Tails wagging over Destin Dog Park renovations

Annie Blanks | 315-4450 | @DestinLogAnnie | ablanks@thedestinlog.com
The paw print paver is shown from an aerial view. The Destin Dog Park just reopened after three weeks of renovations that included installing the paver and re-sodding worn areas. SPECIAL TO THE LOG

Tails are wagging all over Destin this week since the revamped Destin Dog Park officially reopened Monday.

During the three weeks the park was closed, crews worked to lay a 50-by-50 foot brick paver in the shape of a paw print at the entrance to the park, as well as lay sod on worn down areas throughout the park.

“Ever since the dog park was envisioned, we always wanted to have the reputation of being the best dog park on the Emerald Coast,” said Barb Telford with Friends of the Destin Dog Park. “Everything we’ve done since it’s opened with the amenities, the lights … this is the icing on the cake.”

The renovations to the park were made possible because of a public/private partnership between the Friends of the Destin Dog Park and the city of Destin. The Friends raised approximately $13,000 to construct the paver, and Delta Pavers provided the material and labor at a discounted rate. The city chipped in $1,000 for the sodding.

Dogs have been running all over the park since it reopened as their humans mingled on the paw paver, which Telford said has been nicknamed the “paw patio.”

“The mosaic is wonderful, it is most excellent and the people who put it in did a very wonderful job,” said David Sause, who was there with his dog Doofus. “It’s improved my experience by all means, because this is where I do all my dog training.”

The improvements to the park appear to have been a big hit with the dogs and their owners seem to appreciate them also.

“This dog park has gotten a lot of compliments from places that don’t have a dog park this nice,” said Lynn Chandler, who was there with her schnauzer mix Bailey. “I love the (paw print) design. I love the fact that they grassed it. Bailey is not going to get dirty now, that’s for sure.”

The small dog park, which was being used by the big dogs during the renovations, is now closed “to get a little bit of love” and will reopen soon, according to Telford. A grand ribbon cutting ceremony for the big dog park will take place at the second annual Pooch Palooza on Saturday, November 12 at 10 a.m.