Launch of a boat store at Quemahoning reservoir | New


Kayaking became a passion for Lisa Maurer after paddling Key West three years ago.

It quickly became a family affair, she says.

And not just for her own family, but for the growing crowd of boaters turning to the rental store her family recently opened on the shores of Quemahoning Reservoir.

“After we got back from vacation, I thought, ‘This is this beautiful dam but no one is offering these boats,’” she said. “It’s a perfect place for that because there is so much room to explore.”

In May, the Maurer family opened The Yak Shak, their third business in northern Somerset County.

They worked with the Cambria Somerset Authority and the operators of Quemahoning’s family recreation area, Summer’s Best Two Weeks, to locate what became a concession stand, bait shop and rental area near the beach. and the property’s campsite.

Maurer and her children Caleb, Sarah and Luke said rentals keep them busy on weekends, but they were also surprised this summer to see a constant flow of rentals on weekdays.

Often, they are first-time boaters, they said.

“I think it brings people here. It gives them the opportunity to see the recreation area and look around, ”said Lisa Maurer.

The Cambria Somerset Authority and Summer’s Best Two Weeks have been continuously developing the area for years.

It has a beach, pavilions, camping pitches for tents and motorhomes and other amenities.

“Lisa’s boutique is a great addition to Que. People have wanted something like this out there for years, ”said CSA President Jim Greco.

The authority has been discussing the idea of ​​opening and closing a small store on the property since 2011. The idea caught on after operators of the best two weeks of the summer asked park visitors about the items they would like to see offered.

Maurer said she was initially unsure about the idea of ​​operating the store.

But she’s glad she did it now.

“If people are renting a lodge or camping and they forget something, we have all the basics here,” she said.

There are also items from their Shake Shak in Boswell, like homemade ice cream sandwiches, she said.

Bakery products, sweets and basic necessities like eggs, milk and orange juice are also offered.

They also carry personal care items like sunscreen and charcoal, she said.

But the store’s boats are a big draw, Maurer added.

The site opened in May with 11 kayaks, six canoes and 10 paddleboards for youth and adults.

Boats are offered at $ 10 an hour, although the hourly price is reduced for longer rentals, she said.

Tandems cost a bit more – and for anyone renting kayaks, canoes, or paddleboards, the $ 5 entry fee to the recreation area is covered by the boat rental fee, a t she declared.

“As the needs increase we will add more boats,” she said.

David Hurst is a reporter for The Tribune-Democrat. He can be reached at (814) 532-5053. Follow him on twitter @TDDavidHurst and Instagram @TDDavidHurst.

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