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'Muddy Mess': Ottawa Co. needs help for upgrades at popular dog park

The total project is $23,500 and they're hoping to raise $10,000 towards that cost between now and May 15th.

OTTAWA COUNTY, Mich. — A popular Ottawa County dog park is in desperate need of renovations, and they're asking for the public's help to raise money for the upgrade. 

The Grand Ravines Dog Park in Jenison is a popular spot, with acres of open land and off-leash trails. One thing that has become a problem, though, is the extremely muddy conditions.

"The ground there is clay soil, so water just kind of sits on top," said Jessica VanGinhoven, Communication Specialist for Ottawa County Parks and Recreation Commission. "The dogs have a lot of fun with it, but we all know maybe our cars don't love it, or bathing is a lot of work."

Now, the Ottawa County Parks and Recreation Commission is taking steps to reduce the standing water in the west dog park paddock, which should help reduce the muddy conditions. 

Just before memorial day, they plan to start a project on the west paddock of the park to lessen the water buildup by adding drainage tiles, trenches, and an underground pipe system. 

"We know that people love it," VanGinhoven said, "but we also see all of the pictures of all the muddy dogs and we know that the paddocks get torn up and that can be very frustrating."

"Some mud will always be a challenge with clay soil," VanGinhoven added, "but if there's a way that we can mitigate it, we of course want to do that." She also explained that on the park's off-leash trails, work has already been done to lessen the mud with ditches on the side of the trails and it's been successful so far. 

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The total project cost is $23,500 and they're hoping to raise $10,000 towards that cost between now and May 15th.

VanGinhoven said that donations previously made to the dog park will be used to fund the installation of drainage tiles in the park, but, that this project cost will exceed the balance of the dog park donations they've already received. That's why they're collecting donations to help make up the remaining balance. 

"This park has been supported by the community since the very beginning," said VanGinhoven, "and people even requested an on-site donation box for the park's well-being, and we're always so grateful for all of the support."

During construction, VanGinhoven said the east dog park paddock and the off-leash trails will be open while they do work on the west side. 

You can donate in cash at the park's donation box located at:                    3991 Fillmore St.                                                                                       Jenison, MI 49428 

You can also donate online by clicking here. 

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