Tompkins First Run Park



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Every year the "Friends of First Run" celebrate Halloween by throwing a huge party for dogs and dog owners. The famous Halloween parade features hundreds of dogs dressed up in various costumes, competing for prizes. There is also a raffle held to help raise money to renovate the dog run.

The community which fought so hard to make FIRST RUN a reality, raised money and organized volunteers.
Today, even those who have no love for dogs say that First Run was instrumental in bringing Tompkins First Run Park back from its dark days—providing a center of community renewal that the neighborhood desperately needed. Today, First Run is a source of immense pride and devotion for countless people.
First Run was established before much was known about constructing healthy, off-leash areas for dogs. First Run is currently working with New York City Department of Parks and Recreation to renovate the run.
The name "First Run" is no accident the Tompkins Square Dog Run was the first official dog park established by the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation. In the mid 1980s, before the community had been granted an official space, Tompkins Square Park was a dangerous place suffering from the ill effects of rampant drug use and crime that plagued New York. The founders of First Run were not willing to give up their place in Tompkins First Run Park, and fought the perils of the day—and City Hall!—to demand a safe place to gather with their dogs.
Eventually the Parks Department listened. As ex-parks commissioner Henry Stern stated, "starting the run was just a good idea".
Tompkins First Run Park Department included one problem: the run must be managed and funded by the community (not the city.)