New Peachland waterfront feature would expand use for everyone - InfoNews

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New Peachland waterfront feature would expand use for everyone

The new 400 foot pier will be located along the downtown section of Peachland's waterfront.
March 01, 2017 - 5:30 PM

PEACHLAND - A new pier planned for the picturesque downtown waterfront in Peachland could be completed as early as this year, if fundraising comes through in time.

The 400-foot long, eight-foot wide pier would run parallel to the lake right in Heritage Park, Peachland Pier Group president Eldon Kerbes says.

“There’s nothing else like this in the Okanagan,” Kerbes says. “We have one of the longest continuous walkways along the shore with no obstructions, this will be an added amenity to that.”

Discussions surrounding the pier started in early 2014, when the Peachland Lions organization asked the community what they would like service clubs to do. In conjunction with the Peachland Rotary Club and the Peachland Sportsmen’s Association, the idea of the pier was born.

The Sportsman’s Association has been holding an annual event since 1989 called Fishing Forever which allows people with disabilities the opportunity to fish, says spokesperson Al Springer.

“Right now, there is a three-foot wide dock to go out on to fish. If someone is in a wheelchair and they fall off, there’s no getting out,” Springer says. “This would allow handicapped people, as well as everyone else, to fish safely, or just a place to look at the view.”

The dock will be set back 20 feet from the shore and will have three wheelchair ramps. This ability to fish in deeper water would increase the amount of fish one can catch.

“At the moment it’s difficult to fish for the disabled because there’s all kind of rocks and you’re always getting hooked up - if you’re handicapped it’s hard work,” Springer said.

So far, $150,000 of the total $400,000 needed for the project has been raised.

The Peachland Pier Group hopes the money will be raised by fall of 2017.

“I really hope it happens this year,” Peachland Mayor Cindy Fortin says. “We’re just in the fundraising process at the moment.”

Once completed, Fortin says she’ll be casting her rod off the dock.

“I love fishing - I even do it the old way and put the worm on my hook.”

According to Kerbes, once funded, the project wouldn’t take too long to complete.

“Putting the piles down would take about a week, the deck can be put together off site, so all-in-all I would say a month or so.”

However, the dock isn’t the only thing in the works for Peachland’s waterfront.

This summer an inflatable waterpark will be put in the lake near 13th St. - just across from Bliss Bakery. The company Wibit has already put anchors down gearing up for the summer.

Currenty, Wibit has floating waterparks in Kelowna and Penticton

“There’s a lot going on in Peachland,” Fortin says. “We may be a small town, but we’re hopping!”

An open house on the pier project will take place March 1, from 4:30 - 7:30 at the Peachland Community Centre.

Image Credit: Contributed/PEACHLAND PIER GROUP

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