SENIOR BEAT

Lighthouses beckon Senior College members

Posted June 26, 2011, at 9:45 p.m.

What could be a more striking symbol of Maine than a lighthouse other than 21 lighthouses? Here is your chance to visit them all. This August and September, Penobscot Valley Senior College members have a special opportunity to participate in the ever-popular and adventurous Lighthouse Exploration course offered by Duane Prugh of the Senior College at University of Maine Augusta.

“We are thrilled at the thought of seeing these majestic beacons,” said Christina Diebold, senior college member organizing this trip. “This course is really a chance in a lifetime to actually visit all of these lighthouses.”

The Lighthouse Exploration tour begins August 19-20. The second trip runs August 26-27, and the tour finishes up Sept. 9-10. Get up close and personal with some of these landmarks as the class visits Downeast area lighthouses by land and by sea.

“There are all-day field trips that include boat rides to the lighthouses,” said Diebold. “It really shouldn’t be missed, especially for anyone who has a love of the sea, folklore and Maine history.”

You will need a passport for the Saturday, Aug. 20, trip to Campobello Island, so if you don’t have one, start the process now as it can take a while. Carpooling to various sites is available, and the trip planners are hoping for sunshine, although there is something mysterious and awe-inspiring about a lighthouse shrouded in foggy mist. It can be almost eerie. There are no rain dates as of yet, so keep your fingers crossed.

The fee for the lighthouse class, which includes a textbook, is $30 payable to PVSC. In addition, the cost of the boat trips is $155, payable to the instructor. Please note that people taking the course must commit to the boat trips on all three weekends, and membership in a senior college is required.

Madelyn Linscott, 90, a University of Maine Augusta Senior College member, recommends the course to others. “It’s one of the most interesting classes that I’ve ever had,” she said. “It’s just a great course.”

Lighthouses to be explored include Bass Harbor Light, Bear Island Light, Egg Rock

Light, East Quoddy Light, West Quoddy Light, Little River Light, Nash Island, Petit Manan and Narraguagus Light. You also will visit Burnt Coat Harbor; Great Duck Island; Mount Desert Rock in the Stonington area; and lights in Prospect Harbor, Winter Harbor, Castine and Fort Point. Space is limited for this special adventure, so if you are interested in seeing these beautiful lighthouses, get your sea legs under you and register today by calling PVSC at 992-0118. This is a message phone only, so please speak clearly and leave your name and phone number. Registration deadline is Saturday, July 30.

For more information about this course, contact Duane Prugh at 215-3093 or duprume@gmail.com.

Tuesday, Sept. 9, is the date of PVSC’s annual meeting, so there will be a field trip rather than a boat trip.

While no one wants to think about fall since we have finally been blessed with summer, remember that PVSC membership comes with a variety of perks, not the least of which is advanced notice of scheduled classes. It is the best way to ensure enrollment in the classes you want to take.

Carol Higgins Taylor is director of communications at Eastern Area Agency on Aging. Email Higgins Taylor at chtaylor@eaaa.org. For information on EAAA, call 941-2865, toll-free 800-432-7812, email info@eaaa.org or visit http://www.EAAA.org. TTY 992-0150.

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