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The new Caribou Bark Park offers dogs a public place to run around and play

The new Caribou Bark Park offers dogs a public place to run around and play
The new Caribou Bark Park offers dogs a public place to run around and play

IDAHO FALLS – A brand new 45,000-square-foot dog park welcomes furry friends to a world of socializing and discovery.

Officially opened over a week ago with a grand opening by the Greater Idaho Falls Chamber, Caribou Bark Park on Easy Street behind Winco in Idaho Falls is a fenced-in area where dogs can run and play without owners having to worry about where they end up.

It consists of two fenced, triangular sections with a division into large and small dogs. Caribou Bark Park features benches, seven new shade trees, a water spigot and a Mutt Mitt for dog waste bags, developers said.

Opening ceremony of the Chamber
Developers of the Greater Idaho Falls Chamber and Caribou Crossing cut the ribbon on the park. | David Pace, EastIdahoNews.com

The park is a collaboration between the developer of the nearby Caribou Crossing townhomes – Haven Idaho – and the City of Idaho Falls. When fully completed, the Caribou Crossing project will consist of 89 townhomes.

The idea for a dog park originally came from a community trunk-or-treat of 600 residents. In a Google form, 60% of respondents said they would like to see a dog park there, says Julia Ruiz, marketing manager at Caribou Crossing.

“The developers decided to partner with the City of Idaho Falls and then give back by first creating this dog park,” said Brad Camphouse, real estate agent with Homes of Idaho and listing agent for Caribou Crossing.

The city will maintain the park, while Caribou Crossing will provide the funds for construction.

In the future, the developers plan to build a shade structure and agility equipment for the dogs.

Frisbee at Caribou Bark Park
A dog chases a Frisbee at Caribou Bark Park. | David Pace, EastIdahoNews.com

The dog owners who visited Bark Park for the opening were excited about the new space.

“I’m glad it’s so close to home and not across town,” said Ammon resident Edie Schwarz. “I have a small yard, which is manageable, but this is much better, and (my pet Sadie) gets to interact with other dogs, so that’s wonderful. You get to know some of your neighbors, too.”

Jenikah and Cedric Meservy brought their two dachshunds, Maverick and Lily, to explore the area.

“I love how big and spacious it is,” said Jenikah Meservy. “I like that there are small trees that provide shade for the dogs.”

The couple exercises their pets “almost daily” and also takes them to the Snake River Animal Park. They are grateful to now have two opportunities to meet new people and their dogs in Idaho Falls.

Award for the funniest dog
This little dog won the award for “funniest” costume. | David Pace, EastIdahoNews.com

The grand opening also included a dog costume contest, a hot dog barbecue and music.

The award for the “coolest” dog was won by Lonnie Lewis’ poodle Dandy.

Lewis moved to Idaho Falls a year ago and owns a dog grooming salon.

“I like that there are small and large (dog areas) and that they are separated from each other,” she said. “As a dog groomer, that’s super important because you don’t want to have any injuries or attacks or anything like that.”

Award for “Superest”
Naomi and her dog Berta received the “super-est dog” award. | David Pace, EastIdahoNews.com

So far, the Caribou Crossing project is in phase one; 17 residential units have already been built and 12 more are under construction.

In 2026 or 2027, when all three phases of Caribou Crossing are completed, developers will build additional parking for the community on the north side of the substation behind WinCo.

“We want to build pickleball courts, a playground and a fitness trail,” said Tanner Verhoeks, lead developer of Caribou Crossing. “We’ve also talked about expanding the dog park into that area (south of the substation) so there’s an (expanded) area for big and small dogs. We’ve talked about building a hobbit hill. In the winter, there could be a sledding hill there for the kids.”

Bark Park 2
A balloon arch with puppy motifs commemorates the opening of Caribou Bark Park in Idaho Falls. | David Pace, EastIdahoNews.com

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