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Ellisville Dog Parks Get New Sod, Aeration to Help Drainage Issues

VIDEO: Ellisville officials planned to put crushed granite in the dog parks at Bluebird Park to solve the problems of improper drainage and soggy, muddy soil. The parks just reopened after being closed since March 11 due to mud.

Of the 450-plus dog tags issued for the Ellisville Dog Parks, a significant portion of the participants are from Wildwood, Eureka and Ballwin, an Ellisville city spokesperson tells Patch. One of the first owners and dogs to return to the newly reopened park was from Wildwood, as evidenced by the video that accompanies this article.

City plans for the Ellisville Dog Parks inside of Bluebird Park were to attack the challenges with drainage. But due to the very wet weather this past month, first with rain and then snow, city crews were not able to install the crushed granite in the big dog area. The installation of the crushed granite requires the removal of 8 to 10 inches of turf and dirt to install a gravel base and several inches of granite on top.

However, on Friday, the public works department staffers were able to make some drainage repairs and improvements, and sod some of the big dog area. They aerated and seeded the small dog area. The two dog park sections are located between the Bussmann Shelter and the ball fields adjacent to the back parking lot in Bluebird Park.

Both areas of the dog park reopened Friday at 3 p.m., after having been closed due to the messy ground conditions.

"At this point, we still feel that the granite installation is the best solution for the big dog area," said Lisa Blumer, director of Ellisville Department of Parks and Recreation.

"Right now, we are planning on late August to install the granite, when we anticipate the ground should be dry enough to get the needed equipment into the big dog area to do the required work. A specific date has not been set, but residents will be notified by e-mail closer to the planned date."

Blumer said staffers anticipate the dog park will need to be closed for one to two weeks when they make the more major changes, assuming they have very dry turf conditions during the project's execution.

"Thanks to everyone for their patience as we try to make improvements to the dog parks that hopefully will be a long-term solution for our turf problems," said Blumer.

All dogs are required to have a current Ellisville Dog Park membership, which costs $40, and wear a current Ellisville Dog Park membership dog tag to enter the dog park. Members will have a code to open the combination lock on the dog park gates. The dog park is available for Ellisville residents, as well as non-residents.

The dog park is open from dawn to dusk daily, although city staffers indicate there may be times when the park is closed for events, repairs or due to inclement weather.

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