Seinfeld's J. Peterman. Dancing with the Stars champion. Broadway actor. Author. Dad.
All of these things describe the multi-talented John O'Hurley, who arrived in town last weekend to host the National Dog Show Presented by Purina. Before he took on hosting duties, though, he took some time to make two appearances.
Saturday morning before the National Dog Show, O'Hurley sat down with about twenty Spring-Ford students as well as members of the DART (Dogs Are Readers Too) therapy dog team to read Hooray for Reading Day! by Margery Cuyler.
The book tells the story of Jessica, who is a nervous reader until she reads to her dog, Wiggles. The DART team does this in schools and at libraries - kids can sit down and read aloud to a dog, who will patiently listen.
"Dogs don't judge a kid's reading," said one of the DART dog owners.
Friday evening, O'Hurley appeared at the Towne Book Center in Collegeville to talk about his two books, It's Okay to Miss the Bed on the First Jump and Other Life Lessons I Learned From Dogs and Before the Dog Can Eat Your Homework, First You Have to Do It: Life Lessons from a Wise Old Dog to a Young Boy.
O'Hurley, who has always been a dog lover, hosts the National Dog Show each year along with expert David Frei.
"It's an extraordinary piece of programming," O'Hurley told Patch. "It's a great piece of entertainment and it's become a family tradition. There's really something for everyone."
O'Hurley wrote his first book as a look into things we can all learn from dogs. It includes lessons such as "Never Miss A Nap" and "You're Only as Big as You Think You Are."
His second book was written after his now-five-year-old son Will was born, and is a series of lessons from O'Hurley's Maltese, Scoshi, to Will.
O'Hurley says Scoshi wrote the book because the dog was sure that as a dad, O'Hurley couldn't be trusted to teach Will eveything he needed to know.
O'Hurley read a passage from the book, and took audience questions.
Of course, one of the questions was "What was your favorite J. Peterman Seinfeld quote?"
The answer? A line from the episode "The Frogger", after Elaine had eaten a piece of 60-year-old wedding cake Peterman bought:
"Do you know what happens to a butter-based frosting after six decades in a poorly-ventilated English basement?"