Candle Power

Bringing an Icon to Life

A unit of measure for light is candle power. Almost poetic when you consider that even big, blasting spotlights and precision-engineered beacons, such as the light cast by the Fresnel lens of the Harbour Town Lighthouse, have their impact expressed as candle power. The unit we hear used more often nowadays is lumens, but it is not the same. Lumens are a better measure of how light affects an area, while the old unit, candle power, works better for measuring intensity.

Makes you think. If every couple, every concept, every bright idea, every insight inspired by the view from the lighthouse were a single candle, then altogether they cast a light that is as powerful as it is lovely. Those inspirations arise not from the light that the lighthouse puts out, but from the light that people let in when they catch the view from here. It has been known to change how people see things in many ways.

Suddenly Seeing

The thing about heights is that they change our human point of view. Towers and platforms all through history mark places where folks found it helpful to see a greater distance. As it turns out, from higher up we not only see farther, but we also see wider, too. The sensation can be so enlightening that towers, obelisks, domes, and minarets became monuments as well as platforms. They mark a place for memory.

The top deck of the Harbour Town Lighthouse has presented such views and cemented such memories for millions over the years. We thrive on seeing it happen again every single day. People arrive with one view and depart with that view changed. The most remarkable thing of all is that the viewpoint always – always – is changed for the better.

Problems look smaller, circles of friends appear wider and warmer, fresh possibilities present themselves, all because of some moments devoted to the view from the lighthouse. We can’t imagine a better way of life than being host to moments such as these.

More than We Knew

New points of view are not only the take-home prize of visitors. Hilton Head Island residents, too, discover the unexpected when they return to the Harbour Town Lighthouse. The magnetic quality of the lighthouse makes encountering old acquaintances more likely. Chance encounters and small-world stories abound at the lighthouse, from top to bottom and all around.

“Until that moment, I didn’t’ realize how many friends I had made since moving to Hilton Head Island,” a longtime resident told us. “We went down to the lighthouse to check on some work, and there we ran into a couple who had been among our first friends here. The surprise brought to mind all the years we had known each other, and all the chapters we had enjoyed. All at once, we realized how important this community had been to us all along.”

The versions of this story we hear every week – how a visit to the lighthouse changed the way someone sees things – are always different, and yet is one way the same. What people discover here lights up a new way of knowing. Come join us for a little while. We look forward to welcoming you.