Bark Park Jan 09 Presentation

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January 2009 Presentation at Illinois Park District Conference, Chicago, IL

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Bark Park Jan 09 Presentation

  1. 1. Build An Award-Winning Dog Park with No Taxpayer Dollars Phil Simmons Kathy Tinker Jeff Boubelik Session 45 January 31, 2009, 2:00 – 3:15
  2. 2. Our Front Entrance Frankfort Park District January 2009
  3. 3. I. Why Build a Dog Park Bark Park is not a park for dogs—it’s a park for people who care for dogs! Frankfort Park District January 2009
  4. 4. I. Why Build a Dog Park Demand—Dog owners are asking for a safe place to run their dogs (a national and local trend) Pet-friendly community resource (enables dogs to legally run off-leash) Frankfort Park District January 2009
  5. 5. I. Why Build a Dog Park Benefits for Owners Promotes park usage for “empty nesters” – Promotes socialization – within community Frankfort Park District January 2009
  6. 6. I. Why Build a Dog Park Safe place to exercise Promotes healthy lifestyle Strengthens the socializing of a dog Frankfort Park District January 2009
  7. 7. I. Community Demographics, Trends and Needs Frankfort Population: 16,000 (The 36th fastest growing suburb in the U.S.) Frankfort Dogs: Estimate 1,500 (39% of households nationwide own at least one dog; source Humane Society) Frankfort Parks for People: 18 Frankfort Parks for Dogs: 1 (2.5 acres of tail-waggin’ fun) Frankfort Park District January 2009
  8. 8. I. Community Demographics, Trends and Needs Frankfort population continues to grow More families = more dogs Frankfort Park District January 2009
  9. 9. I. Community Demographics, Trends and Needs Dog businesses also continue to build in the community: groomers, vets, daycare, boarding, agility, obedience, pet retail stores, bakeries, and more Frankfort Park District January 2009
  10. 10. I. Park Member Pride Bark Park Pride is Prevalent Members spread the word about the park, thus – helping build membership Owners bring their cameras, take pictures – Members take responsibility to ensure their – dog gets regular exercise Frankfort Park District January 2009
  11. 11. I. Park Member Ownership Members share ownership of the park via: Personal donations – Memberships – Plaque/tree/bench purchases – Frankfort Park District January 2009
  12. 12. I. Park Member Responsibilities Members take responsibility They help keep it clean: “scoop the poop” – They keep vaccinations up to date – Problems reported and suggestions offered – Frankfort Park District January 2009
  13. 13. I. National Recognition In 2008, Frankfort Bark Park is recognized as one of America’s Top Ten Parks by Dog Fancy Magazine Gate system with its ability to create a reminder system cited as a big plus Frankfort Park District January 2009
  14. 14. II. Site Selection Criteria Location Topography Vegetation Parking Lighting Water Safety Frankfort Park District January 2009
  15. 15. II. Site: Location Frankfort Park District donated 2.5 acres of unused land within the 60-acre Commissioners Park. Land is sloping, not suitable for sporting events but ideal for a dog park. Bark Park is in close proximity to a skate park, tennis courts, soccer field and more family-friendly park amenities. Frankfort Park District January 2009
  16. 16. II. Site: Topography/Vegetation Slightly sloped—helps prevent puddles and standing water No trees or shrubs existed Grass and weeds existed Frankfort Park District January 2009
  17. 17. II. Site: Parking Paved path and parking lot existed Gravel walking path and parking lot were added in closer proximity to the entrance. Frankfort Park District January 2009
  18. 18. II. Site: Lighting Currently no lights exist at the park or gravel parking lot Park hours are dawn to dusk 2009 goal is to add lights Frankfort Park District January 2009
  19. 19. III. Amenities/Requirements Deciding What’s Needed Dog amenities – Owner amenities – Frankfort Park District January 2009
  20. 20. III. Amenities/Requirements Gate entrance system Cost: What can we afford – Function: High tech/low tech – entrance system Looks: Community standards – Frankfort Park District January 2009
  21. 21. III. Gate System We can monitor usage Identify violators Those who don’t update their shots – Key component to get support from vets and pet businesses Shot monitoring – Encourages healthy member dogs – Frankfort Park District January 2009
  22. 22. III. Gate System Keeps non-members out Identify members in case of an incident, including victim, violator or witness It supports charging for membership Frankfort Park District January 2009
  23. 23. III. Amenities/Requirements Run Areas Separate run areas for small and large dogs – Small dog defined as 25 lbs or less – Additional landscaping – added between the areas to discourage dogs from fence running Frankfort Park District January 2009
  24. 24. III. Amenities/Requirements Waste Bag Stations Our Motto: “Scoop the Poop” Bag stations are situation inside and out the park, along with covered trash cans (to minimize odor in warm months) Frankfort Park District January 2009
  25. 25. III. Amenities/Requirements Waste Bag Stations Bag stations are sponsored – by a local Frankfort pet business Park District staff refills – the stations perodically Frankfort Park District January 2009
  26. 26. III. Amenities/Requirements Water Fountain Located outside the park – in neutral area Prevents guarding or territorial behavior Easier to maintain outside of park Spigot to fill up water containers Handicap accessible Situated on concrete Frankfort Park District January 2009
  27. 27. III. Amenities/Requirements Sponsorship and Memorial Boards Fundraising tool – Members can honor pets – past and present Pet businesses can show – their support and market themselves Community showcase – Frankfort Park District January 2009
