Hillsboro Lighthouse Celebrates National Lighthouse Day

Enjoy a boat ride, explore the grounds and climb the Hillsboro Lighthouse in Pompano Beach, Florida. Join the Hillsboro Lighthouse Society’s National Lighthouse Day celebration on Saturday, August 11. 
The Hillsboro Lighthouse first illuminated on March 7, 1907, completed the chain of lights which extended from Jupiter Inlet to the Torguas. The lighthouse, also called “Big Diamond” is unique. With of a beam of 28 nautical miles, it is has the strongest light beam of all US lighthouses. It has been on the National Register of Historic Places since 1978. 
The shuttle to the lighthouse sails in the morning at 8:15, 9:00, 9:45, 10:30 and 11:15. Pay $35 for day or purchase yearlong membership for the same price. For more information, visit Hillsboro Lighthouse


TGIF: Save and Stay at a Lighthouse

Faad Lighthouse in Ireland.

Stay at Fanad Lighthouse in Ireland. It was voted one of the most beautiful lighthouses in the world.

Lighthouses have transformed themselves into travel destinations. Located on spectacular shores with awe inspiring views, a lighthouse getaway offers more value for your dollar than the average vacation

The United States Lighthouse Society offers a list of lighthouse accommodations by state. Lighthouse Friends offer comprehensive information on lighthouses. I recently used their website as a resource when planning my New York Lighthouse Trip. The Great Lighthouses of Ireland gives visitors a chance to explore and to spend a night at a lighthouse.

If an overnight stay is not in your plans, lighthouses offer festivals, kids activities, special events, tours and more. Most events are free with the cost of admission. It generally cost less than $10 a person to visit a lighthouse. Admission fees help to maintain and preserve lighthouses.

40% off on Groupon for Hillsboro Lighthouse.

Groupon offers up to 43% off from Hillsboro Lighthouse Preservation.

Not only do you get a lot of “bang for the buck,” your admission goes toward a worthy cause.

TGIF: Birthday Celebration at Big Diamond

Hillsboro lighthouse

Hillsboro Lighthouse Inlet at Pompano Beach.

Enjoy a night of revelry under a full moon and a day of festivities at the Hillsboro Inlet Lighthouse or Big Diamond, March 10-12.

The birthday celebration kicks off March 10 at 5:30 pm with a Full Moon Gala. A spectacular night awaits with a cocktail hour with appetizers, four course meal, live music, dancing, silent auction and private lighthouse tours. A Black and white theme attire sets the tone for a regal affair. The cost for this fund raiser is $110 per person with RSVP required. This is just the beginning of a weekend of fun.

View from the lighthouse

A view from Hillsboro Inlet Lighthouse.

Blow out the birthday candles with Hillsboro Lighthouse Preservation Society, March 11-12. Experience live music, art vendors, cottage tours, lens room and lighthouse tours, silent auction, and more. Grab a slice of birthday cake to celebrate Big Diamond’s 110th Birthday. Visit Groupon to save on up to 40% off the lighthouse tour.

Boat ride

Enjoy a scenic boat ride to Big Diamond.

All monies help preserve Hillsboro Inlet Lighthouse. For 110 years, the lighthouse has faithfully guarded the Hillsboro River Inlet. The historic Hillsboro Inlet Lighthouse was built and commissioned in 1907. Big Diamond is unique. With of beam of 28 nautical miles, it is has the strongest light beam of all US lighthouses. It has been on the National Register of Historic Places since 1978.

Hillsboro Inlet Lighthouse is located in Pompano Beach near Fort Lauderdale, Florida. For more information, visit http://www.hillsborolighthouse.org.



Preservation 50 Friday: The Barefoot Mailman

Barefoot mailman statue

Statue of the Barefoot Mailman, James E. Hamilton.

Visit the Hillsboro Lighthouse on ” Barefoot Mailman Remembrance Day” on October 8. Enjoy a scenic boat ride and learn about James E. Hamilton who gave his life delivering mail.

A statue on the lighthouse grounds honors Hamilton who moved from Kentucky to Florida. He traded being a farmer for a career as a Barefoot Mailman. As often is the case, the grass was not greener in his new career. He went missing during one of his 68 mile routes.

For more information, visit http://www.hillsborolighthouse.org/tours

Preservation 50 Friday: A Beacon Of Light at Big Diamond

Hillsboro lighthouse

Hillsboro Lighthouse Inlet at Pompano Beach.

Preserving lighthouses is an ongoing pursuit. Because of erosion and the hazards of being near the ocean, the demands, upkeep, and costs of preserving lighthouses can be quite large. While the United States Coast Guard (USCG) oversees many lighthouses, it is often the Lighthouse association that rally the public to help with the preservation of lighthouses.

Since its inception in 1997, the Hillsboro Lighthouse Preservation Society (HLPS) has worked closely with the USCG and Coast Guard Auxiliary with the aim of preserving the Hillsboro Lighthouse in Pompano Beach. The HLPS has successfully repaired and restored the Lighthouse’s original Fresnel Len. HLPS also was responsible for the reactivation of the lighthouse. Today, the HLPS is working to combat beach erosion that threatens Hillsboro lighthouse or “Big Diamond” as the locals refer to it.

For more information on how to help preserve the Hillsboro Lighthouse or join HLPS, visit http://hillsborolighthouse.org.


Preserving Our Legacy, Our Future

Hillsboro Lighthouse

Hillsboro Lighthouse, copyright Elaine Marie Austin.


Conserving our resources and preserving our lighthouses are personal passions of mine. I believe how we manage our resources are indications of how we manage our lives.

I am excited about celebrating national landmarks and lighthouses this month. May is “Preservation Month.”

This year is significant because it is the 50th year since the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA) was signed by President Lyndon Johnson. Several events are planned this year in honor of the NHPA.

For more information on P50 or Preservation 50, visit http://www.preservation50.org.

Beach Erosion Threatens Hillsboro Lighthouse

Hillsboro Lighthouse

Hillsboro Lighthouse copyrighted Elaine Make Austin.

Hillsboro Lighthouse has the strongest beam of all the lighthouses in the United States. It has stood as guardian over Hillsboro Inlet for 109 years.

Now this unique lighthouse is imperiled. The landmass around the lighthouse has eroded away. The Hillsboro Lighthouse Preservation Society is seeking restoration of landmass and construction of a permanent barrier to prevent further land loss. The society is hoping to get a grant from the Coastal Partnership Initiative of the Florida Coastal Management Program. If you would like to help, visit http://www.hillsborolighthouse.org.