Coastal Humane Society to celebrate 27th Walkathon in Kelly’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade – OBX Today

The Coastal Humane Society’s Annual Walkathon in Kelly’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade has been a crowd pleaser and major fundraiser for 27 years. This year will be no exception. Proceeds from the Walkathon underwrite the Society’s programs all year – helping OBX people help their pets.

Here’s how the Walkathon works: OBX dog families gather donations for the Coastal Humane Society from friends and families. Then the dogs and their people walk proudly in the parade. 

Patti Bourexis, Coastal Humane Society President, tells us that “families walk because they believe in what we do in our community and they want their children to experience how important it is to help friends and neighbors. Some walk because we helped them and they want to give back. Everyone walks because the parade is fun! The dogs are a big hit; the crowd loves them. We’ve appreciated the support of Mike Kelly and the parade for 27 years.”

“There’s a great Veterinarian Puppy Cup competition this year,” explain Maggie Cox and Liz Myers, Walkathon Co-chairs.  “Seven veterinary practices are participating – Eastern Shore Animal Hospital, First Flight, Martin’s Point, Coastal Animal Hospital, OBX Veterinarian, The Sound, and Roanoke Island Animal Clinic. The veterinary practice that has the most dog families participating in the Walkathon will receive a pizza lunch for their entire staff for three months! Most important, they get The Puppy Cup to display and brag about all year.”

There are pet friendly hotel and golf package prizes for the dog families who raise the most donations as well. Thank you, John Yancy Inn, White Doe Inn, and Nags Head Golf Links, for sponsoring these prizes.  

Dog families wanting to support the Coastal Humane Society by participating in the Walkathon go to and register for the walk. It’s easy. Let’s go for a walk!

The Coastal Humane Society began in 1997 as an all-volunteer non-profit organization helping everyone in the Outer Banks community care for their pets. Twenty-seven years later – thanks to the generosity of our community – the organization has helped over 11,000 Outer Banks pets maintain their health and stay together with their people. Programs include low-cost spay/neuter, vaccinations, medical assistance, heartworm testing, pet food and supplies in the wake of hurricanes and other community-wide emergencies. If you need help caring for your pet, call 252-261-7417 or send a message through and Facebook page.