The Phenix Community Dog Park in Benicia, California is in a bedroom community of San Francisco – just north and east of San Fran -- Fog City. It sits adjacent to the Carquinez Strait that connects Suisun Bay to San Pablo Bay, which goes, respectively, inland, if you're going that way, and off to the Pacific Ocean if you want to find deep water. The park is known as very friendly and community oriented, as well it might be.
Not only was the park begun and upgraded through community efforts, but the entire one-acre park was re-sod in 2000 with the help of 40 volunteers and about 10 city workers who unloaded and planted three and a half semi-trucks of sod during one busy and very industrious July morning. The park, which opened in 1993, is fenced with both large and small dog sections and has two swimming areas.
There are restrooms available, as well as drinking water, benches, some shade and “poop bags” on supply. On top of that, the park is named, well, for a dog and dedicated to service dogs everywhere. The dog whose name graces the park was a Benicia city police dog who retired the same year as the opening of the park – so he was a local hero who was around at the right time.
“During his spare time,” the Benicia Dogs website says, “Phenix competed in the 1993 Police Olympic Games.” Out of that, it is interesting to note that a service dog had some “spare time” at all. Now we know. Phenix, however, took home a bronze medal in the competition: Pizza and biscuits for everyone!
Moreover, the City of Benicia has a Canine Coalition comprised of local dog lovers who take their mission of public outreach and dog park creation very diligently. Since the opening of The Phenix Community Dog Park, the group has pushed to open up three other dog walking areas and helped to write the city's local ordinances concerning canines.