Culver City Dog Park - History

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Brief History

The Friends of the Culver City Dog Park was established in August, 2001, with a handful of area residents. We are a 501(c)(3) non-profit California Corporation, Federal Tax I.D. #42-1560006.


  • July, 2001 - Six people meet at Culver City Park to discuss forming a group to bring a dog park to Culver City
  • August 2, 2001 - First meeting with 18 people to decide how to move forward as a group.
  • August 6, 2001 - Representatives of our group appear before the Human Services and Parks Commission; A yahoo email group is established to communicate with supporters.
  • September, 2001 - Friends of the Culver City Dog Park establishes a name and a post office box and begins distributing flyers through its members, local businesses, and friends. Committees are formed and members meet with representatives of local dog parks to research expenses, design, rules, etc.

  • October, 2001 - Members of the Friends of the Culver City Dog Park meet with Human Services Commissioners and Director, Don Rogers, to discuss park sites, goals, ideas.

  • November, 2001 - Friends of The Culver City Dog Park receives non-profit status from the State of California; Culver City Parks & Service Foundation agrees to act as the group's fiscal receiver to allow tax-deductible contributions

  • December, 2001 - Friends of the Culver City Dog Park begins speaking at local groups and plans information activities; members are notified that they can make tax-deductible contributions

  • January, 2002 - Information table at Pavilions brings in 175 new members, and offers information on dog licensing requirements to the public.

  • February, 2002 - Group plans Candidates forum and begins press releases to local news media. Representative of group meets with City engineer and other City staff to discuss design needs for sites.

  • March, 2002 - First fundraising letter sent to 800 businesses in Culver City. Membership grows to more than 800 and fundraising over $4000. Group receives offers from local business people of food, locations and prizes for fundraising as well as offer from Centinela Feed for a 4000 piece mailer to local residents. Candidates forum draws 50 people and all five candidates. Fundraising Committee meets to plan first fundraising. Group plans proposal for Human Services & Parks Commission

