Overton Park let the dogs out Saturday morning at the unleashing of the new Overton Bark dog park.
More than 150 dogs were in attendance, filing in from a one-mile parade that started in Overton Square.
"You said you wanted a place for your dogs, and we gave it to you," said Tina Sullivan, executive director of Overton Park Conservancy. "There were a lot of hoops to jump through to get this in action, but we delivered."
YoLo Frozen Yogurt sponsored the event, and Hollywood Feed sponsored the dog park.
Hollywood Feed handed out treats for the dogs, and YoLo handed out frozen yogurt for the owners.
"This is one of our ways of giving back to the community," said Shawn McGhee, owner of Hollywood Feed. "It wasn't a matter of if we would get involved, it was a matter of when."
The $175,000 dog park, in construction since December, has handmade benches, dog obstacle courses made from fallen logs and shade trees.
There are two gated playing sections for dogs to enter, one for large dogs and one for smaller dogs.
Each has a double gate so dogs cannot escape.
The green water stations are built so owners and pets can drink at the same time, with one spout at normal fountain height and another near the ground.
"There's not a lot of places for dogs to be free in Memphis," said Brianna Siebert, a Bartlett resident and owner of three dogs. "I love that it is nature-filled, so this will be a regular spot for me."
A costume contest for the dogs brought out a lot of well-dressed canines.
Siebert dressed her dogs as "Peg-a-Leg Pirate," a Victoria's Secret angel and a punk princess.
Those in attendance who didn't bring or own a dog had the chance to adopt one for the event.
From The Commercial Appeal:
The Wuvbirds, Walrus and Side Street Steppers performed during the party while dogs were allowed unleashed in the park.
The opening of Overton Bark is the first of a number of projects planned for Overton Park this year.
There are plans to remake the playground and restrooms near Rainbow Lake, as well as add some restrooms on the east side of the park. There also are plans to improve the bike and pedestrian entrances and connections.
"This outdoes it all," Mayor A C Wharton said. "It's a great day for Memphis, not just for the four-legged friends, but also for their two-legged caretakers."