NEW YORK – Show dogs will have their day in Madison Square Garden again when the Westminster Kennel Club show returns in January after coronavirus precautions prompted a shift to the suburbs this spring.
The club announced Thursday that next year’s final rounds will be held as usual at the famous arena – though earlier than normal, on Jan. 25-26. Preliminary rounds will be at a venue to be announced and start Jan. 24, after a Jan. 22 agility championship at the same place.
Meanwhile, Westminster is preparing for a very different show this year.
It will be outdoors at a riverfront estate about 25 miles north of Manhattan in Tarrytown, on June 12-13 instead of in February – and without spectators, apparently for the first time. The multi-day event usually draws 35,000 to 40,000 people in all, according to the club.
This year will mark the first time in the show’s 144-year history that it won’t be somewhere in Manhattan, and the first time in more than a century that the best in show prize won’t be awarded at the Garden.
Fans can watch the final rounds on Fox channels.