It was a tale of two moods Sunday at the Denver County Fair.
At one end of the National Western Complex, the frenzied frivolity of the furry class was on full display at the American Kennel Club’s dog agility trials. Two floors above, mellow marijuana mavens ambled among booths and displays at the fair’s new Pot Pavilion.
The fair, which is in its fourth year, attracted close to 20,000 people over the weekend, according to organizers.
Grant, a 10-year-old Australian shepherd, was one of dozens of dogs who might have used the calming influences from the weed wing as he readied himself for a lickety-split run through a course filled with jumps, ramps and tunnels.
Grant barked and munched treats as owner Dawn Comstock of Lakewood psyched him up for his turn.
Cannabist Q&A: A reader has a question about treating a dog’s carsickness with marijuana, plus other reader Q’s
“One of the great things about this venue is the audience,” she said. “A lot of dogs respond to that cheering, and they run faster.”
That included Jolt, a border collie, guided through the course by 81-year-old handler Helen Phillips of Arvada.
“I’m slow, he’s fast,” Phillips said. “What I like is the challenge. Every course is different.”
Michael Thornton of Denver watched the trials from the bleachers. He said his 2-year-old terrier mix rescue MacElroy could probably outrun every dog in the place.
“There’s a lot of training that goes into it,” he said.
In the Pot Pavilion, Nick from New York City was reluctant to divulge his last name in the marijuana-themed setting. He said he was impressed with the pot products, apparel and paraphernalia that were on display.
“It seems pretty relaxed,” he said.
While the drug was not allowed inside the doors of the National Western Complex, Nick marveled at the clothing made from hemp — still illegal under federal law — that was for sale.
“It’s an easily grown, cheap material that can make clothes that has been forgotten for a long time,” he said.
John Aguilar: 303-954-1695, email@example.com or twitter.com/abuvthefold
All things Hemp: Learn more about hemp growing in Colorado and read reviews for products that utilize this cannabis cousin of marijuana