Photo by Jerry Gay
Brody looks out the window with a wagging tongue and big smile while reminding himself of the great walk and fun he just had at Grandview off-leash dog park in SeaTac with his master Tom, behind the wheel. Burien is planning an off-leash venue at Hilltop Park.

Off-leash dog park planned for Burien

By Gwen Davis

The dogs of Burien are sure to be good dogs from now on, with the initiation of a first-ever off-leash dog park in Burien.

On Thursday, Aug. 30 Burien residents spearheaded an effort to convert Hilltop Park on South 126th Street into an official off-leash dog park. Burien resident Kellie Bassen is leading the effort. Burien City Councilmember Jack Block, Jr. also attending the first planning meeting as the group of 10 dog-lovers brainstormed how to make this happen.

“Our goal is to get a dog park started here in Burien – an off-leash dog park where people could exercises their animals and socialize with each other,” Bassen said at the start of the meeting. “I think it would be a really great addition to our city.”

The group discussed the logistics of getting the venue started, including cleaning up the park, working with Burien Parks and Recreation, building fences, getting running water and a water fountain, possibly maintaining a porta potty, having a disposal place for poop, creating signage and enlisting landscaping services.

Meeting members also mentioned creating a bulletin board for posting the rules of the park as well as for community announcements.

“Hilltop is the perfect place for a dog park,” Block said. “This is something here in Burien we can do. We love our dogs. I think there will be a lot of enthusiasm once it gets going with support from the community. Not only will people have a place to go and socialize with their dogs but also we can bring people from outside the city.”

Bassen reported she and her husband have a high-energy dog and are tired of driving far away to dog parks. The nearest off-leash dog public space is at Grandview Park in SeaTac.

This would be an opportunity to also have dog walks, dog events and dog meet and greets.

“It will be nice for families,” she said.

The group wants to have 501(c)(3) status, which entails the need for officers and a board of directors. The committee is to be named B-TownDOG.

It will be funded solely through volunteer donations. No grant money will be used at this time. The major cost for the project would be fencing.

The next meeting for the committee was set for Sept. 11. The group chose the Sept. 23 to clean up the park as volunteers.

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