7​​Dates for 2019  

The dates for Greyhounds Reach the Beach® are determined by the dates for Columbus Day weekend.  In 2019 the dates for GRtB are October 10-13, as Columbus Day will be Monday, October 14th.  This is about a week later in October than the dates have been for the past several years.  Our event this year will be held in the beautiful Rehoboth Beach Convention Center.

Temporary Policy from Delaware Division of Health about Dogs on Restaurant Decks

Revised 8-19-2019

Animals and Food Establishments

Information for Food Establishment Permit Holders and


As the permit holder or person-in-charge of a food establishment, can my customers bring their dog or other animals into the interior of a food establishment?

No, the State of Delaware Food Code, in chapter 6 section 501.115 titled “Prohibiting Animals”
prohibits animals in food establishments. The restrictions apply to live animals. Only in specific situations (such as the use of service animals) and under controlled conditions are live animals permitted
inside a food establishment. The reasons for the restrictions include, but are not limited to:
 Animals carry disease-causing organisms and can transmit pathogens to humans through direct and/or indirect
contamination of food and food contact surfaces.
 Animals shed hair continuously and may deposit liquid or fecal waste, creating the need for more frequent and
rigorous cleaning efforts.

Question: As the permit holder or person-in-charge of a food establishment, can my customers bring their dog to the outdoor area of a restaurant?

Answer: While it is prohibited, the Division of Public Health (DPH) food safety inspection officers will not strictly enforce this provision of the Food Code until further discussions can take place. DPH will
provide updated guidance by the end of 2019. If food stablishment owners elect to allow dogs in outdoor areas in the meantime, it is recommended they follow Industry Best Practices.

Industry Best Practices 

  • Food establishments are allowed to restrict dogs from outdoor dining areas.
  • ​There should be separate access to the outdoor area; no dog should pass through any interior area of a

  • There should be no food storage or preparation in the outdoor area. This includes beverage stations and food
    stations, such as raw oyster bars. Dogs may be allowed in outdoor areas with bars, but customers with dogs
    should not be seated directly at the bar.

  • ​There should be conspicuous signage posted at each entrance to the outdoor area that notifies all consumers
    that dogs may be present in the area.

  • ​There should be written policies, available for review upon request, describing food establishment procedures for the safe and sanitary cleaning of surfaces and materials soiled by urine, fecal, vomitus matter, etc. The food
    establishment’s existing vomit and diarrhea clean up procedures may be utilized.

  • Exclude any dog that is not well controlled by its owner or handler. Dogs should be on a leash and not socialize
    with other diners or employees, unless welcomed.

  •  Dogs are not allowed on chairs or tables.
  •  Dogs are not permitted to eat or drink out of restaurant glasses or dishes. Single use bowls should be provided
    upon request. Disposable bowls should never be placed on tables, chairs, or food contact surfaces.

  •  Food establishments should revise food employee hand washing policies to include additional hand washing
    after any contact with dogs and/or their disposable dishes.

Ferry Discount  We  establish a discount for using the Cape May Lewes Ferry each year.  Look for details soon.   You may call to make your reservation at 1-800-643-3779.  Refer to our coupon code when making your reservation.  The code will be available soon.

Crabby Dicks sent us a check for about $390 for all of you who chose to eat there and support greyhound adoption.  This money was equally divided among the first three groups listed above.  We expect to be on the porch again this year at Crabby Dicks enjoying their great seafood, burgers and steaks.

2019 Greyhounds Reach the Beach® Updates!​​

Greyhounds Reach the Beach® is a  registered trademark of The  Grapehound Wine Tour, Inc.  The trademark refers to the greyhound event begun in 1995, and held in Dewey Beach and Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, for four days every Columbus Day weekend.   Managed by The Greyhound Project for many years, the event is now managed by The Grapehound Wine Tour, Inc., a Delaware registered, IRS approved 501(c)3 non-profit Delaware corporation established for the benefit of greyhounds and other sighthounds.  

All proceeds from The Grapehound Wine Tour® event in New York and the Greyhounds Reach the Beach® event in Delaware go to pay for event costs and  the balance donated to participating 501(c)3 greyhound adoption organizations so that they may transport, vet, and place adopted greyhounds from race tracks around the country.  No officer or member of our Board of Directors receives any money whatsoever for our volunteer services.

All Dogs on Deck  Recently the Delaware Department of Health and Social Services (DDH&SS) put out a news release that dogs are not actually allowed on the decks and patios of restaurants.  This rule has been on the books for as many years as Dewey Beach and Rehoboth Beach have welcomed dogs to the decks and patios of their restaurants.

