FIRESTONE — Police dog Aisik christened a dog park baring his name like a canine should.
As a crowd lined the fence of the park, Aisik ran to the first tree, lifted his leg and marked the beginning of Aisik’s Meadow, Firestone’s first dog park.
At least 50 dogs then filed into the grassy 3 acres during a public event Saturday to celebrate the opening of Aisik’s Meadow.
The dog park is just west of Frontier Street, on the east side of St. Vrain subdivision.
You get a lot of house for $250,000 here (one real estate flyer said 3,100 square feet on .25 acres), but the family dog may not get a big yard.
“We have a 24-foot deep backyard, so it’s hard to have a dog,” Jay Sehrt said, who lives a few blocks away from the dog park.
He and his wife, Lori, watched their 7-month-old Border Collie, Rowdy, dart around the park, chasing fellow canines.
“Dogs are a Colorado thing,” Lori Sehrt said. “We are really happy about the park.”
Judging by the turnout, and what a handful of dog owners in the neighborhood said, many dog lovers felt the same way.
“We’ve been waiting for six months for this to open,” Tom Hogan said.
He walked his big brown, shaggy Spinone four blocks from his home to run in the dog park.
“I’m just glad to have this thing done,” he said.
It did take some doing.
Members of the previous Firestone Board of Trustees agreed for developers to turn a holding pond area into a dog park, just east of the St. Vrain subdivision.
Then last year, some of the newer trustees questioned if the town should spend taxpayer money to build a 3-acre park used only by dogs, according to Firestone Mayor Mike Simone.
Trustee Sharon Falcone championed the dog park plan. She helped push the project through, he said.
“We needed something to keep the dogs off the (Firestone) trail,” Falcone said Saturday. “This day and age, nearly everyone has at least one dog.”
Firestone spent approximately $60,000 on the park, according to town spokeswoman Bridge Dalrymple.
The money paid for shrubs, fencing, a water fountain, grass and irrigation.
That grass is an unusual amenity for dog parks in Colorado, which usually are dirt.
Dalrymple said the town used a sturdier grass type and added extra nitrates to the fertilizer, hoping to keep it healthy with the high dog traffic.
As expected, the traffic was high on Saturday for the event. More than 50 dogs were running free at the park at one point during the 3-hour event.
The celebration included a ribbon cutting, a demonstration by the RUFF Flyball Club, a micro-chipping clinic by the Weld County Humane Society, a few vender booths, a raffle and other contests.
“This is just great,” Falcone said of the turnout. “Isn’t it just wonderful?”