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LETTER: Sign petition to save our dog park

Letters to the editor
By Letters to the editor
October 3rd, 2023
RANT to the residents trying to close down the dog park at Millenium in Castlegar because of:
. Dogs barking and making noise during daytime (it empties after sunset)
. Dogs running through their yards (from the fenced in dog park? How?)
. Decreased Sandpipers in the area (Sandpipers decreased when they removed the pools in the dog park enclosure because of the algae) but they’re still around. I see them.
Whoever made the comment in The Castlegar News that “Dog owners should have a dog park in their neighborhoods, because it’s causing a nuisance in ours!” Newsflash: you don’t actually own the neighbourhood you live in. You share it with the rest of us who live in it and pay the same taxes you do. And some of us have dogs.
So before you fight to have the dog park moved to a “non-residential site”, you may want to consider not all dog owners have the means to GET to the non-residential areas that would accommodate a dog park. So… I guess those dogs just never get off-leash time, huh? Sucks to be them. They’ll need to be walked on-leash a lot more. Right by your houses, barking and walking on-leash, barking BECAUSE they’re walking on-leash, barking more because they don’t get off-leash time anymore. At least we’ll all be able to walk our barking dogs at night because it’s not too dark along 6th and 8th, like it was in the old dog park.
I wonder what will replace the dog park area at Millennium. You know, it’d be a perfect skateboard park! Imagine how happy all those skateboarding kids will be to have a place to let those skateboards SLAP the pavement for hours and hours at a time. I can hear them shrieking with joy now. And maybe the city will finally light it up in there so they can skate in the evening hours too!
Of course, a bandstand would be nice too, for outdoor music concerts. We have rock bands all over this town that have no place to perform (some are too young for bars). That old dog park area would be the perfect place for the town to enjoy live music all Spring, Summer and Fall.
Or maybe we could use that old dog park space to put in portable housing for the homeless. Or a shelter. Or an injection site. In summer months it could be a city-endorsed “tent city”.
Maybe they’ll build a new “Park Place” condo tower there, like they did where that other park used to be and we can all enjoy at least a year’s construction noise then sit in our back decks and enjoy our new views of those half million dollar balconies while our property taxes rise and our street parking shrinks. Ah, the sweet smell of densification.
Or maybe the city will just leave that area bare where our dog park used to be. It’ll sit unused until the teens realize what an awesome party spot it would make. Hey! Maybe they’ll hold raves! Whatever they do, we’re all gonna hear it because it’s kind of shaped like a bowl there in parts and the sound will echo like crazy.
I can’t wait to see what replaces this dog park with its happy dogs exhausting their energy, running and jumping and playing off-leash, decreasing their stress (and their owners stress for the rest of the night). Or the people that own those dogs, meeting their other dog owning friends. Or the lonely, shy, or elderly dog owners, for whom this dog park is their only social outlet. Because this dog park is a lot of different things for the people in our neighbourhood who use it. It’s not just here to provide for one small group of residents what THEY need at the expense of what the rest of us need.
But residents who want a silent park space behind their houses for others not to enjoy should get to have them.
They’re called cemeteries.
They’re in communities everywhere.
If you’re one of the residents trying to close our dog park, you should move to one of those communities – because frankly, you’re causing a nuisance in ours.
Save our dog park. Sign the petition.
Paula Marlene
Castlegar, BC
Categories: CommunityGeneral

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