11/19/07 — Stoney Creek Alliance will try to get ideas for proposed park

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Stoney Creek Alliance will try to get ideas for proposed park

By Anessa Myers
Published in News on November 19, 2007 1:46 PM

The Stoney Creek Park Alliance is getting down to business, with the first task being to decide what specific features will be in the new park.

And one of those just might be a spot for those with paws.

From walking trails to picnic areas, the citizen surveys, which concluded Friday, will help alliance members figure out what most of the population would like to see in the park.

"We have to think, 'OK. What do we want to start to raise money for?'" Chairman Peter Roethling said.

About 1,000 people have filled out the surveys so far, Parks and Recreation Director Sonya Shaw said, and the requests should be tabulated by mid- to late December.

"We will have some solid information by the January meeting," she said.

One of the features that people usually ask for is a dog park, and it's an easy goal to accomplish, Mrs. Shaw added.

"There is little to no headache," she said, and the maintenance required would not be particularly overbearing.

Roethling said he has been to a few dog parks around the area, and he was impressed.

"It made me see, I could really picture it at Stoney Creek Park. I have only had positive comments on the possibility of having one here," he said.

What alliance members plan to do now is to make sure they start to have "tangible" plans for specific items in the park facility as they continue to pursue funding and support for the project.

And what would help, member D.J. Coles said, would be to meet with other areas around the state and ask them how they made their parks so successful.

"It seems like we're trying to do it all by ourselves," he said. "I would just tell them, 'Hey, look, we're impressed with what you did. How did we do this?' It's easier than we're making it."

Asking representatives from towns like Kinston, Raleigh, Rocky Mount and Wilson to come to a meeting would also help.

"I'd like to have four people at our meeting sit in front of us and say, "This is what we did. Here's how we did it. Here's who we contacted. Thank you very much,'" he said.

The alliance plans to take trips to other towns to look at their park systems and, once they finalize the schedule, the trips will be open for public participation.