Next time you are on the island, take a good look at the lighthouse. You will notice a dazzling difference.

Last week the St. George Lighthouse got a new look. The lighthouse association paid to have with high-impact glass replace the polycarbonate panels around the lantern room.

Spokesperson Terry Kemp said the original plastic panels had become scratched and weatherworn. “We set aside money each month for maintenance. This is just part of that,” she said.

 Alex Klahm Architectural Metal and Design, Inc. of St. Petersburg installed the new glass, which consists of two quarter-inch panes sandwiching a rubber membrane. The glass would not fit through the scuttle hole into the lantern room and was hoisted up the side of the lighthouse two panes at a time in a specially designed wooden crate lifted by a cable attached to a pole in the lantern room at one end and a trailer-mounted winch on the other.

Kemp said the installers also added a new system of closable vents above the glass panels for ventilation. They will remain open except during bad weather. – By LOIS SWOBODA