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Exploring all options for possible dog park

Submitted photo

Submitted photo

According to the Community Planning Surveys, many of the residents of Big Park (Village of Oak Creek) want to have an off-leash dog park in the area.

This is an unincorporated area in Yavapai County without a local government. One County Supervisor represents this area. There is no local funding for the establishment and maintenance of a dog park.

There is a newly formed group called Big Park For Dogs which is championed by local resident Jane Peck. She has held several meetings to organize interested residents in founding an off-leash dog park, as many as 100 signatures have been gathered from interested parties in support of a dog park.

In the search for a location, Peck has contacted the Sedona Oak Creek School District, the Forest Service, numerous vacant land owners, the county supervisor, our U.S. Congressman, and the Village of Oak Creek Homeowners Association to buy, lease or donate use of at least one acre of open land to make a suitable dog park. All approaches have been met with negative responses.

During the organizational meetings there was much discussion about the financial implications of a dog park, including insurance, hardscaping, fencing, irrigation, and maintenance. A creative solution was presented to have a membership which would require an upfront investment and monthly fees which depend on the number of members. Peck laid out a business plan and potential design features. A Board of Directors has been formed to write and enforce the guidelines of membership.

We are not giving up on this pursuit, and all avenues are still being explored. The Big Park School Campus was available for an off-leash dog park for approximately one year after the closing of the school in May 2018 but was locked down in June 2020 by the School District. There are no more students there as the Preschool’s lease was not extended. This property would be ideal as would a small piece of property belonging to the VOCA homeowners. We’re asking for help from our dog owning community members to please help us locate a property that would allow us to make this dog park accessible in the Village of Oak Creek.

Learn more about Big Park For Dogs at bigparkfordogs.org.

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