All posts by Debby Thompson

Collars & Tags & Microchips—OH MY!

by Mikella Maughan

Every year we see an increase in lost pets around the 4th of July, as they try to escape the noise and confusion of fireworks.  In addition to securing your pets, there are things you can do to help the chances of getting them back home should they somehow escape.

As your pet doesn’t have a voice, the easiest and most obvious option is a collar and ID of some kind.  Pet owners on a budget can find collars at local dollar stores.  Even without a tag a collar makes it easier for your pet to be safely caught by a good Samaritan so they can be returned to you or turned in to a shelter where you can be reunited.  If you are unable to get an ID tag at the moment, you can write your phone number on the collar with a Sharpie or other permanent marker.  This is also a great option for those pets who tend to always ‘lose’ their tags. You can also order collars and tags on Amazon or other online pet stores so you don’t have to go anywhere.

When a pet doesn’t have an ID tag or other identifying information, a microchip is an excellent backup plan. Microchips don’t fall off or get lost, and they don’t have batteries that die.  They simply sit silently under your pet’s skin until the information you’ve registered can be retrieved with a microchip scanner.

Travis County residents can get a free Microchip and/or a free ID tag for their pet by going to Austin Animal Services at 7301  Levander Loop between 11:00am and 7:00pm.  The shelter does not currently assist with chip registration so be sure to register your pet’s chip as soon as you get home.

Williamson County residents can get a free microchip and registration at the Williamson County Animal Shelter.  Just email for more information and/or to schedule a microchip appointment.  These are provided free through a grant by the Petco Foundation.

You can also get a microchip for a fee from your pet’s veterinarian.

You should register the chip with the manufacturer at least once, but you can also register your chip at Michelson Found Animals Foundation (  for free.  Just remember to update your information when you move or change phone numbers.

Now is the time, please don’t wait until your pet is lost and wish you had done something; it may be too late.  According to a 2009 study published by the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, a dog has a 52% chance of returning home if microchipped but only a 21% chance of returning home if not.  Cats have a 38% chance of returning home if microchipped; an astonishing 1% chance of returning home if not.

IF YOU FIND A LOST PET please call or text the Wells Branch microchip scanner volunteer at (512) 270-1026 for a free scan, or take the pet to your nearest vet office or shelter.  Some pet supply stores such as Petsmart, Petco and Tomlinson’s also have scanners.

Please also post lost or found pets on the Wells Branch Lost and Found Pets page on Facebook.

4thFest Event Schedule

WBNA 4thFest Silent Auction
Monday, July 4 | 9:00am – 2:00pm
WB Community Center at KF Park
2106 Klattenhoff Drive

Each year, the WBNA hosts a silent auction during WB FourthFest.  Proceeds benefit the WBNA.  Money raised from this event funds the Easter Egg Hunt, National Night Out, our participation in Halloween Trunk or Treat, crafts at Luminary Fest and all of the educational and safety seminars we put on throughout the year.  Come check out all the wonderful gift baskets and gift certificates donated by WB friends, neighbors and businesses!  Online bidding begins June 24th and ends on July 2nd at 5:00pm at  In person bidding will be from 9:00am to 2:00pm, July 4th at the Wells Branch Community Center, 2106 Klattenhoff Drive.

Contact Margaret Sufke at 512-341-0428 or if you have an item or service you’d like to donate or if you’d like to volunteer.  We can ALWAYS use a hand!

WB MUD 4thFest Parade!
Monday, July 4 | 10:00am
Katherine Fleischer Park
2106 Klattenhoff Drive

The Wells Branch MUD Parks and Recreation Department is excited to once again celebrate the Fourth of July with one of our most beloved community traditions.  The FourthFest parade will kick off at 10:00am from Katherine Fleischer Park. Guests are encouraged to line the streets and show off your patriotic pride in this long-time tradition!  If you wish to include a float in this year’s parade, please contact the WB MUD Program & Events Coordinator at 512-251-9814.

 2022 Parade Route (Departs at 10am)
Facing west on Klattenhoff Dr. => Right on Alpha Collier

=> Right on Fronia Woodward => Right on Cervin Blvd.
=> Right on Wells Port Dr. => Right on Crystal Shore
=> Right on Klattenhoff Dr. => Return to KF Park

WB MUD 4thFest Cornhole Tournament
Monday, July 4 | 11:00am
Wells Branch Homestead | 2106 Klattenhoff Dr.

Got a hankering for cornhole?  This year FourthFest will offer 24 teams the chance to show off their skills in a single-elimination cornhole tournament!  Games will begin after the parade at 11:00am in front of the Homestead.

1st place:  (2) $50 Gift Cards ($100 total)
2nd place:  (2) $25 Gift Cards ($50 total)
3rd place:  (2) $10 Gift Cards ($20 total)

Teams will compete in pairs of two in a single elimination tournament.  Participants must be 13 years or older to  compete.  Registration opens June 1st and ends July 3rd.  Contact WB MUD at 512-251-9814.   Hosted by the WB MUD Recreation Department.

