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New Galesburg Park Lets Dogs Unleash

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A new dog ordinance, South of the Quad Cities will crack down on where dogs can run free, but some people in Galesburg have worked with the city to find a spot for those leashes to come off.

Melissa Powell gets last minute touches ready before the crowd shows up.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014 she held a fundraiser. It was just one of the many fundraisers Powell has held and each one gets her a step closer to her dream of opening a dog park in Galesburg. Its an idea she had after her dog got loose and was hit by a car.

"I said man we just have to have a place to let our dogs run."

Since then she's formed an organization called Project Dog Park. So far they've
raised close to their goal of $30,000.

"I think its an excellent thing for Galesburg and I'm looking forward to it opening," said dog owner, Linda Wilson.

One of their bigger donations has been from the city, donating two acres of land for the park. The park's name will be Connie Nott Canine Area at Inbinder Park, named after Powell's mom.

It comes at a time when the city recently got a leash law after a seven year old boy was attacked by a dog and later died from injuries.

"We've been through a lot in the last year as a community, this is something where as dog owners we can go out be responsible and let our dogs play and be free," said dog owner, Darcy Thorp.

Not only will the park be the city's first dog park, but it will be the only place in the city dogs will be able to go unleashed besides their owners property.

"It's something that's really needed its safe place for our dogs to go to," said Thorp.

A venue that Powell thinks will prevent other incidents from happening.

"It will prevent animals getting hit by cars and um also just it decreases aggression when animals can exercise the way they need to. It makes them happier healthier beings in general," said Powell.

The park should be ready this spring and there's already talks to try and open a second one in the future.