The Rotary Club of Longboat Key was challenged last week to put up a matching $6,135 contribution to Bayfront Park like that from Kiwanis Club of Longboat Key and the Longboat Key Garden Club.
On Monday, Rotary Club of Longboat Key President Carol Erker informed the Longboat Key Town Commission the club accepted that $6,135 challenge and raises it by $4,035.
“I am very pleased to announce that, as a result of contributions collected from residents of Longboat Key during the past several months, including one very large anonymous gift, that we have just received in recent days, the Rotary Club will commit $10,170 to the town’s purchase and installation of amenities and dog agility equipment in the off-leash dog park section of Bayfront Park,” Erker said.
The club has advocated for a dog park on the island since its inception in October 2014.
Mayor Jack Duncan thanked Erker for the donation to the town and Vice Mayor Terry Gans offered a thank you on behalf of himself and his best friend.
“I thank you and my dog thanks you,” Gans said.
On Monday, Town Manager Dave Bullock informed the commission he hopes to break ground on park renovations in December.
The commission will approve a memorandum of understanding with Sarasota County next month for renovations to the park.
Sarasota County purchased a 3.88-acre parcel adjacent to the park in 2007, becoming a partner with the town for a park redesign.
Sarasota County is paying for $2 million of the park project’s estimated $3.11 million price tag. As part of the agreement, the town says the county has a right to be a part of the park’s construction review team.
Besides a new shaded children’s playground, the park will include pickleball, tennis and basketball courts, as well as a bocce ball open space area. Other offerings include a dog park, a kayak launch and paddle sports loading area and walking trails among mangroves and a preserved rain garden area.