A stroll along the Cannon Beach coastline is one of life’s simple pleasures.
But for people with limited mobility, it’s a near impossibility. Until now.
Thanks to the non-profit Haystack Rock Awareness Program and the City of Cannon Beach, visitors to the coast can reserve one of two beach wheelchairs designed with “fat balloon tires” to provide mobility on the sand.
Andrea Suarez coordinates the program and takes reservations from coastal visitors. Since January, the beach chairs have been used over 120 times. There is no charge for the wheelchair use, but donations are accepted.
“People are so grateful. Some people haven’t been able to get their toes in the water for over 25 years and they are so excited,” she said.
In gratitude, one gentleman handed over $6, all the cash he had. Another contributed $200 for the pleasure of rolling along in the sand.
“Just being on the beach is so invigorating. And now with these special wheelchairs, people who haven’t been able to get down to the shore can experience it now for themselves.”
Contributions to help fund the program can be made online at the Haystack Rock Awareness Program.
Now through October, the chairs are available by reservation from 8:30 to 4:30 by calling 503-440-2598. November through January, the hours are 9am to 4pm. Users pick up the chairs at City Hall, complete a liability waiver and return the chairs at an agreed upon time, usually 2-3 hours.
Tolovona Inn offers oceanfront ADA rooms. Call for availability.