While many towns and cities will put up plaques to commemorate famous residents, Riverside, IA has one for someone who hasn’t been born yet. The town has a claim to fame as the future birthplace of James Tiberius Kirk, captain of the Starship Enterprise. Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry wrote in The Making of Star Trek that Kirk had been born in Iowa in March of 2228, and in March 1985, Riverside’s sci-fi loving city council unanimously decided to proclaim itself as the captain’s hometown.
As if that wasn’t enough, the town has taken this premise to warp factor nine -- it’s home to the Voyager Home Riverside History Museum, locally referred to as the "Star Trek Museum". You can’t enter with your pooch, of course, but the city is currently fundraising, and soon you might be able to visit a fascinating statue of Captain Kirk in one of Riverside’s parks.
There’s no designated dog park in Riverside, but you and your buddy are still sure to sniff out something to do! Iowa Township Park is a furrific spot for a leashed walk, and there are some hiking options nearby that are out of this world. You won’t have to boldly go too far to let your furry friend run free, either -- you’ll find some pawesome dog parks a little further afield!
A lovely spot for a sedate stroll, Hall Park sits between the English River and the suburban areas where Riverside’s citizens live long and prosper. There’s a paved walking trail here for you two to stretch all six of your legs on, and two-legged family members might well appreciate the well-maintained playground and sports fields. Not only that, but Hall Park is something of a city hub for community events in the summer -- visit at the right time, and you and your four-legged pal can watch a screened episode of Star Trek, or catch a free concert.
You’d be barking mad not to bring your pooch to Rita’s Ranch Dog Park! Located in the quiet, residential area of Scott Park, Rita’s Ranch isn’t quite as big as the park in Peninsula. Never mind -- there’s enough space for the most rambunctious of pups to burn off some excess energy. Careful, though -- though it might look like the park has a separate small dog area, the fenced enclosure is actually for training. If you and your buddy just popped in to play, you may want to keep an eye on their temperament. Bags and water are provided, so all you have to do is BYOB (Bring Your Own Beast)!