Restoration of lighthouse gets help from a grant
BARAGA — Keweenaw Bay Indian Community (KBIC) Public Works has $10,000 more to put toward restoring the Sand Point Lighthouse. The money is thanks to a grant from the Cultural Resource Fund, administered by Multicultural Initiative for Community Advancement (MICA) Group and funded in part by NEO Philanthropy.
According to Arlan Friisvall, Maintenance Director with KBIC, the grant falls short of being able to restore the entire building, so the focus will be on the lantern room at the top of the tower. The metal roof and window frames will be taken off the tower so that the wood underneath can be replaced.
“The main thing is the floor here,” KBIC carpenter Todd Pittsley said.
Underneath copper sheeting, the wood deck and supports around the top of the tower have begun to rot and fall away. The railing around the deck will be restored closer to the original design, too.
“It was metal before, now it’s wood,” said Jean Jokinen, who wrote the grant proposal on behalf of the KBIC.
The original proposal was for more money, to restore more of the building, but MICA asked that the amount be reduced so money could be given to additional tribes.
The building has housed different KBIC offices in the past, but is currently unoccupied. Friisvall and Jokinen both expect it will be used as office space again eventually, after the building has been sufficiently restored.