Last week I was lucky enough to be invited by Purina-Beneful to go to Alabaster, Alabama for the opening of the Beneful Dream Dog Park—a $500,000 canine wonderland dreamt up by Alabaster resident Jenny Wilson. Jenny’s designs beat out more than 400 other entries in the 2011 Beneful Dream Dog Park Contest. “This is my hometown, this is where I grew up, so being able to receive something that can then be given back to my community is just a wonderful gift,” she said.
Dogs can run around the easily-maintainable astro-turf, fly through tunnels and hoops, and get relief from the Alabama heat in the dog park’s two custom built splash pads. Jenny’s biggest inspiration for the space was her dog, Honey Belle, who was abandoned at this very park years earlier and brought to the shelter where Jenny then rescued her. And Honey Belle’s favorite part? Definitely the splash pads. “This is the only place where you can come as a dog and experience something like that,” said Jenny. And judging by the constant flow of happy, panting dogs chasing water and splashing around, Honey Belle isn’t the only one loving this fantastic feature.
A grand opening wouldn’t be complete with some celebrities, and so Beneful’s Ambassador of Play and Emmy Award winner Eric Stonestreet (or, as you may know him, Cam from Modern Family) came by to welcome everybody and kick off the fun. TLC and DIY Network star Jason Cameron, and dog expert Arden Moore were also there. Cameron and Moore were integral parts of the dream team that helped Jenny’s vision come to life: Cameron oversaw all the contracting and landscaping, while Arden helped oversee the project from “a dog’s point of view.”
Designed and built by dog lovers, this Alabaster dog park is one seriously fun doggie Disneyland!
Feeling creative? The 2012 Beneful Dream Dog Park contest has just kicked off! Entering is easy–for details click here.