HOBS is planning on an expanded schedule of open houses at the Pump House in the Summer of 2017.
The Pump House will be open every Thursday June through August from 4pm to 7pm. In addition, the building will be open every Saturday morning after July 8th thru August from 9:30 until 12:00 noon.
The stirring photo illustrations of the popular exhibit “Icebound” lines the walls of the North room of the Pump House building. This exhibit tells the true story of the 1885 sinking of the SS Michigan off Holland and the heroic survival of its crew.
The South room of the Pump House houses several small exhibits: The walls are lined with dramatic enlargements of turn-of-the-century colored post cards with interpretive labels. Near the Deming water pump are two interpretive signs, one explains in detail the water systems at Ottawa Beach and the other explains the historical significance of the big Deming water pump.
We are anticipating that we will have a display of projects from a class of language arts students from Lakewood Elementary School who learned about the history of Ottawa Beach as part of our Learning Center. The students are very eager to share what they have learned!
In addition to the open houses, three special programs are scheduled:
On June 22 at 7:30pm, Robert Ortman’s documentary “Black Lake: Cradle of Tourism” will be shown. This documentary traces the histories of the Summer resorts which thrived on the shores of Black Lake in the early 20th century.
On July 6 at 7:30pm, Valerie van Heest will present “Fun with Utilities”. The 35 years in which the Hotel Ottawa existed at Ottawa Beach (1886 – 1923) was a period of enormous technological change as the sources of power to operate machinery transitioned from wind, to steam, to gasoline, and finally to electric. This is a fascinating presentation and should not be missed!
On August 10 at 7:30pm, (view the Overview of “Frozen in Time”) Valerie van Heest and Craig Rich will present “Frozen in Time: the shipwreck SS John Moran”. These two experienced wreck divers will explain the history of this cargo ship which was abandoned by her captain and crew in February 1899. The crew all made it to shore, but their eleven year old ship sank in about 300 feet of icy cold Lake Michigan water. It lay perfectly preserved until being discovered 116 years later!
The open house events and the programs are offered free to the general public. Donations are always welcome.
The Pump House is located west of the US Coast Guard station on Ottawa Beach Road. Free parking is available at the Black Lake Boardwalk parking lots at 2278 Black Lake Avenue just east of the USCG station and 2358 Ottawa Beach Road at the Holland Harbor Fishing Access pier.