Members and Volunteers Appreciation Luncheon 2017

On Saturday, June 10, 2017, the Cape Canaveral Lighthouse Foundation held an event in appreciation of its members and volunteers. The buffet lunch was prepared by the Navy Greenhouse at Port Canaveral and was attended by nearly 100 members and volun-teers, as well as a few guests. President Rocky Johnson opened the event with a warm welcome and a brief summary of the vision for the Lighthouse Foundation and emphasized the value mankind places on meaningful historical artifacts. He reinforced the profound role our volunteers play in not only preserving our artifact – the Lighthouse – but in sharing the magical experience of history with others. He also briefly discussed the Education Program that recently was introduced into Brevard Public Schools and stressed our need for even more volunteer help as our programs expand.

Rocky then introduced two of our special guests – Lindsey Swindle, representing Senator Dorothy Hukill, who staunchly worked towards getting a Lighthouse Foundation funding bill through the Appropriations Committee. Even though the bill was not funded this year, her efforts were extremely appreciated, and we were honored to have Ms. Swindle join us for this event. Rocky also introduced Rocky Randels, former Mayor of the City of Cape Canaveral, and currently City Council Member.

Carolyn Burby, Volunteer Coordinator for the Lighthouse Foundation, extended a personal thank you to the many volunteers who have given their support over this past year . They’ve kept the Keeper’s Closet going, the tours going – and both thriving – and they’ve helped to spread the word about our Lighthouse at several community events. She noted, “It’s been a busy year, and we’re going to need your help even more in the future.” Carolyn then encouraged volunteers who are not currently members to join the membership family, and to invite their friends and family to also become a “Friend of the Lighthouse.” Our event Planning Committee members – Sharon Crockett, Bev Merrilees, Yvonne Thornton and Carolyn Burby deserve a pat on the back for putting it all together.

Lunch was then served by the Greenhouse and included hamburgers, hotdogs, baked beans, cole slaw, potato salad, cookies and beverages. Dr. David Paterno, Ron Ecker and Carolyn handed out many door prizes, and attendees were delighted to receive restaurant gift cards, hotel stays, spa gift bags, massage certificates, zoo admission tickets, symphony tickets, trampoline park jump passes, photo studio certificates, seafood market gift bags, tote bags and several other gifts.
And a good time was had by all!

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Rocky Johnson – President CCLF

Angels and Lighthouses

Dear Cape Canaveral Lighthouse Supporters:

Did you know that there are angels at the Cape Canaveral Lighthouse? Well, there are, and we are in desperate need of more!

Please consider this month’s request:

“Wanted: More Angels for the Cape Canaveral Lighthouse”.

Three of my collegiate years were spent learning classical Greek, and also translating that ancient language int English. Once you get “into” translating Greek and Latin into English, you can never quite get away from the etymology of often used words, and playing upon the differences and similarities of those words in conversation. Sometimes I play with words just for fun, but other times I find the word play helpful in making a point, and that’s certainly the case here.

The word “angel” would directly translate from the Greek as “messenger”. So yes, there are certainly angels (messengers) at the Cape Canaveral Lighthouse, and those messengers are, well, You! Having just held our annual Members and Volunteer Appreciation Luncheon, I am in awe at how many angels actually support the CCLF. Our angels are made up of a diverse group, and come from all walks of life, but they do share one thing: They love to share the message of our lighthouse. This month my request is that each of us fulfill our duties as messengers by getting out there and sharing the story of the lighthouse with others.

How many angels can dance on the top of a lighthouse? You’ll have to attend one of our upcoming events to find the answer to that one.

See you at the Lighthouse!

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June 2017 Newsletter

The latest edition of the Canaveral Beacon is now available now. It includes an article about the Members and Volunteers Appreciation Luncheon held on June 10, 2017. The article includes an accounting and photos of the festivities. The Foundation will very shortly be initiating a “Volunteer Spotlight” on the

Cape Canaveral Lighthouse Foundation Facebook page.

Also in the newsletter; a brief about the Brevard Public Schools Education Partnership; the events of Descendant’s Day 2017; and Foundation volunteers’ participation in Earth Day at Enchanted Forest Sanctuary in Titusville. You’ll also find information on upcoming events for the Cape Canaveral Lighthouse Foundation and the Florida Lighthouse Association.

