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Hawkeye Downs giving dogs plenty of room to run this winter

Venue to offer indoor, off-leash dog park on select Wednesdays

The South Expo Hall at Hawkeye Downs in southwest Cedar Rapids, seen in December 2017, will host an indoor, off-leash do
The South Expo Hall at Hawkeye Downs in southwest Cedar Rapids, seen in December 2017, will host an indoor, off-leash dog park this winter. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)

CEDAR RAPIDS — Select Wednesday nights through March, Hawkeye Downs will be hosting an indoor, off-leash dog park for local pups.

“We know Iowa winters can be hard on pets and their owners, and this year is no exception with COVID-19 concerns,” Jenn Draper, executive director and events manager at Hawkeye Downs, said. “Our space provides an ideal location to allow for plenty of social distancing and room to run.”

Dates available for the dogs to explore the climate-controlled environment of the South Expo Hall are Nov. 4 and 18, Dec. 2 and 16, Jan. 6 and 20, Feb. 3 and 24, and March 10.

The North Hall will feature a mini vendor market with local businesses.

“This component allows vendors who have experienced a hard summer for sales to continue vending into the winter.” Draper said.

Cost is $5 per dog with free admission for owners. Vendors, staff and patrons will be asked to wear a mask while in the building. Hand sanitizing and pet cleanup stations will be provided.

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