VIRGINIA BEACH - Members of Va. Beach City Council will be made honorary keepers of the Cape Henry Lighthouse on Saturday as part of the city's 50th birthday celebration.
The historic lighthouse, owned by Preservation Virginia, is on Fort Story. City residents and people with military IDs can attend the festivities for half price ($2.50 for adults, $1.50 12 and under).
The lighthouse will be open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. At 11 a.m., Mayor William D. Sessoms, Jr. will be given the key to the lighthouse.
Officials say the Cape Henry Lighthouse was the first public building project of the new United States government after the Revolutionary War. The octagonal sandstone lighthouse safeguarded maritime traffic from 1792 until 1881, when the new Cape Henry Light was placed into service. Since 1930, the old lighthouse has been owned and operated by Preservation Virginia, a private nonprofit group dedicated to perpetuating and revitalizing Virginia's cultural, architectural and historic heritage.
Virginia Beach was created on January 1, 1963 with the merger of the seaside community of Virginia Beach and Princess Anne County.