neff decided he must be a member of
the Scottish clan MacDuffus! Oh, the ring box? Contained a lovely
chocolate, the man knows how to wow a woman! Coral better just watch
out! <G> We had a lot of fun, and it was a fun way to raise a
bit of extra money for health!
The Date, photo courtesy of Laura Lopez-Mendez
Some thanks to just a few special people, there are so many, this is
by no means a complete list!
Joye Neff, as always, the hardest worker, and
Ron Smith, for manning the Berner-Garde booth
almost the entire week.
Ann Skinner, for all the help on registration, and
manning the BG booth most of the week as well. And thanks for helping
with Flash - I really did mean to be right back!
Lynne Hawkinson - for everything. Vanna
extraordinaire, and thank you so very much for Monday, I can't tell
you how much that meant to me.
Maria Crifasi and Janice Parky - I think you know
how much your help meant on Monday. Thank you, from the bottom of my
heart! $3000 worth of thanks!
Sherry and Rob Hartung, thanks for keeping things
under control on Friday, it's always a crazy day!
Vicky Hall and Dottie Schulte, for not only working
their keesters off at the BMDCA booth, but then working the Auction as
well. You ladies work too hard!!
Fred, or Frank - did you work hospitality every
day? It was an awesome spread!!
Cheryl Waterman, who always seems to be right were
help is most needed, and quietly finds common sense solutions that no
one else ever seems to think of.
And to everyone who helped put on a wonderful
Specialty - it may even have been the best I've attended!
Terrific site, wonderful hotel and staff!
As for Frankenmuth, they don't hold a candle to
Texas for Margaritas, but if you like chicken and large portions -
well, Frankenmuth is the place to be!
Pat Long, Brew (& Luther) Berwyn PA"
This wonderful collage of pics from the Judges'
with thanks to Laura
Ruth Nielsen's Tattoo, photo by Maria Crifasi
"I confess to the tattoo - it's actually a
picture of ZenMaster Max - done from a photo taken by Janet Wissman.
It seemed only fitting that the dog who introduced
me to the fabulously insane world of Berners and who was my constant
companion for 10 1/2 years would be the one indelibly inked on my arm.
I had fun showing it off at the Specialty, and I now know that I am
not the ONLY one with a beloved Berner tattoo!"
This photo is Sue Wilkinson with Wolle, and Toni
Davies with Iris.
The photo was taken by a friend of Toni.
Sue and Wolle with Coral Denis
Sue Wilkinson in her LBD (little black dress)!
More pics on these pages,
Bean, does Agility
more to come
Feel free to send your fun pics and tails from the Specialty!
Site Graphics by AHM http://lakeviewpottery.com/
Site hosted by http://bernese.biz/