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Hagerstown to hold forum on dog park proposal

May 08, 2008|By DAN DEARTH

HAGERSTOWN -- The City of Hagerstown will hold a public forum tonight at Northern Middle School to discuss a proposal that would convert a portion of Mills Park into an off-leash dog park with two fenced-in areas.

Community Development Coordinator Cindy Blackstock said the forum will be an informational session in which city officials intend to present the proposal and then solicit feedback from the audience.

"It's nothing that will happen in the imminent future," Blackstock said. "We're on a fact-finding mission."

Blackstock said Mills Park was chosen, in part, because it is one of the least-used parks in the city.

The proposal would cost about $45,000 and include building two fenced-in areas at the park - one for small or timid dogs and the other for large, more active dogs, Blackstock said. At this point, city officials haven't determined the size of the proposed enclosures or how the money to build them would be raised.

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Blackstock said she would present comments from tonight's community forum to the mayor and City Council at a later date.

The proposal to build an off-leash dog park was introduced last year by the Hagerstown Area Dog Owners Group, or HA-DOG.

Rych Pullen, HA-DOG president, said the city needs an off-leash dog park so residents can exercise and socialize their dogs in a controlled setting.

People who use the park would have to clean up after their pets and follow other rules to ensure the area remains clean and safe, Pullen said.

If you go



What: Public forum to discuss the creation of an off-leash dog park in Hagerstown.

When: Thursday, 7 p.m.

Where: Northern Middle School Auditorium, 701 Northern Ave.

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