Dog Trainers To Adopt Favorite Mililani Park

Rasa Fournier
Wednesday - August 18, 2010
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Jay Haley meets a new four-legged friend, Tony, at Hawaii Dog Foundation’s ‘meet and greet’ for its adoptable dogs last month at Mililani Mauka Dog Park. The next session is from noon to 2 p.m. Aug. 28 at the park, 95-1069 Ukuwai St. Photo by Whitby Bierwolf.

Leeward Training Club has plans in the works to adopt Mililani Waena Park. The club uses the park regularly for dog training, so members would like to give back to the community by cleaning up the grounds.

Club president and training director Ted Ketcham said the group used to do park cleanups many years ago.

“Back then - in the early ‘80s - you didn’t have the graffiti or the vandalism that you do now,” he recalled. “You had occasional problems, but nothing like this. You can’t walk away for 20 minutes without somebody spray-painting or breaking into the bathrooms. It’s pretty horrible.”

Ketcham knows the area well, as he has been an area dog owner since 1977. When he got his first canine, a golden retriever, he quickly signed up for training sessions.

The club currently has classes three times a year and boasts a large membership.

“On any given Saturday,” he noted, “we have more than 200 dogs out there with their associated people.”

Registration for the upcoming session is Aug. 22 and 29. For more information, call Leeward Training Club at 623-6280.

Assistant trainer and Wahiawa police sergeant Deborah Wilson confirms that there is no shortage of manpower.

“We have so many people ready to help,” said Wilson, who spearheads the cleanup effort. “The trainers and the people out here with their dogs, they look at the graffiti and they’re always saying, ‘We’ve got to do something about this. How can we help?’”

Wilson encourages area residents to call police when they hear any sounds coming from the park at night. She said she also has police come by to patrol the area more frequently.

“We already pick up the trash at the park all the time,” she added. “That’s part of what the club does, but we really want to be able to paint over that graffiti.”

With Wilson’s determination and ongoing talks with the city, Mililani Town Association and the police, the park may soon get a needed makeover.

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