LACKAWAXEN TWP. - Before the start of the Lackawaxen Township May meeting, there was a hearing regarding an ATV training center being constructed in the Masthope Community.

Masthope Community Manager Randy Schmazle said the community is one of a few that allow ATVs to ride on roads. Because youth are required to take a Pennsylvania State ATV training course and community member Sheldon Langer is a state authorized instructor of the course, a place is needed to practice.

The only present location to learn, however, is near Marshall’s Creek and people must supply their own equipment in order to learn; hauling an ATV to such a distance is a task. As well, there are many units in the community, with most owners being unable to transfer their ATVs.

Schmazle said four sites were considered, but the final location was chosen two years ago and now the community’s board of directors have approved the facility in addition to community members voting to fund the facility.

Describing the facility, Schmazle called it a “stretch” because it is just a flat piece of ground without a sewer, water or lights and it will be used “very sparingly” possibly four to five days out of the year. Typically, 10 to 12 children or adults take the course at a time.
With his own son having taken the course, Schmazle called it “very educational for the kids” as they learn how to ride an ATV, go over obstacles and how to stop.  Recommended for anyone, the course is geared for children under 16 who haven’t received their driver’s license.

Masthope, Schmazle said was developed into seven primary sections, but where the facility will be, has yet to be developed and is currently just a rough road of stone. There will be some construction that will offer the children the option to ride on an elevation of possibly three feet.

The area surrounding the facility will not be altered and materials from the area will create a natural barrier. There are existing ATV trails in the area as well as traffic, so additional traffic will not be created other than during the training sessions.

When lessons aren’t happening, people will have access if they wish to ride their ATV. The property is owned by Masthope. The ATVs are registered with the DCNR and insurance certificates are required by the community. Although Masthope is not charging people for the course, the state does have a $50 fee.

The board approved the constriction of the ATV training area.