The Boyd Foundation is dedicated to making Tennessee the most pet-friendly state in America, and we’re doing so by building or enhancing dog parks across the state. We’ve just wrapped up our first year of this initiative — the Tennessee Dog Park Dash — and we’re thrilled to tell you all about it.
In our inaugural year, we saw an outpouring of support from communities across the state. From the initial research to the competitive application process, our team quickly realized that there really was a dire need for more safe spaces for our Tennessee pets.
Dog parks allow pets to roam leash-free and play with other dogs in a controlled environment. Studies have also shown that having dogs and actively going to dog parks can have a positive influence on your health. We believe in our vision and only want the best for our pets and people in Tennessee.
Throughout our three-year campaign, the Tennessee Dog Park Dash will impact more than 100 dog parks, and we granted thirty-seven winners in 2018 alone. If your community was awarded in the program’s first year, congratulations!
- West Tennessee: Bolivar, Brownsville, Camden, Decatur County, Dyersburg, Henderson, Humboldt, Lakeland, McKenzie, Memphis, Milan and Pickwick, Tennessee.
- Middle Tennessee: Gallatin, Lawrenceburg, Lewisburg, Manchester, McMinnville, Mount Pleasant, Murfreesboro, Spring Hill and White House, Tennessee.
- East Tennessee: Athens, Bristol, Chattanooga, Cleveland, Crossville, Erwin, Greeneville, Jonesborough, Kingsport, Kingston, Morristown, Rogersville, Spring City, Union County, and Jefferson County, Tennessee.
- Grand Prize winner: Jackson, Tennessee.
Jackson, Tennessee was chosen as the grand prize winner because the community was truly engaged and excited from beginning to end. The city raised money for pet welfare organizations, hosted dog-friendly events, developed fun videos for social media and more.
Though they won the big prize, Jackson certainly wasn’t alone in the fight for our Tennessee pets. Thousands of dollars were raised for animal welfare and new, annual fundraising events were organized across the state. That outcome was exactly the type of friendly competition that we were hoping for.
We had the pleasure of traveling to most of the winning communities in July and August of 2018 to celebrate with local leaders and community members. We heard stories of spouses that first met in the dog park, people that purchased their homes based on proximity to the dog park, and both pets and people that saw improved health from consistent visits to the dog park. Our team documented the trip from start to finish - showcasing our future parks, and of course, our furry friends.
Let’s make more memories in 2019!