8th Tour de Corgi celebrates corgi lovers, FoCo community

Corgis+Walter+and+Winifred+walk+along+the+stage+during+the+costume+competition+during+Tour+de+Corgi+at+Civic+Center+Park

Collegian | Milo Gladstein

Corgis Walter and Winifred walk along the stage during the costume competition during Tour de Corgi at Civic Center Park Oct. 1.

Allie Seibel, News Editor

The eighth annual Tour de Corgi took place Saturday, Oct. 1 in Old Town Fort Collins.

The event, which included a costume contest in Civic Center Park, a vendor fair behind the park and a parade of costumed corgis and owners through Old Town Square, has been a Fort Collins staple since 2015.

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Founder Tracy Stewart started Tour de Corgi after seeing the So Cal Corgi Beach Day in Huntington Beach, California, on Facebook.

“During the first Tour de Corgi at the library, my partner at the time and my three corgis were all dressed in Broncos gear,” Stewart said. “One of the folks hanging out in the park took a photo of us, and that’s my favorite old photo of the Tour de Corgi.”

While the event remained mostly the same this year following an online Tour de Corgi in 2020 and a return to the in-person festival in 2021, the parade route was shortened after participants voiced concerns over the length of the route for their corgis’ short legs.

This year’s theme was Camp Corgi, with merchandise guided toward that theme. Proceeds from this year’s Tour de Corgi will be donated to Wyoming Dachshund and Corgi Rescue, 4 Paws Pet Pantry, Bandit’s K9Care and Colorado Corgis and Friends Rescue. In 2021, the event raised $8,000 for the four charities.

“I think (Tour de Corgi) brings everybody together. It brings people together to smile and have a laugh and to do something just for fun, and it’s also for a good cause. Everybody has smiles on their face. It’s really a happy day.” -Tracy Stewart, Tour de Corgi founder

In addition to Camp Corgi, a special costume contest category was added to honor Queen Elizabeth II, who died Sept. 8 and kept more than 30 corgis in her lifetime.

“We have in the past had a couple people dressed up as Queen Elizabeth, and that was a lot of fun,” Stewart said. “And so we added a costume category of Queen Elizabeth after the queen’s death. We’re expecting to have a dozen people dressed up like the queen, and we’re asking them to lead the parade in memoriam of her.”

The event drew hundreds of corgi owners and lovers from around Fort Collins and surrounding areas, including some owners taking part in the event for the first time.

Maverick the corgi plays in the Old Town Square water fountain during the Tour de Corgi parade Oct. 1.
Maverick the corgi plays in the Old Town Square water fountain during the Tour de Corgi parade Oct. 1. “It’s been fun,” Maverick’s owner Jonathan said. “I think we’ll do it again, yes. We will probably do it again next year.” (Collegian | Michael Marquardt)

Corgi owner Kellen, who only provided his first name, dressed his corgi named Jolene in a monarch butterfly costume. Members of his party were also dressed as butterflies to match Jolene. This was Kellen and Jolene’s first time attending Tour de Corgi, as Jolene is only around a year old.

“My favorite memory of the day so far has just been (being) able to see all the corgis,” Kellen said following the costume contest. “The costumes are awesome.”

Moose, a bumble bee-dressed corgi, and his owners Peyton and Max, who only provided their first names, were also first-time participants.

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“My favorite memory of the day has been seeing all of the corgis’ creative costumes competing in the costume contest,” Peyton said following the presentation of contest awards.

The event is one of the most popular in Fort Collins each year, and on Sept. 20, Fort Collins Mayor Jeni Arndt read a proclamation declaring Oct. 1 Tour de Corgi Day. Arndt, “Dude Dad” Taylor Calmus and Megan Wolfe, resident neurologist at CSU’s Veterinary Teaching Hospital, served as the costume contest judges this year.

Stewart, who has watched the event grow in size and popularity from the first festival in the library park in 2015, said the event has grown into an annual celebration that people love.
“I think (Tour de Corgi) brings everybody together,” Stewart said. “It brings people together to smile and have a laugh and to do something just for fun, and it’s also for a good cause. Everybody has smiles on their face. It’s really a happy day.”
Reach Allie Seibel at news@collegian.com or on Twitter @allie_seibel_.