Jackson set to break ground on first ever dog park Friday

Betty's Dog Park, Jackson
Betty's Dog Park, Jackson(City of Jackson)
Published: Apr. 19, 2021 at 10:22 AM EDT
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JACKSON, Mich. (WILX) - A new dog park is giving Jackson residents something to be excited about. Residents and their four-legged furry companions are invited to celebrate the start of construction at Betty’s Dog Park with a groundbreaking event on Friday, April 23 at 11:30 a.m.

Located at the corner of N. Blackstone and Van Buren streets, Jackson’s first-ever dog park makes use of the existing Beech Tree Park in Downtown Jackson.

According to the City of Jackson, the new park will be fully fenced, with separate areas for big and small dogs to roam free, including sidewalks, benches and picnic tables.

Beech Tree Park is a public park that’s been without a use since its award-winning beech tree was removed due to a lightning strike. Betty’s Dog Park will open this summer after a six week construction project is completed.

This pooch paradise is named after Betty Dahlem Desbiens, a long-time Jackson resident who donated funds to make the park possible. Desbiens says she was inspired to help with a dog park project after she saw a man and his dog walking in Beech Tree Park.

“I thought ‘How nice it would be for both the owner and dog if that little dog could run and play freely’,” Desbiens said. “A dog park will certainly improve the quality of life for our many Jackson dog owners.”

Mayor Derek Dobies says there’s a growing need to provide a new dog-friendly area since there are hundreds of people moving into new apartments in Downtown Jackson with their pets.

““We greatly appreciate this generous contribution to the City,” Mayor Dobies said. “This is just another amenity that will attract people to our community. It’s something that downtown residents and families all over the community can enjoy. I look forward to bringing my pug, Sir Woof, to Betty’s Dog Park.”

Jackson residents and their pets are welcome to attend the event, which will feature words from City officials and a groundbreaking. Attendees are asked to please wear face coverings and social distance. Dogs on leashes are welcome to attend. The event will also be live streamed on the City Facebook page so residents can safely participate from home.

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