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Lighthouse News of the Week – May 21, 2021

Should North Carolina’s Ocracoke Lighthouse be moved?

The future of Ocracoke Lighthouse is in peril due to rising tides and damage done to the structure during the annual storm season. The lighthouse opened in 1823 to help guide ships through the tricky waters of the Ocracoke Inlet off the coast of North Carolina.

Ocracoke Light Station, North Carolina. U.S. Lighthouse Society photo.

The entire Ocracoke Light Station sits just 2 feet above sea level, and officials at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration believe that number will reach zero in the next two decades. During Hurricane Dorian in 2019, water covered the bottom seven feet of the lighthouse and heavily damaged the keeper’s quarters. “The writing’s on the wall. The tides keep getting higher,” Amy Howard, chair of the Ocracoke Tourism Development Authority, told The Virginian-Pilot.

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[Note – In spite of what it says in this article, Ocracoke isn’t close to being the second oldest operating lighthouse in the country.]

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Erie Land Lighthouse, Presque Isle Lighthouse (PA) opening for tours, visitors allowed to climb towers

Erie Land Lighthouse hasn’t guided mariners for more than a century but the 49-foot tower remains a beacon in an eastside neighborhood. Starting this weekend, the public will be able to climb the 69 steps to the lantern on a regular basis. Erie Land Lighthouse, which was previously open only for special events, will be accessible on Saturdays and Sundays for a fee and the first Tuesday of each month for free.

Erie Land Lighthouse, Pennsylvania. U.S. Lighthouse Society photo.

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Monthly sunset, full moon climbs at back at Cape St. George Lighthouse (FL)

The monthly Sunset and Full Moon climbs are back at the Cape St. George Lighthouse. The May Sunset and Full Moon Climb will be held on Wednesday, May 26, 2021. This is a unique opportunity to enjoy the view of St. George Island, the Gulf of Mexico and the Apalachicola Bay under the evening sky from the top of the lighthouse.

Cape St. George Lighthouse, Florida. U.S. Lighthouse Society photo.

The sun will set at 8:43 p.m. and the “Flower” moon will rise at 9:21 p.m. on May 26. The May full moon is called the Flower moon because flowers are in abundant bloom at this time.

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Nauset Light Preservation Society (MA) honors keepers of the past

Nauset Light is one of Cape Cod’s most celebrated lighthouses, now cared for and doted over by the nonprofit, all-volunteer Nauset Light Preservation Society (nausetlight.org). Founded in 1993, the group’s original mission was to rescue the beacon from coastal erosion; in 1996, the light was successfully moved back from the brink. The Society has recently been researching and marking the graves of Nauset’s lighthouse keepers, six in Eastham’s Evergreen Cemetery and one in the Orleans Cemetery.

Nauset Lighthouse, Massachusetts. Photo by Jeremy D’Entremont.

On May 15, members of the NLPS, the National Park Service, and Eastham Historical Society, as well as descendants of the Nauset keepers, gathered at Evergreen Cemetery to honor their memory and service. Graves had been marked with bronze U.S. Lighthouse Service medallions into which, during the ceremony, American flags were placed as those in attendance read the “Lighthouse Keepers Prayer” at each grave.

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2021 Lorain Lighthouse (OH) Sunset Wine Dinners

The 2021 Lorain Lighthouse Sunset Wine Dinners will start on Tuesday, June 15, 2021, and will continue every Tuesday through September 14, 2021 (weather permitting). This is a fantastic way to celebrate a special occasion and catch one of Ohio’s most beautiful sunsets. The evening includes a boat ride (departing by boat from Dock “A” (Transit Dock) at the Oasis Marina at Port Lorain, north of the Erie Steak and Seafood Restaurant) to and from the lighthouse and a brief guided tour of the lighthouse. The dinner, including a wine paired with each course, is catered by Erie Steak and Seafood Restaurant.

Lorain Lighthouse, Ohio. U.S. Lighthouse Society photo by Mike and Carol McKinney.

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U.S. Lighthouse Society News is produced by the U.S. Lighthouse Society to support lighthouse preservation, history, education and research.

If you have items of interest to the lighthouse community and its supporters, please email them to Jeremy D’Entremont at Jeremy@uslhs.org



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