Friday, March 23, 2012

Lulu the beagle goes to Barnett Park in Orlando -- well, almost

I want to try and check out as many of the dog parks in the area as possible, not just to see the different parks we have in Central Florida, but also as an excuse to take Lulu out for rides, which I think we both enjoy (she seems to enjoy them, at least).

We've been to Dr. Phillips Park, and we went to Barber Park once before I started the blog (I will go back to get pics and do a write-up at some point though, it was awesome). I figured we'd check out Barnett Park on Wednesday. It's just west of Orlando off State Road 50, and is one of Orange County's larger parks, so I figured the dog park must be pretty cool.

I should have lowered my expectations.

First off, when we got there, we couldn't find the place. The signs point to all of Barnett Park's amenities EXCEPT the dog park. I happened to catch it behind one of the playground areas, tucked away in the corner. The big banner on the fence helped, or I never would have known what it was.

From what I could tell, the park is split between a section for small dogs and a section for large dogs. A trail runs in between the two sections.  It looked like there was a covered area for humans, so there was more shade, but other than that it didn't look much different than Dr. Phillips Park, which was disappointing given the size of the park.

But it was hard to tell, because it was so inaccessible. The closest walkway from the parking lot was a bridge over a canal. That bridge on the day I was there was closed for some reason. The only other way to reach it was to walk all the way around to the trail. And since there were no other dogs there anyway, I decided not to do it.

I don't mind work being done, but considering how far away it is from the parking lot and other accessible walkways, some more signs would have been nice. We will try to go back over the weekend. 

Instead, I took Lulu over to Dr. Phillips Park, where she had a grand time until it rained.

Barnett Park is located on State Road 50 (West Colonial Drive) next to the Central Florida Fairgrounds and Exposition Hall. It does have some amazing facilities -- playgrounds, a skate park, a BMX track, a splash park, ball fields, etc. Just wish the dog park was easier to get to.

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