Parks add to a community’s quality of life by offering space for people of all ages to enjoy the outdoors and participate in a variety of social, recreational and athletic activities.
Dyer boasts more than 20 parks, many of them smaller, pocket parks with playground equipment. The town’s largest park – aptly named Central Park – continues to be developed along Calumet Avenue and 213th Street.
The 77 acre site has been in the works since the land was obtained in 2005, said Mark Heintz, director of the Dyer Parks & Recreation.
“It was zoned to be residential,” Heintz said. “A lot of people backed it as a park. We were park deficient in terms of park acreage at that time. Once it was purchased, the community began to envision it as a communal meeting place.”
Heintz said the Dyer Redevelopment Commission has been a partner is buying the land and financing development. The Dyer Water Board, Sanitary Board and Stormwater Board have also contributed to this park.
Today Central Park is coming alive with fields, a shelter, native trees and soon the Dyer Dog Park.
The trees are significant because they will provide shade in what is primarily open field currently, Heintz said.
“In the last year, we’ve received a grant for trees from the Indiana Department of Natural Resources, Division of Forestry. Originally we planned for 50 trees, but we got such great pricing that we were able to purchase 116 trees, mostly 1-1/2 to 2-inch diameter,” he said. “That will help us establish an arboretum.”
The Dyer Dog Park has been of major interest to the community, according to Heintz. It will be located west of the new shelter and will be a membership only facility. Access will be gained through a key card.
The membership fees will be different for residents of Dyer and non-residents, he said.
“For residents, the annual fee is $60 for the first dog and $20 for an additional dog. Non-residents will pay $108 for the first dog and $36 for an additional dog,” Heintz said.
There will be two play areas for dogs based on size and weight. Those 26 pounds and larger will use the large dog area. Puppies under the age of six months won’t be allowed in the park. The Dog Park will be open from sunrise to sunset.
To register for dog park privileges, each canine must have current licenses and be current on vaccinations, Heintz said. All owners must quickly clean up after dogs and dispose of the waste.
“Owners are responsible and liable for their dogs and children,” he said. “Children under age 12 are not allowed in the Dog Park. Children ages 13 to 17 must be accompanied by an adult.”
There will be regular maintenance of grass and landscaping in the Dog Park by the Town of Dyer, Heintz said. “During those times the park will be closed. No herbicides will be used in the Dog Park.”
For more information about Central Park and its future Dog Park, contact the Dyer Parks & Recreation Department at (219) 865-2505.