You can view the newsletter at:

Canaveral Beacon – June 2017

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Eagle Scout Project Provides A Walking Tour for Lighthouse Visitors

A visit to the Cape Canaveral Lighthouse is truly a visit through the past. From the unique first floor door to the 151’ spiral staircase, you learn what life must have been like for the Lighthouse Keepers. Now, while waiting to climb the historic staircase, you can take a “walking tour” outside the lighthouse and journey back in time to see pictures of the homes the lighthouse keepers lived in while keeping the Fresnel light shining.

St. Luke’s Episcopal Church’s Boy Scout Troop 701 Scout Master Tom Knudson was contacted and asked if he had a scout interested in doing a project for the Cape Canaveral Lighthouse. Eagle Scout candidate, Mason Ripper, showed an interest. He visited the lighthouse, discussed his project with Dr. Sonny Witt, developed a proposal and presented it to the Cape Canaveral Lighthouse Foundation Board.

The space inside the lighthouse is limited, so while visitors are waiting their turn to climb the historic staircase, they could learn a bit of the history of the Lighthouse Keepers. Mason’s project was to provide a “walking tour” for the lighthouse visitors awaiting access to the lighthouse. He planned to build three kiosks, each with a picture of the original cottage at that location, and an artist rendering of the proposed cottage that will be re-built. Each kiosk includes a poster telling the story of the lighthouse and the weekly lighthouse tours.

The project was approved on October 3 by the Boy Scout advisers. Mason completed the design and construction of the three kiosks, showcasing the pictures of the Keepers’ Cottages along with the history of the lighthouse. The scouts assisted with the placement of the kiosks on the lighthouse grounds on March 5, 2017.

Thanks for the direction and support of Dave Chasar (placement of the kiosks), Mike Wheeler (kiosk framing), Conny and Jeff Ripper (Mason’s parents), Dr. Sonny Witt (liaison with USAF, 45th Space Wing, Director of Operations), the Cape Canaveral Lighthouse Foundation, and Ginny and Charles Davis, Cape Canaveral Lighthouse Foundation members who assisted Mason in accomplishing his Eagle Scout Project.

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Florida Lighthouse Association (FLA)

A Few Words about the Florida Lighthouse Association (FLA)
Bob Merrilees
Former President, Cape Canaveral Lighthouse Foundation

The Florida Lighthouse Association is a nonprofit group of citizen activists dedicated to the preservation of the 30 remaining historic lighthouses that line our state’s 1,350-mile coastline. Once central to the economic growth and settlement of our nation, many of Florida’s lighthouses face uncertain futures. We encourage members of the Cape Canaveral Lighthouse Foundation to support FLA by joining and attending meetings. For details check out the website at . FLA grants have helped us toward our goals of restoring our Canaveral Lighthouse community as it once was. Recently FLA awarded us a grant of $6,000 for the rental of a trailer to be placed at the lighthouse to house our gift shop and display our Brick Project. We ask you to show your appreciation by joining FLA today!

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Cape Canaveral Lighthouse Foundation Announces Opening of New Gift Shop

Cape Canaveral Lighthouse Foundation announced today the new gift shop (Keeper’s Closet) will open December 2.  The Keeper’s Closet is located on the grounds of the Cape Canaveral Lighthouse.

The Foundation raised funds with a $6,000 grant from the Florida Lighthouse Association and a Go Fund Me campaign in October for the air-conditioned, secure trailer.  The trailer is located adjacent to the lighthouse for convenience for the visitors during their tour of the lighthouse.  In addition to a retail gift shop, the engraved brick paver walkway project will be housed in the trailer.  Visitors will now have an opportunity to select a brick with a design that can be engraved and placed in the walkway surrounding the lighthouse.

“The Foundation was in dire need of a facility to house its Keeper’s Closet because it had outgrown its space on the first floor of the lighthouse.  The Keeper’s Closet and Engraved Brick Paver Walkway Project are the main fundraising efforts for the Lighthouse Foundation,” said CCLF President Bob Merrilees.

The Florida Lighthouse Association, a non-profit organization, was founded in 1996, to promote and preserve Florida’s historic lighthouses.  The FLA’s mission is to safeguard Florida’s remaining lighthouses for future generations by supporting community based restoration, preservation and education efforts.  The FLA receives several grant applications each year, making competition for the funding through the non-profit organization high.  To learn more about the Florida Lighthouse Association, visit

The Cape Canaveral Lighthouse Foundation, established in 2002, assists the US Air Force 45th Space Wing at Patrick Air Force Base in preserving, protecting, promoting and interpreting the lighthouse and its historical significance to the Florida Space Coast, State of Florida and Nation.  It is our intent to complete the historical integrity of the Cape Canaveral Lighthouse Complex by rebuilding the original Lighthouse Keepers’ Cottages.  The Cottages will be designated as a replica home, an education center and an artifact display cottage with gift shop.  We seek sponsors to join us and contribute toward our efforts.

