Tionesta Indian Festival features lighthouse tours

From staff reports

It’s August and in Tionesta that means Indian Festival will be held and runs from Thursday, Aug. 18 through Sunday, Aug. 21.

The Sherman Memorial Lighthouse tours are sponsored by Tionesta Lions Club monthly from June to October on the second Saturday of the month.

August will also have an Indian Festival Lighthouse tour on the third Saturday of August. The lighthouse is privately owned by Jack Sherman and is donated for these fundraising events which benefit the Tionesta Lions Club’s community projects.

Self-guided tours of this beautiful six story structure will be held from 1 to 4 p.m. Aug. 13 and 20 (during Indian Festival), Sept. 10 and Oct. 8. As you climb the spiral staircase, see Sherman Family memorabilia, lighthouse collectibles and finally a beautiful view up and down the Allegheny River from the balcony circling the top.

The dates listed above are the only dates that the lighthouse will be open to the public. Please mark your calendars so you do not miss this opportunity.

The lighthouse is located on “Lighthouse Island” on the Allegheny River in Tionesta. Directions from State Route 36 on Elm Street in Tionesta are turn west onto Sherman Street at the Mid-Town Motel and follow the signs.

The 47-feet-high tower is based around eight glue-laminated columns and Insulspan Wall Panels making this a one-of-a-kind design in the world of lighthouses. The star on the top of the lantern rooms is 100 feet above the island’s surface.

The pre-manufactured lantern room situated on top of the timber frame tower is made of aluminum and glass and is 12 feet in diameter and 20 feet high with an observation deck with guardrails around the outside.

The tower foundation is octagon shaped, solid reinforced concrete, two feet thick and 18 feet in diameter. There is a basement within the foundation walls.

All six floors and the basement can be accessed by spiral stairs, 76 steps to be exact. The exterior of the foundation is faced with river rock and the lighthouse is clad in vinyl siding.

The interior of the lighthouse is replete with inlaid hardwood floors and natural finish on the beautiful, laminated timber columns. Each floor of the lighthouse houses Sherman family history and memorabilia.

The fifth floor of the lighthouse features the construction process of the Sherman Memorial Lighthouse, with photos and construction blueprints.

Admission is $5 per adult, $2 for children 13 to 18 and free for children 12 and under. Proceeds of the tours benefit Tionesta Lions community projects.

For more information or private group tours, call (814) 755-3672.

The dates listed above are the only dates that the lighthouse will be open to the public. Please mark your calendars so you do not miss this opportunity.

Additionally, the Tionesta Lions are sponsoring a second annual Tour-de-Tionesta family fun ride starting at 10 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 13 at St. Anthony’s parking lot on Elm St.

The length of the ride is a little over five miles and children are welcome to participate but must wear helmets for this event. Following the ride, there is a free hot dog picnic at the lighthouse.

There is no registration fee but try to give advance notice to fannyfarmercook@gmail or call (814) 493-1722 so there are enough hot dogs for participants. Then just show up with a bike and a smile on your face.


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