Mount Philo park rangers pair with hotel to raise money for pups in need

Ozzy was confiscated from his former owner and spent many months in a shelter before Long Trail Canine Rescue helped find him a loving home.
Ozzy was confiscated from his former owner and spent many months in a shelter before Long Trail Canine Rescue helped find him a loving home.

Hotel Vermont announced that it is hosting a benefit for the Vermont-based Long Trail Canine Rescue on Saturday, Aug. 27. The partnership, based in a mutual love of animals, emerged naturally between one of Hotel Vermont’s owners, Caroline Canning, and Kim Frigault, a park ranger at Mount Philo State Park and the director of Long Trail Canine Rescue.

Kim and her husband John have been the park rangers at Mount Philo State Park for the past five years. From May to October, days are hectic, with the couple on-duty 24 hours a day tending to the park and its 70,000 summer visitors. All summer, John and Kim live in the tiny ranger cabin on the summit, with their rescue dogs Philo and Seeger

Kim and John, with their friend and rescue partner, Lisa LaFlam, head all-volunteer non-profit outfits for stray and rescue dogs, including Long Trail Rescue in Vermont and Hope for a Street Dog in Junquillal, Costa Rica. These organizations enable about 120-150 dogs a year to find their way from “kill shelters” in Southern U.S. States and Costa Rica to new, loving homes in Vermont. They know how to operate on a shoestring.

“We raise money from small donations and try to make it go as far as we can to help as many dogs as we can. We donate our own time, and we never say no,” explains Kim.
Locally, there is some help on the way.

At Hotel Vermont, the evening of Saturday, Aug. 27 will feature an auction emceed by Tim Kavanugh, as well as music by rescue pup owner Josh Panda. Featured speakers include Lya Battle, founder of the Land of the Strays Dog Sanctuary near San Jose, Costa Rica, who will travel to Vermont for the event. The Land of Stray Dogs, a 1,000-acre compound where over 900 adoptable dogs run free, awaiting new homes, has been featured in various media outlets including the UK’s Daily Guardian and The Huffington Post.

“Caroline and Hotel Vermont offered to help raise funds and awareness for our mission, and we are thrilled that the community will come out to help our dogs and to learn more about what we need. In addition to funding for transportation and vet bills, we need people to foster dogs as they navigate the transition to new homes,” noted John while surveying a flock of children hiking atop Mount Philo before sunset.

Items up for bid to raise money include a one-week vacation stay in a three-bedroom home by the beach in Costa Rica, a private party for eight at Burlington’s Hen of the Wood, and a dinner for up to 12, with wine pairings, prepared in your home by chef Doug Paine of Juniper and Bleu Northeast Seafood.

The event will include a complimentary welcome cocktail and snacks provided by Juniper at Hotel Vermont and Bleu Northeast Seafood.

Tickets, available at, are a $25 donation that will go directly to Long Trail Rescue.

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