Love on Highland Park by picking up Your pup’s poop—Do Dah Day is May 15

signs in Highland Park

Do Dah Day 2021 is coming to Cahaba Brewing this Saturday, May 15, from 11AM-6PM, and Highland Park FIDO (Friends in Dog Ownership) is continuing its tradition of “flagging and bagging” to get ready for the big event even though it won’t be in the neighborhood this year. Keep reading to find out more about what pet owners can do to make Highland Park, the traditional home of Do Dah Day, more beautiful year ’round.

Meet FIDO Highland Park, making the area more beautiful one dog pile at a time

FIDO sign in Highland Park
Flags and piles will be cleaned up before DoDahDay. Photo via Pat Byington for Bham Now

It doesn’t take a lot of imagination to realize that Birmingham’s Highland Park neighborhood, with its three big parks, is a local favorite for many of the area’s dogs and their two-legged friends. To preserve the health and beauty of the area, FIDO’s on a mission to promote responsible pet ownership.

Translation: they want you to pick up your pet’s poop.

To get the scoop (get it?), Bham Now’s Pat Byington talked to Elizabeth Sanfelippo, President of Highland Park Neighborhood Association. Here’s what she said.

Bham Now: what is flagging + bagging?

FIDo flag in Highland Park
“I am not fertilizer” flag in the Highland Park neighborhood. Photo via Pat Byington for Bham Now

Sanfelippo: Our group was started by some residents—dog owners and others—who were tired of people not cleaning up after their animals. Suzanne Baker got the group started and is very passionate about it.

Along the way, someone came up with the idea to do a campaign called “flagging and bagging.”

We write cute, funny little notes on yard flags, then put them next to dog piles that we see in the neighborhood.

This year we put the flags up May 7-8 and we’re planning to collect the flags and dog piles May 15-16.

In this one-week timeframe, our flags and signs are out, and we’ll kind of keep adding flags as as our participants walk around the neighborhood and see more piles that appear throughout the week.

Bham Now: tell us about the cleanup effort.

FIDO flags in Highland Park
“Too acidic to fertilize” + “I’d rather be bagged.” Photo via Pat Byington for Bham Now

Sanfelippo: this year, each person is taking a section along Highland and focusing on flagging there. Then our cleanup will start on Friday because some people will want to go to Do Dah Day on Saturday. By the end of the weekend, all the piles and all the flags will be picked up.

Bham Now: what’s the purpose of flagging and bagging?

FIDO sign in Highland Park
“Allow me to ruin your day.” Photo via Pat Byington

Sanfelippo: the main idea is just to point out to people in kind of a playful way that it’s not just one. It’s easy for people to think “I just have one dog—it’s not going to be that much. But it really adds up quickly.

And yes, a dog pile can really ruin your day—it could also ruin the inside of your house or your car. It’s not fertilizer, which some people try and claim it is—it’s too acidic. It spreads bacteria, and is just plain gross.

So we’ve found this to be an effective way over the years to remind and educate people. Some people don’t know that it’s also against a city ordinance, and there is $100 fine.

Bham Now: tell us about dog ownership in Highland Park.

Birmingham, Do Dah Day, dogs, pets, animals
King George, the 2016 Do Dah Day King. Photo via Do Dah Day

Sanfelippo: Highland Park is an extremely pedestrian friendly area, and there are a lot of dog owners, so people are are always walking either around the parks or in the parks. A lot of people get together and walk their dogs together or socialize their dogs together in the parks.

Picking up after our dogs is just part of being a responsible dog owner and helps keep the area enjoyable for everyone, dog owners or not.

Head to Do Dah Day this Saturday, May 15 from 11AM-6PM

Do Dah Day Birmingham
Do Dah Day is a Birmingham favorite. Photo via Do Dah Day’s Facebook
  • What: Do Dah Day, in support of local animal shelters, with live music, cute animals, food trucks, vendors, kids area and more
  • When: Saturday, May 15, 11AM-6PM
  • Where: Cahaba Brewing
  • Tickets: $8 per person at the door

Find all the details here.

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Sharron Swain
Sharron Swain

Writer, Interviewer + Adventurer | Telling stories to make a difference

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