Twin Falls Dog Park Supporters Get Closer to $64,000 Goal; Fundraiser Set

Twin Falls Dog Park Supporters Get Closer to $64,000 Goal; Fundraiser Set

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Dog Park Lot

DREW NASH • TIMES-NEWS A fire hydrant sits at the corner of Shoup Avenue W. and Blake Street N. Thursday, May 31, 2012 in Twin Falls. A proposed dog park may soon be coming to the lot.

TWIN FALLS • Twin Falls dog owners may not have to ruff it much longer.

Volunteers dedicated to building a permanent local dog park have almost reached their $64,000 goal. But before workers can begin digging fence lines and installing doggy water fountains, the group needs a bit more.

So a fundraiser is being held Saturday, June 29, with a 5K walk/run, People and Pet Lookalike Contest, a children’s pet parade, dog training tips, a dog agility course, pawprint tiles from HandsOn and a stupid pet tricks contest at the bandshell, said Steve Vawser, a member of the Magic Valley Canine Social Group.

“We’ve raised $45,000 so far,” he said. “We’ve secured where the park is going to be; we just need to gather enough funds to finish fencing the park.”

The event is one in a long series of fundraisers the Canine Social Group has used to facilitate Baxter’s Park.

TwinFalls swapped land with TwinFalls County nearly a year ago for the permanent dog park. Earlier this year, the City Council voted down funds to pay the remaining costs. Proposals to designate certain city parks as “off-leash” areas for dogs also have been denied.

Council members now are going through budget requests for fiscal 2014, which means they will consider allocating money to a dog park, said Vice Mayor Don Hall.

“It’s been an ongoing conversation with the council,” Hall said. “With a lot of the projects, we really like to be a joint effort with the public, and that’s defined by what this group is doing with the fundraising. At this time, we’re not sure at what level.”

Dr. Marty Becker, a well-known veterinarian and northern Idaho author who regularly appears on “Good Morning America” and “Dr. Oz,” also will attend the event and will sign his book for a $50 fee, with proceeds to go toward the park.

Becker already gave $15,000 for the project, but after additional funding unexpectedly fell through, he promised to return to TwinFalls to compensate for the loss.

“It’s going to be a fun day in the city park,” Vawser said. “This is a ‘Day for the Dogs.’”

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