Time to turn back on the light

We’re a society that treasures its landmarks.

From a giant needle in Seattle, to an arch to nowhere in St. Louis to a totem pole in Bethany Beach, people are proud of the landmarks in their communities, and others are anxious to come see them. For the communities that house these symbols of recognition, it is vital that they maintain the standards of the attraction — if, for no other reason, for the sake of regional pride.

Well, a group in Fenwick Island is currently doing just that — trying to put some life back into the Fenwick Island Lighthouse.

From 1993 to late this spring, Oliver Cropper has performed caretaker duties for the lighthouse, along with handling his responsibilities as owner of the adjacent trailer park. The lighthouse had been open for tours, attracting between 20,000 and 25,000 people a year, according to Cropper. But this year, with Cropper having stepped down from maintaining the lighthouse, it has been closed to visitors, and has remained unlit.

Enter “The New Friends of the Fenwick Island Lighthouse.” The group, headed by Fenwick Island’s Winnie Lewis, has now rounded up 10 volunteers and plans to announce new hours for visitors to enjoy the historic lighthouse. But it’s going to take more than that dedicated group to keep the light shining.

The group will need more help in maintaining and improving the lighthouse, and more money to make those improvements possible, as well as paying for the bills to keep the light turned on at nights. This is a rare landmark for our area that can truly serve as a source of pride and as an attraction to the outside world.

Anybody with an interest in participating as a volunteer with The New Friends of the Fenwick Island Lighthouse or making a donation can call (302) 436-8160.


It appears that things might be beginning to smooth themselves out with the Ocean View Town Council, and that’s a good sign for the entire town.

Councilman Bill Wichmann opened last week’s meeting with a prepared statement asking for solidarity amongst the council, and was received with a handshake by each council member.

It’s not important that the council members agree. In fact, it’s better for the entire town if they argue their points on each and every issue before the council. However, personality differences that result in a cantankerous governing board never helps anyone — particularly the residents.