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Lighthouse News of the Week – June 24, 2022

New London Maritime Society (CT) offers lighthouse tours

The New London Maritime Society is dedicating efforts to increase public access and lighthouse preservation with trips and a New London family discount this summer. NLMS has dubbed July and August of this year Lighthouse Summer. NLMS will offer weekend trips to Harbor and Ledge lighthouses through July and August, and two trips to Race Rock on Aug. 13 and 20.

New London Harbor Light Station, Connecticut. Photo by Jeremy D’Entremont.

Links to tours and other special Lighthouse Summer events will be posted on the maritime society website, nlmaritimesociety.org

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Town of Castine (ME) rejects calls to turn Dyce Head Lighthouse keeper’s cottage into short-term rental

Despite some calls to turn a coastal town’s historic lighthouse keeper’s cottage into a more robust short-term rental business, local officials decided this week to keep leasing it to a local teacher. The town of Castine, Maine, owns and has been renting out the three-bedroom house at Dyce (Dice) Head Light for decades. The current lease expired this month. Some factions in the small town wanted to turn the cottage that overlooks Penobscot Bay into a short-term rental that could generate the municipality more money.

Dyce (Dice) Head Light Station, Maine. Photo by Jeremy D’Entremont.

But the town rejected the unusual idea. On Tuesday, the Select Board voted to continue renting the house to Tracy Lameyer, a local educator who has been the tenant for the past nine years.

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Hudson-Athens Lighthouse (NY) to hold fundraiser

Friends and admirers of the Hudson-Athens Lighthouse will be pleased to know that in the past year amazing progress has been made to secure funding for the critical maintenance work needed to preserve our historic beacon for future generations. With the summer tour season now upon us, the Hudson-Athens Lighthouse Preservation Society (HALPS) is also doubling down on events both on and off the Light to keep our valued neighbors informed and involved in this exciting effort. At the end of last year HALPS was awarded a substantial $500,000 grant through New York State which will allow us to address much-needed maintenance to weatherproof the brick light keeper’s quarters and iconic tower.

Hudon-Athens Lighthouse, New York. Photo by Jeremy D’Entremont.

HALPS is now in the process of securing $180,000 in matching funding for this grant, which will guarantee the longevity of the above-water portion of the Lighthouse. To that end, friends and neighbors of the Hudson-Athens Lighthouse are encouraged to attend the “Keeping the Light” event, which will be held 3-5 p.m. on June 26 at the Stewart House in Athens. Tickets for this fundraising event can be found here.

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Port Washington (WI) aims to keep lighthouse project moving

The City of Port Washington should hire Legacy Architecture to design the needed improvements to its deteriorating lighthouse, the Board of Public Works agreed Tuesday. The proposal from the firm calls for the improvements to be designed so the city can budget for the work to be done as soon as next year, Public Works Director Rob Vanden Noven said.

Port Washington Breakwater Lighthouse, Wisconsin. USLHS photo by Mike and Carol McKinney.

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An audio tour of Five Finger Lighthouse (AK)

Out in the middle of Frederick Sound, where it intersects with Stephens Passage, is a tiny island. It’s thin and jagged and shaped a bit like a ship. It holds the first manned lighthouse in Alaska, Five Finger Lighthouse. The light itself is automated these days but the buildings are kept up by volunteers. One couple, Pat and John Gans, is spending six months living at the remote spot this year. And one of their duties is welcoming visitors and sharing some of the charm and history. Pat Gans took KFSK’s Katherine Monahan on a recent tour.

Five Finger Lighthouse, Alaska. USLHS photo.

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Plum Beach Lighthouse (RI) set for repainting this summer

Some new paint this summer will continue the restoration and upgrade efforts at Plum Beach Lighthouse. The painting work comes as the harsh saltwater splashes against the metal lighthouse puts the need for painting at least once every decade, with the last done about seven years ago. The painting is expected to be completed sometime in late August while other work is done to the exterior of the lighthouse.

Plum Beach Lighthouse, Rhode Island. Photo by Jeremy D’Entremont.

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Historical Association Announces “Summer Sundays at The Bluff Point Lighthouse” (NY)

The Clinton County Historical Association announces that the public is invited to visit the historic Bluff Point Lighthouse on Valcour Island Sundays July 3, July 17, July 24 and July 31 from 1 pm to 3 pm.  Transportation to the lighthouse is the responsibility of the individual. On July 10, the lighthouse will be open from 9 am to 2:30 pm and transportation to the lighthouse will be available between 9 am and 1:30 pm.  The cost is $30 per person. Preregister by calling 518-561-0340.

Bluff Point Lighthouse, Lake Champlain, New York. USLHS photo.

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Race to Alaska competitors find safe harbor at New Dungeness Lighthouse (WA)

When did Carling Zeeman know she and her teammate Michelle Choy might be in a bit of trouble? Probably when she started throwing up. “We started at 5 a.m. and I was OK for a couple of hours, but the swells … ” said Zeeman, a Canadian two-time Olympian in the women’s single sculls. “It’s my first time in rough ocean water.”

New Dungeness Light Station. Washington. USLHS photo.

Rough weather thwarted a number of competitors in the 2022 Race to Alaska — a 750-mile sea journey billed as “North America’s longest human and wind powered race” featuring sailing boats, kayaks and rowing boats — forcing at least eight individuals to divert their Port Townsend-to-Victoria B.C. journey to a stop at the New Dungeness Lighthouse.

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Graves concern: Dispute over lighthouse tax bill gets Land Court hearing (MA)

The Land Court trial to determine whether Graves Lighthouse, is within the boundaries of Hull, Massachusetts, began this week, but was recessed for a month at request of the town’s attorney.

Graves Lighthouse, photo by Jeremy D’Entremont.

The suit, filed in February 2020 by David Waller of Malden, disputes the Town of Hull’s claim that the lighthouse is within the town’s jurisdiction, and therefore subject to local property taxes.

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Group sets sights on restoring Cape Disappointment Lighthouse (WA)

It’s a question that has been asked often over the years: When is the Cape Disappointment Lighthouse going to be restored? Now, the Keepers of the North Head Lighthouse are trying to help come up with a solution to those inquiries, and they’ve enlisted the help of a local Coast Guard officer to aid their cause.

Cape Disappointment Lighthouse, Washington. Photo by Jeremy D’Entremont.

Susan Gebhardt, a senior global real estate advisor at Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty and a member of the lighthouse group, said that when she takes visiting friends and family to visit both the North Head Lighthouse and the Cape Disappointment Lighthouse, they are quite literally disappointed at the state of the latter’s structure.

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Port Authority of Oswego (NY) secures $4.75 million for harbor breakwater repairs, includes preservation of lighthouse foundation

The Port Authority of Oswego (POA), recently secured $4.75 million in federal funding to make critical repairs to the Oswego harbor’s breakwater. As part of this project, the POA ensured that a portion of the funds were earmarked to repair and preserve the foundation of the Oswego West Pierhead Lighthouse. 

Oswego West Pierhead Lighthouse, New York. Photo by Jeremy D’Entremont.

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Happisburgh Lighthouse (England) to open this summer for tours

A historic north Norfolk lighthouse is offering tours for the public on open days this summer. Happisburgh Lighthouse is opening for seven days over the next three months so the visitors can explore the 85-foot tower.

Happisburgh Lighthouse, England. USLHS photo.

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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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