Pomham Rocks Lighthouse Celebrates 150th Jubilee on the Rocks
How do you celebrate a 150th birthday? With special events all year long, and of course, plenty of cake. Pomham Rocks Lighthouse, in Riverside, marks its 150th jubilee in 2021. Rhode Islanders of all ages and lighthouse lovers from far and near are invited to join in the celebration. Built in 1871 and perched on an island off the coast of East Providence, RI, Pomham Rocks Lighthouse is the last surviving lighthouse in upper Narragansett Bay.
To kick off this special year, the Friends of Pomham Rocks Lighthouse is holding a photography and art contest in March. Entry is free and open to anyone age 18 or older. Entrants can submit photos or artwork, in jpg or pdf form, depicting Pomham Rocks Lighthouse. All submissions will be considered for publication in a 2022 wall calendar and for use on merchandise sold in The Lighthouse gift shop. Contest rules and submission details will be posted on www.pomhamrockslighthouse.org. Deadline to enter is March 30.
Friends of Pomam Rocks Lighthouse will sponsor a benefit run on April 24. Organized by Rhode Races & Events, the Pomham Rocks Lighthouse Run starts and ends at Rose Larisa Park, 701 Bullocks Point Avenue, Riverside. Winding through scenic neighborhoods, the run will be followed by refreshments at the Park. There are three race options: 5K walk, 5K and 10K runs. Participant of all ages are welcome, as are both novice and experienced runners and walkers. If Covid restrictions prevent the in-person event as planned, or if you can’t take part in person on April 24, but still want to support this landmark light station and museum, run or walk at your choice of time and place by registering for the virtual event.
A series of commemorative events will honor the many dedicated lighthouse keepers who kept the light burning to ensure the safety of passing vessels. The first graveside ceremony and dedication honors Pomham’s first lighthouse keeper, C.H. Salisbury and his wife, Mary, who served from 1871 to 1893. Representatives from the Friends of Pomham Rocks Lighthouse, the U.S. Coast Guard, the town of Warren and city of East Providence will take part in the program at Warren’s South Burial Ground in June.
Pomham Rocks Lighthouse Day will be the highlight of the year for the community. If Covid guidelines allow, all are invited to the celebration on August 8 from noon to 3 p.m. at Squantum Association, 947 Veterans Memorial Parkway, Riverside, RI. Displays and video presentations will inform the public about the history of this important light station. Birthday cake will be served and free boat rides and tours of the lighthouse will be available. Food, music, raffles and games on the lawn will be featured.
Boat rides and tours of the Lighthouse museum will be offered during the summer season, if allowed by pandemic guidelines. Plans are also underway to commemorate the initial lighting of Pomham Rocks Lighthouse on December 1, 1871. To find out more about events planned for the jubilee year or to register for the Lighthouse Run, visit www.pomhamrockslighthouse.org.
The Friends of Pomham Rocks Lighthouse is a 501(c)(3) non-profit volunteer chapter of the American Lighthouse Foundation. All proceeds support efforts to maintain this important New England maritime light station and museum that is an integral part of Rhode Island’s heritage and that is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.