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Three Dog Park Sites Eyed for Canton

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CANTON - Residents will have the chance next month to voice their opinion about three possible sites for a fenced-in village dog park, including two new locations that surfaced at Monday night’s village board meeting.

Trustees agreed to hold a public hearing 6:30 p.m. July 21 to gather input about the three locations, a step that may help jump start the long-delayed project.

The search began more than two years ago, but the project was put on the back burner after the first two proposed sites were rejected by the village board.

“Various people have wanted to know what the progress is for a dog park,” said Judy L. DeGraaff,a village resident who is spearheading the project. “There is a need.”

The first two proposed sites were rejected by the board last year.

Priest Field off Judson Street was turned down after neighbors complained a dog park would be too noisy and would interfere with children playing in the field’s grassy area which houses a playground.

Next, the village trustees rejected having a dog park at Canton Island Park off Main Street because they felt it would interfere with the community’s waterfront revitalization plans.

A grassy area next to the Canton Fire Station, Riverside Drive, is a possibility that was suggested last spring by Village Superintendent Brien E. Hallahan. The village owns the property and it’s already partially fenced in.

However, some members of the fire department have raised concerns about the loud ambulance and fire sirens that may frighten dogs when an alarm goes off.

“It’s an awful racket when the trucks come out of there,” said Michael K. Morgan, treasurer of the Canton Fire Department and chairman of the town’s Planning Board.

Also, during the winter, the department uses the grassy area to pile snow.

Ms. DeGraaff said those challenges can be worked around, and she’s talked to neighbors near the site who support having a dog park there.

She believes the issues are not challenging enough to prevent a dog park at the site.

During the discussion, Mayor Mary Ann Ashley said a grassy section next to Buck Street playground on Lincoln Street is also another possibility that could be explored.

Ms. DeGraaff questioned whether that location would be large enough and whether nearby homeowners would protest.

Henry A. “Skip” Wason, superintendent of the Partridge Run Golf Course, said a site between the golf course’s clubhouse and sewer plant gate off Sullivan Drive is available.

“I don’t see that it would interrupt the golfers,” he said.

In other news, the village accepted a Zamboni donation from Pepsi Co. that will be used to resurface ice at the Canton Recreational Pavilion. In exchange, the village signed a 10-year contract with Pepsi.The Zamboni was formerly used at St. Lawrence University’s Appleton Arena and operates with electrical power rather than propane.

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