BUTLER COUNTY, Pa. (KDKA) — A local group decided the docks at Moraine State Park needed an upgrade to make a summer pastime more inclusive.
At the state park, people used to have to access the lake by trudging through murky water or crouching down on the concrete and rubber docks. But a new ADA-compliant dock is changing the game. Leadership Butler County installed the dock this weekend with the help of park rangers.READ MORE: Police Investigating Deadly Late Night Shooting In Homewood
The dock has a wide ramp for wheelchair access and a trough system to place and steady a kayak or canoe. People can then slip into the boat from the sliding transfer bench and pull themselves into the water using the sidebars and rollers.
“I think every state park and every local waterway should have one because it brings so much opportunity to people,” said Carrie Ferguson of Leadership Butler County.READ MORE: Woman Dies After Being Shot In Homewood Early On Monday Morning
Members of Leadership Butler County told KDKA’s Royce Jones that they hope installing the dock will encourage people across western Pennsylvania who have given up riding because of mobility issues to get back on the water.
Ferguson said the dock is already making a splash among park visitors, telling KDKA, “One lady wrote, ‘I have three bulging disks and I haven’t even been on the water yet, but I can finally maybe do that this summer because of this dock.'”
The new dock cost the group $30,000 in fundraising dollars. In the future, the dock might even include a space where people can lock up their wheelchairs while they ride.MORE NEWS: PROSPR Now: Pine Richland Volunteer Parent Group Calls District's Response To Sexual Assault Allegations Into Question
Click here for more information about how Leadership Butler County is raising money for future projects.