New access point for paddle sports launched (VIDEO & GALLERY)

The new accessible canoe and kayak launch just south of the Suncor Agora in Centennial Park. August 6, 2020 Photo by Melanie Irwin

Paddlers have easier access to Sarnia Bay with the opening of a new accessible canoe and kayak launch Thursday morning.

City staff and Sarnia City Councillors were joined by members of Sarnia’s accessibility committee for a ceremony.

Sarnia Accessibility Coordinator Dale Mosley said they’ve had a really positive response so far.

“We wanted to make it accessible for everybody,” said Mosley. “We have people with disabilities that really wanted to use it and keep using it for the sport and activity that they love. Even as they age, people sometimes have disabilities as part of that.”

Mosley thinks it will become a popular attraction.

“Hopefully it attracts tourism and hopefully there’s more people that will be able to come out and use the bay, where we didn’t have that option before, now we have it. It’s away from the boat launch and I’m hoping this bay is going to full of kayakers and boaters and canoeists.”

The launch features a wheelchair ramp, a transfer bench, railings, a ladder and life ring.

Currently there is no agreement to offer canoe an kayak rentals in the park, but the service is one the city is interested in.

The $75,000 project was installed quickly by JS Marine after just being approved by Sarnia council in June.

While the dock will stay in the water over the winter it will be transferred over to the boat launch area.