When Dave Yeager, of Wildwood Crest, retired in 1983, he moved to the Jersey Shore, started painting and got interested in lighthouses.
Since 1989, he's been part-time keeper at the Cape May Lighthouse, and his pen-and-ink drawing of the structure was recently chosen for a U.S. Postal Service stamp cancellation for today's National Lighthouse Day.
The Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts & Humanities, which runs Cape May Lighthouse, is holding a celebration today to mark the light's 25th anniversary of being open to the public. It was built in 1859 and fully reopened for visitors in 1988.
The Postal Service will cancel stamps using Yeager's design, and there will be a crafts show and kids activities from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Being the keeper involves opening the building in the morning and sometimes dressing up in historic garb.
"I guess nowadays it's a lot of, 'Let me take a picture with the lighthouse keeper," said Yeager, 86.
Yeager plays the part of Harry Palmer, the head keeper from 1924-1933, who had two assistants and lived in a house next to the light.
He's often asked if keepers were bored, but Yeager doesn't think they were. They had too much work to do, keeping the oil light burning through the night and on cloudy or stormy days.
Yeager, a World War II veteran, also works at MAC's World War II Lookout Tower on Sunset Boulevard in Lower Township, he said.
Stockton's Third Thursday
Kate Ogden, associate professor of art history at Richard Stockton College, will be at Stockton's Kramer Hall, 30 Front St. in Hammonton, for the Third Thursday event Aug. 15 to discuss Stockton's master of arts in American studies program. She will be in Room 207 from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Michelle McDonald, associate professor of Atlantic history, will participate from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Sept. 19 Third Thursday event, also at Kramer Hall.
Urban Teacher Academy
Somers Point's Kaitlyn Leonard, a rising senior at Mainland Regional High School, is among 26 students participating in Rowan University's Urban Teacher Academy through Aug. 9.
Students have worked in Camden observing Head Start classes, working with children on reading activities and doing service projects. Leonard said she was inspired by many teachers, especially Danna Phillips, her pre-calculus teacher.
Contact Michelle Brunetti Post:
If You Go:
National Lighthouse Celebration at Cape May Lighthouse, 215 Light House Ave, Cape May Point, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. today. Stamp cancellation, free kids activities, craft show. Call 609-884-5404.