Officials in the DDH&SS are now considering how to handle this issue.  While the 2014 FDA rules say that dogs are not allowed on the "premises" of a restaurant, until now this has been interpreted to mean in the restaurant itself, not surrounding areas.  For years, dogs have been brought to the decks and patios of Delaware restaurants with many positive effects on tourism and not the slightest negative impact on health.  Our GRtB folks have loved socializing on restaurant decks and patios in Delaware with their hounds.   

Yesterday (Tuesday, August 13) the DHSS began to back off their hard line approach.  They say that they have indicated all along they just meant that the issue is now being looked at and that no decision has been made.


The Facts:  We know that....

In fact, nine states, including Delaware's next door neighbor, Maryland, allow dogs on restaurants' outdoor decks and patios.  
In fact, there's almost no connection between having dogs lie down on the floor with their people on restaurant decks while they dine and the spread of any disease.  
In fact, dogs often see their doctor more regularly than people do, and there are few diseases that dogs have that can be transmitted to humans;  it's far more likely that the person at the table next to you will have a disease actually communicable to humans than a well-cared for dog will.
In fact,  60% of people surveyed on Healthline.com favor allowing dogs on restaurant patios.

This article from VCA Animal Hospitals, gives an excellent rundown of the various zoonotic infections (those which can be spread from dogs to people) and explains the great lengths that you would have to go to to contract one:


Disease transfers are most likely to happen if 1) you first have an infected dog and 2) the dogs bites you or 3) you ingest fecal material or dog urine.  That's basically what it takes.  Such infections are very rare even for people who live with dogs.

The most dangerous zoonotic disease is rabies.  Essentially you would have to be bitten by an unvaccinated dog with rabies to contract rabies.  For eight of the last nine years, from 2010 to 2017, there were zero cases of rabies reported in dogs within the state of Delaware.  In 2018 there was one.  We'd like to hazard a guess that the chances of someone bringing an unvaccinated, rabid dog with them to dinner at a Delaware restaurant are probably pretty small.
​our paragraph here.

It's a Privilege

That said, having our dogs with us on restaurant decks does not give us carte blanche to act stupid.  This whole controversy started with a complaint about how a dog was acting at a restaurant.  No one wants to eat on a deck where a dog has peed or where guests watch a dog owner allowing his dog to lick his restaurant plate. No one wants to hear your dog barking throughout their meal.   We have to be very responsible as dog owners to enjoy this privilege.  

See this link for dining etiquette when you are accompanied by a dog:


Write to the DHSS

We are asking all dog owners who value the privilege of dining on restaurant decks and porches with their dogs to write to the DHSS and state your opinion on this issue.  To assist you with some facts supporting the continued ability for folks to dine on restaurant decks with their dogs, I have attached several informative links below.  Please review these if you wish before you write.

Background of FDA Rules


Health and Safety

As you know millions of dog owners like you live with their dogs 24 hours a day, seven days a week.  The dogs are in our bedrooms and kitchens.  Our dogs are vaccinated and protected against most dog diseases and parasites through regular vet visits.  Our dogs probably see the doctor for checkups more than we people do!

While humans transmit diseases and food-borne illnesses to other humans every day, it is almost unheard of to find that a dog has somehow transmitted a disease to a human, despite millions of contacts in our homes every day.  It takes a very unusual circumstance in most cases for disease transfer to happen between dog and human, especially in a restaurant setting.



If you would like to write a snail-mail letter to the Delaware Department of Public Heath on this issue, please be polite and respectful and use this address:

Jamie Mack
Health Systems Protection
417 Federal Street
Dover, DE 19901

​We need to let the DHSS know where you stand on this issue and what it means to you.

Contact us at admin@grtb.org

Watch this space.

Updated 8-20-19​

Type your paragraph here.

​​​​The Dewey Goes Pink race for breast cancer usually takes place in downtown Dewey during our weekend every year.  We support the race's efforts to fight breast cancer. 

This year the race takes place a week before GRtB on October 6th.  The race will not impact our event at all this year.


Donations for 2018     Our expenses were very high in 2018 but we were able to raise about $8,500 for greyhound adoption.  Thank you for your help is supporting greyhound adoption!

2018 proceeds were donated to

Greyhound Pet Adoption of Delaware (Newark, DE)
Forever Home Greyhound Adoption (Middleburg, NY)
God's Greyts (Orlando, FL)
Midwest Greyhound Adoption (Sugar Grove, IL)
​Virginia Greyhound Adoption (Mechanicsville, VA)our paragraph here.