WB MUD 4thFest Concert
Monday, July 4 | 6:00pm
Shoreline Soccer Complex | 3908 Shoreline Drive

The fun doesn’t stop in the morning!  Put on your favorite red, white, and blue outfit and join us as the FourthFest celebrations continue with a concert in the park!  Tomar & the FCs are playing and the Rec Department will have    foodtrucks on hand.  Bring the whole family for an exciting evening of live music at the Wells Branch Soccer Complex. Gates open at 5:30pm.

WB MUD 4thFest Fireworks!
Monday, July 4 | 9:30pm
WB MUD Rec Center | 3000 Shoreline Drive

To finish out the night, join us for WB MUD’s dazzling Fourth of July fireworks show!

The annual Wells Branch MUD Fireworks Show will begin at 9:30pm at the Wells Branch Recreation Center.  Prepare to be dazzled as they light up the night sky in celebration of the Fourth of July!  There will not be any public parking available at the Recreation Center.  Although parking is available along the street and in the Willow Bend Pool parking lot, the number of spaces are limited, so we encourage all who can, to walk or ride bikes.

Please come early, bring your blankets, chairs, coolers and bug spray.

Don’t forget to clear your area and pick up your trash when you leave. Thank you!

Questions? Call the WB MUD Rec Center at 512-251-9814.

*No personal fireworks are allowed on District Property.

Silent Auction Volunteers Needed!
Are you ready to help?

Each year the WBNA hosts a Silent Auction during the annual 4th Fest celebration. This auction is our BIG fundraiser for the year. We are actively seeking event volunteers to help solicit items, help prepare the baskets and/or work the auction. Follow the sign up link if you’re interested in helping out. Shifts are two hours. Feel free to sign up for more than one slot if you would like. We would love the help.

We have developed an online system to help folks register as a WBNA volunteer. We recently published a video clip highlighting how to sign up as a volunteer. Please follow the link to learn more: Volunteer Video

Sign up HERE:

Here’s an insider’s tip. If you volunteer for the 4thFest Silent Auction you’ll get a preview of this year’s auction goodies, while helping to stage the auction items. How about a ride on the WBNA parade float? If you help decorate it, you can ride it—it’s worth an early start! Want to experience the excitement of the closing bids? Volunteer to be a closer and get ready to move quickly. Whatever you to choose do—we can promise that you will have fun at the 2022 4thFest Silent Auction.  Plus, there’s air conditioning inside!

Opportunities Include:

  • Sunday, July 3rdStaging, Set up, Signage 1:00 – 4:00 pm
  • Monday, July 4thFloat Prep, 8:30am – Parade is at 10:00am
  • Monday, July 4thSilent Auction, many slots available, bidder registration, runners, closers

Remember, it’s the volunteers that really make everything happen. Please consider joining our volunteer team, even if you can only give a couple of hours for a single event or help out behind the scenes—your contribution helps the entire community succeed.  Watch the WBNA.US website, follow us on Facebook and please consider volunteering at the 2022 4thFest!

2022 Silent Auction Donations Request

Each year the WBNA hosts a Silent Auction during the annual 4thFest celebration.  This auction is our BIG fundraiser for the year.  Funds raised help to pay for all the WBNA community events: the Easter Egg Hunt, National Night Out, our participation in Halloween Trunk or Treat, crafts at Luminary Fest as well as the town hall meetings, candidate forums and safety awareness sessions throughout the year.  We are excited to be hosting the auction once again during the WBMUD Independence Day celebration.

Last year we introduced a hybrid format of an online auction and a “live” event for the final bids on July the 4th.  The live event will be in our traditional venue at the WB Community Center from 9:00am – 2:00pm, July 4th.  The online auction will go live the week before.  Watch the WB Google Group, our website, and the Facebook page for updates.  A link will also be included in our Summer Issue of the Neighborhood News.

Friday, June 24:  The Silent Auction site goes live!

Saturday, July 2:  The Silent Auction site closes and we transition all active bids and make arrangements for all “Buy It Now” items.

Monday, July 4:  The live auction opens at 9:00am and closes at 2:00pm.   Payments and Pick Up will be from 3:00 – 5:00pm.  Buy It Now items made be purchased throughout the auction.

In addition to giving back to our community, donating to the WBNA Silent Auction is a GREAT way to promote your business!  We are seeking donations of merchandise, gift cards/certificates, theme baskets, and services to auction.  In return, you will receive exposure for your business at the live auction and on the auction website.  There will also be a special “Thank You” section in the September issue of the WBNA Neighborhood News and on our website and Facebook page with links to your site.  If you have items or services to donate please email us at

Along with our local businesses, services, and Austin area attractions, we would LOVE donations from the community.  We will begin accepting donations May 28.  Donations to be included in the online auction must be received by June 20.   Live auction donations will be gratefully accepted through June 30.  We would also like to welcome the return of baked goods donations, please contact Margaret Sufke, 512-341-0428, for details.

We are actively seeking event volunteers to help solicit items,help prepare the baskets and/or work the auction.  If you have any empty baskets leftover from last year, we’d love to have them!  Please email us at and watch for our new social media volunteer site.

Thank YOU for supporting the Wells Branch Community!