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Cape Canaveral Lighthouse Foundation Membership

A Few Words about CCLF Membership

from Bob Merrilees, President, Cape Canaveral Lighthouse Foundation

As I mentioned in our last newsletter, we are making great strides with our tours on Friday and Saturday, each week in educating our community and out-of-town visitors about our lighthouse. The Keeper’s Closet continues to do well. We are working to take the history of our lighthouse and the Cape Canaveral community as it once existed, early settlers and prehistoric inhabitants, into our local schools and will keep you posted on our progress.

I cannot stress enough, how important membership is to our Foundation and we hope you will join our team as members and help us to continue to move forward. Detailed information about membership categories and contact information is on our Membership page or in this month’s Canaveral Beacon. Thanks to our members, volunteers, and sponsors for your continued support.

Lighthouse Tours

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Cape Canaveral Lighthouse Foundation’s Continued Quest

A Few Words from Bob Merrilees
President, Cape Canaveral Lighthouse Foundation

The Cape Canaveral Lighthouse Foundation continues its quest to rebuild the Lighthouse Keepers’ Cottages and to increase access to the Lighthouse. The Air Force and other regulatory and environmental requirements have been diligently pursued and accomplished, for the most part. Our progress is due to the aggressive and persistent efforts of Ginny Davis, the heart of our Foundation. Now that we are at this pivotal point, funding is the challenge. Our critical need is a decision on how we go about this fundraising and who will lead this effort.

We have so many loyal partners in our corner such as RZK Architects; Hensel Phelps; Robert Elliott, our Air Force point of contact for site plans; as well as our members and volunteers. In the coming year we will be working to strengthen and broaden our Foundation Board in order to move forward toward our goals.
We are still looking for a Newsletter Editor and a Keeper’s Closet Manager and hope one or more volunteers will step up and lend a hand.

The resumption of the Lighthouse tours, which began in January 2016, has been a real boost to our visibility in the community and has resulted in an increased income stream from the Keeper’s Closet at the Lighthouse and occasional donations from SunWard Tours and the community.

We sincerely thank all of you for your continued support.

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Foundation Appreciation for Local Business Support

The Cape Canaveral Lighthouse Foundation is grateful for the continued support from the following businesses that provided door prizes for the Membership/Volunteer Appreciation Event:

Andrei’s Restaurant
Baja Chowder & Seafood
Bonefish Grill
Brano’s Italian Grill
CCLF Keeper’s Closet
Cocoa Village Playhouse
Country Inn & Suites
Dixie Crossroads
Fishlips Waterfront Bar & Grill
Florida’s Fresh Grill
Grills Restaurant
Milliken’s Reef
Port St. John Veterinary Hospital
Radisson at the Port
Rusty’s Seafood & Oyster Bar
Seafood Atlantic
Squid Lips
Therese Roche, Independent Consultant, Thirty One Gifts

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Keeper’s Closet Manager Update

Keeper’s Closet Manager
Our Keeper’s Closet is currently being managed, on an interim basis, by Bev Merrilees. Profits from the Keeper’s Closet continually support the Lighthouse and our goal of rebuilding the keepers homes and the Lighthouse community as it once was. It goes without saying that this is a key volunteer position for our Foundation. Experience in sales/marketing would be helpful. Bev and our Foundation Treasurer, Kathie Underwood, will work with you to transition into the job. We currently have a group of dedicated Keeper’s Closet volunteers. We are trying to expand our community outreach and also have our gift shop open each Friday and Saturday at the Lighthouse from 8:30 am to 10: am to accommodate the newly begun tours. These requirements necessitate more volunteers.

Manager Responsibilities include:

Inventory and document stock
Track items that are sold and back fill as needed Store stock
Price and prepare stock for sale
Recruit, train & schedule volunteers
Work with current manager to discuss current procedures and how they can be more efficient

If you want to help the Foundation in a really substantial way and would like more information about this interesting and challenging job, please get in touch with us at

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