SMITHTOWN, NEW YORK – Suffolk County Legislator Susan A. Berland (D-Dix Hills) and her colleagues in elected office joined with representatives from the Suffolk County Alliance of Chambers and Laborers Local 66 at Blydenburgh County Park to announce the launch of the “Suffolk County Canoe and Kayak Storage Rack Pilot Program”. Together, they unveiled the first of six storage racks for canoes and kayaks which will be located at various parks and beaches across the county beginning Memorial Day.
This initiative, spearheaded by Majority Leader Legislator Berland, will allow residents to rent a space to lock their kayak or canoe for the entire season, making it easier and more convenient for them to enjoy the water in our county parks and beaches. The program was unanimously approved by both the Suffolk County Parks Trustees and then the Suffolk County Legislature at the May 11th General Meeting. The material and labor used to construct the racks were generously donated. The material by the Suffolk County Alliance of Chambers and the labor by Laborers Local 66.
The program allows residents to purchase a seasonal sticker to place on their canoe or kayak. They will then be assigned a specific storage rack location and are responsible for providing their own device(s) to secure the canoe or kayak to the rack. The season will run from Memorial Day through Columbus Day and spaces will be assigned on a first come first serve basis. Storage racks will be located at Blydenburgh County Park, Southaven County Park, Lake Ronkonkoma County Park, Timber Point Golf Course, Indian Island County Park and Smith Point County Park Marina.
Permits can be purchased in-person through the Suffolk County Parks Department at the West Sayville Administration Building (200 Montauk Highway, West Sayville). Those interested in reserving a space may download the form online at https://www.suffolkcountyny.gov/Departments/Parks/Doing-Business/Seasonal-Kayak-Canoe-Storage-Rentals. For Suffolk County residents who are Green Key Card holders there is a $100 fee for a seasonal permit and a $250 fee for non-residents.
“We are so fortunate to live in a place where we have beautiful waterways, beaches and parks,” said Legislator Susan A. Berland. “I sponsored this program to make it easier and more convenient for our residents to access and enjoy the water in our County parks and beaches. Thank you to the Suffolk Alliance of Chambers and Local Laborers 66 for their generous donations and help in getting this program up and running. I look forward to expanding the program to more county parks and beaches in the future. The permit application is now live so sign up soon before all of the spots are gone!”
“Suffolk County parks are a preserved natural playground that provide a safe and fun way to enjoy our region’s beautiful assets. I applaud Legislator Berland for spearheading this exciting initiative that provides Suffolk residents with the accessibility and convenience to experience the best of what our parks have to offer,” said Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone.
“The “Suffolk County Canoe and Kayak Storage Rack Pilot Program” is a great way to ensure residents can enjoy the many waterways in our county by giving them a place to store their canoes and kayaks during the summer,” said Presiding Officer Rob Calarco. “I offer my sincere thanks to Majority Leader Legislator Susan A. Berland for continuously bringing innovative ideas to Suffolk County and the Suffolk County Alliance of Chambers for donating the funds to make this program possible. I also want to thank Laborers Local 66 for generously donating the time and labor to get this project moving in time for the summer season. These public-private partnerships show what can be accomplished when we all work together to better our community.”
“As Long Islanders, accessing our waterways is key to our quality of life. These canoe and kayak racks will make it easier for families to do just that and get out on the water to enjoy all that Long Island has to offer,” stated Deputy Presiding Officer Kara Hahn. “As part of the first phase of the Suffolk County Blueway Trail, which aims to help people access water-based recreation near our downtowns, there is clear synergy between these two programs. Hopefully in the future we can work together to place the racks along the Blueway Trail so small businesses can benefit.”
"Laborers Local 66 members live, work and play here in Suffolk County," stated Local 66 Business Manager Steve Flanagan. "We are taxpayers too and like all families on Long Island our members enjoy our beautiful parks as well. We are proud to provide volunteer labor to build kayak racks that improve our County park system at no cost to the taxpayers."
“The SCAC is pleased to work with Suffolk County and the Marine Industry Revitalization Advisory Council (MIRAC) on a public-private partnership by supporting the residents and boating enthusiasts by supplying the material for the kayak racks in these 6 parks. We hope that the added revenue from these racks helps maintain the beauty of our natural treasures (parks) and also helps with our water quality and enjoyment at our shorelines,” said The Suffolk County Alliance of Chambers Board Co-Chairs, Gina Coletti and Bob Fonti and Board Member, David Kennedy.
Image: (left to right) Kevin Hyms, Ronkonkoma Chamber of Commerce; David Kennedy, Patchogue Chamber of Commerce; Legislator Steve Flotteron; Legislator Nick Caracappa; Legislator Sarah Anker; Legislator Sam Gonzalez; Deputy Presiding Officer Kara Hahn; Majority Leader Susan A. Berland; Legislator Anthony Piccirillo; Presiding Officer Rob Calarco; County Executive Steve Bellone; Gina Coletti, Suffolk County Alliance of Chambers; Legislator Leslie Kennedy; and Bob Fonti, Suffolk County Alliance of Chambers.