New dock survives 90-mph winds

CHENEY STATE PARK -- Boaters who use the east boat ramp at Cheney State Park have received a new courtesy dock from the Cheney Lake Association (CLA). Last spring, the CLA asked the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks for plans to build a courtesy dock that does not float but sits on the slope of the boat ramp. The CLA then made arrangements with Central Steel of Wichita to build the dock.

After completion, Central Steel hauled it to Salina for galvanizing and then delivered it back to the lake. CLA bought decking materials from Andale lumber at a reduced cost, and association members installed the decking, upright posts, and a handicapped-access ramp. Park staff helped place the courtesy dock in the lake the week prior to July 4, and the dock was dedicated on July 3. Boaters started using it immediately.

That night, a 90-mph wind hit Cheney Reservoir, providing the ultimate test for this free standing dock. Fortunately, it just moved sideways and was easily moved back in position.

"This donation to the people of Kansas from the Cheney Lake Association totaled more then $10,000 in direct payments alone," said Jerry Schmidt, Cheney State Park manager. "We've received many compliments from the public about this new facility, and we greatly appreciate the donation and effort of the Cheney Lake Association."