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May 21, 2018 4:51 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

East Quogue Residents Advocate For Dog Park In Their Hometown

Brian Babcock of East Quogue plays with Lady, his 2 year old greyhound and boxer mix, near the proposed dog park. AMANDA BERNOCCO
May 22, 2018 11:10 AM

Lady, a 2-year-old greyhound and boxer mix from East Quogue, loves to run around and play with her friends. But the free-spirited pup is running into a problem: There are no nearby dog parks for her owner to visit.

Lady’s conundrum has inspired her owner, Brian Babcock of East Quogue—who also has a 3-year-old beagle named Charlie—to push for a dog park to be built in his hamlet.

He and Julie Crowley, a fellow East Quogue dog owner, are asking the Southampton Town Board to allow them to build a dog park across from the Pine Neck Marina, a secluded area nestled off Head Of Lots Road in East Quogue.

When they pitched the project to the Town Board during a recent Thursday morning work session, the pair of civic leaders had support in the audience from six community members—most of whom had met each other through their dogs.

Currently, dog owners in East Quogue have two options if they want to take their four-legged friends to a dog park: drive to Windmill Lane in Southampton Village, or to Montauk Highway in Shirley.

But Mr. Babcock, Ms. Crowley say a dog park in East Quogue would be more accessible to visit for those who live west of the Shinnecock Canal, especially since it’s nearly impossible to get to the Southampton Village dog park after work—especially in the summer months—because of traffic. East Quogue, they propose, would be a central location for all of western Southampton Town to use.

Standing in the proposed park, under a bright blue sky, with birds chirping in the trees, Mr. Babcock said the Pine Neck Marina would be the perfect place for a dog park. He explained that the trees surrounding the park create a buffer so that nearby homeowners wouldn’t hear dogs barking all day long.

The proposal also shouldn’t impact taxpayers—he and his neighbors plan to take over stewardship of the property, which was acquired by the town with Community Preservation Fund revenues. It was not immediately clear when the purchase was made or how much the town paid for it.

The biggest startup cost would be installing a fence around the property, Mr. Babcock said. Depending on the fence, he estimates that it would cost approximately $20,000 to $50,000 to install. Volunteers have offered other start-up services, including the installation of a water fountain for dogs to drink from.

At the work session, Ms. Crowley noted that the dog park would likely have different sections for small dogs and bigger dogs, so all of the animals are comfortable playing in the park.

The Town Board members appeared to be in support of the dog park but suggested that a public hearing should be held to gauge community interest.

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I wish our local dog owners would start cleaning up after their dogs on the beaches. So annoying
By adlkjd923ilifmac.aladfksdurwp (747), southampton on May 22, 18 6:59 AM
2 members liked this comment
Is all that dog waste good for our water?
By tenn tom (259), remsenburg on May 22, 18 7:23 AM
1 member liked this comment
No. Not at all. They should find a place away from our waterways.
By 2329702 (67), East Quogue on May 22, 18 8:57 AM
I trust the Town Board will involve our hamlet's official organizations: the EQ CAC and the EQ Civic Association in developing this great idea!
By Taz (725), East Quogue on May 22, 18 11:10 AM
Finally, something for dogs to do besides roam the streets and get into trouble.
By Pacman (273), Southampton on May 22, 18 3:43 PM
1 member liked this comment
My dog ran in my yard, she was a home dog. How about Gabriski???
By knitter (1941), Southampton on May 25, 18 9:04 AM
What happened to dog owners walking their dogs daily and fencing in their yard? Why don't they arrange doggie play dates in their yards and not expect SHT to fund a play area? Better yet visit Indian Island Park or Sears/Bellows and walk the trails.....your dog will love it. The bonus for you is you will get exercise in beautiful surroundings.
By crusader (391), East Quogue on May 26, 18 2:49 PM
great idea --
By MRoussos (1), East Quogue on Aug 5, 18 7:58 AM