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Chamber Notebook Article:

Manitowoc Sunrise Rotary



People have been curious lately about goings on at the Manitowoc North Breakwater Lighthouse and at Red Arrow Beach.

Many are already aware that the Manitowoc North Breakwater Lighthouse is privately owned by Mr. Phil Carlucci, from Long Island NY. He purchased the Lighthouse at an auction from the US Coast Guard in 2011, and continues to take an active interest in any and all activities surrounding it. Although its light and fog signal were operational, it was automated and few people, if any, entered the lighthouse for maintenance purposes. He was required to renovate the neglected, dilapidated structure, and after spending more than $300,000, he transformed it into the beautiful, stately icon it is today.

Manitowoc Sunrise Rotary felt fortunate, honored, in fact, when they were designated by Mr. Carlucci as the Lighthouse Keepers. We work closely with Mr. Carlucci to fulfill some of his wishes. He, in turn, is interested in showing off the building to the public. It is his desire to get as many people as possible to tour the Lighthouse.

We have offered tours on the 4th of July for the past number of years. In 2022 we had more than 1,700 people attend a very successful open house. Due to the generous contributions from our local sponsors, Sunrise Rotary was able to offer free admission on that special day.

For 2023, Sunrise Rotary has prioritized two goals for the Lighthouse. The first goal is to open the Lighthouse to the public. We will be assisted in reaching that goal by working with the local school systems to offer historical tours to all 4th grade classes on an annual basis. This works well with the fact that schools are required to focus on Wisconsin history at that grade level.

For more than 100 years the Lighthouse fulfilled its duty as harbor guardian. But in its recent history, the beautiful, five story building stood bare inside. Our second goal is to outfit the empty building with furnishings of the era. We have begun the necessary research and have located interior pictures of the Lighthouse, which show equipment and furnishing that were in the building. Refurnishing the interior will be a long, slow process, but work has begun in the Watchroom on the 3rd level. From old pictures we were able to identify, locate and acquire a matching office desk and chairs. But the search continues for other furnishings and equipment.

We are in the process of forming a committee of interested persons to assist with the research for the interior of the Lighthouse. If you are interested in joining us in this important task, you can use the "Contact Us" button on our website:

And there’s more exciting news going around town about a family event scheduled for July 14 – 16, 2023 at Red Arrow Beach. Manitowoc Sunrise Rotary, in partnership with Visit Manitowoc, will be introducing a new annual event called Wisconsin Sand Sculpting Festival, Manitowoc.

This unique, three-day festival, the only one of its kind in the entire state of Wisconsin, will be a massive tourist draw and a major boost to our local economy. The event will be promoted state-wide and on the other side of Lake Michigan, where there are numerous followers of sand sculpting competitions.

Over the course of the weekend, 10 competitive semi-pro sand sculptors will construct massive sculptures along our beachfront. Attendees of all ages can watch and chat with competing sculptors in action, participate in hands-on amateur competitions, demonstrations and speed sculpting competitions. In addition, there will be an entertainment tent featuring a variety of live performances, food trucks, refreshments, and vendor booths.

Mark July 14 – 16, 2023 on your calendar now and plan to join in the fun. This is an event you don’t want to miss.

Manitowoc Sunrise Rotary is part of a global network of 1.4 million neighbors, friends, leaders, and problem-solvers who see a world where people unite and take action to create lasting change – across the globe, in our communities, and in ourselves.

Together, we eradicate polio, train skilled peacemakers, and provide lasting solutions for communities, fighting disease, hunger, illiteracy, and poverty not only locally, but around the world. Most of our fund-raising activities benefits youth and youth activities in the local area.


We welcome new members.

“The Chamber of Manitowoc County, with its publishing of The Chamber NOTEBOOK, provides space for Chamber members to present information about their business. The publishing of this information is in no way intended as showing preference for that business by The Chamber.”