Digest>Archives> May 2003

Journey to the Harbor of Refuge Light

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Historic DCB-36 optic display.
Photo by: Bob Trapani, Jr

Lighthouse enthusiasts are marking their calendars in anticipation of having the opportunity to take part in Delaware Bay lighthouse history. May 24, 2003 will mark the first time an offshore light in the mid-Atlantic region will be open to the general public for tours. The Delaware River & Bay Lighthouse Foundation will be offering six fun-filled summer dates to tour Harbor of Refuge Lighthouse that include May 24th, June 21st, July 5th, July 19th, August 9th and August 23rd.

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Harbor of Refuge Lighthouse.
Photo by: Herb Von Goerres

For the DRBLHF, the most exciting aspect about visitors having the chance to tour Harbor of Refuge Lighthouse is the two-fold reward it will yield. Each tour will have its share of both fun and inspiring memories, but it will also serve to enhance lighthouse preservation awareness in the region. DRBLHF President Bob Trapani, Jr. explains, “Offshore lights present unique challenges to restoration and preservation efforts; therefore, I believe the tours will provide lighthouse enthusiasts with a newfound perspective and appreciation for the difficulties associated with saving water-locked lights.”

Built in 1926, Harbor of Refuge Lighthouse is a 76-foot tall steel caisson structure situated atop the south end of the National Harbor of Refuge stone breakwater wall and has the distinction of being the last lighthouse built in the Delaware Bay. In addition to the light’s breathtaking location at the mouth of the bay, Trapani is hopeful that visitors will also see the wonderful opportunity to help the lighthouse. “In the process of enjoying their visit to Harbor of Refuge, I hope visitors take a moment to notice the vivid scars left by scouring waves, the horrible effects of salt air corrosion and the challenges associated with staving off rapid deterioration inflicted by Mother Nature at such an exposed location. There is an urgency to lighthouse preservation, so hopefully the tours will inspire more people to get involved and volunteer their time to help save our lights,” says Trapani.

For more information on the six tours, please visit the Delaware River & Bay Lighthouse Foundation web site at www.delawarelights.org Don’t miss out on this unique and exciting opportunity!

This story appeared in the May 2003 edition of Lighthouse Digest Magazine. The print edition contains more stories than our internet edition, and each story generally contains more photographs - often many more - in the print edition. For subscription information about the print edition, click here.

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