Sport Brella Revisited
I just couldn't give up on the Sport Brella. (See my earlier article, Sport Brella, Looking for Shade in All the Wrong Places.) It had too much potential as a shade solution to let it go and there was that nagging feeling that perhaps I'd missed something.
To recap, I've been looking for a shade maker for dog agility activities to keep me and my dog cool. I'm a small person, and I need something easy to handle. A large canopy is hard to lug around and requires at least two people to put up.
The Sport Brella is light, easy to carry, and goes up in minutes. I had some minor problems the first time around. Perhaps I just needed more bonding time with the 'brella.
The agility trial in Walnut, California was the perfect opportunity. I didn't really need the shade, since my agility buddy brought her EZ-UP Dome II. But not ALL of her friends plus dogs could fit, so on Sunday I arrived with the Sport Brella to supplement the EZ-UP.
This time I found the stake that telescopes out of the bottom of the middle rod, something I had missed before, and important element for stabilizing the 'Brella. I also made sure it was well staked down. Even then, it took just a few minutes to open it up, secure it, and enjoy the shade.
As with any shade cover, a good sense of where the sun will be during the course of the day is helpful. That will take some practice for me, as my sense of direction isn't entirely adequate. But adjusting the 'Brella is easy, so if it's not positioned perfectly, it's not hard to shift it.
Turns out, I wasn't the only one there with a Sport Brella! Set up very close to us was another shade seeker and her dog. She was kind enough to let me take her picture. I'm only sorry I didn't get her name! She purchased hers from Sports Authority, and opted for the extended warranty at a cost of $6.
I might have had more success the first time I tried my Brella if I'd had more complete instructions. There are several ways you can use the Brella, and the telescopying stake wasn't obvious to me.
Overall, it was a successful outing, so I'm holding on to my Sport Brella. I'll never have to be shadeless again! Now, if I could just Q next time...