• Cape Lookout Lighthouse from Barden Inlet

    Cape Lookout

    National Seashore North Carolina

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August-September 2014 Ranger Programs

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Date: August 15, 2014
Contact: Wouter Ketel, 252-728-2250, ext. 3014

HARKERS ISLAND, NCEndless sandy beaches, the call of gulls, the crash of surf and the stories of surfmen and rugged islanders. Come explore the hidden beauty and history of your local National Park during a Ranger-led interpretive program.

Programs will be offered at the Harkers Island Visitor Center. For more information on these programs, or to request a program for your family or group, call the Harkers Island Visitor Center at 252-728-2250.

Special Programs –Select Dates

Horse Sense and Survival Tour

Friday, September 19 & Sunday, September 21 –Reservations required, Fee for ferry transportation

The wild horses of Shackleford Banks are fascinating to observe but may be difficult to find. Join a Ranger for a half day walking trip to find horses and watch their behavior. The park will arrange transportation by local ferries; there will be a charge for the ferry. If you have your own boat, call the park for reservations and meeting locations. Call (252) 728-2250 for reservations, more information on the program and ferry costs.

Moonrise Lighthouse Climbing Tour

Thursday, September 4; Friday, September 5; Saturday, September 6–Tickets required

Ever wonder what it was like to be a lighthouse keeper? Bring your own flashlight and experience the lighthouse as the keepers did, in the dark of night. Hear stories of the light keepers and watch the moon as it rises over the Atlantic Ocean and reflects off the waters of Core Sound.

A special ferry trip will depart Harkers Island at 6:30 PM and return at about 9:30 PM. During the climb the Keepers Quarters Museum will be open.

Tickets for the Moonrise Tours must be purchased in advance and are non-refundable unless the trip is cancelled due to the safety concerns, otherwise the trip will go rain or shine.

NOTE: Park staff will work to evaluate known safety issues and announce trip cancellation by 1:00 PM of the day of the climb. However, weather related safety issues can develop at any time prior to the time of the ferry departure.

The cost for the program is $23 for adults, $12 for children (11 and under), $19 for seniors (62 and older), and $19 for Access Pass holders (for the Moonrise Tours the ferry cost is included in the price of the program).

Reservations for the Moonrise Tours can be made Monday through Friday, between 9:00 AM and 4:00 PM. To make a reservation, call 252-728-2250, extension 3020.

Daily Programs and Activities

Lighthouse Area

Lighting the Way (15 minutes) 10:30 am, 1:30 pm and 3:30 pm

Lighthouse Keepers played a very important role in protecting the coast. Come learn what life was like for them and what they had to do to keep the light in the Cape Lookout Lighthouse burning. Meet on the porch of the Keepers' Quarters Museum by the lighthouse.

Ribbon of Sand(film) (16 minutes)

Travel through the Cape Lookout ecosystem from the sound side marshes and estuaries to the thin protective line of islands of the Outer Banks and the ocean depths beyond. This shorter version of the park film is shown upon request. For your convenience, this film is open-captioned. Shown in the Keepers' Quarters Museum.

Harkers Island

Ribbon of Sand (film) (26 minutes)

Travel through the Cape Lookout ecosystem from the sound side marshes and estuaries to the thin protective line of islands of the Outer Banks and the ocean depths beyond. The film is shown upon request. For your convenience, this film is open-captioned and audio described. Assistive listening devices are also available.

Harkers Island Visitor Center and Ferry Gateway

Weekend programs–Saturdays at 1:00 and 3:00 pm

Saturday, August 16

Discovery Cart (1:00 PM, 30 minutes) –From giant whale bones to the tiniest shells and everything in between: take a closer look at some of the natural treasures found on the beach. Through this hands-on activity, learn about horseshoe crabs, loggerhead sea turtles, sharks, whales, shells, and the many other creatures that share our world.

Journey of the Fresnel Lens (3:00 PM, 30 minutes) –Built in France. Removed and hidden during the Civil War. Found, repaired, and returned to duty in the Cape Lookout Lighthouse. And then removed again as technology advanced. Follow the path of the lighthouse's Fresnel Lens over the course of over 150 years of warning ships of the dangers at sea.

Saturday, August 23

History on Hooves (1:00 PM, 30 minutes) –Discover the story of some of the most famous residents of Shackleford Banks: the wild "Banker" horses. Learn about their past and how the park and its partners are working to protect the future of the herd.

Beach Babies: Shorebird Nesting (3:00 PM, 30 minutes) –Cape Lookout National Seashore isn't just a great place to relax on the beach. These beaches also provide vital nesting grounds for endangered and threatened shorebirds. Find out how to spot shorebird nests and learn how you can help protect them.

Saturday, August 30

Maritime Forest Trail Tour (1:00 PM, 45 minutes) -It has never been easy for living things to survive at the edge of the sea, and only the strongest, most resilient plants and animals thrive in this salty, water-starved habitat. Join a ranger for a walk on the Soundside Nature Trail and learn how native plants and animals survive with the constant threat of the forces of nature.

Women of the Light (3:00 PM, 30 minutes) –At a time when women rarely worked outside the home, these women broke tradition when they became Keepers of the Lighthouse. Along with their male colleagues, they worked tirelessly to guard the coast.

Saturday, September 6

Coastal Heroes (1:00 PM, 30 minutes) –Nor'easters, hurricanes, shoals, and wars have claimed thousands of lives on the North Carolina coast. Join a Ranger to hear the stories of these events and some of the people who risked their lives to rescue strangers from the Graveyard of the Atlantic.

Discovery Cart (3:00 PM, 30 minutes) –From giant whale bones to the tiniest shells and everything in between: take a closer look at some of the natural treasures found on the beach. Through this hands-on activity, learn about horseshoe crabs, loggerhead sea turtles, sharks, whales, shells, and the many other creatures that share our world.

Saturday, September 13

History on Hooves (1:00 PM, 30 minutes) –Discover the story of some of the most famous residents of Shackleford Banks: the wild "Banker" horses. Learn about their past and how the park and its partners are working to protect the future of the herd.

Life of a Keeper (3:00 PM, 30 minutes) – Discover how lighthouse keepers, and their families, managed to keep the light burning through storms, wars and good times.

Saturday, September 20

Maritime Forest Trail Tour (1:00 PM, 45 minutes) -It has never been easy for living things to survive at the edge of the sea, and only the strongest, most resilient plants and animals thrive in this salty, water-starved habitat. Join a ranger for a walk on the Soundside Nature Trail and learn how native plants and animals survive with the constant threat of the forces of nature.

Civil War: The raid on Cape Lookout Lighthouse (3:00 PM, 30 minutes) –Spies, beautiful ladies and a daring raid by a small band of Confederate soldiers –come join the Ranger to hear about the Confederate Army's attempt to destroy the Cape Lookout lighthouse the night of April 3, 1864.

Did You Know?

Scotch Bonnet sea shell

The Scotch Bonnet is North Carolina's state shell. It is one of many that can be found along the beaches of Cape Lookout National Seashore.