GRANDVIEW — The red ribbon set as a barrier for the official grand opening of the City Dog Park was no match for the nine canines who bounded off to initiate the grounds as soon as the gates opened Thursday, Aug 8.

Their owners were encouraged to let their fur-babies off the leash to explore the fence enclosed park, “…which has been in the works for the past four years,” Grandview City Council member Joan Souders announced.

The 607 N. Willoughby Road park, located near the city cemetery and city public works yard, was a citizen-driven effort, Councilman Mike Everett noted.

“The dog park is a reality because of a group of citizens who were dog lovers, dreamed of a place for dogs to gather and socialize,” Souders explained.

“Becky Cantu was the chair and head cheerleader for the park, which was constructed with $6,000 and numerous donations from the community,” Souders remarked.

She and Everett, who brought their pets, Maisie and Abby, handled the cutting of the ribbon, before the dogs and owners.

“We have the only official dog park in this region,” Souders announced.

“It is now a part of the city’s park system and will soon be listed on the national website for dog parks,” she added.

“We want people to bring their dogs to roam free in the park,” she commented.

Andrea Ramirez, who brought her dog “Blue” to opening day, said she learned about the dog park on Facebook, and wanted to be a part of the opening.

“It’s really nice,” she commended as Blue went about introducing himself to the other dogs.

Julia Hart can be reached at 509-837-4500, ext. 123 or at jhart@sunnysidesun.com

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