Earlier this week, District Parks and Recreation officials locked the gated patch of grass next to the Bruce Monroe Community Garden and attached signs to the gates barring dogs.
Almost immediately after the signs went up, Columbia Heights resident Dave Bobeck started a Facebook page called “Save the Bruce Monroe Community Park Dog Run,” which has already garnered 60 members. The problem, Bobeck said, is that he’s not sure who they’re saving their makeshift dog park from.
“I’m not really sure if there was pressure or where it’s coming from to keep dogs out,” Bobeck said. “Obviously somebody cared enough to send enough emails that they put up the signs, so somebody out there is opposed to this, but we haven’t heard who or why.”
Department of Parks and Recreation spokesman John Stokes told DCist that the area was chained off because it was not a legitimate dog park. In fact, said Stokes, the plot is officially designated as a stormwater management area for the community garden.
Still, Bobeck said he and his neighbors are trying to get the signs removed so their dogs can use the area again. Bobeck said he’d at least like the chance to respond to whatever opposition the makeshift park has run into.
“People having been using that as a place to run their dogs for basically as long as the community garden has been there,” he said. “It’s been uncontested as far as I know and we want to restore access to that immediately if possible. Failing that, we’d at least like to know what the issues are with the dog run use and have a chance to address those issues.”
But a resolution may come soon. ANC 1A Commissioner Rashida Brown told members of the Facebook group that she is working to schedule a meeting next week to bring together dog owners and DPR officials who closed the area. Bobeck said that one member of the Facebook group is working on submitting the applications to DPR for an official dog park, but added that he doesn’t think there is a need to spend money building an official dog park when owners have been happily using this plot for years.
“Some people are talking about development and an official dog park in the future, but if it comes down to public funds going to that or to some better cause, by all means let them go to a better cause,” he said. “Just open that area back it, it won’t cost anybody anything.”
Photo via Facebook/ Save The Bruce Monroe Community Park Dog Run
Dog lovers and beer lovers are set to come together on Thursday for “Dogtoberfest” at Dacha Beer Garden, a fundraiser for a Shaw dog park.
Patrons who donate to Bundy Dog Park will receive happy hour discounts on DC Brau’s Oktoberfest beer from 5-8 p.m. on Thursday.
The Bundy Dog Park at 470 P St. NW is managed by a non-profit, which holds fundraisers to pay for park cleanup and plastic bags in the park. Funds raised during Dogtoberfest will also go toward building a water source for dogs in the park, according to Dacha Beer Garden.
Photo via Facebook/ Bundy Dog Park
Dog Park Meeting
The Shaw Dog Park’s monthly meeting ,of the dog park committee is this Wednesday, April 20, 7 pm, at the Hotel Helix. All are welcome to attend. Shaw Dog Park located at 11th Street and Rhode Island Avenue NW (just south of R Street) and operated by Shaw Dogs, a volunteer group. Our newest contributor, Tori Tyree, has some tips for the dog park.
Dupont Group Fundraising on eBay
Interested in bargains and want to help a local organization? Historic Dupont Circle Main Streets is holding an eBay fundraising auction. HDCMS’s mission “is to make Dupont Circle’s commercial corridors economically healthy, improve our quality of life, and reflect our community’s pride and history.” As of this writing they still have lots of cool vintage cufflinks, collectibles and artwork available to the highest bidder.
The main topic of discussion at the February 24 meeting of the Shaw Dog Park Committee was the rule limiting the number of dogs one person may bring to the park. The issue has been particularly important recently due to reports of a professional dog walker bringing up to 10 dogs to the park and a related incident that is alleged to have occurred at the park (details below).
The Shaw Dog Park Committee meetings are open to the public and usually held on the third Wednesday of the month at Hotel Helix on Rhode Island Avenue. Visit Shaw Dogs for more information about the group and the dog park on the 1600 block of 11th Street NW between Q and R Streets.
Here is the committee’s report on the February 24 meeting:
Shaw Dogs meets tonight at 7 p.m. at the Hotel Helix at 1430 Rhode Island Avenue NW. Meetings are open to the public. Shaw Dogs is the volunteer group responsible for operating the Shaw Dog Park on the 1600 block of 11th Street NW. You can join the Dog Owners of Greater Shaw listerv at Yahoo! groups.
Shaw Dog Park rules are likely to be the main topic of discussion tonight’s meeting. There have been alleged violations of the rule that limits the number of dogs any one person can bring to the park at one time (three dogs). In fact, Shaw Dogs placed a poster at the park with a photo and information about the alleged violator who was reported to have been brining 10 to 20 dogs to the park at one time.
In DC, the dog parks are operated and maintained by volunteer organizations that are formed specifically for each park. This is done in conjunction with the city. In other words, some official policing capacities in the hands of citizens and not government staff, i.e., DC Urban Park Rangers. There is a separate organization for the the 17th Street dog park, Circle Dogs.
I will say it one more time: Small children should not be allowed inside dog parks, not even if they are accompanied by an adult. Even the nicest, best-trained dog can be unpredictable around strangers (especially small children) and especially when put in a pack setting with other dogs.
Sunday Update: I’ve been told that work will begin this week on the dog park and will take six to seven weeks to complete–in time for a spring opening.
From Dupont Circle listserv on Yahoo! Groups:
Great news, dog owners of Borderstan. The new dog park that is under construction at 11th and R will be fully enclosed, according to Jesse Rounds of the DC Department of Parks and Recreation. Moreover, Rounds told Borderstan.com today that DPR is hoping to open the park in early November. Rounds said:
“Entry into the dog park (both for small dogs and big dogs) will be through double gates on the 11th Street side of the park. The fence will enclose a rather large area with approximately 2,000 square feet for small dogs and over 12,000 square feet for larger dogs. We’re looking forward to opening this park soon so that both dog owners and non-dog owners can enjoy the park while feeling safe.”
The dog park will be located on the soccer field near Shaw Junior High School.