The Williamsburg dog park off George Hays Road, which closed due to flooding in early spring, should be opening again in the near future. Flooding took out the whole fence around the park in addition to other damage.
Mayor Roddy Harrison told the city council during a meeting Thursday that while the fence is back up, the park hasn’t re-opened yet.
“We are really close to opening it back up,” he said adding that benches are already in place in addition to stations for pets to relieve themselves.
The park will be divided up into two sections with one part for larger dogs and the other part for smaller dogs.
The council also discussed the upcoming Gateway to the Cumberlands Jeep Jamboree, which is set for Oct. 15-17.
Williamsburg Main Street Manager Nannie Hays said that about 280 Jeeps and about 400 people are signed up for the annual event. Jeep owners from across the country come to Williamsburg for the jamboree, and then embarking on a number of off-roading adventures, which will take place primarily in rural parts of southern Whitley County and northern Campbell County, Tennessee.
After a day of off-roading adventure, participants will return to the Williamsburg Tourism Center where dinner will be served.
“We think we have it figured out how to take care of them and be safe,” Hays told the council.
Tourism officials plan to utilize both gyms in the building, and the participants will return in groups after they complete their trail rides, which will vary in length and time.
She said the biggest worry concerns the restrooms, including sanitizing the restrooms after use and limiting the number of people in the restrooms at a given time.
Millys on Main will be providing the sack lunch for participants each day, Hays said.
In addition, the council discussed increased foot traffic downtown, which many attributed to new businesses that have opened downtown over the last year, including: The Brick Oven, The Butcher’s Pub, Moonbow Mercantile, Cumberland River Coffee, and Moonlight Meat Shop.
Councilwoman Patty Faulkner noted that there is a lot of foot traffic now downtown in the late afternoons and evenings.
Mayor Roddy Harrison said that it isn’t just college students or older people, but a mixture of folks.
The topic of how restaurants and bars were doing with masks, capacity limits and other COVID-19 requirements also came up during the discussion with Harrison noting that city officials have had to have discussions with some owners over the last week or so.
Harrison said he emphasized to the businesses that people are paying attention to things, such as whether workers are wearing masks.
“You aren’t going to lose business, if you have a mask on. You might lose business if you don’t have a mask on,” he added.