Cats, keep out if you know what’s good for you. Downtown Mesa is throwing a canine-themed street party.
The city’s regular Second Friday event is all about dogs today, and Valley residents are invited to bring their (leashed) pups to join the fun.
Merchants will keep their doors open late to offer specials and activities in their stores and restaurants, and sidewalks will be stocked with biscuit-and-water stations for pet pit stops. Second Fridays also bring out arts-and-crafts vendors and live performers, and admission is free at Mesa Contemporary Arts, the five-gallery artspace within Mesa Arts Center.
Here’s the rundown of things you can do with your dog:
Dog Costume Contest: Dogs in winning costumes will receive prizes from longtime Mesa pet store the Pet Club, and all attendees will receive free dog biscuits. For humans, there are art exhibits, live music and $1 root beer floats. 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. at OneOhOne Gallery, 101 W. Main St., (602) 690-6071 or www.OneOhOne101.com.
Dog Talent Show and Tail-Wagging Contest: Talented dogs can do tricks and wag their tails for prizes. There will also be dog stories for kids and a visit from Arizona Labrador & Giant Breed Rescue. 7 p.m. at Inside The Bungalow, 48 N. Robson St., (480) 844-2353 or www.InsideTheBungalow.com.
Beer and wine Tasting for dogs: Canines can sample pet-safe booze from Bark Vineyards and 3 Busy Dogs while they chill out with fans and misters on the restaurant’s grassy spaces. Inside, there’s live music and food and drink specials for people. il Vinaio restaurant, 270 W. Main St., (480) 649-6476 or www.ilVinaio.com.
Crafts and games: Mesa United Way will provide a dog mask coloring activity for kids, a bean bag toss for dogs and balloon tying. Every kid who participates gets a free book. (480) 969-8601 or www.MesaUnitedWay.org.
Dog photos and scavenger hunt: A photographer will take pooch portraits, and attendees can pick up a card that will take them on a scavenger hunt through downtown. Bring the validated card back at 9:15 p.m. for a prize drawing. 12 West Main reception center, 12 W. Main St. (480) 600-8679 or www.12-WestMain.com.
The Human Bean coffee shop (405 W. Main St.) and Twisted Sisters’ Designs (48 S. Robson St.), a jewelry studio and gallery, will also participate. The coffee shop will donate 25 percent of Second Friday sales to Desert Paws Rescue, an organization that will be at the shop with adoptable dogs. The jewelry company will host a prize drawing at 9 p.m. Both businesses will give away free dog treats.