Jonestoberfest Makes A Big Statement In Gulfport

They were groomed, coiffed and decked out in costumes, but only a handful of the competitors could be top dog at the festival's pet parade costume contest.

Lilly and her owner Melissa Turnowicz won top prize for most creative costume. They were dressed as a shower and bar of soap.

"I actually found the idea for the shower on line, and I didn't know what to make of my dog. I just thought he could be, well, I could make a bar of soap, and he would be really cute. We'd look like each other," says Melissa Turnowicz.

Max, the English Bulldog with Woody from Disney's 'Toy Story' on his back, didn't win any prizes, but he got plenty of attention from the crowd.

David Tomasovosky, Max's Owner, says, "He's a six year old English Bulldog. He loves parades, and he's somewhat of a hambone, when there's a camera around."

The event was a family affair for Tiffany Clark, her daughter Olivia and their pet yorkie, Cassius.

Clark says, "We just thought it would be a good thing to do to for the kids, a chance to get the pets out. You can't take them a lot of places now, so it was a great day to go out. We thought it was beautiful weather."

While Cassius often shyed away in Tiffany's purse, other festival goers couldn't conceal their excitement at Jonestober Fest.

Organizers say this is just the beginning of good things to come for Jones Park.

"This is 30 acres, and 30 acres that we're going to use to the best of the city's ability to use as a haven of entertainment and activities for children of all ages," Festival Chairwoman Andi Rushton-Oustalet says. "A walking park, an area where beautiful trees are around everywhere and Jonestober fest is the beginning of activities to let people know what is going to happen in this park and how it's going to happen."

The festival runs until 11pm Saturday night.  Admission is free.