Date: Fri 30-May-1997
Furry Friends United -
A Hopping Good Love Story
B Y A NDREA Z IMMERMANN
When Petey The Rabbit met Jen The Guinea Pig, it was a 14-karat affair. They
waited until they were old enough - in animal years - to be united in
friendship, and the event finally went off May 19 at Dickinson Park with their
young owners and other members of Dawn Tomiano's first grade class in
The plan for the wedding - complete with carrot and lettuce bearers - was
hatched by Libby Feltch (Jen's owner) and Colleen Thornberg (Petey's owner).
The six-year-olds are classmates at Head O' Meadow School. Before any adults
knew about it, the entire class wanted to be involved. Under the direction of
the teacher, they have written stories and created a guest book for the kids
to sign. The students also designed the invitations.
Friends came early to the pavilion at the park to help decorate for the event.
"Classmate Laurie Villodas has been a flower girl in a lot of weddings and
knew all about what to do, so she offered lots of suggestions," said Libby's
mother, Ann Feltch, who bought Jen a larger cage as a wedding present.
"We are taking birdseed [in netting] and untying them and throwing them. And
then all of the birds will come," said Libby, who is a young book reviewer for
The Newtown Bee.
The much-anticipated event finally happened in spite of the lousy weather. At
3:30 pm, Petey and Jen hopped down the aisle to The Chicken Dance (Petey had
wanted The Bunny Hop but it wasn't readily available on tape). Lauren Villodas
made the wedding outfits - the rabbit sported a red bow tie; the guinea pig
wore a veil and "carried" a bouquet of dandelions. Ian Madsen helped his
father slice and drill carrots to create two rings for the couple to exchange.
The pavilion was decorated with bell garlands. About 20 kids attended the
ceremony, and immediately afterward enjoyed a reception treat of chocolate
cupcakes (not enough youngsters liked carrot cake) and Hi-C.
"If anyone knows why these critters shouldn't be joined in special friendship,
speak now or forever hold your peace," said Shari Thornberg, who presided over
the ceremony. "By the power vested in me by the Humane Society and Newtown
Parks and Recreation, and especially Mrs Tomaino's first grade class, which
made this all possible, I now pronounce you friends for life. You may eat your