Rainy weather didn't dampen the spirits of the spectators and participants during Monday's 76th Mountain State Forest Festival events.
Furry creatures of all shapes and sizes invaded the Elkins High School gymnasium as owners and their pets competed for top honors in the MSFF Pet Show.
Festival Assistant Director Gary Hart, who organized the event, was happy with the crowd attending one of the festival's most popular events.
The Inter-Mountain photos by Angie Pritt and Anthony Gaynor
Gracie Metheny, top photo, belts out a tune during the Mountain State Forest Festival Gospel Talent show on Monday, while Maid Silvia Emily MicKibben Everson, bottom photo, and members of her court take time to pet Mia, an English mastiff owned by Charity Ross during the pet show.
"We had a good turnout with the weather," Hart said. "We have about 50 participants. The event is popular because it gets the kids involved. We have some unique animals."
Pastor Frank Stanley and his family attended the show to participate and watch all the animals. His son, Jonathan, competed in the event with the family's dog, Izzy.
"It is a yearly tradition and we love it," Stanley said. "We like to see all the animals. My daughter wants to be a veterinarian. We love animals."
As the animals made their passes by the judges, Maid Silvia Emily McKibbin Everson and her maids of honor, Emily Jane Thompson and Megan Leigh Nida, and the minor court had the opportunity to meet the animals and their owners.
Everson selected Summer Lewis Spencer and her dog, Spencer, as her favorite. Nida choose Colton Stasny and his golden retriever, Brody, as her favorite while Thompson chose Diane Wilfong and her dog, Hershey, as her pick.
"I loved the pet show," Everson said. "I am a big fan of dogs. The dog I chose as my favorite closely resembles mine."
In the owner pet look-a-like contest, first place went to Stasny, with second going to Alexis Ayres with Tootsie, a yorkie, and third to Wilfong and Hershey.
The most fitting name contest was won by Chris Tingler and his ferret dubbed Bandit.
The prettiest cat award went to Ani Reger with Lilly; second place went to Daisy Godwin with Bats; and third place went to Fisher Goswin with Bones.
The most unusual award went to Melissa Sharp with Bella.
The most handsome male dog award went to Michelle Metheny with Dozer, an English mastiff; and second went to Trent Cooper with Shadow, a beagle mix.
The best tricks title went to Summer Lewis Spencer with her shih poo, Spencer. Smith brought the small dog and laid down a small plastic toy piano that the "played" with its front paws.
The best costume award went to Hollie Huffman and Bella, a chihuahua; second place went to Brooke Johnston with Samson, a Boston terrier; and third place to Avery Jones, with Feebe, a Jack Russell.
The most beautiful female dog went to Brendon Lewis with Margie, a toy poodle; second place went to Jonathon Stanley with Izzy, a lab mix; and third place went to Charity Ross with Mia, an English mastiff.
The cutest baby prize, for pets up to one year old, went to Sara Weiford with Chloe, a chorice, which is a chihuahua and Yorkshire terrier mix.
The obstacle course was won by Rigger with Jayde; second place went to Cooper, with Shadow; and third went to Jones with Feebee.
The wet weather didn't put out the sparks of talent displayed by the performers in the MSFF Gospel Talent Show Monday evening. The show, originally slated for the Citizens Bank Downtown Stage in Elkins Town Square, was moved to the EHS gymnasium.
John Zirbs, known as "Mr. Forest Festival," entertained the crowd with his annual rendition of "The Forest Festival Rap."
Winners for the children's division of the Gospel Talent Show were Gracie Metheny of Elkins, first place; and the Josh Helmick Trio of Beverly, second place.
Teen winners included Hillary Mayle of Grafton, first place; and the Caleb Helmick Trio of Beverly, second place.
The adult division was won by Katrina Groves, first place; with a second place tie between Cassie Wallace and Chelsea Anderson.
Crafters setting up at the Randolph County Senior Center Bazaar got an early start Monday, many saying they had a profitable day.
Mary Lewis sold pastries and vintage jewelry this year at her booth.
"I have almost sold out of my breads and baked goods today," Lewis said. "My jewelry has also been a hit today."
Sisters Wanda Harper and Bonnie Ratliff have offered their wares at the bazaar for about seven years. They sell blankets, needle point gifts and canned goods.
Joyce Thompson has been a vendor for 14 years. She sells crochet items including afghans.
"I enjoy being a part of the Senior Center Bazaar," Thompson said. "I like talking with folks and meeting new people."
Everson and her court traveled to several businesses throughout the area on Monday. Everson, Nida and Thomspon received several gifts throughout the day.
At the Kissel Stop, Silvia was presented with a jar of Silvia's Choice coffee, which is a blend of caramel, Swiss chocolate, maple and southern pecan flavors. The blend will only be available through festival week.
At Davis Trust Company, each of the trio received a set of pottery that included a pitcher and set of mugs.
At Youth Health Service, the trio was presented with pumpkin-scented candles. Everson also received a bag of goodies that included candy, a candle, and notepads. Her maids received similar goodie bags.
At Pickens School, Everson was presented a quart of homemade maple syrup. She also had the opportunity to shoot a bow with several members of the school's archery team. Students in kindergarten through fifth grade yodeled for her and some students made her cards.
Nella's Inc. gave Everson a jeweled leaf keyring, necklace and set of earrings from Hallmark. A glass, leaf-embossed candle holder also was given to every member of her royal court.
Nella's Nursing Home gave her a Blenko glass leaf candy dish.
Colonial Place presented Everson with a leaf ornament. Her maids of honor were given leaf pins that can double as necklaces.
Today's events for the festival include the Randolph County Senior Bazaar, which will be open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Senior Center on Fifth Street.
The Variety Talent Show will kick-off at 7 p.m. in the Elkins Town Square. In the event of rain the event will be moved to the EHS auditorium.