North Head Lighthouse celebrates 114th anniversary
May 9, 2012, 11:08 a.m.
The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission and Keepers of the North Head Lighthouse invite the public to attend the 114th anniversary of the North Head Lighthouse at Cape Disappointment State Park in Ilwaco.
The celebration runs from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. May 19 at the North Head Lighthouse at Cape Disappointment State Park, 244 Robert Gray Drive, Ilwaco. The event commemorates the anniversary of the historic lighthouse by offering self-guided tours of the Lighthouse Keeper’s Residence, memories shared by those who lived at or cared for the lighthouse and live music by the Ilwaco High School Jazz Band. Refreshments will be available. The North Head gift shop will be open during the event. The Discover Pass is required to attend this event.
Participants also may tour North Head Lighthouse and lantern room from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. as part of the anniversary celebration. Tours are $2.50 for adults and free for children 7 to 17. Children must be 7 years or older to tour the lighthouse.
The Keepers of the North Head Lighthouse also will sell $5 raffle tickets for prizes to be awarded on Sept. 12. Ticket proceeds support the group’s mission to restore and preserve the North Head Lighthouse. For more information about the event or the raffle, call (360) 665-5580 or (360) 642-2502.
Parking is limited at the North Head Lighthouse. Participants may park at the Cape Disappointment State Park campground store lot and take the transport van to the lighthouse.
The 114th North Head Lighthouse anniversary is sponsored by the Keepers of the North Head Lighthouse. The Keepers of the North Head Lighthouse formed in 2009 to insure a steadfast vigil and sound legacy for the lighthouse. The Keepers promote awareness, raise publicity and are spearheading efforts to restore the North Head Lighthouse, which has been damaged from time and the harsh elements of the Pacific Coast.
On May 16, 1898, the North Head Lighthouse was put into service as the primary navigation aid at the mouth of the Columbia River. The Cape Disappointment Lighthouse had served this function since 1856; however, ships continued to run aground at the “Graveyard of the Pacific.” Due to the sheer number of shipwrecks, it was determined a second lighthouse was needed on the northwestern spur of Cape Disappointment, commonly referred to as North Head. With all of the original buildings associated with the station still standing, the North Head Lighthouse is the most intact lighthouse reservation in the Pacific Northwest.
Cape Disappointment State Park is a 1,882-acre camping park on the Long Beach Peninsula, fronted by the Pacific Ocean and lying along the Columbia River. The park offers two miles of ocean beach, two lighthouses, hiking trails and the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center. As part of a larger art installation, the park also features the Confluence Project amphitheater, designed by world-renowned architect and artist, Maya Lin.