I am an avid boater and have spent my entire life travelling on Georgian Bay and northern Lake Huron based from cottage at South Baymouth on Manitoulin Island. I have a great appreciation for and fascination with lighthouses, both as navigational aids while boating as well as the unique architectural and historical significance they represent My great grandfather was the lightkeeper of two range lights at South Baymouth one of which is pictured here so there is also some family connection to these unique structures.
The Nottawasaga Lighthouse was one of six "Imperial" towers built between 1855 and 1858. Ironically, our own Nottawasaga Lighthouse went into service in 1858, the very same year that the Town of Collingwood was incorporated. All six of the towers are still in existence today, unfortunately the Nottawasaga Lighthouse is in the worst shape stemming from years of neglect as the light was decommissioned in 2003 after which it was subsequently struck by lightning causing further damage. For a complete history of the lighthouse and other information please visit the Nottawasaga Lighthouse Preservation Society (NLPS) website.
This past June I was elected to the NLPS Board of Directors and humbly assumed the position of Chairman. Collectively the Board has worked very hard through the summer months and this week we are in the process of taking the first step in what we hope will be a successful and historically correct restoration of the tower and eventually the rebuilding of the lightkeeper's house. The accompanying picture is one of the six Imperial towers, this one on Cove Island off Tobermory. One day the Nottawasga Lighthouse will stand as proudly as this one. Over the next four to six weeks we will be shrink wrapping the tower to help prevent any further degradation of the structure while we raise the necessary funds for its restoration. While this work is underway you too can help.
Aviva Canada is one of the leading casualty and property insurers in Canada. Each year the Aviva Community Fund provides $1 million in funding for special community projects across the country and this year the Nottawasaga Lighthouse has made their list of contenders for up to $100,000 in funding. You can help by casting you vote to save our "Light." To date we have over 9,300 votes but many more are needed. Please visit Aviva's "Help Save The Nottawasaga Lighthouse" webpage or the NLPS website to cast your vote and encourage your friends to do likewise. Each person can cast 18 votes, it's quick and easy yet will potentially mean a great deal in helping us to secure this funding opportunity.
In the coming weeks I will endeavour to keep you apprised of the shrink wrapping process as we race against the weather to complete the work. If you have any questions and or to offer your support in any way, we are always looking for volunteers in various capacities so feel free to contact me at 705-443-1037 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org