Plans to build Carbondale's first dog park took a big step forward this week thanks to a contribution from Glenn and Jo Poshard.
A good crowd of dog lovers, as well as children from Alice Wright Early Childhood Center, was on hand Monday to cheer on park organizers as the Poshards presented a $5,000 check.
"This will be great for SIU students," Glenn Poshard said of the planned site near the LIFE Community Center, noting that it will help SIU's recruitment efforts. Jo Poshard also spoke to the volunteer effort needed.
Friends of Carbondale Dog Parks board member Nancy Cottom introduced Mark Wece, coordinator of the Highway Construction Careers Training Program at John A. Logan College. Wece's spring construction class will build the concrete walkways, entrance pad and shelter -- a donation of more than $20,000 value.
Jane Adams, president of the Friends of Carbondale Dog Parks board, provided an update on the park's progress.
"We've pledged that no taxpayer funds will be used to build this dog park," Adams said. "Every penny will come from you, the public. We've gotten $20,000 in pro-bono contributions from Asaturian Eaton for surveying and engineering drawings, from Arthur Agency for our branding materials and from Thad Heckman for the concept drawings."
Those behind the planning of the 2.5-acre park hope to raise $86,500 to construct the facility and add amenities including fencing, drinking fountains, spray hydrants, a shelter, landscaping and a play structure for the pooches, among others.
More information on the project is at cdaledogparks.org.