New Shirt

Currently we are designing a new and spectacular 25th anniversary Greyhounds Reach the Beach®
event shirt. 

Our new shirt will be available in ladies cut and universal cut styles, also in long and short sleeves in the same color. 

It will be announced with photos both here and in our event emails.

Our gorgeous Greyhounds Reach the Beach® logo was designed by greyhound artist Linda K. Evans of East Clarendon, Vermont.  Linda will be exhibiting her art at the rehoboth Beach Convention center this October with about forty other top greyhound vendors.

Greyhounds Reach the  Beach®

                                 October 10-13, 2019                                      It's all about the greyhounds.©         

Frequently Asked Questions

Why Can't Everything be in Dewey Beach?  This brings up a suggestion we hear from time to time from the "old timers."  Why can't we have the event, with vendors, speakers and registration, all in Dewey Beach like we used to do?  To answer this question, you have to understand how the little town of Dewey Beach has changed from 1995 until today.

History  From 1995 to 2008 the event was managed by The Greyhound Project.   It was held in tents, parking lots and restaurants around the Town of Dewey Beach.  After a nor'easter blew down the vendor tents in 2007, the Greyhound Project decided to stop managing the event.  The reasons were eloquently expressed and had to do with the development of condos and hotels in Dewey Beach which diminished open areas or restaurants where the event could be held.  They also cited the difficulty of obtaining liability insurance after the tents blew down.  Thus the event officially "left" Dewey Beach with the Greyhound Project in 2008 due to the lack of available space.

Today, ten years later, Dewey Beach still offers very few suitable options for hosting the event.  We have combed through the parking lots and businesses of Dewey Beach to find a location.  We have checked with parking lot owners and real estate experts.  We have spoken to Town officials.  Condos have taken over much of the open space of the town.  Space is at a premium.  A small home in Dewey Beach will sell for over a million dollars. There is much less room now for the event than there was in 2008 when the Greyhound Project decided the town could no longer support the event.  Businesses do not want to give up their parking lot.  Many businesses do not allow dogs.

The Hyatt Place in downtown DB, perhaps the one space that is large enough to host the event, offered us a reasonable price for their modest meeting room for 2018.  Their ballrooms, after remodeling, are now priced at $10,000 each ... not for the week but for one day.    Not a realistic option for a charity trying to help greyhounds. 

With our securing the Rehoboth Beach Convention Center as our host location for 2019, all these concerns about where to hold the event in Dewey Beach have disappeared.  Our vendors do not have to buy an annual vendor license for $109 as they had to do in Dewey Beach.  We do not have to buy a business license for the event.

The Summer is Over So Things Should be Cheap

Those who think the summer tourist season is over by Labor Day, and that we should be able to get bargains everywhere, are misinformed.  Prices at hotels and restaurants can be very high at this time of year.   October is peak wedding season for this beach resort, particularly for the Washington, D.C. crowd.  Compared to Washington, D.C., Dewey Beach prices are a bargain.    In 2018, there were auto races on Friday, Saturday and Sunday at Dover Speedway.  This competition for accommodations impacts area hotel availability and prices.

​Survey Results

E-Booklet  We asked whether or not the E-Booklet was helpful in planning your weekend.  83% of respondents felt the E-Booklet was helpful.  5.5% felt that they glanced at it but it wasn't all that helpful.  About 8% offered a comment.

Several people in past surveys said they wanted the E-Booklet sooner, more than a week to ten days before the event.  The fact is, information is changing right up to the beginning of the event.  Speakers can change their minds or new speakers could decide to respond to invitations posed months earlier.  Vendors cancel or decide to attend.  Hotels get new owners and change policies.  A booklet produced a month early would be even less accurate than the booklet we create now.  We do post regular changes to the event on this Updates page so that people have new and changing information ahead of time.  Printing the E-Booklet even earlier would not help people get more accurate and correct information.

Traffic  Some folks complained that the traffic at the beach is very heavy, especially on Rt. 1.  As we indicated above, the beach is very popular at the beginning of October.   We wish there was less traffic but we unfortunately don't have that power.

Schedule Communication  Some folks wanted better communication about the event schedule.  We send out an E-booklet with a great deal of information a week before the event.  We also handed out a double-sided sheet at the registration table with schedule information.  That said, we think we can do a better job of make the schedule clearer within one section of the booklet.  Some folks said there were too many things going on for a four day weekend.  Part of the beauty of this event is that while you can't do everything, you get to chose what you do.