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The East End Seaport Museum. (Credit: Monique Singh-Roy)

The East End Seaport Museum and Marine Foundation opens its doors to the public this Saturday for a grand seasonal opening celebrating the Tall Ships visit to Greenport.

A major exhibit will be dedicated to the ship Hermoine. The French frigate brought General Lafayette to the aid of General George Washington during the Revolutionary War. She was grounded and wrecked in 1793.

“I am impressed by the fact that the Congress actually met once aboard the original “‘Hermoine,” said Trustee Lynn Summers, who volunteered to coordinate the L’Hermoine exhibit.

Twenty years ago the group “Friends of Hermione-Lafayette in America” organized to build an exact replica of the Hermione. Today, that vessel is described as one of the most authentically built Tall Ships in the last 150 years. The museum’s exhibit, L’Hermoine, will illustrate the construction of the reproduction of Hermoine and the life of General Lafayette.

Hermoine, the life-sized replica, will make an appearance in Greenport on July 6 and 7, as part of the American tour of Tall Ships. The museum’s exhibit will be on display for the entire summer at the museum.

Other exhibits dedicated to the Tall Ships include a look at the maritime tradition of model ship building. Model yacht racing and tactical demonstrations will take place with the newly formed East End Model Yacht Club every third Saturday at Mitchell Park through September.

The Seaport Museum is also inducting a permanent exhibit dedicated to Long Beach (Bug) Lighthouse. The original lighthouse was built in 1870 and destroyed by arsonists in 1963. Rebuilt in 1990, this year marks the 25th year of the relighting of Long Beach Bar (Bug) Lighthouse. The new “Bug Light Room” features videos, artifacts, floor plans and models referencing the history of the lighthouse.

The museum’s grand seasonal opening runs from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, June 6 at the East End Seaport Museum. Visitors will also have an opportunity to participate in a raffle for free Lighthooise Cruise Tickets and other museum gift shop items. Light refreshments will be served.  Admission to the event is complimentary.

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