Bark for a Park
Bark for a Park is a nonprofit organization that works with municipalities to establish off-leash dog parks. The group was first organized in 2004 by residents of Birmingham's loft district. It incorporated as a non-profit in 2008.
Bark for a Park is currently working with several area governments:
- Birmingham dedicated a 2.6 acre dog park at George Ward Park on October 17, 2009.
- Hoover dedicated a 2 acre dog park at Loch Haven Park in 2010, using funds from a $25,000 Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs grant.
- Fultondale opened a 1½–2 acre Bark Park adjoining Children's Park in May 2011.
- Gardendale a dog park in September 2017.
- Homewood is in the early stages of planning for a dog park. A proposed 2½ acre parcel at Patriot Park was not approved by the parks board in February 2011; alternate proposals and sites are being considered.
- The Barks & Recreation Dog Park in Pelham was dedicated on September 30, 2018.
Jenny Wilson, executive director of the Shelby Humane Society, won a $500,000 grant in the 2011 "Beneful Dream Dog Park" contest. Contest judge Jason Cameron and author Arden Moore collaborated on the design and construction of the 1-acre off-leash park at Veterans Park in Alabaster. The park features a clubhouse for parties, a splash pool with a giant fire hydrant, and an agility training course. Additional funds are being raised through the sale of brick pavers memorializing deceased pets. The park held its grand opening on July 12, 2012, with special guests television actors Eric Stonestreit (Modern Family) and Jason Cameraon (Desperate Landscapes) joining Wilson, Alabaster Mayor David Frings, and pet expert Arden Moore.
In addition to the public parks, privately-owned parks began development, including the 6.5 acre Cahaba Beach Dog Park in North Shelby County which opened in 2012 and the 10,000 square-foot indoor Riverchase facility in Pelham.
- Ray, Tiffany (August 27, 2009) "Don't sit, don't stay - Dog park coming to Hoover, Alabama." Birmingham News
- Ray, Tiffany (October 7, 2009) "Birmingham dog park apparently on fast track." Birmingham News
- Ray, Tiffany (October 14, 2009) "Hoover Parks and Recreation Board approves building a dog park in Loch Haven Park." Birmingham News
- Singleton, William C. III (October 17, 2009) "Barking up the right tree: City opens dog park." Birmingham News
- Reynolds, Ed (March 3, 2011) "No dogs allowed: Puppies not welcome at Homewood's Patriot Park." Black & White
- Osburn, Lisa (March 14, 2011) "If you build it they will run (and play): Fultondale, Alabama dog park to open." Birmingham News
- Osburn, Lisa (May 4, 2011) "City makes improvements to Black Creek Park". Birmingham News
- Kennedy, Veronica (January 18, 2012) "Veterans Park in Alabaster picked for Beneful Dream Dog Park." Birmingham News
- Wagner, Neal (July 10, 2012) "Celebrities attending dog park unveiling." Alabaster Reporter
- Cason, Mike (December 5, 2012) "New owner of Irondale's Grants Mill Station says expect sweeping changes soon." The Birmingham News