Saturday, October 13th, 2012
By William Kincaid
Boathouse dedicated on lake
MONTEZUMA - In just 2.5 minutes, the Montezuma Fire Department's rescue boat, Muskrat 1, can be lowered from the new boathouse on Windy Point into Grand Lake, enabling firefighters to cut their response time by 15 minutes.
Fire chief Ron Schulze, Ohio Department of Natural Resources Director Jim Zehringer and other officials spoke on Friday evening during a dedication of the department's new 30-by-36 foot boathouse.
Montezuma firefighters secured a 25-year-lease with ODNR to use a parcel of state land near the entrance of Windy Point for the boathouse at no cost, Schulze said.
"It's so important the job that you guys do," Zehringer said. "We're (ODNR) just happy to be a smart part of that having the land here ... it's great that we have the partnership."
The lake now has three boathouses - one on the east end, one on the west end and one on the southwest corner, Brian Miller, manager of Grand Lake St. Marys State Park, said.
"It was just a no-brainer to me," Miller said about the construction of a new boathouse. "It was a real good fit. This is another project that shows the community's dedication to Grand Lake St. Marys."
Previously, firefighters had to move the boat out of the firehouse along state Route 219, drive it to a dock and ramp it into the lake before they could descend on the scene of an accident.
Now they'll be able to reach emergencies on the lake much quicker.
"It's a quicker response," Miller said. "We all know about the golden hour."
The boathouse cost $55,000 and was financed through the department's 1.5-mill operating levy and donations.
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