EDITORIAL: Event makes water sports accessible to all

York Dispatch
  • Vandals spread tacks again on rail trail.
  • York United Block Party brings cops and residents together.

Thumbs Up: To the sponsors and volunteers who gave children and adults with disabilities a chance to experience water sports during the 21st annual P.K. Filling Adaptive Water Sports Clinic.

Easter Seals of Western and Central Pennsylvania oversees the event during which members of the Pequea Waterski Club help the nearly 80 participants ski, tube and ride jet skis for the day on Lake Aldred.

The board is secured as volunteer Morgan Filling, left, and mother Kathy Gross, right, assist April Gross, 29, of Hanover, into a secured aluminum frame chair before waterskiing during the P.K. Filling Adaptive Water Sports Clinic in Airville, Sunday, Aug. 7, 2016. Dawn J. Sagert photo

"And it’s just about getting them on the water, feeling the independence while they’re on the water and learning a new recreation sport,” Easter Seals director of therapeutic recreation Matt Ernst said. “They come out here to get an experience they can’t have anywhere else."

Nicole Talarico, 30, of Robeson Township in Berks County, water skis during the 21st annual P.K. Filling Adaptive Water Sports Clinic near Airville, Sunday, Aug. 7, 2016. Dawn J. Sagert photo

The clinic was the brainchild of Pat "P.K." Fillings, just two years before she was diagnosed with and ultimately lost her life to cancer. Her family administers the event with sponsor and volunteer assistance. Her daughter Morgan, who was a child at the event’s inception, made the trip from Baltimore to attend.

Volunteers make a day on the water possible for the disabled

“To be 28 and have this event still going in her memory is absolutely incredible," she said.

Thumbs Down: To vandals who, for a third time this summer, have littered the York County Heritage Rail Trail with tacks. In the latest incident nearly 100 upholstery tacks were found on the trail near Glen Rock last Sunday. They were responsible for flattening tires on at least five rider's bikes.

Hanover Junction Train Station

York County Department of Parks and Recreation staff and volunteers helped remove the tacks using magnets.

“We’re asking for the community’s help in finding whoever is responsible for this thoughtless behavior,” Michael Fobes, manager of natural resources for the department, said in a release.

Ranger patrols are being increased in the area and Fobes urged people to continue using the trail but to remain vigilant to “help us catch whoever is involved.”

Reward offered after tacks found again on rail trail

The rail trail is one of York County’s gems used by riders and walkers of all ages. The fact that someone would tarnish the trail during its peak season is revolting.

The department is offering a $500 reward for information leading to an arrest.

Thumbs Up: To York City Councilwoman Sandie Walker who organized the the York United Block Party, themed Unity for our Community. About 50 York City law enforcement officers interacted with hundreds of members of the community on West King St. in front of the station last week.

Chief Wes Kahley said he hoped the event would help stimulate conversations in the future.

Artrella Benjamin and Derrick Dixon, both of York City, brought their daughter to the event. The family was enjoying the police interaction with those in attendance.

YCPD block party is 'what we need to show our country'

"I definitely give them a thumbs-up," she said.

So did we.