CHAZY The bleachers were filled and all eyes were on George Brendler Field, but this time, it wasnt a soccer game that had spectators in amazement. Members of the Clinton County Canine Club and their dogs took to the field Monday morning, hosting an assembly for kindergarten through sixth grade students of Chazy Central Rural School The purpose of the assembly, said club secretary Linda Lapier, was to show children what activities they could do with their dogs to promote a healthy relationship with their animals and get some good exercise in the process. We want to entertain the students and, at the same time, increase awareness so more children would be interested in spending more time with their dogs, Lapier said before the assembly. Lapier was a reading teacher at CCRS until her retirement last year. In preparation for her retirement, Lapier became interested in becoming a dog trainer as a way to occupy the extra time she anticipated. She came up with the idea when her class worked with a therapy dog program, which involved bringing in trained dogs to spend time with students as their learn to read. The program is believed to increase a childs confidence in their reading ability. See DOGS, page 9 Dogs From page 1 I knew Id have to do something when I retired, she said. So, I began this about two and a half years ago. Even though shes now retired, Lapiers first thought was bringing a group of dogs from the canine club to the school to demonstrate what she and others have learned. She and other dog owners from the club watched the reactions from children as they eagerly watched the dogs perform their exercises, jumping over hurdles and running through tunnels and obstacles. The assembly garnered rounds of applause from the students, including Matthew Parent, a student in Tuesday Barcombs second grade class, who said he enjoyed watching the dogs run with their owners. I liked it, especially the last part, said Matthew, referring to the final agility course. Matthew said he owns a dog thats a chocolate Labrador-beagle mix named Molly, and though he enjoys spending time with her, said shes too old to run through exercises like the ones he saw during the assembly. The interest the canine club saw from the children is the reason Lapier said shed like to see the club host similar assemblies at other schools. Those interested in learning more about the Clinton County Canine Club may contact Lapier at 846-8839 or visit the clubs Web site at www.clintoncanine.org.