Onset Town Pier is located in Onset Village and is just before the Bourne Bridge. It’s a great place to visit the ocean without waiting in long lines of traffic to get over the bridges to Cape Cod or spending a lot of money on gas! I go to the Pier in Onset often all months of the year just to feel the ocean breeze and sometimes to fish off the pier. I recently visited with my aunt and again today with Josh, my good friend and roommate to do a wheelchair accessibilty review of Onset Pier.
There is a large paved parking lot located at the Pier and it is very easy to wheel a wheelchair around. The cost during the summer months is normally $2 per hour yet if you have a handicap sticker on your vehicle, you can park for FREE! The off season cost for parking for all is FREE! There is both a Ladies’ and Mens’ restroom located at the Pier next to the Harbor Master office. Both restrooms are wheelchair accessible with a large handicap stall and all the ADA requirements are met. There is also an accessible sink in both restrooms.
Another Public Ladies’ and Mens’ restroom is located in a small building across the street from the Pier. It is fully wheelchair accessible and meets all the ADA requirements but high on a hill which some in manual wheelchairs may find difficulty in wheeling up the paved paths. A person in an electric wheelchair would have no problems getting to it.
The area in front of the water is paved and it is very easy to maneuver a manual or electric wheelchair on. The pier has a few railroad ties piled up about a foot high at the edge of the water which is a good barrier so one in a wheelchair can’t wheel over into the water! There are usually a few people fishing and you will often see the great fish they catch. Recently I brought my new fishing pole that I got for my birthday here and went fishing with my friends.
We met a very nice couple who helped us a lot. Their names are Sharon and Joe. Another man fishing next to us caught a lobster but it was too small for him to keep so he had to throw it back into the water. There is also a low water faucet at the deck area which is convenient to fill your bucket if you want to keep the fish you catch fresh to bring home to cook. I also like to get some water from here on a hot and sunny day to cool off.
There is a limit on how much the fish you catch weigh. If the fish you catch are young and don’t weigh enough then you will have to throw them back into the water. I’ve caught a few fish here in the past but always throw them back in for I want them to live. The Harbor Patrol has a small office in this area of the Pier so if you need any help or assistance don’t hesitate to ask for they are very helpful and kind.
Onset Beach is right next to the Pier. It has a cement ramp that leads to the sand, yet they do not have any wheelchair beach chairs available to use like the State Beaches like Horseneck Beach and Scusset Beach State Reservation. If you own your own beach wheelchair, you won’t have any problems accessing this beach.
Whale Watching, Deep-sea Fishing, Sight seeing , Music and Jazz cruises are available right at Onset Pier. I asked a person at the Ticket office if the sightseeing cruise was wheelchair accessible and she said a wheelchair can get on the top deck of the boat but can’t get to the restrooms located on the first level. She also told me that they have two or three hour cruises.
My friends and I saw the Neat Lady Fishing boat arrive back from a fishing trip. This boat is not wheelchair accessible for persons need to walk down about 4 steps to get to the ramp of the boat. Some fishermen who came off the boat showed us a large cooler of different kind of fish they caught! My friends told me that they will look for a fishing boat out of another place that is wheelchair accessible for me to get on.
I haven’t been on one of the Cape Cod Canal tours out of Onset Pier but I have been on a Whale Watching trip out of Plymouth. ( Captain John’s Boat-Whale Watching). And the Captain John’s Boat in Plymouth was very hard to get my wheelchair on that boat. The folks here at Onset told told me that the Hy-Land Cape Cod Canal tour boats are easy to get my wheelchair on. I saw the boat arrive here today and saw that it would be very easy for a person in a wheelchair to get onto the boat as you can see the nice ramp to the boat in the picture above. If you want to find out more information about all the boat trips you can take from Onset Pier, you can click on the website above.
If you get hungry for something to eat or thirsty for something to drink while you’re at the Onset Pier you can eat next door at Kenny’s Salt Water and Taffy ( Kenny’s Salt Water Taffy) or Marc Anthony’s Pizzeria ( Marc Anthony’s Pizzeria) which is a short wheel up the street.
You can also pack a picnic lunch and enjoy it in a nice grassy shady area to the right of the main entrance of the parking lot. There are many other stores and places in Onset that are easy to get to if you park at the Onset Pier. All the crosswalks in Onset are very safe to cross at for there is a sign at each cross walk for traffic to stop while someone is crossing the street.
Across the street up on a grassy hill is also a band shell with many seats. It is where bands play music during special events. It is named the Lillian Gregerman Band Shell. This place has a special place for wheelchair seating which is right up front.