Late year Harbour Lights Releases
Collectors have contacted me on numerous occasions asking why a particular few late-released lighthouses and lenses are so very hard to find. Here is why...
In 2006, Harbour Lights was sold by the Younger family to their largest retailer, Lighthouse Depot in Maine. Almost immediately, Limited Edition runs went from 4,000 or more per release to only 1,500 or 2,500 per sculpture. All outside sales companies that were utilized by the Youngers were eliminated and all sales were handled by Lighthouse Marketing's (the Depot's wholesale leg), office staff.
Finding sales of Harbour Lights dwindling, Limited Editions were reduced to only 1,200 for most releases. Also, to save on expenses, only around 500, or so, of each piece was originally produced by the factories in China and delivered to Maine. It was Hl's intention that when the first 500 were close to being sold they would place an order with the factories and get another shipment. That would continue until all of the 1,200, (or whatever the predetermined number was), of each release was made. Unfortunately, Harbour Lights went out of business in 2011 before many of the Limited Edition pieces could complete their production runs.
Beginning with HL365 Point Vicente, CA in 2008, all subsequent Harbour Lights releases had no more than the original 500, or so, pieces produced. Thus, even though the flags of each release may say that 1,200 were made, (999 for Sankaty on the Move), it is not the case. Although I have not been able to conclusively confirm, I strongly believe that two lenses produced at this time (HL802 Umpqua River and especially HL806 Fastnet Rock lens), also fall into this shortened production category. It is also highly conceivable that a few of the Open Edition Glows may also fall into this group. I would definitely place all GLOWS first released in 2008 and later in this category (HL480 Biloxi - HL484 Whaleback), and would not be surprised to discover that even Glows first released much earlier also are in this designation.
One more hard-to-find Christmas release, HL725 Burnt Island, may also somewhat fall into this category.
When Harbour Lights released its much anticipated Christmas lighthouse each year, production run was usually 5,000 of each produced. That practice held true through 2007 and 2008 when the first two lighthouses in the Flying Santa commemorative trilogy, HL722 Hospital Point and HL724 Perkins Island were released. In 2009, Harbour Lights changed that strategy for the trilogy's final piece. Instead of the usual 5,000, HL725 Burnt Island's production run was only 1,200. There is also a growing suspicion that not all of the 1,200 were even made, that perhaps only about 750 were actually produced. When first released, we made it clear to our customers in October of 2009 that if they wanted a Burnt Island they would need to get it right away as the production run had been drastically reduced. Some heeded the warning and purchased the piece right away. Many others ignored it and when they attempted to purchase it in November or December found that the piece was sold out. Lots of those collectors are still searching for a Burnt Island after many years!
If you are searching for one of these later year Harbour Lights releases, contact us. We may be able to help you find what you are looking for.