Dog Park At Bauer In The Works

Board of Selectmen Monday give the nod to a project that will provide a space for all dogs--big and small--at Bauer Park on the east side of Copse Road, at no cost to the town. Here's how you can get involved or provide donations.


There are many dog owners in town who think Bauer Park is a great place to let their pooches run off leash. The owners might like it, and the dogs might like it, but it's not really allowed.

But town officials and volunteers are working to come up with a dog park where that will be allowed, right across Copse Road from the main part of Bauer Park, said Scot Erskine, director of the Madison Beach & Recreation Department.

Erskine, appearing before the town's Board of Selectmen during a meeting Monday night with Holly Johnson, vice chairman of the Bauer Park Committee, said that the area is now overgrown, but a group of volunteers intend to reclaim it and turn it into a dog park at no cost to the town.

The intention of the group is to raise money through donations and by seeking grants, he said. He said following the meeting that anyone who wants to get involved, and or provide donations, can contact him at 203.245.5623.

He told the board that there currently is a "dog problem" at Bauer Park, which includes about 64 acres of open fields, forest, and wetland on the west side of Copse Road, and about 24 acroes on the east side, north of Hunter's Trail.

"Many dog owners believe it's ok to let their dogs off leash there," he said. "But it's not." He said the recreation department is working to educate dog owners and, working with police, are also enforcing the prohibition against off-leash dogs there. So he said the recreation department is all in favor of a dog park.

He said the current plan is to separate the park into two areas, one area for small dogs, and one area for big dogs and small dogs who like to hang out with big dogs.

Not only will the park be good for the dogs, he said, it also will be good for the dog owners.

"It'll be a way for dog owners to socialize, and for the dogs to run free," he said.

The current plan, which is still being developed, calls for a chain link fence that will be about four to five feet high, he said.

The Board of Selectmen unanimously voted in favor of endorsing the creation of a park, to be located on the east side of Copse Road, to be developed without using town funds.

Following the meeting, he and Johnson said the ballpark estimate for the cost of such a park is $20,000 to $40,000. They said the range was so large because plans are still being developed. Now that the plan has the endorsement of the selectmen, they said, planning and fundraising can begin in earnest.

Erskine said the Beach & Recreation Commission also has endorsed the creation of a dog park on the east side of Copse Road at Bauer Park.

Lucinda Pinchot December 06, 2012 at 11:50 AM
Dog Park Thank you Lee for you thoughtful and thorough presentation last evening. It's important to have a dialog going.
Ann January 25, 2013 at 06:45 PM
I heard through the grapevine that Rockland Park is willing to have a large off leash dog area. Why can't the town get the off leash dogs out of Bauer Park? These dog owners are breaking the law and have no problems with infringing on other's rights. I've given up walking my dog there because all the off leash dogs run up to me etc. It is the same old story and will only get worse when the weather warms up. Carl how do you feel about this?
Christie Sedaca January 25, 2013 at 07:02 PM
Hi Ann, Christie here. Rockland is a perfect place. Who is in charge there, is it Parks and Rec? Bauer is a free for all with dogs and dog poo all over. It is a disgusting shame and I'm fed up with the town doing nothing about it. What about the kids who take classes there, don't they have a say? Why isn't the dog police person there? I don't think I'll even have a garden there this year, my husband it so sick of seeing dog poo all over. We were away for 3 months, and it looks as if nothing has been done about a dog park. I like Bluff head and would like to see dogs allowed off leash at Rockland.
Jason Harris January 25, 2013 at 07:52 PM
Small towns, it's who you know. If I were running a stop sign repeatedly I'd get a ticket. The Bauer off leash dog walkers get away with it daily because they know someone or the town really doesn't give a hoot. Wait until someone gets hurt and the town has to answer for years of people complaining and the town doing nothing. The complaints are DOCUMENTED and can be taken to court. These people will complain that Rockland is too far to drive, give me a freakin break, they are spoild brats.
Carl January 26, 2013 at 11:32 PM
Well Ann, Rockland does seem more appropriate as it is bigger and does not have all the other activities Bauer Park has. I don't think people with dogs understand all the classes that go on at Bauer Park even in the winter. Most dog owners don't understand the bacteria in dog doo that is not killed by a freeze or wintering over. It is very unhealthy to have that bacteria in a vegetable garden or where children are playing. Even dogs on leashes who are allowed to defecate in or near the gardens are a health risk. Not to mention the ones running all over. Take it up with City Hall, they own the park and are responsible for what happens there.


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »