The panhandle is known for the world’s most beautiful beaches, beaches that should be accessible to all.

The old saying goes, you don’t know someone’s struggle until you’ve spent a day in their shoes. Leslie Moskal attended physical therapy five years ago. In one of her classes, the students were given an eye opening task.

“They would give us a card that said today you’re going to pretend like you use a wheelchair,”  said Moskal. 
She said they were then given tasks they had to try and accomplish. 

“It was really hard we couldn’t figure out how to navigate and reach certain things, so i definitely got an appreciation for people that have difficulty in their environment accessing public places,” said Moskal.

She created the sandy wheels event last year to help those with disabilities have an easier time gaining access to the beach. The Ed Walline Beach Access has an Americans with Disabilities certified mat. The mat helps those with wheelchairs, canes, and beach wheelchairs make their way onto the sand. The beach day had a goal-

“To provide access for those with disabilities to actually come and enjoy our beaches, it’s awesome, its everything,” said Wayne Hall. 

Hall performed music at the event and was happy to be able to spend the day by the water. 

“Getting on the beach again you know and being able to get on without having a lot of obstacles and struggles,” said Hall. 

Moskal says to obtain a beach wheelchair at a public beach access in Walton or Okaloosa county, all you have to do is ask for one.