A new, public fishing pier in Gloucester County will delight anglers and offer a front-row view to waterfront educational programs.
But the Middle Peninsula Chesapeake Bay Public Access Authority (MPCBPAA), more commonly known as Virginia’s Coastal Wilds, is looking to the community to help it fundraise the $25,000 needed to finish construction.
Construction is underway for the 400-foot pier at Captain Sinclair’s Recreational Area along the Severn River. The 97-acre waterfront property gifted to the Coastal Wilds in 2013 is a picturesque spot for tourists and locals to hunt, fish, paddle, swim, bird watch, picnic, enjoy the trails and host gatherings. The MPCBPAA provides public water access opportunities across the Middle Peninsula.
“The public fishing pier will enhance one of the most pristine recreational saltwater sport fishing areas on the Middle Peninsula that also offers endless opportunities for recreation and leisure in Gloucester County,” said Lewie Lawrence, Secretary for the MPCBPAA. “Once complete, this will be the first dedicated public fishing pier associated with the Mobjack Bay in Gloucester County. In order to get that done, we’re turning to the public for financial support to close a funding gap.”
The MPCBPAA, which is without a state-allocated revenue stream, has relied on the Virginia Saltwater Recreational Fishing Development Fund through the Virginia Marine Resources Commission to support the project thus far but needs to raise an estimated additional $25,000 due to the increased cost of materials and supply chain problems. To fill that gap, the MPCBPAA launched an innovative crowdfunding campaign in the community that incentivizes giving.
A $5,000 gift, for example, means the donor will receive private use of the waterfront property (or others in the Coastal Wilds portfolio) for five full days, including exclusive use of the pier. With a $1,000 gift, the donor can use the property for a full day, including private use of the pier, and a $500 gift gives the donor use of the property for a half day, including private use of the pier. Smaller gifts will result in an invitation to a donor-only day at Captain Sinclair’s and an invitation to the ribbon-cutting event for the new public fishing pier that will be the second in Gloucester County. All donors who give at least $50 will receive specially designed Get Wild T-shirts and coozies from Virginia’s Coastal Wilds.
The coastal ecosystem that comprises Captain Sinclair’s Recreational Area in Naxera is made up of three miles of waterfront for exploration, densely forested mixed hardwood and pine trees, tidal and non-tidal wetlands, a floating dock for kayak launch, an unimproved concrete boat ramp, waterfowl and nature viewing blinds, bow hunting areas, public yard and and three dwellings, including multiple public buildings as well as various marine science research projects. The site is named for Revolutionary War hero Capt. John Sinclair.
Learn more about the campaign and donate online here.