This week, unbeknownst to us, the MTA was scheduled to do work in the park.  We are shocked and dismayed not only at the lack of respect they showed for our park, but the lack of communication in this matter.  This is by no means the fault of the Parks Dept, but the MTA, who obviously did not follow any of the guidelines that the Parks Dept gave.  We do not recommend that anyone use the park at this time, but if you do, we recommend that you leash your dog.  The pictures below do not do this destruction justice.  If you are upset by this, please email us at  We want to have a paper trail that there are people that use this park that are not pleased with the disrespect the MTA showed to our space.  We are currently working with the Parks Dept on this situation, and hope that the matter will be resolved quickly.  We will keep you updated as to the progress.   These pictures do not do the damage justice.  Please be careful if you take your dog to the park.


Astoria Park Alliance is Helping the Rockaways!

This weekend, ARF-ARF's friends at the Astoria Park Alliance will be hosting their annual Leaf Fest Cleanup. They are generously using the opportunity to host a drive for Sandy relief in Rockaway. Not only will they be collecting animal supplies for our December drive, but also monetary donations. Since we like to spread the love, ARF-ARF is compiling a list of organizations to disperse money to.  Please tell your friends who live in or near Astoria!

Guardians of Rescue Looking for a Foster

Christine lost everything in the flood that followed "Sandy". She is running a shelter for other displaced victims of the storm and needs our help. Tragically, both of Christine's cats died 4 months ago in the same accident that caused Poochie to go blind. While Christine was at work, her landlord went in to her home without her knowing and treated it with pesticides. She had just started to recover from the loss of her beloved cats and get poor Poochie adjusted to living without her sight in her new home when the storm hit....... Now she has lost everything....... she needs our help. Poochie is blind, used to cats but not good with other dogs, so a special home is needed with patience and love to give her. Poochie is sad and confused and needs a safe haven while her owner recovers from this devastating hurricane. If you want to foster Poochie, email the foster application from to


We Are Back Online!

For those of you who view our news feed online, we are truly sorry that we have not been able to keep up.  Since we are entirely made up of volunteers who have also been affected by Superstorm Sandy, many of us were without power and/or regular internet service.  But we were able to connect to Facebook via smartphones, so we were able to get some information out that way and communicate with those who needed help.  Our core is now back up and running, and so are we.  To get you up to speed, this is some of the things that we have been up to since the storm hit:

This was just a snippet of what happened to the dog park.  In total, we had 12 very large trees down in our 2.5 acre space. 

Our storage container was completely moved off of its foundation and turned around.  Normally, it is closer to the entrance, and runs parallel to Rockaway Freeway.  On the side across from the plain white side, is a large mural inspired by artwork from elementary students in Rockaway.  That side should be facing the street.  Everything inside the container was knocked over, and since the container took on water, all of our supplies for events, park maintenance, outreach, and items we had collected for our shelter drives is now destroyed. 

After surveying the damage from the park and speaking with our parks department, we found that there was nothing to be done until the trees get cleared.  Since it took so long to be able to even get into the park in order to open the container, there is nothing salvageable.  At this point, we will probably need someone to come in who is trained in dealing with mold removal.  We will also need to hire someone to move the container back to its foundation.  We would need to raise money, but that could be done later.  There was nothing to be done at the present.

We were sure people needed help, but who, and how would we start?  We tried to contact our regulars and members to find out if they were ok and if they needed any help.  Some only had home phones that were down, some had cell phones that had died, but we did get in touch with a few people.  Many said that they were fine, but some were running out of supplies, while others asked for things for their neighbors.  So we took the money that we had just raised at the Costume Carnival the Saturday before, and went out and bought supplies.  We asked friends who weren't affected if they would like to donate items, and we put out the word for the need for fosters and adopters.  Seeing that we had just received our non profit determination from the IRS the week prior to the storm, we tried to get in touch with larger organizations and businesses, but unfortunately, we still had other paperwork that hadn't been filled out yet, and there just wasn't time for that.  Since many of us no longer had cars, we borrowed rides, and went around to help.  We found fosters for 7 turtles, an adopter for a Russian tortoise, rescued one dog, helped find a home for a bunny, and looked for a foster for a parrot.  We delivered dozens of cans of wet dog and cat food, 10 bags of dry dog food, leashes, collars, cat litter, pans, 2 bags of parrot food, 2 bags of hamster food and 2 packs of small animal bedding, one bag of rabbit food, and a few toys for animals.  Our Executive Director spoke at a town hall meeting on B94th St to let people know that help was available.  We even had New York Tails and the host of Pets in the City on Pet Life Radio come out to spend the day with us and do some stories about what was going on in our area, and how it was affecting the pet owners of Rockaway.  We even handed out supplies to a couple of local rescues who were helping with pets that were being taken care of. 

