A Real Bark of a Time

By Angela White, Kelly Schmitz, Will Kamps, and Emily Krause


With many options being available this Halloween, one local Howard-based business featured a special “pawty.” Bark and Brew held a much-anticipated 4th annual Halloween “pawty,” focusing on bringing all furry friends and their owners together, costumes and all. Over 100 individuals attended the event accompanied by their furry four-legged buddy. From firefighters to “ruffarees,” many owners showcased the cuteness of their dog in hopes of winning 1 of the 3 prize baskets available.

Pet owners looked on as their dogs ran with each other.

Owners socialized inside the bar area featuring an array of seating options and an opportunity to enjoy a full bar, while dogs were free to roam the building. Outside, their dogs ran free in a fenced-in area, enjoying some sun and toys left by previous owners and staff. Staff members guarded areas to ensure no pets would escape so owners could relax and let them enjoy the inside and outside independently. No children are allowed to attend Bark and Brew at any time, so this was a completely adult-centered event.

Owners waited for a drink while their dogs happily roamed the building.

“It’s a really fun way to let your dog run free with no worries like I can have a drink without having to worry my dog’s going to escape outside,” Tonya Thacher remarked. A gentleman named Steve with his Shar Pei, Stanley, said it was his favorite spot to visit on the weekend to play fetch with a beer in his hand.

Bark and Brew has been in the Howard area since November 2017, giving a place for both dogs and their owners to socialize, enjoy a drink or treat, and spend time with one another. This will be Bark and Brew’s last Halloween event, as they will be closing on November 7th of this year. New owners have taken over the building, denying the lease renewal for the business. A burger and bowling business will take over the building, so it will not be vacant.

“It’s not just a dog bar or a bar. It’s a place where people have made lifelong friends. Our customers have turned into friends, some like family,” Tara Brunette, the owner of Bark and Brew, said. Although this location may be closing, Brunette confided it’s far from over. “Our next step would be to reopen, somewhere, somehow, in some shape or form. That’s the goal. We cannot just say goodbye to Bark,” she went on. Future plans for Bark and Brew are unknown, but Brunette is very optimistic these are not the final days of the business.

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