GLEN ROCK, NJ – The Glen Rock NJ Dog Park kicked off July in style by reopening on July 1 and participating, for the 5th  consecutive year, in the annual Glen Rock Independence Day Parade on July 4, 2020. 

After a 15-week closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Glen Rock NJ Dog Park is back and better than ever!  The park officially reopened on July 1 after being closed to the public since mid-March.

Glen Rock Dog Park President Eileen Hillock said. “It was very important to the Board to reopen the park in a way that was both sensible and safe.  While Bergen County did allow dog parks to reopen in June, the restriction of one dog/one person didn’t make sense to our Board so we waited and used the time to draft our own reasonable reopening plan.  We consulted with the Borough and also surveyed users of the park and incorporated their suggestions for safety measures into our reopening plan.”

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Reopening safety measures implemented by the non-profit’s Board of Directors in consultation with park users, the Borough, The Director of Parks and Recreation and the Office of Emergency Management include mandatory face masks (for people, not puppies), a bring your own toy (BYOT) policy, limiting the number of people in the park to a maximum of 20 at one time, and the suggestion to sanitize hands before and after visiting the park. 

During the park’s closure, the all volunteer Board of the Glen Rock NJ Dog Park non-profit was hard at work behind the scenes working with donors on park enhancements. 

Dog Park enhancements include:

  • A new flagpole and flag installed by Gates Flag Company and underwritten by a generous donation by JT Bolger of Ridgewood, NJ. 
  • Electricity installation to ensure our flag is properly lit at night.  Electric line installed by Tino Ranieri of Ranieri Electric, again via a generous donation by JT Bolger of Ridgewood, NJ.   Long time Glen Rock resident and Vietnam Veteran Phil “Butch” Gulmy and the team from Gulmy Construction once again donated their time and equipment for this installation.
  • A new Bike Rack donated by 9W Market, Palisades, NY.
  • Fresh water run to the park courtesy of Rich Cervone of Cervone Plumbing, Glen Rock NJ.
  • Social distancing signage donated by American Graphics Systems, Fair Lawn, NJ.
  • Dog Waste Station and bags donated by Dorice Stancher, Of “Canines Can Do” Hawthorne, NJ.
  • Agility Equipment purchased with a grant received from the Greater Bergen Realtors Association.

The Trex Plastic Bag recycling challenge, led by volunteer Robyn O’Hagan, which ran from March through May 2020 netted 1500 pounds of plastic bags for recycling and culminated in 3 new benches for the dog park. Robyn noted. “I was amazed by the level of support, especially since we had just started this at the beginnings of the COVID pandemic . Our initial goal was to collect and recycle 500 pounds of plastic during the 6-month collection window.  Collecting three times that much in half the amount of time just blew me away! I am in awe of the support received from our businesses and by our local resident who dutifully saved their bags for collection.”

Coming soon / planned for the future:

  • A new green metal bench generously donated by former Glen Rock Councilwoman Joan Orseck and dedicated to her late husband to complement the bench donated by Dr. Denis Sepulveda of Glen Rock Veterinary Wellness Center. 
  • (3) new Trex benches via a plastic bag recycling drive coordinated by Robyn and Michael O’Hagan.  Mike was a former Councilman and long time dog park liaison.
  • A Gazebo to provide much needed shade and a location for onsite site training classes.  This is an Eagle Scout project led by Henry Pfeiffer, son of Board Secretary Christine Pfeiffer.
  • Solar Panels donated by Infinity Energy, Pearl River, NY.

“Roots for Rivers” Grant

Unfortunately, because of the pandemic, the planting of trees and shrubs along the north fence of the park was postponed from the initial March 28th date to the Fall.  Sustainable New Jersey’s Kaitlyn Vollmer , informing the organizers of the approved extension shared, “Although being outdoors planting trees is one of the safest activities we can participate in these days, we fully understand that it takes a village to successfully accomplish this work.”  Lisa Schor Babin, Vice President of the Glen Rock NJ Dog Park and Tom Scerbo, Trustee of the Glen Rock Arboretum are coordinating the installation.

The Glen Rock NJ Dog Park is located at 350 Doremus Avenue, Glen Rock NJ  behind the recycling center. It was entirely built and is managed by the Glen Rock Dog Park 501(c)3 non-profit charitable organization at no cost to the Borough of Glen Rock. Donations to the park are tax-deductible. The Glen Rock NJ Dog Park is the only park in the entire Country dedicated to the 9/11 Search and Rescue dogs. For additional information on the park or to make a donation please see www.GlenRockNJDogPark.org or on FaceBook @ glenrocknjdogpark