Brigantine City Council and Elks Lodge 2428 gathered on July 8 for the dedication of a WaterWheels at the Beach Patrol Headquarters at 17th Street and the beach.

BRIGANTINE — The Brigantine Elks donated $2,000 to the city of Brigantine for the purchase of a new beach wheelchair and to help pay for the new ADA-compliant beach mats that were installed by the city this season.

For over twenty years, the Brigantine Elks has donated beach wheelchairs to the city’s Beach Patrol, but this year is special. Elks member Karen Geller worked with the city to find a new style beach wheelchair that is easier to use in the sand and that can go in the water.

Geller has been working with Brigantine’s Superintendent of Public Works John Doring and Deputy Mayor Vince Sera for the past two years to help improve beach access in Brigantine. “The members of our lodge care a lot about our seniors and people with disabilities. We want to make sure everyone can enjoy spending time at the beach and in the water with family and friends.” Geller said.

Brigantine first started to improve beach accessibility in June 2018, when the city installed a 350-foot-long, 5-foot-wide ADA-compliant beach mat at the 16th Street beach entrance that stretched from the parking lot to the ocean.

This year, the city installed four more ADA compliant beach mats at 10th Street North, Roosevelt Boulevard, 26th Street South and 34th Street South.

Geller secured two grants from the Elks National Organization to help cover part of the cost of the mats.

“Having great community partners like the Elks has really helped us to improve the quality of life for all the families and retirees who live in and visit our community. We are so fortunate to be able to work with good people like Karen who truly care about Brigantine.” said Sera.

All the city’s beach wheelchairs are kept at Beach Patrol Headquarters, 17th Street and the beach. Use of the chairs is on a first come first serve bases. For more information on the beach wheelchairs, call Beach Patrol Headquarters at 609-266-5233.

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