SIDNEY — A new dog park will be dedicated Friday, Nov. 19, at 11 a.m. at Deam Park. Dogs and their owners are invited to attend the event.
“This project has been a long time in the making,” said Duane Gaier, city of Sidney Parks director. “Bob New worked to get a dog park in Sidney over 15 years ago and we have been trying to find an appropriate location and funding ever since then. With the donations from the Richard Steenrod Estate and the funds held at the Community Foundation of Shelby County in Memory of Joe Rudy, we were able to make it happen.”
The small area of the dog park is in honor of Rudy, said Gaier. The large dog area is in honor of the Steenrods.
“The small area was named after Joe Rudy, a dog park supporter for years before he passed. In his memory, gifts were made to the community foundation for a future dog park in Sidney. His company, 1157 Designs, designed and manufactured all of the unique signage for the dog parks at no cost to the city,” said Gaier. “There were funds in the Richard Steenrod Estate that were set aside for Deam Park improvements. Working with Mr. Steenrod’s son, Rick Steenrod, it was decided to use the funds from his father’s estate to develop the dog park.”
Dick and Alice Steenrod were Sidney residents until 1983, when they retired to Florida. They were dog lovers and had several dogs throughout their long marriage. Their favorite was Teddy, a west highland terrier, who brought them 16 years of joy. He traveled with them on their many RV trips, including a summer in Alaska, where Dick and Alice had lived early in their marriage.
Dick was CEO of Steenrod Inc., a home construction company. He had a vision for the development of Northwood Village, on the north edge of Deam Park, which has been home to many Sidney residents. The Steenrods lived adjacent to Deam park in Northwood Village for several years.
When planning their estate, they wanted to benefit the park in some way. After their deaths, Alice in 2006 and Dick in 2017, their children, Mike, Rick, and Jill were approached by the Sidney Parks Department about possibly funding a dog park. They felt it would be an appropriate memorial to their parents, especially since the dog park is situated beside the housing development that Dick created. Their hope is that it will provide a place for dog lovers and their furry friends to meet and play together.
On the day of the dedication, Gaier is hoping to have speakers from the Steenrod and Rudy families, along with rec board and council. SCARF is planning on being there and possibly bringing shelter dogs to the event.
“Anyone interested in bringing their dog to the ribbon cutting are encouraged to do so. We would love to have a lot of dogs there that day,” said Gaier.