“Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero”

“Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero” will be shown Aug. 18 at Westwood Plaza Theater, 1910 Minno Drive, Johnstown. Submitted photo

Head back to school with a lesson of faith and courage.

Cuddles for Kids will host its Back to School Party for children at 10 a.m. Aug. 18 with a showing of the film “Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero” at the Westwood Plaza Theater, 1910 Minno Drive, Johnstown.

The movie is based on the life and times of Stubby, a homeless mutt who became a national hero during World War I.

After being rescued off the streets by an American soldier, Stubby was given a name, family and the chance to perform acts of valor beyond his stature.

After the war, Sgt. Stubby, who was the first dog to be given rank in the U.S. armed forces, was featured in newspapers and parades around the country.

He is still recognized as the most decorated canine in American history.

“We wanted to do something that would offer kids in the community a chance to see an animated film that’s also a true story and gives them a little bit of history,” said Robin Hagins, executive director of Cuddles For Kids.

The message of the film is that when given a chance, anybody can make a difference regardless of their origins.

“In this case it’s a dog, and in our case the community gave us a chance with Cuddles for Kids, and they’ve both made a difference,” Hagins said. 

“That message really spoke to us, and we think this will be a great film to share.”

When children arrive at the theater they’ll be greeted by CFK representatives and they’ll be given a choice between a lion or tiger CFK Pittsburgh Penguins Foundation Pillow Pet and a small soda and popcorn.

“We also will have prizes – the movie studio sent us a bunch of items to give away,” Hagins said. “We’re also working on some other prizes for the parents.”

Proceeds will be used to expand the CFK scholarship program for high school seniors.

“We’d like to do this every year, and it’s a chance to get kids together and ready for the school year,” Hagins said. 

“We like to find something like this that has a positive message and offers something to the community that is family friendly.”

Cost is $15 in advance and $17.50 the day of the event.

Tickets can be ordered online at www.cuddlesforkids.net

Movie with a message

What: Cuddles for Kids Back to School Party featuring a showing of “Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero.”

Where: Westwood Plaza Theater, 1910 Minno Drive, Johnstown.

When: 10 a.m. Aug. 18.

Cost: $15 per person in advance, $17.50 at the door.

Information: www.cuddlesforkids.net.

Kelly Urban is a reporter for The Tribune-Democrat. She can be reached at (814) 532-5073. Follow her on Twitter @KellyUrban25.

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