Open May 10, 2014 through October: Fri.-Sat. 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Sun. 12-4 p.m.
Suggested donation to visit museum:
$2 adults / $1 students & children.
Lighthouse climb costs $10 adults / $5 children 8-12 years old.
A seasonal attraction located at Simmons Island Park, 50th Street and Lighthouse Drive (4th Avenue). After years of extensive remodeling and renovation, the 1867 Light Station Keeper’s Cottage opened in May 2010 as a maritime museum featuring artifacts, maps and information about Kenosha’s important 19th century harbor. The first floor of the building has been restored to a 1907-08 time period, complete with historic paint colors and a period kitchen. Exhibits document Kenosha's harbor history, with information on its lighthouse keepers, shipping and commercial fishing history. A chart desk for nautical charts and maps displays historical harbor maps that date back to 1839, which shows the plot of Southport (what Kenosha used to be called). An authentic Fresnel lens, on loan from the U.S. Coast Guard, is on display. It has the size lens that used to sit atop the Southport Lighthouse. The second floor is now open with exhibits about the restoration project, local shipwwrecks, US Coast Guard, and a re-creation of a lighthouse keeper’s bedroom/office.
The Southport Lighthouse, built in 1866, is the third lighthouse tower to have existed. During museum hours, visitors can climb the 72 steps to the top of the lighthouse for a panoramic view of the Lake Michigan shoreline. The tower stands 55 feet above the lighthouse grounds.
Adult and school group tours welcomed. Facility rentals available. Free parking. Suggested donations to tour the museum; there is a fee to climb the lighthouse (must be 8 years old or older).
Join the museum on May 14, 2014 for the Southport Lighthouse Paint the Tower Workshop. Join the Kenosha History Center for a special workshop with Judy Soles as your instructor as she demonstrates how to artistically transform a ceramic Southport Lighthouse replica into your own personal work of art. 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. $25 fee includes an 11” Replica of the 1866 Lighthouse. This workshop is open to all ages. Class size limited, supply list available.
The lighthouse and maritime museum, inside the keeper's house, documents Kenosha's lighthouse keepers, shipping and fishing history. Also climb the 1866 Southport Lighthouse. The tower stands 55 feet above the lighthouse grounds. See Kenosha, Lake Michigan and into Illinois and Racine County.
Triple Dipper: Ice Cream, Music & Fun, a Family Ice Cream Social at the Southport Light Station Museum! To help celebrate National Lighthouse Day all Kenosha County Residents are invited to climb to the top of the Lighthouse Tower for FREE! ($5 for Out of County adult visitors.) All children 8 to 12 years old climb FREE!