National Lighthouse Day coming up


Grays Harbor Lighthouse in Westport will celebrate National Lighthouse Day on Aug. 7 by waving $5 admission, Julie Smith, administrative assistant said Monday.

The free admission is part of celebration that will be held from Aug. 7-10 at the state’s 13 lighthouses.

Smith invited patrons to come see the new and expanded gift shop that is now located in a former kerosene storage facility instead of the base of the lighthouse. At 107 feet tall, Grays Harbor Lighthouse is the tallest in the state.

“It’s a great view,” said Smith. Originally 300 feet from the water’s edge, the lighthouse is now 3,000 feet away, thanks to sands that accumulated in part due to the construction of the jetty system. The Westport Maritime Museum is also close by, http://www.westportmaritimemuseum.com/.

Hours are from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily from Thursday-Monday. It is closed Tuesday and Wednesday.

Hundreds of volunteers spend thousands of hours every year keeping the 13 non-profit lighthouses restored and open to the public.

While many of the state’s iconic lighthouses are supported by donors, much of the funding for restoration, preservation and interpretive projects come from grants supported by proceeds from the Washington Lighthouse specialty license plate.

Administered by Lighthouse Environmental Programs (LEP), a Whidbey Island-based organization, nearly $150,000 in grants have been made possible by the sales of Washington lighthouse license plates since 2008.

The $28 LEP receives from the sale of each plate is a tax-deductible donation for the driver, one that many Washington employers will match.

The other lighthouses include Admiralty Head (Coupeville, Whidbey Island), Browns Point (Tacoma), Burrows Island (near Anacortes), Lime Kiln (San Juan Islands), Mukilteo (Mukilteo), New Dungeness (Sequim), North Head (Ilwaco), Patos Island (San Juan Islands), Point No Point (Hansville, Kitsap Peninsula), Point Robinson (Vashon Island), Turn Point (San Juan Islands) and the Swiftsure Lightship (Seattle).

For more information about LEP and the Keep Washington Shining campaign, visit washingtonlighthouses.org or follow on Facebook at Washington Lighthouses.

 

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