Dog days

New dog park coming to Big Rapids

As part of the Parks and Recreation Master Plan re-done every five years, a recent survey went out to the citizens about whether or not a dog park would be well received. After getting feedback, a committee was created to obtain permission to proceed with the dog park proposal.

Although the committee is unsure at the moment about the date the park will open, Parks and Recreation is working with the committee and brochures have been sent out to promote fundraising, such as selling bricks to get names engraved on.

“I think it is a good thing and a nice place for interaction for dogs. It is better than just walking on the road or on a leash all the time,” Stephanie Demarest, FSU senior in graphic design, said.

Located at the River Street Park is roughly one acre staked out for the new addition of a big and small dog area.

Demarest said, “It would be nice to see more than a running area. Possibly ramps or something to run over or under–some kind of amenities for the dogs.”

Like the other county parks, the park will be open at daylight and close at dusk or 10 p.m. Chair of Committee Mark Brejcha is the one behind the vision of the entrance areas. The park will provide a serenity garden and bricks leading as a greeting in attempt to create an area to socialize.

Recreation Director Heather Bowman said, “Mark is the nuts and bolts of the operation. He has worked on grant applications and is involved in handing out brochures to bring awareness.”

Demarest’s dog Andie has been to a dog park and was scared at first but had fun playing with other dogs.

“It was still nice to socialize with dogs. Dogs need to be used to other dogs; it’s good for them,” Demarest said.

For those interested in adventuring out to the new park, there are no fees attached; however, it is appreciated to remember to pick up after your pet. Bags and trash receptacles will be made available.