PORT CHESTER, N.Y. -- Port Chester may convert the upper portion of Abendroth Park into a dog park.
The idea came about from a group of citizens who started a Facebook group dedicated to establishing an off-leash dog park in the village. They started gathering signatures from residents and met with members of the Park and Recreation Commission to scout possible locations.
"What we've seen in other communities is that it does reduce the number of dog issues in the parks and in the community in general. It promotes responsible dog ownership," Dina Goren, one of the group's leaders, said when presenting the idea to the Board of Trustees on Monday night.
The group is dedicated to raising the money to pay for fencing, water supply, garbage cans, benches and possibly electricity, Goren said. It would pay for upkeep and does not foresee the park costing the village anything. The group is considering several fundraising options, including community tag sales and a community dog calendar, as well as applying for 501(c)3 nonprofit status and applying for grants, she said.
"We've found that dog parks really end up being the cleaner of the parks," Goren said. "There's usually no food, so there's little littering, and people care about the parks so they take care of it."
Abendroth Park was chosen because it is little used, has access to parking and has enough space for about 20 dogs. The park would have three sections: one for little dogs, one for dogs who are in training and one for all other dogs. Goren said the park could possibly have fees for usage and separate fees for residents and non-residents.
Park Commission Chairman Jerry Terranova said he was in favor of the park. The Board of Trustees voted unanimously in support of using Abendroth Park for the dog park, pending a public hearing. A public hearing was scheduled for the board's next meeting on April 15 at 7 p.m.
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