VIENNA - Work on the Jackson Dog Park in Jackson Memorial Park will continue through the winter and into next spring, said Mid-Ohio Valley Paws director Miranda Haught.
Dog owners and their pets have stumbled upon the 1.4 acre park on their own and by word of mouth so far, said Haught's brother and the city's systems administrator, Adam Clegg. The two said they wanted to create a place for members of the community to let their dogs run free. The city of Vienna, including Mayor David Nohe, city council members and parks director Norm Harris, have helped make the park a reality, they said.
"Without the city we wouldn't have been able to do this," said Haught. "Now people can have somewhere to take their dogs."
Photo by Mandi Cardosi
The Jackson Dog Park is located in Jackson Memorial Park off 34th Street in Vienna.
The park is the only one of its kind in Vienna and the second in Wood County, she added.
"It's the only park in Vienna you can let your dog run leash-free," said Clegg.
He said the city donated the land and fencing. The park was constructed over an old baseball field. Opening in October, there are future plans of a grand opening for next spring, Haught said, including a puppy pageant.
"We don't want people to think that this is it," she said of the current state of the park.
The current facility has a dog water fountain, benches, clean-up bags, trash cans and a gravel walk surrounding the park, she added.
Volunteers have done a lot of work on repurposing the old dugouts to the field, by painting paws on the wood. The initial dog park is only phase one, said Haught.
"Eventually we want to include an area for smaller dogs," she said. "Like under 20 pounds."
Clegg said future plans for the park include a fire hydrant for decoration, benches, trees and wireless Internet for owners.
Other plans are to include more signage around the park and an agility area as the final phase, Haught added.
Catherine and Josh Saxe brought their 15-week-old Boxer Black Lab, Max, to the park Monday night. They said it has been a great place to bring their new puppy and will be a good tool when he is full grown.
"We live in an apartment," said Catherine. "So it's great to have a dog park to take him off the leash and be socialized with other dogs."
Catherine said her husband got their other dog, a Golden Retriever/Chow Chow mix, while in college. The 10-year-old Jake isn't as energetic as their new addition, she said.
"It will be really important when he is full grown," she added about the dog park. "He will be about 70 pounds."
Haught said her inspiration for creating the park was her 7-year-old Shih Tzu rescue dog, Lilly.
Rules include hours of operation for the park being from dusk to dawn, no other animals are permitted and no pet should be unattended.