February 2021 Volume 4, Issue 1
A brand new dog park called Dogwood Acres has been added to Thomas Park, an area within the city of Sterling. With this dog park also comes some backstory about how and why it was developed in the first place.
Vanessa Sharp, the head of the development of Dogwood Acres, had much to comment on regarding the process of creating the park. “In General, the dog park was developed due to a need that a few millennials saw in the area. We came together through a new group of millennials that was meeting every so often with the help of Kris Noble with Sauk Valley Chamber of Commerce and Janna Goharing of Sterling Main Street as well as a few other prominent members of the community,” explained Sharp.
Sharp went on to discuss how the development of the park was successful. “It really worked out in our favor that we had people interested in a dog park for the area, had enough people interested in helping raise funds, and the support of prominent leaders in the area to help steer us in the right direction,” commented Sharp. “The fact that we were able to raise $50K in a span of about 3 months showed us how much the community really wanted this too.”
Sharp continued talking about why everyone agreed that the new dog park should be localized in Thomas Park. “We felt that Thomas was ideal due to the amount of space that was unused and available for an addition such as a dog park,” stated Sharp. “The biggest hurdle was adequate parking and access to utilities.”
The park itself features 3.5 acres of space for dogs to run around and socialize with other dogs unleashed. The dog park is also divided into two separate areas designed for smaller dogs and bigger dogs.