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Longboat Key discusses artificial turf, upgrade ideas for dog park

Artificial turf was installed in the big dog park at Longboat Key's Bayfront Park in fall 2022.
Artificial turf was installed in the big dog park at Longboat Key's Bayfront Park in fall 2022.
Photo by Petra Rivera
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The town of Longboat Key hosted Bark in the Park on March 1 in the big dog park in Bayfront Park for residents and their dogs to come together to discuss enhancements to the town and future Longboat events.

"This is what our town is all about," said Town Manager Howard Tipton. "Getting together over our common interests and putting our ideas together to make our Key a better place."

In 2022, resident Irene Hess donated $123,000 to the Longboat Key Foundation to cover 75% of the big dog park with artificial turf. Tipton announced at this event that the town has budgeted the $175,000 needed to add artificial turf to the remaining 25% of the big dog park and the entirety of the small dog park.

Chair of the Longboat Key Foundation Jim Brown said work on the project would start in May.

Tipton shared that the artificial turf currently in the park has helped keep it clean and well-maintained for the frequent parkgoers. Residents who attended Bark in the Park shared ideas with Tipton that they think would help improve their experience.

People suggested lights for the nighttime, high-top tables and working fire hydrants for the dogs to play in the water in the summer. He said that since the town will be paying for the artificial turf, the Longboat Key Foundation will appreciate donations for to make these ideas happen.

Residents enjoyed the discussion with Tipton and Assistant to the Town Manager Susan Phillips as well as other dog owners on Longboat. The town provided a food spread along with homemade dog treats made by resident Shawn Leven.



Petra Rivera

Petra Rivera is the Longboat community reporter. She holds a bachelor’s degree of journalism with an emphasis on reporting and writing from the University of Missouri. Previously, she was a food and drink writer for Vox magazine as well as a reporter for the Columbia Missourian.

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