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Living History

Living History

U.S. Life Saving Station 30

The Museum, Life Saving Station, and Lifeguard Museum look forward to reopening with Kate Devaney at the helm after COVID-19 forced them closed

For Kate Devaney, becoming the director of Ocean City’s Historical Museum, U.S. Life Saving Station 30, and the Lifeguard Museum (located inside the Bayside Center) was a natural progression. 

“I’m a local. I grew up in Sea Isle. I graduated from Ocean City. It’s kind of a perfect fit,” said Kate.  “My mom was a high school history teacher. It’s always been a big part of my life and something that I love.” 

After graduating from Ocean City High School, Kate attended Loyola University Maryland and graduated with a degree in political science. She went on to earn a master’s degree in history from Villanova. 

“I’ve always been interested in non-profit work. In undergrad, I was drawn to social justice issues. After I left school, I wanted to go into the non-profit world. I started working for the South Jersey Cultural Alliance. It supports and provides networking and development for nonprofits in South Jersey.”

Then, Kate went on to work at Historic Cold Spring Village in Cape May, where her duties were public relations, marketing, special events, fundraising, and grant writing. 

“I always loved museums. I loved history. I loved the nonprofit world.” 

For Kate, no day is typical.

“I knew I would wear a bunch of different hats in a day,” she explained.  

The Historical Museum is set to open the first week in April showcasing their new renovations that were done since closing because of COVID-19 regulations. 

“Because of the age of a lot of the volunteers and board members, there was hesitance to reopen. As our vaccines become widespread, there’s more of an excitement and willingness to come back,” Kate said. 

U.S. Life Saving Station 30 will also be reopening. 

“That will reopen in the spring as well. If somebody wanted to arrange a tour [now], that’s a possibility at any time.”

To arrange a tour, call U.S. Life Saving Station 30 at  (609) 398-5553.

It has also been undergoing some changes – the second floor is being renovated.

“They’re very close to finishing [the second floor]. We’re hopeful that that will be open this summer for visitors,” said Kate. 

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Currently, there’s no schedule of events for the museum.

“We had to cancel fundraisers so it’s hard to make any plans right now. We do have an annual summer lecture series. It’s one of our key events. It’s usually held in the library, but the library doesn’t think they’ll be able to host large gatherings. We’re looking into an outdoor location. We’ve talked to the city about some locations.” 

However, they are offering a virtual event.

“The library has been doing trivia night monthly on Zoom. I reached out to them and said ‘Hey, can we do an Ocean City Trivia Night?’” 

It’s scheduled for March 31. 

The museum is always looking for volunteers. 

“Volunteers can do anything from welcoming to the front desk from helping from behind the scenes at the research area,” Kate said.  

The Ocean City Historical Museum is located at 1735 Simpson Ave # 3. Their phone number is (609) 399-1801.
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