Dog park almost ready to open

Beau the dog, who belongs to Naugatuck Mayor N. Warren ‘Pete’ Hess, lays outside Monday at the new Naugatuck dog park on Andrew Mountain Road. The park should be open to the public within two months. -REPUBLICAN-AMERICAN

Beau the dog, who belongs to Naugatuck Mayor N. Warren ‘Pete’ Hess, lays outside Monday at the new Naugatuck dog park on Andrew Mountain Road. The park should be open to the public within two months. -REPUBLICAN-AMERICAN

NAUGATUCK — A dog park that officials have discussed for several years is finally taking shape.

The approximately 3-acre fenced-in park where dogs can roam free on Andrew Mountain Road should be open to the public and their canine companions by the end of September, Mayor N. Warren “Pete” Hess said Monday.

The park has a roughly 100-yard-by-50-yard fenced-in area for small dogs to play.

All of the work was completed by the Naugatuck Public Works Department. It was fully paid for by state grant money, said Burgess Rocky Vitale, who chairs a dog park committee.

He has been trying to get the project off the ground for about 10 years. In that time, his own dogs died, but Vitale has remained committed to the project.

“I looked out at the field and thought it was so gorgeous; I thought I was going to cry,” he said. “It was so emotional to see it all come together.”

He said businesses are calling him to donate and that Public Works employees and commissioners have been wonderful to deal with.

“I think this is another thing that is going to enhance Naugatuck and something that people will be proud of,” he said. “It will be one more thing to draw businesses and people to Naugatuck.”

A few things must be finished before the park can open. First, the entrance and exit ways must be upgraded and parking lots must be finished; they will not be paved. A well will also be dug, and the borough is looking for hundreds of pounds of diatomaceous earth, a natural product that will help kill fleas and ticks.

On Monday, Hess toured the field with DPW Director Jim Stewart and Borough Engineer Wayne Zirolli. Hess’ dog, Beau, joined them on the trip.

Looking out at the open field with a row of trees in the middle, Hess said he believes people will love the project.

“This is like something out of Maine,” he said. “It’s absolutely gorgeous.”