Erin, Ace, and Red, the dog, rowing in Lake Elizabeth in Allegheny Commons. (📸: Erin Harper)
Allegheny Commons is my home away from home (but really, super close to my home).
That’s why it caught my eye when I saw my neighbors floating in Lake Elizabeth, which was first created in 1868 as a place to swim, boat, and skate, but has been torn apart and renovated over the years. You can learn more about this history of the name in this article in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
“I have wanted to build a boat for years, but had a lot more time since I’ve been working from home for the past year,” Erin Harper said.
Erin started building this Fliptail 7 folding boat during quarantine, and when warm days started rolling around, it was finally time to set sail. She took her youngest child and their pup along (Although, she said their dog, Red, is not a huge fan of water but seemed to enjoy the ride once he settled in.)
“I wanted to make a folding boat so I could tow it behind my bicycle down to the river,” She said. “There’s also the possibility of attaching a 3 hp motor to the boat.”
Erin plans to try out the boat in the protected channel in the river by 3 Rivers Rowing next, but she couldn’t have picked a more perfect place to see if this pandemic project sinks or swims...literally.
By the way — this spot isn’t pretty all on its own. Year after year, volunteers clean up Lake Elizabeth to make it a shining spot in the city. If you’re feeling inspired, grab your gloves, boots, and masks for “What the Muck?!” on April 6.