  • April, 2002 - First drafts of website are drawn up; Group makes presentation to the Human Services and Parks Commission which passes a resolution to go to City Council "reserving" the Boneyard as the site for development of an off-leash Dog Park. Membership passes 1000 mark in numbers and, at the end of the month had raised $5380.00 towards the park. Members walk inside of The Bone Yard site and meet with Commissioners to streamline proposal.
  • May, 2002 - Group has booth at Fiesta La Ballona and first fundraiser at Shakey's Pizza, bringing membership to over 1300 and funds raised above $6000.00. Group launches website: and new email address - City Council recommends that dog park be included in their Departments' work program.
  • June, 2002 - Group appears at City Budget Hearings. City Council adds dog park as a line item to budget for funds to be added later and adds project to staff's work program. Doggy Wash fundraiser sponsored by California Groomin' & Jose Diego's Dog Wash brings in $553.00. Group helps at Culver City rabies clinic. Invitations go out for August 3rd fundraiser. Funds raised total $7915.00 with
  • July, 2002 - City Council appoints Councilmembers Alan Corlin & Albert Vera to official sub-committee for the Dog Park, which includes members of the Group as well as Commissioners Charles Deen & "Alex" Alexander. August date is set for staff to present a time line and list of tasks to the Council in order to establish the park. Membership tops 1450 and funds raised exceed $11,000.00
  • August, 2002 - Official sub-committee had first meeting to discuss dog park. Group consisted of City Council, Commissioner, Staff and representatives of our group. Staff developed proposed timeline for the park. City Council directed staff to determine feasibility of Bone yard for the dog park. Our first anniversary fundraiser brings 140 people, more than $6600 in donations, Silent Auction contributions from more than 50 sources and is a huge success. Group has information table at Petco Grand Opening for 3 days and adds 312 members to the group. Membership tops 1750 and money raised exceeds $14,500.00.
  • September, 2002 - Supporters near 1800 and money raised goes to $15, 703.32. City asks County to begin going door to door to license dogs, a move supported by the Group. Group sets dates for new fundraisers, and asks City for updates on status of the Boneyard for use as the dog park. Annual General Meeting scheduled for October 23rd.
  • October, 2002 - Funds raised total nearly $16,000 after 2nd Doggy Wash Fundraiser and Annual General Meeting. Group numbers nearly 2000. A new Board is voted on with expanded roles. City contracts for a survey of The Boneyard to determine its feasibility as the site for a Dog Park.
  • November, 2002 - Large group of dog park supporters asks Human Services Commission to prioritize the dog park when asking for Prop 40 funds. Dog park sub-committee holds meeting to focus on next steps to establish the park. Funds raised total $16225.00.
  • December, 2002 - Supporters total 1925 and total funds raised nears $17,000. City identifies several grants to pursue to build the dog park. City applies for permission to file federal Brownfields Grant application with the Environmental Protection Agency.
  • January, 2003 - Parks, Recreation and Community Services Commission ranks the dog park project as 2nd place for California State Proposition 40 funding, up from appx. 40th the previous year. Shakey's fundraiser held, with 60 people attending, including 4 of 5 City Council members, and several Commissioners and staff members. $336.60 raised to bring total to $17353.60. Group agrees with City to take over organizing City's annual vaccination clinic in June.
  • February, 2003 - EPA invites City to apply for Brownfields Grant to clean up Boneyard. Large turnout writes City Council and speaks at meeting regarding upcoming renewal of Animal Control Contract with L.A. County. Group supports increase of dog license fees to support park maintenance, and encourages City to make dog licensing easier by modifying website and increasing community awareness.
  • March, 2003 - City Council agrees to agendize naming The Bone Yard in Culver City Park as the official site for an off leash dog park. Money raised goes over the $18,000 mark. City applies for Brownfields Grant to clean up the park area.
  • April, 2003 - City Council votes 5-0 to officially designate The Bone Yard area of Culver City Park for development of a Dog Park! Group joins Culver City Chamber of Commerce, and sends out 900 letters to local businesses and organizations to ask for support. Group announces plans for "Dog Days of August" fundraiser/event as part of Fiesta La Ballona for August 22nd, and continues plans to assist the City with annual vaccination clinic June 5th.
  • May, 2003 - Group decides to focus on Major Donor and Fundraising Event Sub-committees and postpones "Dog Days of August Event" in order to focus on larger fundraising. Group promotes City & County sponsored vaccination clinic to be held in June. Contributions cross the $19,000 mark.
