K-9 Korral dog area being planned for Colville

Meredith F. Carroll
Special to the Statesman-Examiner

Local canines will soon have a reason to rejoice.
The K-9 Korral Committee is working with the city and Stevens County to open an off-leash park where dogs run free and interact with other dogs.
The 1-acre, fenced area is adjacent to the Ag Trade Center and Northeast Washington Fairgrounds, just south of the baseball field.
Committee chairwoman Jody Hoffman said organizers are shooting for a grand opening late next spring.
There are a lot of preparation, cleanup and repairs to be made, she said.
The vision for the K-9 Korral has been in the works for a long time.
“I brought the idea to the City Council about 7 years ago,” she said, “But, they said no.
“And then about a year ago, I found people to help, and it took off from there.”
The committee created a plan to work with both the city and the county to draw up a contract.
Fairgrounds manager Lori Matlock helped.
“This is one of the first times I’ve seen the county and the city play well together,” she said.
Matlock was the one who pointed out that the property would be great for an off-leash dog area, and she proceeded to work with the committee in getting the ball rolling, Hoffman said.
The funds needed for maintenance and operation will come from Matlock’s budget, not from the city or county, and she will step up as manager of the whole operation, she said.
Officially, the off-leash dog area can’t be called a “dog park.”
If the area has the word “park” in its name, then state regulations and insurance become issues. And the city would have to designate the area as an official park.
Hoffman said that the committee is happy to refer to the area as the K-9 Korral.
Since funding will come from the fairgrounds budget and private donations, the K-9 Korral Committee is asking for donations of time, and money.
There is a work party scheduled for 10 a.m. Oct. 27 — volunteers will be picking up garbage, raking and removing obstacles.
Helpers are asked to bring rakes, shovels, wheelbarrows and chainsaws, organizers said.
The committee meets this week at 4 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 18 in the Ag Trade Center, organizers said. The agenda includes upcoming work parties and discussion of ways to improve the area.