Letters to the editor

by Staff
Wednesday, March 13, 2013

An alternate view

The Lumina News article of March 6th, by Reporter Kelly Corbett unfortunately did not mention the existence of the public support for the proposed kayak and paddle board launch on Pelican Drive.

In fact there is a supportive petition to be found on Change.org

link: www.change.org/petitions/wrightsville-beach-board-of-alderman-support-the-development-of-a-kayak-sup-launch-ramp-off-pelican-drive

This link has been naturally shared across Facebook by many who share water sport enthusiasm and environmental interest.

Here’s why it’s important: 

On the islands of Wrightsville Beach there are very limited and not very safe points of access to the salt marsh and inland waterways for non-power driven water sports such as kayaking and SUPing. The town dock at Wynn Plaza ‘s with its limited parking (bordered by Waynick Blvd.) poses a safety issue at the street side as well as water side on the very busy Bank’s Channel. The State Boat Ramp to the North of Trask Bridge is a very busy and aggressive place including the ICW traffic and significant tidal currents. Parking at this ramp facility is only permitted for cars with trailers. Kayaks and SUP are usually car topped and thus not permitted to park here. Street-end accesses are few and far between if you don’t mind climbing over slippery oyster laden rubble.

 The inlet on Lee’s Cut along Pelican Drive, provides a calm point of access in a No Wake Zone and creates access to the entire north side of Wrightsville’s pristine salt marsh areas. These areas are otherwise difficult to reach. 

Kayaking and SUPing are quiet and respectful water activities that have been and should continue to be encouraged by the Town›s administration. Placing Town resources into service by support for this positive type of activity is the proper thing to do and should be seen in the light of the increasing administration discussion, ordinances and enforcement strategies to address the unwanted/unacceptable water sport activities regarding aggressive jet skis, alcohol and unsafe power boating and the infamous reckless holiday weekend activities at Masonboro. 

Kayaking and SUPing enthusiasts and beginners alike have demonstrated their respectful approach to the quality of life that we seek here in Wrightsville Beach through their stewardship for the environment. Many proudly remove trash and debris from the marsh encountered on their voyage. 

The residents Channel Walk need not fear these water sports nor their participants. We are not talking about wild, aggressive, careless behavior. We are nature lovers who seek to enjoy the peace and quiet and the beauty our marine environment has to offer.

Their stated concerns of noise, congestion  and trespass simply don›t apply. People using this ramp would simply have no reason to seek to trespass at Channel Walk. In fact, it would not be surprising to see power boats using this new launch ramp site to pickup passengers who have parked their boat trailers along Pelican Drive instead of Channel Walk’s dock as they state. 

Parking to the East along Pelican is on a first come first serve basis...early bird catches the worm. Additional parking is available in the TOWB overflow lot near the Wrightsville Museum (grass lot) across Salisbury Street ... a short walk.

Support for this Kayak and SUP launch ramp is greatly appreciated.

Neal Briggi

The Henderson Street League for the Environment and Responsible Government

Ed. note: Kelly Corbett’s story in the March 7 issue of Lumina News solely covered the proceedings of the Wrightsville Beach Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee. 

Copyright 2014 Lumina News. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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