Group rallies support, continues fundraising quest for East Falls dog park

 Jim Guaneri (left) and and Joe Silvent show off $10 shirts designed by East Falls Community Council to help raise funds for a proposed dog park. (Jimmy Viola/for NewsWorks)

Jim Guaneri (left) and and Joe Silvent show off $10 shirts designed by East Falls Community Council to help raise funds for a proposed dog park. (Jimmy Viola/for NewsWorks)

Funds and signatures. The East Falls Community Council (EFCC) seeks both to support its mission to acquire land for a neighborhood dog park.

At the group’s monthly meeting, held Monday night at Falls Presbyterian Church, EFCC second vice president and dog park-committee liaison Claire Stilley said the group aims to acquire land from the Department of Parks and Recreation for the enclosed, no-leash park.

The meeting featured a panel discussion including Susan Crosby, executive director of Animal Care and Control; Caroline Patten, who will open Liberty Veterinarian Clinic near Ridge Avenue in the former bingo hall and Germantown dog-trainer CJ Hazell.

Stilley asked residents at the meeting to sign a petition and share it with neighbors.

 The dog-park committee is also selling $10 shirts to raise funds. 



“Every single penny goes to the dog park,” Stilley said. “This has gelled into such a community within a community this last year.”



Making the case

Stilley cited anecdotal evidence gathered last year when the dog-park committee randomly surveyed the neighborhood and found that 56 percent of residents were dog owners.

Stilley said she hopes the petition will grab the attention of Fourth District City Councilman Curtis Jones Jr., who could help them secure funding.

“Any land that Parks and Recreation controls is suitable for the dog park,” said Alex Keating, a seven-year East Falls resident and member of the community council. “It has logistical support for garbage removal.”



Hard numbers aside, Stephen Brodsky said he considers an East Falls dog park to be a no brainer. 



“There’s nothing out here,” said Brodsky, a hairstylist who moved to East Falls last year with his partner and Great Dane. “It’s a very populated area … but all it has is [grass near the Queen Lane] Reservoir or getting in your car and driving to Wissahickon or Fairmount Park.”



Residents can contact dogparkineastfalls@gmail.com or visit EastFallsCommunity.org for more information.

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