Goldie Gibbons Dog Park

Goldie Gibbons Park

Goldie Gibbons Park is our second and newest dog park in the Bedington area of Berkeley County.

Membership Registration

Our dog parks are membership-based and run from January 1st to December 31st for all.  You can join or renew your membership in our Administrative Office or now, online.  Regardless of how you register, there are required documents that will need to be provided and approved.  You will also need to pick up purchased key fobs from our office as we are unable to mail these to you.  Below is important information as you register regarding the dog park membership and process:

 

  • You will need to provide a copy of your dog(s) current vaccination record from your vet’s office (West Virginia requires rabies; Parvo and Bordetella are recommended) and a copy of the dog tag county license. If you register online,  you will be asked to upload these documents.  Our office staff will approve them and contact you if there is any wrong or missing information.
  • You will need to log into your account (if you have a current dog park membership, you will already have an account) or create one in order to register for the dog park.  You will not see it as an option in a search of our online registration without being logged in.  If you have any trouble or are unsure if you have an account, please contact our office for assistance.
  • The membership fee is $15 (regardless of when you register) for the first dog and $5 for each additional dog (max of 4 dogs per household).
  • Members may only take two (2) dogs per person at any time. Please read all dog park rules that are provided with your registration and receipt. You can also find a copy in our downloadable forms 
  • Dogs must be 6 months of age or older to join. 
  • Entry and exit from the dog parks work using a key fob system. New members must purchase at least one key fob, no more than two per household for a one-time fee of $10 per key fob.  This fee will not be required in future renewals unless you need to replace a damaged, lost or non-functioning key fob.  If you do not renew within the specified grace period (window to register each year is typically the week after Thanksgiving through the second week of February), then those key fobs will be deactivated.  Customers who come in after the registration deadline can still renew but will need to pay a $5 reactivation fee (can take up to 48 hours to have a working key fob) or purchase a new key fob (for immediate access).
  • Membership provides access to BOTH the Wurzburg Dog Park (located at Ambrose Park) and the Goldie Gibbons Dog Park (located in the Bedington area at the north end of the county).
  • If you have any questions about the membership or registration process, please feel free to call our Administrative Office or email us and we will be happy to help.
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The History of Goldie Gibbons Dog Park

This property was purchased by Goldie and Gladstone Gibbons on November 2, 1944, from J.W. LeMaster and his wife, Azaline V. LeMaster. A large wooden Victorian building once stood proudly in the northwest corner of this 1.7 acre parcel and the structure became home to whoever owned the property at the time. Along with being a homestead, through the years this structure housed a general store, the Bedington Post Office, an office to Doctor Andy LeMaster, and a station where local folks would wait to board the Cumberland Valley train. They would purchase their ticket to take them south to Martinsburg or north to Hagerstown. Anyone brought to Doctor LeMaster’s office with an illness or injury that required hospitalization was loaded onto the train and taken to Martinsburg or Hagerstown, depending on which direction the train was headed at the time of need.

(Goldie Gibbons)

Virginia Lee Gibbons was born on October 11, 1946 and became an eye witness to what lead to this property becoming a public park and dog park. As Virginia Lee grew up on this property, she saw her mom, Goldie, begin to take in stray animals. Before long, many dogs had taken up residence at the Gibbons’ property. Goldie took in animals that were sick, injured, or simply didn’t have a place to stay. She would treat and care for the animals until they regained their strength then, through very loving effort, tried to find them a good family willing to adopt them. If she was unsuccessful, she would adopt them herself. Virginia once stated in a newspaper article that she had no idea how many dogs had romped around on this property. The good folks of the Bedington area referred to Goldie Gibbons as the Bedington Humane Society because of the loving care and concern she had for animals.

(Virginia Lee Gibbons)

Virginia Lee left the area to attend school where she studied law and was later hired by the federal government as an attorney for the Environmental Protection Agency. In the early 1970’s, Virginia Lee returned home for a visit and purchased a mobile home for her mother and placed it in the center of the property. Goldie Gibbons made her residence in this home until her death in 1981. In the mid-1980’s, the old Victorian house had become dangerously weak and dilapidated. Virginia decided to have it torn down and used the mobile home as a rental property in the 1990’s. When the mobile home was removed, the property became a vacant piece of land and Virginia was living in Alexandria, Virginia. Many people contacted Virginia wanting to purchase the property, but all were turned away because Virginia had a plan in mind for this parcel of land. Virginia Lee contacted long-time Bedington resident, Phil Martin, about maintaining the property in her absence. He agreed and this arrangement lasted until 2016 when Virginia donated the land, for the purpose of becoming a public park area, to the Berkeley County Council.

The design and construction of the park would be turned over to the Martinsburg-Berkeley County Parks &
Recreation Board. The M-BC Parks & Recreation Board would be responsible for operating and maintaining
the park as well. Virginia Lee passed away on June 15, 2016. Funds were given from her estate to the Eastern
West Virginia Community Foundation to allow for construction of the park, but also to establish an endowment
to help maintain the park in future years.

From her hospital bed, she expressed her immense joy to know that the dream she had to honor her mother,
Goldie, would become a reality. Of course, a significant part of this park would be a dog park.

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