Now that the city has come in to help, the work is easier, but it is still far from over.  We still have animals in need of homes.  Some people still have missing pets, or are in need of help.  We are committed to helping in whatever way we can, even while we are still getting ourselves in order.

If you would like to help or know someone in need of help, please email us at or call 917-903-6518.  There is no donation too small, or any man hours that will go to waste.  We thank everyone who has already donated money, supplies, and time.  You have made it possible for Rockaway to recover and start rebuilding.  We hope that this help will continue as we move forward.

We are currently coming up with a plan of how we will move forward.  We have several ideas of things that we would like to implement.  Things that Rockaway should have always had, but there was never enough time or money.  Hopefully, this will change.  Stay tuned.

To like us on Facebook, click this link:

To see videos of the day with New York Tails, go here:

To hear the interview on Pet Life Radio, click here:

ASPCA will be in Rockaway Tomorrow!

The ASPCA will be in Rockaway tomorrow handing out pet supplies.  They will be handing out cat and dog food, and providing medical services for pets along with microchipping.  This will be on 116th.  There will also be another possible location at B94th.  ARF-ARF will also be handing out supplies tomorrow to St. Francis on 129th.  Stay tuned to our Facebook page for updates, as we will continue to try to help organizing getting more supplies into Rockaway. 

Also, we are putting together a list of people who need to find fosters or pet friendly housing, both temporary and long term.  Please contact us regarding your needs via email at, or via our Facebook page.

If you are not connected to us on Facebook, please click on the link to like us:

"It's My Park Day!" Tomorrow

Come join us for our Fall cleanup to celebrate Partnerships for Parks "It's My Park Day!"  We will be filling in holes, cleaning up garbage, cleaning up the paths, painting, and putting up new snow fencing on the front gate.  There is no special skill needed.  Feel free to bring tools you feel comfortable working with, but please note that it is not necessary.  Parks will supply us with tools.  All volunteers will receive refreshments and an entry into a raffle for a goodie bag.  Please remember that all children MUST be closely supervised.

ARF-ARF is Now an Official Charity!

We are pleased to announce that ARF-ARF has finally received approval from the IRS, and is now an official 501c3 public charity in the eyes of the federal government.  Now our next step is to register with the state government.

Please note that if you make any contributions to ARF-ARF, that money is tax exempt.  We will be making this announcement publicly at the Canine Costume Carnival on October 27th.  You won't want to miss it!

Thank you to all who have supported us so far.  With this new tax status, we are hoping to be able to do even bigger and better things, and hope that we can continue to count on your support.

ARF-ARF Presents to CB14 Parks and Public Safety Tonight!

Zina Skachinsky, Executive Director of ARF-ARF, will be presenting about the needs of Freeway Dog Park to the CB14 Parks and Public Safety Committee.  The meeting will be taking place at 7pm in the Peninsula Mediation Room.  Come out and show your support for the largest dog park in NYC.

Our Costume Carnival will soon be here!

In just a few weeks we will be celebrating our 6th annual Canine Costume Carnival.  There will be lots of activities for both people and dogs, not to mention our costume contest (registration ends at noon so don't be late!).  Don't forget to bring an item for our shelter drive, which will go to benefit Heavenly Angels Rescue.  They will be at our event with some adoptable animals.  See the flyer below for more info.  You won't want to miss it!

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