Fruita to consider leashed dogs at downtown events
FRUITA, Colo. — Fruita dogs and their owners may enjoy Civic Center Park events together as part of a three-week trial starting Thursday, June 4.
According to Ture Nycum, Fruita’s parks and recreation director, a designated space will allow Fruita’s Thursday Night Summer Concert Series attendees to bring dogs on leashes. The area that will allow dogs is located on the east side of the park, by the memorials. The main place folks sit will remain dog-free.
“We understand dogs are part of the family, and people want to come down with their family members,” Nycum said. “We also want to make sure it’s an environment where people without dogs can feel comfortable.”
The trial will determine whether leashed dogs will be allowed at other Summer Concert Series and other downtown Fruita events. In previous years, dogs were not allowed at the Fruita Concert Series, which is a free concert held every Thursday at Civic Center Park (325 E. Aspen Ave.).
“Three concerts will allow a good opportunity to see how it goes — if it is something to continue, expand on, or go back to how it was before,” said Mike Bennett, Fruita’s city manager.
The trial ends Thursday, June 18. Then city council and staff will discuss trial results and whether dogs will be allowed at future events.
COMMUNITY WEIGHS IN
A majority of the households throughout Colorado’s Grand Valley house at least one dog. Currently dogs are not allowed at downtown Grand Junction events, though Palisade allows canines at events like downtown farmers markets.
When the Free Press asked its Facebook friends whether dogs should be allowed at events, readers expressed concern over dog safety.
Community members, like Grand Junction’s Sarah Mah Withers, are concerned about dog owners being responsible.
“It’s not the dogs I worry so much about; it’s the owners that won’t clean up after them,” she said.
Another Grand Junction resident, Jennifer Binkley, expressed concern regarding hot weather and crowded areas.
“I know some dogs are OK with it, but most are not,” she said.
Robbie Urquhart, a Fruita resident, is conflicted when it comes to allowing dogs at events.
“I love taking my dogs places with me, but there are times when it’s too stressful … ,” Urquart said. “There are also some dog owners that are irresponsible. But, since you can come and go as you please at the concerts — since they are free — I think it’d be OK to have your dog there.”
For more information, visit http://www.fruita.org.
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