Think for a moment about all of the people, places and programs in the region that rely on the efforts of dedicated volunteers.
If we made a list, it would certainly be a long one.
One example of a local place where volunteers play an integral role is the historic Fairport Harbor Lighthouse. In an ongoing initiative, the all-volunteer Fairport Harbor Historical Society, which maintains the Fairport Harbor Marine Museum and Lighthouse at 129 Second St., is working to support a restoration project on the tower and keeper’s house, according to museum Trustee and Fairport Harbor Village Councilman Tony Bertone, who oversees the buildings and grounds operation at the museum.
We’re impressed with the efforts of the society on this project and believe the group deserves recognition.
First, we like how the Fairport Harbor Historical Society has shown the willingness to work cooperatively with other community groups to come up with creative fundraising ideas for lighthouse maintenance.
Although the Fairport Harbor Marine Museum and Lighthouse does charge admission to visitors, Bertone points out:“We don’t raise a whole lot from the 6,000 to 7,000 visitors we get in the few short months we’re open.” So it’s imperative for the society to go and beyond in planning special events to generate revenue.
Collaborating with other groups on fundraising is important because, as Bertone pointed out, the historical society involves perhaps 20 to 30 people trying to maintain the lighthouse. We believe that bringing together people from a variety of community organizations can help in drumming up innovative fundraising ideas and provide more hands to help with carrying out special events.
One recent fundraiser did give the society’s coffers a boost, when the Lake County Visitors Bureau got together with the folks at the museum, the Lake County Historical Society, the Fairport Harbor Tourism Council, the village’s administration and Lake Metroparks to host the inaugural Lake County Community BBQ Aug. 1 on the museum grounds.
The event raised about $3,500 for museum preservation efforts, according to Lake County Visitors Bureau Director Scott Dockus, who started the job not quite three months ago.
Dockus said he and his crew came up with the idea for the event less than three weeks before it happened. So he was especially thrilled about its success.
“We actually had a full house, and…