By Lindsay Carey
Southington Eagle Scout Aron Zamfino presented his idea to install an obstacle course in the Southington Dog Park before the Board of Parks Commissioners on Wednesday, Oct. 1.
Zamfino said he just recently moved to Southington and joined Troop 32. However, he is presenting the project for Troop 3 in Derby, his former troop.
After speaking with some people around town who go the dog park, Zamfino said that he heard several complaints about dog fights.
“From my understanding dogs have been fighting in the dog park and there has been disruption,” said Zamfino.
He said that he did some research to find out what would keep the dogs from fighting and possibly causing injury to one another and he came across obstacle courses.
“There were statistics that show that putting obstacle courses in a dog park can occupy the dogs minds to keep them from fighting,” said Zamfino.
He also said the decreased risk of injury to dogs, because of minimal fighting, would likely attract more people to the park.
If approved by the board and his troop, Zamfino said that the entire project would be built by the Boy Scouts. He said he estimates that the course would cost $2,000, which he plans to collect through fundraising, asking to local businesses and taking donations.
He plans for the obstacles to be cemented down into the ground to minimize damage or maintenance and said if there was any maintenance needed that the boy scouts would take care of it.
Zamfino predicted that the project would take 250 hours to complete and if approved, his troop could begin installation in the spring.
He said the obstacles would be cemented down into the ground and should there be any maintenance needed, the boy scouts would take care of it.
Although, Zamfino did not yet have a specific plan for the layout of the obstacles, he shared pictures of his ideas for the kinds of obstacles he would like to install.
He said that the obstacles would include weave poles, a dog, jump, and towers for climbing. The obstacles would also vary depending on the size of the dog.
Parks Chairman Michael Fasulo shared his concern about reducing the open space in the dog park.
“I wouldn’t want to see so much stuff that it will take away from the open space of the park,” said Fasulo.
Zamfino said he is flexible on the placement of the obstacle course based on what the Board of Park Commissioners would like.
“I think it’s a great idea, but before we can discuss it we need a pretty clear idea of what you have in mind,” said Fasulo.
The Board of Commissioners suggested Zamfino use a map of the dog park to scale the project to show them exactly what it would actually look like.
Fasulo said that if he can get the plan to the Director of Recreation David Lapreay before the next meeting, they will take another look at it.
Commissioner David Kanute asked the board to make a motion in support of the obstacle course upon seeing a specific plan of where the obstacles will go.
By Lindsay Carey