Dog park recommendation nears

by Kelly Corbett
Wednesday, October 9, 2013

A location has been flagged within the Wrightsville Beach Town Hall Municipal Complex to show the sole location option for a possible town dog park.

During their Monday, Oct. 7 meeting, Wrightsville Beach Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee members took a trip to envision the dog park.

The topic of a dog park most recently arose in June from a resident’s suggestion to the committee.

Only four of seven members were present during the monthly meeting. Chairman Greg Files and members Katrina Morton and Penny Tillery were absent.

The 0.66-acre area in between Salisbury Street and the town water tank and town storage includes a shelter and some trees for shade. Members also marked a 0.16-acre spot that could potentially be added to the other space to increase the dog park area, but would limit town vehicle transportation.

“We were trying to get as close to an acre as we could,” member Elise Running said.

Member Kitty Brunjes, who visited local dog parks before the meeting, said the area looks “considerably smaller” than the other dog parks she saw.

Brunjes voiced concerns earlier in the meeting about a park being too hot for dogs during the summertime with the sandiness of the beach location.

Parks and recreation program supervisor Katie Ryan said there have been discussions about putting a road through the proposed dog park space for town maintenance use.

“That’s a long way off, but there has been discussion about that,” Ryan said.

Member Trish Green recently conducted an informal poll of dog walkers while walking her own dog. She said the results were split, with seven for, seven against and one unsure.

“It was for odd, random reasons,” Green said.

John Thomas, one of the people Green polled who was in favor of a dog park, attended the meeting.

There was also a brief discussion about funding construction costs with donations by placing dedication signs in the park.

During the November meeting, members will have representatives or information from representatives to gain more insight into operations of New Hanover County and City of Wilmington dog parks, how the town would handle the extra facility and veterinarian views. They will then make a recommendation to the Wrightsville Beach Board of Aldermen.

During a new business item, Running, who is also the Harbor Island Garden Club president, asked if the committee would like to partner with the garden club to resurrect the judging of houses decorated for Christmas.

Residents will register for the contest in the park office. Running, Brunjes and Green will work with the club to organize the contest sometime in December.


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