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Posted on: May 28, 2014

14-028 Celebrate the 116th Anniversary of the North Head Lighthouse at Cape Disappointment

OLYMPIA – May 28, 2013 -- The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission and Keepers of the North Head Lighthouse invite the public to attend the 116th anniversary of the North Head Lighthouse at Cape Disappointment State Park in Ilwaco.

The celebration is from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, June 7, at the North Head Lighthouse at Cape Disappointment State Park, 244 Robert Gray Drive, Ilwaco.

The event will feature refreshments, fun for children, music, an informative exhibit, the sale of a North Head Lighthouse special-edition poster, a contest for a lighthouse-related prize and self-guided tours of a lighthouse keeper’s residence. Guided tours of the lighthouse will be available for $2.50 for people 18 years and older and free for ages 7 to 17. (Children must be 7 years or older to tour the lighthouse tower.)

The Discover Pass is not required to attend the event. June 7 is a State Parks “free day,” in recognition of National Trails Day. Parking near the lighthouse is limited; signs will direct visitors to alternate parking.

About the North Head Lighthouse

The North Head Lighthouse was put into service as the primary navigation aid at the mouth of the Columbia River on May 16, 1898. The Cape Disappointment Lighthouse, also at the mouth of the Columbia River, had served this function since 1856. However, ships continued to run aground at the confluence of the river and the Pacific Ocean, in the area known as the “Graveyard of the Pacific.”

Due to the number of shipwrecks, a second lighthouse was installed on the northwestern spur of Cape Disappointment, commonly referred to as North Head. With all of the original buildings of the station still standing, the North Head Lighthouse remains the most intact lighthouse reservation in the Pacific Northwest.

The Keepers of the North Head Lighthouse formed in 2009 to promote awareness of the historic icon and to spearhead efforts to restore the structure, which was damaged over time by the harsh elements. For more information about the Keepers, visit online at or visit their Facebook page at: For more information about the event, call (360) 665-5580 or (360) 642-2502.

About Cape Disappointment State Park

Cape Disappointment State Park is located on the Long Beach Peninsula between the Pacific Ocean and the Columbia River. The park comprises more than 1,800 acres, offering camping, 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.

Cape Disappointment also offers cabins and yurts for overnight rental. Also available for rent are the historic lighthouse keeper’s residences, outfitted with modern conveniences. For information about the park and its accommodations, visit

Stay connected to your state parks by following Washington State Parks at, and Share your favorite state park adventure on the State Parks blog site at

The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission manages a diverse system of more than 100 state parks and recreation programs, including long-distance trails, boating safety and winter recreation.

Support state parks by purchasing your annual Discover Pass today, and enjoy a whole year of outdoor fun on Washington’s beautiful state-managed recreation lands. For more information, visit

Media contacts:
Toni Droscher (360) 902-8604
Steve Wood, Interpretive Specialist, (902) 642-3029
Wash. Telecommunications Relay Service: (800) 833-6388


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