Celebrate Burnt Island Lighthouse’s 200 Years of Service with the Keepers of the Burnt Island Light

Evening socials scheduled July 20 and 27
Tue, 07/13/2021 - 8:45am

    The nonprofit organization’s “Keep the Light Burning” campaign received widespread support in restoring the Burnt Island Light Station in time for its 2021 Bicentennial. Individuals, organizations, local businesses, school children, and visitors to the region championed for the cause through donations, volunteer labor and benefit events. Their generosity truly represents their love for Burnt Island and appreciation for the work being done by the “Keepers of the Burnt Island Light” to preserve Boothbay Harbor’s beloved light station for future generations.

    In 2020, the lighthouse, keeper’s dwelling, and shed were completely restored - work that included new roofs and custom made Marvin windows. However, finishing touches on the boathouse, painting of the dwelling’s interior walls, and improvements to the grounds has just been completed by the Board of Directors and its dedicated volunteers. Now, they invite you to witness the results. You will enjoy the step back in time as the restoration depicts the 1950 time period, when Keeper Joseph Muise and his family lived there.

    The Keepers of Burnt Island Light (KBIL) will be hosting evening socials this summer with the first two being offered on the Tuesdays of July 20 and 27 (rain dates scheduled for the 21st and 28th). If these events prove to be successful, others will be offered in August and posted on the KBIL website (www.keepersofburntislandlight.com). The Novelty will leave Pier 8 at 4:15 p.m. and return at 6:45 p.m. There will be no charge for your island visit and a complimentary snack will be served. The water taxi fee of $20 per person will be paid at the booth before boarding.

    Limited seating is available so please complete the online reservation form at: https://forms.gle/WHN3Zn1BjHMc8qGa8. You will be notified if you are on the waiting list or if the trip has been canceled due to lack of interest. If you need to cancel your reservation, please call the Balmy Days Cruises at 207-633-2284. Note that a mask will be required inside the water-taxi's cabin and while visiting state buildings - a COVID restriction.

    In the past couple of years, the Keepers of Burnt Island Light have welcomed several new people to its Board of Directors. Founding member Jean McKay helped recruit individuals who supported the mission of helping the Department of Marine Resources (DMR) with requirements to provide public access, restoration, preservation and educational services. Jean moved to the Boothbay region in 1998 from New York State after a combined career of public school teaching and pre-school instruction based out of her own little farm in Monroe. During her first year in Maine, Jean became associated with Burnt Island and helped to create its living history program, as well as hands-on learning activities for teachers, students, and visitors. Jean and her husband enjoy sailing and cruising the coast of Maine.

    Libby Zipperer has been an elementary school teacher in Maine for the past 25 years. Her first visit to Burnt Island was in 2008 on her daughter’s field trip. She immediately fell in love with the island and since then has participated in several recertification courses; provided overnight fieldtrip experiences for her own students; volunteered in many educational capacities; and welcomed the public ashore during the past three summers. Her island experiences have truly enriched her life and she is thrilled to give back to it as the newest member of the board. Libby lives in Edgecomb with her family where sweet treats from her kitchen are offered in her River Road stand called “Occasional Delights.”

    Adam Smart was born and raised in Claremont, New Hampshire. After graduating from high school in 1997, he joined the U.S. Coast Guard. He is serving at station Boothbay Harbor for the second time with his current position being that of Officer-in-Charge. His interest in the Burnt Island Lighthouse’s future came naturally. This beacon, and all of America’s lights, were transferred to his organization in 1939 when the U.S Lighthouse Service was abolished. Adam and his wife Deb reside in Boothbay Harbor with daughters Allison and Emily.

    Dawn Kenealy serves as the enrichment coordinator at the Margaret Murphy Center for Children in Auburn. Dawn first visited Burnt Island when she attended a teacher recertification course. It was there that she was inspired to bring marine life to the classroom. After fundraising and taking additional courses on the island, she has maintained a 55-gallon aquarium at her school for the past 10 years. Dawn is a proud member of the organization’s Board of Directors, one who wants to give back to the place that has given so much to her and her students.

    Eric Marden was born and raised in Waterville, Maine, spending his childhood summers as a third generation Ocean Point resident. A product of the Maine vocational/technical education system, he graduated from Central Maine Technical Institute in 1980. Drawn to the coast to practice his trade, he established Marden and Wyman Builders that later morphed into Marden Builders Inc. in 1995. To this day, he enjoys the challenges of the construction industry, all the interesting people he meets, and his love of the sea. Eric and his wife Jennifer raised two daughters in the Boothbay region and feels blessed to have them, their spouses and grandchildren living nearby.

    Andrew Hallinan was born and raised in Boothbay Harbor. A recent graduate of Husson University’s business program, he operates lobster and menhaden businesses — fisheries that he has been a part of since he was old enough to climb aboard his father's boat. As a recent addition to the Board of Directors, he wants to ensure that the community’s members get the opportunity to experience and learn about Burnt Island first-hand. He enjoys all outdoor activities with his wonderful, girlfriend Shelby and they both appreciate Burnt Island for its rich history and endless beauty.

    Matt Lindemann joined KBIL’s board last fall after settling in as assistant principal of Boothbay Region Elementary School. Matt’s experience with Burnt Island began as a 10-year-old student on a field trip to Burnt Island. After becoming employed as a teacher in Hampden, he continued the tradition of bringing 5th grade students to Burnt Island so that they too could participate in the DMR’s outstanding, outdoor school program. As a board member, Matt’s goals are to continue to grow educational programs on Burnt Island, especially for local schools and regional communities.

    Elaine Jones recently joined the Board of Directors after spending 38 years in the field of education – first as a public school teacher and then as Education Director for the Maine Department of Marine Resources. She was responsible for designing, building, and operating the Maine State Aquarium, and acquired the Burnt Island Light Station in 1998 for the state as part of the Maine Lights Program. At both educational facilities, she worked with tireless enthusiasm and dedication to bring her dreams to fruition. She retired last January after 30 years of service with the State of Maine. She is so grateful for the friendships made and support given to her, the Aquarium and Burnt Island.

    Please sign up today and join these dedicated board members for a tour of the fully restored light station. You are certain to enjoy the beauty of a magical place in your own back yard. Should you have further questions, please feel free to email: litekeeper1@gmail.com.