The City of Reinbeck Park Board is exploring the possibility of creating Reinbeck's first off-leash dog park. The Park Board is charged with improving and enhancing the lives of our citizens by providing attractive park and recreation facilities for the people who live and work in our community. Current estimates indicate that approximately 40% of Iowa households own one dog or more, and it is believed that those figures are consistent with dog ownership in Reinbeck. The City of Reinbeck and surrounding towns currently have no designated area for people to play with and exercise their dog in a safe off-leash setting. As a result, the Park Board has noticed that dog owners often take their dogs to Reinbeck's fenced-in baseball and softball fields and allow their dogs to run in these facilities. There is clearly a need for the City of Reinbeck, and surrounding towns, to provide a place for dog enthusiasts to exercise and play with their canine pets. The plot of land designated by the Reinbeck Park Board as the future site of the proposed dog park is the wooded area located west of the Elmwood Park tennis courts.
Studies have shown that dog parks add many benefits to a community: dog parks encourage responsible pet ownership along with the enforcement of dog-control laws; dog parks give dogs a safe place to exercise and play, and exercise customarily reduces barking and other problem behaviors. In addition, dog parks are often more for people than for dogs. They foster community relationships by allowing residents to socialize with each other while their pets play. It is a truly multigenerational park activity and provides senior citizens and disabled community members with an accessible place to exercise their pets. The residents of Parkview Manor and Westview Estates would have easy, wheelchair accessible access, to enjoy watching the activities within the dog park. Dog parks also provide outdoor exercise opportunities for the majority of park users who do not otherwise participate in organized sports. Relatively low construction costs and low maintenance costs also yield the greatest amount of recreation opportunities for the investment, and there is a low user cost.
There are many citizens of Grundy County who drive all the way to Waterloo/Cedar Falls to take their dogs to the off-leash dog parks in Black Hawk County. The success of the Waterloo and Cedar Falls dog parks leads us to believe that a similar project within the City of Reinbeck would be an extremely popular facility which would be attractive to the citizens of Reinbeck as well as to several other towns within a thirty mile radius of Reinbeck. The Park Board encourages interested persons to complete an online Dog Park Survey. Please e-mail the Park Board to request a link to the survey. If you would like to make a donation to the Dog Park fund, please direct donations to the Park Board at City Hall, with a note that the funds are to be directed toward the Dog Park project. If you have additional questions or concerns, please contact the Reinbeck Park Board at: ReinbeckParkBoard@gmail.com.