  • June, 2003 - Vaccination Clinic is successful event, with 44 dogs being vaccinated and a number of dogs being licensed. Group gets own 501(c)(3) approval from U.S. Government to enable them to take direct tax-deductible contributions. Culver City is awarded $50,000 assessment grant and $200,000 clean-up grant from the EPA to clean up the dirt on site. Big write-up appears in Pet Press, and we are contacted by NBC News for future article. City gives permission for group to purchase sign for dog park. Group sets October 18th for major fundraising dinner. Group participates in Chamber of Commerce Expo.
  • July, 2003 - Group begins Major Donor program and first park bench is "adopted" by Doggie Central for $1500. October 18th event set at Four Points Sheraton in Culver City. Third Doggy Wash Fundraiser nets $732 plus $105 in t-shirt sales, moving total dollars raised to over $21,000.
  • August, 2003 - City Council adopts Budget Amendment to accept EPA Grant funds, and sends out Requests for Qualifications to firms to bid on assessment and clean-up of site. "Future Home of Dog Park" sign unveiled at City Hall, and posted at The Boneyard. Booth at Fiesta La Ballona and fundraiser at Baja Fresh bring funds to $22,300. Edward Asner agrees to be Honorary Chair and Special Guest at "Boneyard Bash" fundraiser October 18th.
  • September, 2003 - Group tours the Boneyard Site and awaits Site Inspection to begin design concepts. Invitations sent out to The Boneyard Bash. Major clean-up begins at the site and much of the debris is removed. Engineering firms submit bids to the City for Assessment and Clean-up fo the site.
  • October, 2003 - Boneyard Bash receives more than 130 Auction items for the fundraiser. VCA Animal Hospitals donates $5,000 to "Adopt A Bulletin Board" at the Boneyard when the park opens. More than 60 volunteers work to plan the major fundraiser, including senior citizens, members of the Culver City High School Interact Club and NJROTC. Event raises nearly $17,000 towards the dog park.
  • November, 2003 - American Health Solutions Pharmacy adopts a bench for $1500. Overland Gems donates 10% of holiday gems sold to park. Members attended Parks Commission meeting to ask that dog park remain number 2 priority on their grants list. Request for Dog Swim Fundraiser approved by Parks Commission to pass on to Council.
  • December, 2003 - Group learns that current fencing at site will not be usable so additional funds of approximately $45,000 must be raised. City works on grant proposal and group gathers signatures to support it.
  • January, 2004 - Group has more than $40,000 in bank. City submits State Grant proposal. Date of March 24th is set for Culver City Municipal Election Candidates Forum. We begin to receive contributions in memory of departed pets. City Council unanimously approves Dog Swim Fundraiser in municipal pool.
  • February, 2004 - Dog Swim postponed due to possible state law prohibiting it. Friends of Adam and Jackie Sandler, organized by Judit Maull, donate more than $2500 to adopt a water fountain in the large dog park in memory of "Meatball", the Sandlers' beloved dog. Generous contributions of $250 each are received from Marilyn Cole & Walt Shubin. Group takes a position to oppose Measure U, a ballot initiative which would lower the Utility Tax from 11% to 2% due to grave concerns about how it would affect the City, and especially the parks. City continues to work with EPA and Kleinfelder & Associates on the time line for the assessment and clean-up of the land. Goal for park to open is end of 2004.
  • March, 2004 - Westfield Shopping Mall donates $1000 to adopt a tree in our park, bringing total in the bank to $43,000. Ferrufino Blinds continues to donate $1 per blind sold to our group. Candidates forum is very successful. A Pet Smart link is added to our website to help raise money.
  • April, 2004 - Funds in bank now exceed $44,000. EPA announces it will delay by two months their approval of the plan to proceed with clean-up and assessment. This is one month longer than we had on time-line. Group continues to monitor status through City. Boneyard Bash 2, our fundraising dinner, is scheduled for October 16, 2004 at Radisson Hotel, Culver City. Mini-fundraiser at Daphne's Greek Restaurant scheduled for Tuesday, May 25th. Plans made to start park Design Sub-committee, and to work with City Attorney's office to move the park forward.
  • May, 2004 - Daphne's Greek Cafe fundraising event attracts more than 200 supporters, and raises $465.24 for the park. Group informs supporters of deadlines to register dogs so they will be eligible to go to the park. Design committee researches plants, trees, designs, fences, ground cover and workable ideas.
  • June, 2004 - Group helps City organize annual low cost vaccination clinic, which vaccinates more than 93 dogs, a record high. EPA approves the basic assessment plan and the sub-contractor, Kleinfelder & Associates moves forward to plan borings to test the site and determine a clean-up schedule. Large group of staff, Commission members, Council Members, Department Heads and representatives of our group meet to determine time frame for working on the project.
