What started as a passion project for some fishing aficionados has shaped into something that could improve a stretch of mostly inaccessible lakefront for all.
Nearly 100 people went to a Wednesday night open house for the Peachland Pier project — a 130 metre long pier planned for the south end of the town’s waterfront — and the vast majority offered their support.
“The feedback was really positive,” said Eldon Kerbes, the president of the Peachland Pier Group, society.
“Some people had questions, but most were excited about what’s coming.”
The approvals that are required from federal, provincial and municipal governments as well as First Nations have been attained.
If they can raise the $400,000 needed, construction of the 400 feet long pier should begin by fall.
Nearly $150,000 has been raised to date, and the rest they’re hoping will fill in from personal donations, local industry donations, as well as federal and provincial grant money. Any donation above $20 will get a tax receipt from the town.
Everything from plaques to benches are offered as a bonus for giving.
But, as Kerbes pointed out, the real incentive is the pier itself.
The idea for the project — which has been collaborated on by the Peachland lions, Peachland Rotary and the Sportsman Club — came from the Fishing Forever program. The Sportsman Association has been holding the annual event that allows people with disabilities from across the region the opportunity to fish since 1989, but it wasn’t without some challenges.
“They’re able to fish on this shore, but the trouble is there are rocks and overtime they put there lines in they got stuck,” said Kerbes.
The idea to move fishing access further out, off a pier came from that and the pier has nine fishing bays in its configuration. An added bonus is that more fish will be drawn to the shade of the pier.
The appeal, however, is more far reaching.
“It’s just for people who like the lake,” he said
Helping with the fundraising arm of the project John Grimes. He said that he sees the pier taking shape as a regional landmark, where local industries can find a place to share more about their industries.
“There will be interpretive panels, where stories about our wine and creative industries and First Nation can be shared,” said Grimes.
“We think there’s a real opportunity for different sectors to have their stories told and help with some of these consist.”
For more information, go to https://www.peachlandpier.org/