Chicamacomico's Centennial Celebration Trifecta on Hatteras Island

“Honoring Our Heroes – Preserving Our Past.” That’s the motto at the Chicamacomico Life-Saving Station. Today, August 4th, 2011, the 1911 Chicamacomico Life-Saving Station (located at MP 39.5 in Rodanthe) will celebrate their centennial with a trifecta of events to be remembered for another one hundred years!

Three celebrations take place today:
The 1911 Chicamacomico Life-Saving Station Centennial
The 6th Annual National Heroes Day
National Coast Guard Day

According to the Chicamacomico Life-Saving Station Museum Complex, “Chicamacomico was part of the United States Life-Saving Service (USLSS) and was the first station built in North Carolina. The original station, dating from 1874, is still on the site as one of eight buildings belonging to the Chicamacomico Historical Association. The men of the United States Life-Saving Service (1871-1915) were the original rescue heroes, the “storm warriors” who made dramatic and heroic rescues of shipwreck victims whose lives were in peril from the sea. In their history, nation-wide, the USLSS’s men responded to over 178,000 lives in peril from the sea, of which they saved over 177,000! In 1915, this service merged with the US Revenue Cutter Service to form the United States Coast Guard who routinely continues this tradition of heroism.”

Chicamacomico decided to honor and celebrate true American heroes of the past and the present. Participants invited include the US Coast Guard, Coast Guard Auxiliary, local volunteer fire departments, local law enforcement agencies, local EMS units and Ocean Rescue squads, Cape Hatteras Electric, NPS Cape Hatteras National Seashore, Outer Banks Lighthouse Society, and perhaps some last-minute surprises. Equipment on display and/or in use includes fire engines, ambulances, police cars, Coast Guard helicopter, rescue boats, and others. There will be numerous displays, demonstrations, and exhibits as well as hands-on activities and participation events and live period music.

Today’s Schedule of Events for Chicamacomico’s 6th Annual “American Heroes Day” and the 1911 Life-Saving Station Centennial:

10:00 Event Opens (All emergency vehicles: NO sirens or lights this time)
10:30 Opening Ceremonies – Main Stage Area
-Posting of Colors, United States Coast Guard Ceremonial Honor Guard, Alexandria, VA.
-Welcoming Remarks: James Charlet, Chicamacomico Historic Site Manager.
-Guest Speaker for the1911 Centennial: Capt Anthony Popeil, Commander, USCG Sector North Carolina.
-Guest Speaker for the 6th Annual American Heroes Day: Joe Swartzer, Director, North Carolina -Maritime Museums System
-1911 Life-Saving Station Restorer: Ken Wenberg
-Browsing time for exhibits, displays, tables and talking with Special Guests
12:00 S.S. Mirlo Rescue Story & Sea Chantey Singer John Golden Ramp of 1874 Station
1:00 Beach Apparatus Drill Starts at 1874 Station
(Teams USCG Motor Lifeboat Station Oregon Inlet & Station Hatteras Inlet)
2:00 Water Rescue Demo (Chicamacomico Banks VFD Water Rescue Unit) On the Beach
3:00 USCG Search & Rescue Demo (SAR), Jayhawk Helicopter & GC 47’Lifeboat On the Beach
(USCG Air Station Elizabeth City and USCG Motor Lifeboat Station Oregon Inlet)

Ongoing Events Throughout The Day:

Hot dogs, chips & sodas, for sale!
US Coast Guard Station Oregon Inlet- static display of 25 foot response boat & tow truck
US Coast Guard Station Hatteras Inlet- interactive demonstration of fixing vessel water leaks
Chicamacomico Banks Volunteer Fire Dept & Water Rescue Unit- static display and inspection of ladder truck and jet-ski, and tow truck. See demo above.
Dare County Sheriff Department- live demos of K9 Officer and dog, static displays and inspection of patrol car and 5 ton “storm truck”
Dare County Emergency Medical Services – static display of EMS ambulance and equipment
Kill Devil Hills Ocean Rescue Unit – static display of truck and lifeguard equipment
Salvo Volunteer Fire Department – static display and inspection of company fire engine
North Carolina Highway Patrol – static display and inspection of SUV Patrol vehicle.
Cape Hatteras Electric Cooperative Bucket Truck-climb in trucks, try on lineman gear, ride way up in the bucket!!
Tables, displays, handouts, and conversations with – Interaction with Special Guests, Dare County Emergency Management, NPS Cape Hatteras Nation Seashore, Outer Banks Lighthouse Society.
1911 Centennial Participants- Restorer Ken Wenberg in the old cookhouse, Period 25′ shad boat, Antique sewing machines, Antique gas engines, Period songs from Sea Notes, John Golden, and Juliann & Richard

*This is a tentative schedule and subject to change due to the fact that active-duty emergency personnel and equipment are present and may be called out before or during the event.

Admission fees are a flat $5 per person. Children 5 and under are free. Chicamacomico’s seven acre site will be filled with equipment and displays of the participants, so parking will be across the street. Carpooling is encouraged. No coolers allowed. Cold bottled water will be available for sale.

For additional information, contact the Chicamacomico Life-Saving Station at (252) 987-1552.

Surf or Sound Realty is proud to be a sponsor of the Centennial Celebration on Hatteras Island. If you are visiting the Outer Banks today, don’t miss this fun family event during your Hatteras Island vacation!


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