Officers for 2019
President – Karen Karp
Vice President – Susan Shields
Secretary/Treasurer – Cathy Burnstine
The idea for an off-leash dog park originated during the election campaign of 2002. Councilman Denis Dunn and Councilman Mike Skindell (now a state representative) gathered a group of interested citizens who coalesced into an organization chaired by Lakewood residents Brittany O’Connor, Shelly Gould Burgess, and Whitney Callahan. They chose the name FIDO (Friends of the Ideal Dog-park Off-leash). In the months that followed, the group collected hundreds of signatures and lobbied the Council in support of the park, as Councilmen Dunn and Skindell spearheaded the effort within the Council.
After much discussion about location, the City agreed in the fall of 2002 to construct the park at its present Metroparks site, seven-tenths of an acre in area, just across the bridge from the Marina. The City and FIDO agreed to share the expense of the project, which covered fencing, grass seeding, installation of the water fountain, and “mutt-mitt” dispensers. FIDO raised $15,000 to help. The park was opened on June 27, 2003, and soon proved to be one of Lakewood’s most popular parks. One big problem appeared. The constant wear on the grass surface wore it down to bare dirt which soon turned into mud when the rains came.