Mirror, mirror who is the best pet in Selma?

Published 9:44 pm Saturday, January 5, 2013

Last year a cat named Booger stole the title of Selma Pet Idol 2012 and now 2013 waits for its precious pet to be crowned. As the New Year has arrived registration is now open for The Selma Times-Journal Pet Idol contest and pets of all shapes, sizes and species are invited to compete.

The third annual Pet Idol will raise money for Newspapers in Education, a program that funds newspapers being in classrooms. Times-Journal circulation director, Shane Gaut, said the contest would also fund an organization of the company’s choice in addition to giving money to NIE.

“Almost all newspapers participate in Newspapers in Education,” Gaut said. “We raise funds throughout the year to pay for the newspapers to be delivered. Last year’s Pet Idol raised enough money to provide more than 59,000 newspapers to our local schools.”

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He explained that every Wednesday, 30 newspapers are delivered to each local classroom so that teachers can incorporate the reading and research gathering skills and exercises into their lesson plans.

“You can also just sponsor one classroom — you don’t have to participate in Pet Idol,” Gaut said. “Some people sponsor their child’s classroom, and you can pick a teacher to sponsor if you want to for NIE.”

He said Pet Idol for the last two years has been a great success, earning more than $4,000 in 2012. He added the contest is fun for the entire community for the several weeks it goes on.

“Obviously you will have your cats and dogs, but last year we had horses, guinea pigs, goldfish, chickens and even a cow,” he said. “You win a photo shoot and they win a feature in the paper, as well as a pet friendly gift basket.”

The deadline to enter pets in Pet Idol is Friday, Feb. 8. On the following Sunday, Feb. 10, all pet entries will be published in the Times-Journal so that voting can begin. Votes are 50 cents per vote.

There are three rounds of voting and in the second round, the top 50 percent proceed. Votes start back at zero for the beginning of each round and the finalists are published in the paper each week.

To register a pet in Pet Idol and help bring newspapers into classrooms, fill out an entry form in the Times-Journal office located on 1018 Water Avenue and submit a picture of the animal.

The form should include the pet’s name along with your address, phone number and a $10 donation to the Newspapers in Education program. Checks can be made out to The Selma Times-Journal NIE. Photos will not be returned.

Digital photos can be e-mailed to petidol@selmatimesjournal.com.

All businesses, organizations and individuals who donate $300 or more to the NIE program will secure a spot on the sponsor page of each of the five rounds of the Pet Idol contest.

Donations can be mailed to the NIE program at P.O. Box 2080, Selma, Al., 36702, or brought to the Selma Times-Journal’s 1018 Water Ave. office between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.

For questions, call 875-2110.