  • July, 2004 - More than 30 volunteers help send out 2500 "Save the Date" postcards for our Boneyard Bash in a record 45 minutes. Updates are given on the park's progress. Volunteers begin gathering ads and Auction items for the event. Group's goal for the October 16th fundraiser is to raise $20,000 towards the park. Group has booth at Culver City Chamber of Commerce Expo and networks with community businesses to help support the Dog Park.
  • August, 2004 - Conceptual design of Park is submitted to Parks & Recreation Commission where it is passed unanimously for recommendation to the City Council. Red Brick Pizza fundraiser is held raising $452. Group again has booth at Fiesta La Ballona and raises $350.
  • September, 2004 - Only mild contamination found on site which will allow EPA clean-up to proceed. Kleinfelder advises clean-up should come in at budget. RSVP volunteers stuff, stamp, seal and mail all 2300 invitations for the Boneyard Bash. City Council unanimously accepts EPA clean-up plan.
  • October, 2004 - Boneyard Bash 2 fundraiser is very successful, bringing in more than $18,400. New dog park ordinance and park rules are unanimously approved by the Parks & Recreation Commission. EPA clean-up begins.
  • November, 2004 - City schedules dog park items for City Council approval. EPA clean-up finishes.
  • December, 2004 - Dog Park ordinances and new rules approved by the City Council. Council also approves MOU with the Friends as well as allows group to move forward to negotiate directly with a contractor to build the park. Park rules and ordinances approved. Pet Smart donates $2500 to group.
  • January, 2005 - L.A. County Fire Dept declares land clean for use as a dog park. Friends given until May to enter into agreement with contractor.
  • February, 2005 - Council approves small increase in dog license fees to offset dog park maintenance costs as part of its animal control program. Date for Boneyard Bash 3 set for October 15, 2005.
  • March, 2005 - Group holds Baja Fresh Fundraiser. City works on negotiations to improve park site, so group delays entering into contract to build the park.
  • April, 2005 - Friends enters into MOU with City of Culver City to allow the building of the park. Group has appx. $75,000 towards building of park.
  • May, 2005 - City of Culver City enters into agreement that will result in removal of oil pipes and telephone poles from the Boneyard. Friends given until July 1st to enter into contract with builder as oil pipe agreement had delayed final park design. Projected park opening by November 2005.
  • June, 2005 - Friends volunteers staff Low Cost Vaccination Clinic for City & County. Pipe and debris removal from Boneyard proceeds rapidly. Date set for Groundbreaking Ceremony. Friends enters into initial contract with ValleyCrest Landscape Development to build park.
  • July, 2005 - Friends sign final contract with ValleyCrest and City enters agreement to allow them to enter City land to build. 2300 postcards mailed to supporters to Save the Date of October 15, 2005 for Boneyard Bash 3 fundraiser. Groundbreaking takes place Saturday, July 23rd, with large crowd including City Council, City Commissioners, City Staff, EPA, Friends Board Members, Major donors and community volunteers. Kick-off meeting takes place with ValleyCrest, City Staff and Friends to discuss details of project. Group continues to raise money for project.
  • August, 2005 – Group has a booth at Fiesta La Ballona, bringing in more members. Oil pipes are removed from the site, paving the way for construction to begin.
  • September, 2005 – Auction items are announced for Boneyard Bash 3. Meetings take place to plan construction of the park.
  • October, 2005 – Boneyard Bash 3 is held and raises the most money ever – over $20,000!! Permits are issued by the City to ValleyCrest Landscape Development Company and construction begins on the park.
  • November, 2005 – Decomposed granite is installed on the site. The City votes to apply for (and accept) a grant of $150,000 from the County of Los Angeles for Phase 2 of the Boneyard Development. This money to be administered by the City of Culver City. Volunteers are honored at a special meeting and party.
  • December, 2005 – Trees are planted and fencing goes into the park. All Phase 1 park items have been adopted: 10 trees, 8 benches, 2 water fountains, and 1 bulletin board. First dogs enter the park to "test" it for holes, problems, etc.
  • January, 2006 – Grants subcommittee meets for the first time to work on large grants for future park development. Main gate is removed and park is 90% completed. Garbage cans and bags dispensers are installed.
  • February, 2006 – Final City inspections take place with park to open very soon.
Gee, that's a lot of work in such
a short time. Keep it up!
I want my dog park!

Historical Report as of February, 2006

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