Lumina News file photo
The North Carolina Coastal Federation will kick off a capital campaign to fund the entire relocation and renovation of its new headquarters in the historic Palmgren-O’Quinn home on Thursday, Aug. 22, in the Wrightsville Beach Historic Square.
With a target goal of $600,000, on Thursday, Aug. 22, the North Carolina Coastal Federation will kick off its capital campaign to fund the entire relocation and renovation of the new headquarters in the historic Palmgren-O’Quinn home.
Relocated from south Harbor Island to a lot next to the Wrightsville Beach Museum of History off West Salisbury Street in June, the Palmgren-O’Quinn cottage will become the NCCF’s Southeast Office and Education Center once complete near the beginning of 2014.
Tracy Skrabal, NCCF southeast office manager and coastal scientist, said around $300,000 has been spent on the move and renovations so far and that Thursday’s event will be used to raise awareness about the NCCF’s funding needs.
“We are hoping that folks come out to learn about the center,” Skrabal said. “We really want to raise the exposure and also emphasize that, while this is a worthwhile project and one that will benefit the region, it is not inexpensive. So we hope folks see the importance of supporting our mission and it also gives us the opportunity to thank some folks that have already done that in a very significant way.”
Gifts from the project’s major sponsors will be announced at the event as well as the grant funding the NCCF has secured thus far.
“Our request for funding really goes in all directions and we are both talking with folks that have the potential to make large gifts while also applying to a number of grants and also appealing to people in the community to give what they can give,” Skrabal said. “Our capital campaign is $500,000 for moving and renovations, and when we get to the end of that we are hoping that everything will be done.”
The new NCCF center will share the Wrightsville Beach Historic Square with the Wrightsville Beach Museum of History and the Wrightsville Beach Chamber of Commerce. Museum director Madeline Flagler said the museum is excited to welcome the new addition.
“We are a small little group over here and we are really excited to enlarge that group,” Flagler said. “We anticipate [the NCCF] will be wonderful additions and good neighbors, and we look forward to everything they are going to be doing over there.”
Flagler said the museum is already planning partnerships with the NCCF to provide joint educational opportunities for children involving history and science. While the NCCF center is not open yet, she thinks the museum is already benefitting from the partnership.
“People come in fascinated by what is happening over there,” she said. “It is really very nice and we have already enjoyed them being over there even though they are not technically there yet. At the end of the season we anticipate around 2,000 people will have come through the museum.”
Wrightsville Beach Mayor David Cignotti said he would be speaking about the NCCF’s commitment to the Wrightsville Beach community at Thursday’s event.
“I think their commitment is two pronged,” Cignotti said. “One is through offering environmental expertise to help us protect our fragile environment and the other I would say is their commitment to historic preservation. I hope our community will rally around them and support them in our endeavor.”