  28. 28. III. Boards Frankfort Park District January 2009
  29. 29. III. Boards Frankfort Park District January 2009
  30. 30. III. Amenities/Requirements Benches Members can rest – Sponsorship – opportunity Shade Shelters Two in large run area, – one in common area Frankfort Park District January 2009
  31. 31. III. Amenities/Requirements Landscaping Grass and weeds were already there – Seeding – Fertilization – Aeration – Mowing – Frankfort Park District January 2009
  32. 32. IV. Organizational Issues Fundraising Construction Administration Frankfort Park District January 2009
  33. 33. IV. Fundraising 501(c)3 Status Public Donations Private Donations Ongoing Fundraising Frankfort Park District January 2009
  34. 34. IV. Fundraising Operation Playground What is a 501(c)3? How did being a non-profit help us build the park Frankfort Park District January 2009
  35. 35. IV. Fundraising Create a 501(c)3 People want to know where money is going – 1-2 months to create – Assistance from dog-friendly lawyer – Run by a private organization Form committees within the group Get tasks approved by park district Frankfort Park District January 2009
  36. 36. IV. Fundraising Public Donations Letter-writing and phone calls to: – • Pet Businesses, non-pet businesses, foundations Community garage sale – Publicity in local newspapers – Shake the can – Frankfort Park District January 2009
  37. 37. IV. Fundraising Get Creative Frankfort Park District January 2009
  38. 38. IV. Fundraising Private Donations (Families) Plaques – Benches – Trees – Monetary – Frankfort Park District January 2009
  39. 39. IV. Fundraising Support Creation of Bark Park brochure Overview of project – Suggested donation amounts – Rendering of the park – Plaque, bench and tree info with space to write the – message Reminder that donations are tax deductible – Used local pet vendors to help distribute the – brochures to dog owners Frankfort Park District January 2009
  40. 40. IV. Fundraising Support Created Frankfort Bark Park website www.frankfortbarkpark.com Made donating online available – Provided periodic construction updates – Uploaded supporting documents such as park – rendering, 501(c)3 letter, donation forms and more Frankfort Park District January 2009
  41. 41. IV. Frankfortbarkpark.com Frankfort Park District January 2009
  42. 42. IV. Fundraising Ongoing Fundraising Park memberships—money comes back to – Operation Playground, not the park district—this keeps the park self-sustaining Frankfort Fall Fest parking lot management – Frankfort Park District January 2009
  43. 43. IV. Building the Park Park Rendering/Drawing: provides an idea of what the park will look like Materials Bids/Donations Signage Frankfort Park District January 2009
  44. 44. IV. Building the Park Materials/Specifications List Identify vendors and contact – Discuss options (example: brick color) – Negotiate pricing – Determine materials cost – Build as funds allow – We paid our vendors along the way Frankfort Park District January 2009
  45. 45. IV. Building the Park Bids and Donations Ask community leaders if their business can help – Businesses, vendors and friends of the park district – Frankfort Park District January 2009
  46. 46. IV. Building the Park Get a drawing of your park for promotional and fundraising purposes Our rendering got published in local newspaper and community publications which helped draw the attention of readers Frankfort Park District January 2009
  47. 47. IV. Building the Park Frankfort Park District January 2009
  48. 48. IV. Building the Park Signage Important – communication tool Outside the park – Leash rule How to register Inside the park – Rules Leash rule in common area Frankfort Park District January 2009
  49. 49. IV. Building the Park Frankfort Park District January 2009
  50. 50. IV. Administration Rules Incident Management Shot Monitoring Website Publicity Memberships Frankfort Park District January 2009
  51. 51. IV. Administration Rules Research other park rules – work with PDRMA – (risk management) and your lawyer Develop a liability waiver too – Post rules on the website – Post rules at your park – Reiterate in newsletter – Incorporate into membership package – New in 2009: Signoff on rules page – Frankfort Park District January 2009
  52. 52. IV. Administration Incident Management Develop a policy for consistent and fair – method to handling incidents Utilize your local Animal Control resources – Frankfort Park District January 2009
  53. 53. IV. Administration Shot Monitoring Vaccination data entered into a database – Members are contacted the month before their shot – records expire. Card is deactivated the next month – Frankfort Park District January 2009
  54. 54. IV. Administration Website Fundraising tool in the beginning – Park progress posted during construction – Downloadable registration packet posted along – with rates and general info Events page helps us promote upcoming events – Good source for the media – Frankfort Park District January 2009
  55. 55. IV. Administration Publicity Dog events (2008 Pooch-A-Palooza) – Word of mouth – Referrals from members and local pet businesses – Frankfort Park District January 2009
  56. 56. IV. Administration Memberships Frankfort Park District manages the registration – and paperwork Volunteers continue to assist with other tasks such – as event planning, website, newsletter Frankfort Park District January 2009
  57. 57. Contact Us Jeff Boubelik, Executive Director, Frankfort Parks, 815-469-9400 Phil Simmons, Operation Playground/ Frankfort Bark Park, 708-226-5418 Kathy Tinker, Operation Playground/ Frankfort Bark Park, 815-464-1711 Frankfort Park District January 2009
  58. 58. Thank You “A tired dog is a happy dog” Frankfort Park District January 2009

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