Boy Scout raises money to build Poplar Grove dog park

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Poplar Grove Boy Scout Ian Neibarger is behind his village’s future dog park, he says he picked it as his Eagle Scout project because it’s close to his heart.

“I actually have three dogs,” said Neibarger. “We’re a dog loving family, I guess you can say. They also always talked about developing the area.”

The dog park will be built across the street from village hall. Poplar Grove village president Owen Costanza says it’s land they have wanted to redevelop for some time.

“It used to be a BMX race track that we had to take down,” said Costanza. “We actually purchased more land for that, so he’s actually got a bigger patch to build on now.”

The project is expected to cost around $10,000. The village budgeted a few thousand dollars to get Neibarger started.

“He did some other things around the village to try help and collect money,” said Costanza. “We’ve always made village hall available to him plus all the resources to him that the village has.”

Neibarger says his goal was reached thanks to donations from the community and business partners. He also hosted events like movie nights to raise money.

“We had a dog walk on the Long Prairie Trail which is right behind me over here,” said Neibarger. “Then, we started sending out just letters to friends, family, businesses.”

The proposed dog park is about 1.5 acres. Now, Neibarger says he wants to meet with designers.

“[They can] help me get a rough draft that way I can show it to the board and get myself a person on what I’m trying to do, where I should put stuff, how much stuff I should buy,” said Neibarger.

Neibarger says Poplar Grove residents’ excitement for the project has kept him motivated.

“This is really close to the whole community,” said Neibarger. “I hope it gets used for a long time.”

Neibarger hopes to have the dog park completed by this summer.

For more information and how to donate, visit Ian’s page here.

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