News of Otsego County

Dog Park

After 7 Years, Milford Opens First Dog Park

After 7 Years, Milford

Opens First Dog Park

Rotary, Village, Volunteers Make It Happen

The Milford Dog Park & Learning Center was dedicated this evening, and organizer Kimberly Winsor pointed out that couldn’t have happened without another kind of dedication: It took seven years’ effort, a grant from the Milford Rotary Club and volunteers to make the $3,500 project happen.  Among the attendees were, from left, Maximus; his master, Rotary President Alicen Sosnowski, Kimberly Winsor, Bruce Hodges, president, Cooperstown & Charlotte Valley Railroad, which provided the land; Ted Winsor, representing the Milford Macs, a major sponsor, and Village Mayor Brian Pokorny.  Inset, Sosnowski’s Maximus becomes the first dog to enter the park.  Traveling the world for two decades with her husband, retired Marine major Dan Atkinson, the younger Winsor, who emceed this evening’s ceremony, said “everywhere we lived, there was a dog park.”  It serves a practical purpose, but it’s also a place “for people who responsibly own and care for dogs.”  As a learning center, the idea is to teach youngsters how to train and care for their pets.  Plus, “it’s a hub for community fun,” Winsor said. A dog park has been long in the planning by the City of Oneonta, and Milford’s may be the first in Otsego County.  (Jim Kevlin/

Dog Park Near-Complete In Milford’s Wilber Park


Dog Park Near-Complete

In Milford’s Wilber Park

Milford’s Dan Atkinson rolls out chain-link fencing this morning at the Village of Milford’s Wilber Park, where work is underway to complete a community dog park in time for its prospective dedication at 4 p.m. Thursday.   Attaching the fencing are Dan’s wife Kimberly Winsor, right, and Sarah Cummings, Oneonta, who is active there in Superheroes on Ripped Jeans, the animal-care group.  At left, the Atkinsons’ daughter Willow, 5, looks on.  Inset, Sarah and Kimberly do some of the heavy lifting.    The $3,500 project is being accomplished with the help of a grant from the Milford Rotary Club.  It would be the first public dog park in the county, although other communities are considering similar facilities.   (Jim Kevlin/

Dog Park Stays In Budget, But Council Concerned About Spending

Dog Park Stays In Budget,

But Council Concerned

About $20M Spending

By JAMES CUMMINGS • Special to

Mayor Gary Herzig hopes that Common Council will approve the City’s $20 million budget in December. (James Cummings/

ONEONTA – The Neahwa Park dog park and new positions in fire and public works departments were among the items in the city’s $20 million 2020 budget, but with a deadline looming Council members decried the lack of time given to addressing the changes.

“This year’s budget is a very aggressive one,” said Mayor Gary Herzig. “We give our Council members more time to discuss parking spaces than we do our budget.”

“It appears that there’s a lot more moving parts with this budget,” said Council member David Rissberger, Third Ward.

“This is the most confusing budget,” said outgoing Council member Melissa Nicosia, Second Ward. “I’m feeling overwhelmed by the information I’m being fed. I don’t want to have to go through this with a fine-toothed comb.”

OPEC: Oneonta Dog Park A Possibility

OPEC: Oneonta Dog Park

A Possibility in Neahwa

By LIBBY CUDMORE • Special to

Here’s a photo from Wikipedia of a typical dog park.

ONEONTA – It’s not just dogs that will benefit from the proposed Oneonta dog park.

“There are a lot of dog lovers in Oneonta,” said Common Council member Michele Frazier, First Ward. “People who love dogs meet each other at dog parks, it fosters community.”

The dog park, which has been proposed several times over the past few years, was once again brought to the table during the city’s Operations, Planning and Evaluations Committee meeting on Monday, Aug. 26.

New Subcommittee To Study Splash Park, Dog Park Ideas

New Subcommittee To Study

Splash Park, Dog Park Ideas

After a couple of surprises, Common Council’s OPEC (Operations, Planning & Evaluation Committee) formed a subcommittee last night to explore siting a dog park and splash park contained in the proposed Neahwa Park Master Plan. One surprise was Council member Michelle Frazier’s communicating the idea that the splash park be set up in Muller Plaza, so kids can play while parents lunch nearby. “I don’t think that will happen,” said Mayor Gary Herzig. Two was her observation that an informal dog park has already developed on Fair Street, and the path of least resistance might be to site it there. “I don’t want to put it anywhere just because it’s cheap,” said the mayor. Council member Dave Rissberger, the OPEC chair, said he’ll participate in the subcommittee, which will include another council member, two City Hall staffers, and two staffers from the Parks & Rec Department. At the meeting in Council Chambers were, front to back, City Clerk Nancy Powell, Herzig, City Manager George Korthauer, Rissberger and Frazier. (Jennifer Hill/
Dog Park, Housing Top Comprehensive Plan

Dog Park, Housing

Top Comprehensive Plan

Council member Russ Southard, Sixth Ward, converses with Mayor Gary Herzig and GOHS executive director Bob Brzozowski about the future of Oneonta as a second open house was held to gather community input on the city’s Comprehensive Plan earlier this evening. Curated recommendations, including a dog park, green-energy initiatives, increased moderate and low-income housing, as well as enhanced arts and recreation offerings, were put forth for visitors to support with check-marks and sticky notes.  The study will also be available online through the city’s website, and once the feedback is gathered, the Steering Committee will compile the results to take to Common Council, who will take a vote. Herzig anticipates action on the final plan will begin in early 2019. (Ian Austin/
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