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Pet Idol 2020: Annual vote in which ballot stuffing is encouraged

ABBY, THE 2019 PET Idol winner and current mascot for the Daily News’ Newspapers in Education program. The Maltese belongs to Nilar Shein of Iron Mountain. Abby spends her days meeting and calming people at the Dickinson Neurology Associates office in Kingsford, where she is a permanent fixture. (Theresa Proudfit/Daily News photo)

IRON MOUNTAIN — Time again to let everyone know you have one special pet.

This is the eighth year of The Daily News’ popular Pet Idol competition, inviting residents in the region to share that prized animal companion they have at home, be it cat or dog, parrot or pony, guinea pig or goat, cow or lizard.

The public then gets to make the call on who will be the next Pet Idol, with the first round of voting kicking off Feb. 3.

“It will allow readers to choose their favorite pet from submitted photos,” said Jennifer Flynn, Daily News circulation manager.

Last year, the winner was Abigail Annie of the U.P., a Maltese owned by Dr. Nilar Shein of Iron Mountain.

Pets can be entered today through Wednesday, Jan. 29.

To participate, readers should submit a photo of their living pet — please, no “In Memoriam” entries.

The contest is open to all types of critters, Flynn said, with no limit on entries — and yes, you can enter the same pet more than once but each requires a $5 donation.

There is no limit on voting, either — ballot stuffing is encouraged, she said — but a 25-cent donation is needed to cast each vote. Proceeds go to the Newspaper in Education program that provides newspapers to area school districts and teachers for classroom use.

The Pet Idol winner will be featured with its owner on the front page of The Daily News, plus receive a trophy donated by BK Enterprises.

The top pet also will be the mascot of the NIE program for the 2020-21 school year.

The contest has three rounds, with all entries vying at the start. The field will be cut in half after each round, with the highest vote-getters advancing.

All votes will carry forward into each round.

Pet photos and ballots can be viewed at www.ironmountaindailynews.com, via the Pet Idol link and also will run in The Daily News throughout the contest.

Extra copies of the ballot can be printed off the website or picked up at The Daily News office at 215 E. Ludington St. in Iron Mountain.

In the event of a tie, newspaper employees will conduct a tie-breaker. All decisions are final and donations are non-refundable.

Photos must be of good quality, in black and white or color but at least 3-by-5 inches in size. Only one pet per picture and the photo should be only of the pet.

The Daily News reserves the right to refuse any photo deemed unsuitable.

By entering a photo, permission is given to submit the owner and pet’s information in the contest.

The Daily News and Powers Printing employees and their immediate families are not eligible to win the contest.

Entries either can be mailed to: The Daily News, Attention: Jennifer Flynn, 215 E. Ludington St., P.O. Box 460, Iron Mountain, MI 49801 or dropped off at The Daily News office.

The Daily News must receive all entry forms and pet photos by the close of business Jan. 29.

Entry forms should include owner’s name, address and phone number, along with the name of the pet. Photos can be picked up at The Daily News office at the end of the sweepstakes.

Participation means entrants agree they are bound to the official rules and all decisions made by The Daily News regarding the sweepstakes.

Ballots and donations can be dropped off or mailed to the newspaper by the deadlines posted.

Votes for round one will be accepted from Feb. 3 until the close of business Feb. 12. Voting for round two will be Feb. 17 until close of business Feb. 26.

The third and final round of voting will be March 2 until close of business March 11. The winner will be posted, once all votes are tallied, in The Daily News and on our website the week of March 16.

Again, all proceeds benefit the NIE program with area schools. For more information or to sign up to get papers in the classroom, contact Flynn at 906-774-2772, ext. 218.

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