Star Island Centennial

Celebrate Star Island’s centennial starting summer 2015 and going through summer 2016. With island and mainland events, historical reenactments, and unparalleled access to the archives, this celebration offers a chance for old and new Shoalers to learn about Star Island’s history while looking towards a bright future.



We will seek to re-live the original dedication while celebrate all we have accomplished over the past cenutry and look towards the future. In doing so, we hope to re-invoke the proclamation read on July 22, 1916 which stated: “Now, therefore, let all persons who frequent this island so comport themselves as they should who are the heirs of a noble tradition and who seek to bring in the reign of righteousness and good-will.”

Join us on July 23rd for centennial, sustainability and architectural tours of Star Island, explore 140 years of the grand Oceanic hotel, participate in memorable chapel services, step back into the past to dance under the stars and indulge in the fine tradition of sipping lime rickeys from a rocking chair overlooking the sea.

Schedule of events!


  • 12:55 pm – Depart the mainland aboard the Thomas Laighton (If overnight guest. No parking available for overnight guests,)
  • 3:00 pm – Take an historic architecture, centennial or sustainability tour. Meet on front porch of Oceanic
  • 4:00 pm – Attend a lecture in Elliott Hall about the 140 year history of the Oceanic Hotel by historian Ann Beattie
  • 5:30 pm  Mingle and relax during a social hour with our conferees in Newton
  • 6:30 pm –Enjoy dinner in the historic dining hall
  • 7:15 pm –Indulge in coffee and dessert in the Stone Village
  • 8:00 pm –Dance and star gaze at the Shoaler’s Ball in the Stone Village



  • 9:25 am – Depart the mainland aboard the Challanger (If day visitor)
  • 11:00 am – Take an architecture, history or sustainability tour
  • 11:30 am – The Gosport Grill opens for lunch - enjoy a lobster roll, burger or hotdog with a world-class view – or bring your own picnic!
  • 12:00 pm – Historic reenactment of the original 1916 dedication of Star Island
  • 12:30 pm – Take a step back in time and view some of Star Island’s historic films, spanning the past 100 years
    – Take photos with Uncle Oscar on the front porch of the Oceanic
    – Enjoy a free lime ricky!
  • 1:15 pm – Centennial Chapel Service
    – Take an architecture, history or sustainability tour
  • 2:15 pm – Gather on the front lawn for the main event: Star Island Centennial Re-dedication
  • 3:00 pm – Enjoy birthday cake and music on the front porch and help us celebrate Star’s birthday!
  • 3:45 pm – Depart the island aboard the Thomas Laighton (ISCCO)

Day Adults: $50
Day Youth:$15
Day Infant/Toddler: $0
All overnight options sold out

Ticket price includes transportation to and from the island and all activities. Food is not included, but our island grill will be open.

Day parking is available at ISSCO for $5.00


Thank you to our Centennial sponsor Insource Services!



Solar Array Ribbon Cutting

We did it!

Thank you to everyone who celebrated the unveiling of our new solar array on June 27, 2015. We hosted hundreds of guests who ventured out to Star Island aboard the M/V Thomas Laighton for an afternoon on the island. We celebrated our 100th birthday with a cake on the front porch. A ceremonial ribbon cutting followed, along with tours of Star Island’s facilities focused on our sustainability initiatives.

Thank you to our sponsor Insource Services, Inc for supporting this event!

Insource Logo


Participate graphic

How can you join in on this centennial celebration? Here are some ways:

  • Ribbon Cutting – Thanks to everyone who came out and enjoyed a beautiful afternoon on Star Island on June 27, 2015.
  • Time Capsules – Two time capsules, a 50 and 100 year, will hold momentos about what life is currently like on Star Island. Every conference is asked to submit an item to the time capsule, and anyone can write a memory on archival paper available on island. The time capsules will both be sealed and buried during the island’s rededication in 2016. Items will be collected throughout the summer and the off-season. See below for more information!
  • Historic Videos – Request to view historic videos from the Vaughn Cottage vault during your conference. Conference leaders are encouraged to coordinate with Pam Smith, Director of Development, for a viewing and reception. Contact Pam at
  • Vaughn Cottage – Vist the Celia Thaxter Museum in Vaughn Cottage to learn about Isles of Shoals history and the Star Island Corp.’s part in that story.
  • Rededication – In July of 2016, we will rededicate Star Island 100 years after the 1916 dedication. This celebratory day will recreate the 1916 event with an eye towards the future.

A Quick Reference for a 2016 Time CapsuleTimecap

Congratulations! During 2016, you have a very rare opportunity to influence and participate in a significant history project. We are using the Centennial Year on Star to take a deliberate look at who we are, where we have been, what we do and think from day to day, and what we hope for our future. As we take time this year to reflect and rejoice, we’ll mark the occasion with program activities. One lasting legacy of our Centennial Year will be two time capsules - one that will be opened in 50 years, and one that will be opened in 100 years. We will collect your contributions throughout 2016, and the time capsule will be sealed on 31 December. During the conference season, you may bring your contributions to the Front Desk, marked for “Time Capsule”, or hand them directly to Pam Smith.

What is a Time Capsule?
A time capsule is a container that preserves artifacts in a safe, stable manner. We will be using two stainless containers that will be filled with inert gas and sealed. Both capsules will be stored on Star Island and registered with the Rockingham Registry of Deeds and the International Time Capsule Institute.

What Should We Put in a Time Capsule?
Time capsules should tell a story. As fast as society, technology, and even our natural environment is changing, what will life be like in the future? We can only guess, but we can send a sample of our current selves to our future selves. By collecting for two capsules, we are promising to talk to ourselves in 50 and 100 years. In all probability, many of us 50 years old or younger will be around to open the 50 year time capsule. What does 2016 want to say to 2066? 2116? Hope, dreams, concerns, questions, best wishes- they all bear thinking about.

Our time capsule artifacts should be “Star Centric”, but also descriptive of our lives on the Island during our conferences. Logical artifacts include:

  • Photographs
  • Paper written notes
  • Journals
  • Conference newsletters
  • Made souvenirs

Remember that the 50 year capsule can contain individual and collective “letters to self”. You should use acid free paper for notes, or consider using an acid free journal to write in. Likewise, photos should be printed on acid free paper. If you need assistance conserving an artifact (such as newsprint), please contact Tom Coleman and he can help. You may seal items in envelopes, but also submit an inventory list. We will most likely be putting your artifacts in separate envelopes or bags identifying your conference. Your items will not be opened or read before packing. If you are chairing a family conference, please plan on submitting no more than the equivalent of a shoe box full of material. This means the area of a shoe box, not necessarily the shape. The approximate space allocation is 340 square inches. If you are representing a smaller conference, please try to use less. These dimensions are for each capsule.

What Should we avoid?
Please do not include anything perishable or degradable. Plant matter, rubber, food, candy, hair, and some plastics may degrade and “off gas”, effecting other items in the capsule. Most paper, including newsprint, is not stable for long term storage, so consider copying documents to acid free paper. Electronics are a big question, and while a DVD, CD, or data storage device will certainly be around in 50 or 100 years, it may not be readable. We are accepting these media, but be aware of the possibility they may not be readable.

Thank you for participating in our History - our Story!

For further information, consult the SIC Homepage, or call Tom Coleman at 603-380-4377.

Useful Information can be found at:




Support graphic

To help us celebrate our centennial, please consider supporting the Star Island Annual Fund by clicking here.