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Ashton to go to the dogs this week


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A contestant in a previous American Dog Derby. | Courtesy photo

ASHTON — Every third week in February, Ashton is transformed as curious spectators and anxious racers gather for the American Dog Derby. And this year’s fun starts on Valentine’s Day and ends Feb. 16 on Main Street.

The derby is more than the main race. Other happenings include a celebrity race, snowshoe race, and weight pull, and soup challenge.

The children event begins at 10 a.m. Saturday. (Registration is at 9 a.m.) Kids bring their own dogs and hook them up to a dogsled. They run for half a block.

See the full schedule here.

The races began in 1917. Since 1993 the event has been held each year except for when there is a lack of snow. Organizers say it’s the oldest sled dog race in the United States. See the full history here.

The dog sled race tradition is made possible by donations from supporters and the city of Ashton.

For any questions or more information contact John Scafe at (208) 360-0988 or Kathy Scafe at (208) 681-0266. You can also contact them and get a full list of events through the website,