It was a hot summer day, but that didn’t stop town residents from coming out with their fur babies to the Town of North Hempstead’s unveiling of its brand new dog park at Michael J. Tully Park in New Hyde Park—a first in the town.
Town of North Hempstead Supervisor Judi Bosworth, along with Councilwoman Lee Seeman, Town Clerk Wayne Wink, and Councilman Angelo Ferrara, cut both ribbons to the big and small dog parks to thunderous applause and barks.
“We are so excited that we’re doing the ribbon cutting for this beautiful dog park,” said Bosworth right before she cut the ribbon. “I’d like to thank our park’s department, our DPW department and all of the people who worked so hard to make this happen. A special thank you to Steve Pollack because I know you met with so many residents to get input. We wanted to make sure that this was exactly what you and your dogs wanted.”
The new facility features separate areas for large dogs, who weigh more than 30 pounds, and small dogs, as well as watering stations, play equipment and artificial turf and pea gravel play areas.
“We are excited to welcome our furry four-legged friends to the first-ever North Hempstead park built just for them,” said Bosworth. “This park truly was a collaborative project between the town and the residents. Many ideas from local dog owners were incorporated into the plan, which helped to create this wonderful playground for dogs. We hope it brings hours and hours of pleasure to both dogs and their owners.”
The dog park was constructed by D.F. Stone and includes benches for humans, a shade structure, as well as water fountains for both dogs and their owners. Many dog play features, including a tunnel and jump obstacles, which were donated by the Shelter Connection—a nonprofit that works with the town’s animal shelter.
“Our boy Otis is super excited to experience the brand new dog park,” said Sandra “Dee” Cerrone, a resident who advocated for the dog park opening. “We’re grateful to the Town of North Hempstead for hearing us out and making this vision a reality.”
The new dog park is another way Bosworth and the town are working to make North Hempstead a dog friendly place to live. Dogs are already welcome at many of the town’s parks, including North Hempstead Beach Park, Hempstead Harbor Trail and Mary Jane Davies Green.
The dog park came as part of the town’s 2019-23 capital plan, which focused on allocating funds to address the town’s critically important infrastructure. The capital plan also included funding to address facilities and equipment throughout the town that will lead to more efficient service delivery.
The general fund five-year capital plan included $102.9 million of infrastructure investment. The town will fund this year’s expenditures with $18 million of additional long-term borrowing, after accounting for grants and existing funding. In developing the plan, the town took into account grants that have already been awarded—assuming that federal and state grant funding will continue in future years. The construction of the dog park at Michael J. Tully Park cost $380,000 while operating maintenance costs may increase slightly at Michael J. Tully Park due to the additional amenity.
Besides the new dog park, Michael J. Tully Park, which will be receiving more than $10 million in investments, will be facing other general improvements. The changes will provide funding for various capital improvements at the park, which includes the replacement of the turf field at the stadium and the reconstruction of the existing handball courts. The project will also provide funding to evaluate and repair drainage issues at the softball fields.
Michael J. Tully Park is located at 1401 Evergreen Ave., in New Hyde Park.