Lighthouse Museum should move forward

To you, our valued friends and readers, we say — Happy New Year! May 2013 bring you good health, peace and prosperity.

The year just passed was certainly one of extreme highs and lows for the Staten Island economy. On the upside, we had the announcement of potential development on the North Shore that can truly grease the economic engine here — things such as The NY Wheel and a unique retail shopping center. This was soon followed, though, by Superstorm Sandy.

As our Island continues its recovery, it would be adding insult to injury for us to lose the hard-won momentum that was just beginning to gather in St. George.

While it can be hoped that the larger elements of that development will continue apace, there is a smaller component that warrants our careful attention right now. The National Lighthouse Museum is reaching a critical juncture on its road to becoming a reality on Staten Island.

In 1997, Staten Island was awarded the charter to develop this museum. There is an historical property right near the SI Ferry Terminal that is the proposed site. After many setbacks, the new Board of Trustees for this venture has been able to move the ball forward.

This museum is a good thing for the ongoing revitalization of the North Shore. It goes hand-in-hand with the other development and will be right in its midst.

It will be another piece of the puzzle to make that part of the Island a world-class tourist destination, drawing boating enthusiasts and maritime history buffs.

Right now, the museum is at a crucial stage. It requires funding to ensure that it will be ready on opening day, which is expected to be this year.

We know that recent times have called on all our resources to respond to Sandy’s wrath. Staten Islanders, in their goodness, have been giving till it hurts.

But if there’s a chance you can direct even just a small amount of your charitable giving to this cause, we recommend you do. We believe this special project belongs here, and will provide dividends to our community for many years to come.

To learn more, visit the website www.lighthousemuseum.org.