Gloversville Recreation Committee announces fundraising plans for dog park

PHOTOGRAPHER:
LEADER-HERALD FILE PHOTO Gloversville Mayor Vincent DeSantis, second from right, addresses the families that turned out Sunday for the grand re-opening of the Spring Street Park Sunday. Looking on, from left, are Gloversville Recreation Commission volunteers Logan Barclay, John Proski, Jen Mazur, April Rhinehart and Jeremy Krajewski.

GLOVERSVILLE — The Gloversville Recreation Commission on Thursday announced its plan to begin fundraising for the city’s first dog park throughout this year, with the goal of establishing it by the spring of 2024.

“We are so excited to announce that we will be allocating funds towards the creation of the city’s first dog park,” reads a news release from the recreation commission. “We will be working with city officials to determine the best location to implement a dog park and welcome suggestions from the community.”

Recreation Commission Chairman Jeremy Krajewski said no location has been chosen yet for where the dog park will be located. He said there are at least three sites the commission is considering, but he said no announcements will be made until the commission narrows the list down to two. He said that while the dog park project will be the most complex project the commission has undertaken, it is also one of the most highly anticipated.

“This is a project we have literally wanted to do for four years,” Krajewski said. “Every one of us on the commission are pet owners. We all have friends who have dogs, and there are very few places, not just in our city, but anywhere around here, where you can take a dog to and have a dog park.”

According to a google.com search for nearby dog parks, the closest to Gloversville may be Anderson Dog Park in Schenectady or the Saratoga Springs Dog Park, although the search also lists Gloversville’s Myers Park as a dog park, which it isn’t. The “Dog Park Finder” feature on chew toy manufacturer Nylabone’s website lists the Kelly Dog Park in Ballston Spa as closest at about 30 miles away.

Krajewski said preliminary estimates indicate creating an official dog park for Gloversville, which will include fencing, ‘dog park obstacles,’ and possibly some ground grooming or other soil work, could cost between $30,000 and $50,000.

“We’re going to do the same thing we’ve done the past few years, which is all of our fundraising efforts, through Railfest and other events, will go towards the dog park project, and we’re looking, hopefully, to get matching donations from the community,” Krajewski said. “This will be far more than the Spring Street park project. There are rules and regulations we need to go through to meet New York state’s guidelines for dog parks, and whatnot. We have ideas for what we want to do, but as far as our location, how much everything will cost, and all of the hurdles we have to jump through, it will be far more than what we’ve done [to support the enhancement of the city’s parks so far].”

The Recreation Commission raises money primarily through the city-sponsored events it organizes throughout the year, including the Wine & Food Festival set for June 6, Railfest set for Aug. 12 and the Bacon & Brew Fest on Sept. 16, among others.

In 2019, the Recreation Commission raised $22,000 for the revitalization of the Spring Street Park, which has now been completed. In 2022, it raised $14,000 which has been earmarked for the creation of a “tot lot” at the newly expanded portion of Elk Street Park, which is expected to be finished in the spring.

On Friday, the Gloversville Recreation Commission announced via posts to Facebook the availability of merchandise it will be selling to raise funds including the sale of black t-shirts that say “Supporter” of the city of Gloversville Recreation Commission for $20 or $15 for “Youth Supporter” t-shirts.

Some of the other merchandise items the commission is selling includes 20 ounce Tumblers for $25, coffee mugs for $10, stickers for $2, magnets for $5, and keychains for $4. According to the social media posts for the merchandise, people interested in purchasing the items should print and submit the order forms posted to the City of Gloversville’s Facebook page and make payments out to the City Clerk’s Office, 3 Frontage Road, Gloversville, NY 12078, or order directly from this link: form.jotform.com/230194363203144.

City Clerk Jenni Mazur, who serves as the Common Council liaison to the Recreation Commission, on Friday explained some of the preliminary steps that will soon be taken towards the creation of the dog park.

“We will seek a quote from our insurance carrier at the city to know how much, if any, the liability insurance policy will increase,” she said. “[The Recreation Commission will be] researching other municipalities’ codes and the actual size and designs of their dog parks to research the best fit for Gloversville. A lot will depend on how much we are able to fundraise, but we are hopeful, with how the community has supported us in the past, that we will be able to do something really exceptional for the city. We are excited to tackle our biggest project yet.”

Krajewski said he encourages anyone who wants to support the Gloversville Recreation Commission’s efforts with a monetary donation to contact the City Clerk’s office directly by calling (518) 773-4542 or emailing [email protected].

By Jason Subik

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