About William Hazel

William Hazel is the Executive Director of the Virginia Beach Surf and Rescue Museum

A Tale of Two Centuries

Elaine holds her phone up a moment, goes to the museum’s website, and with a couple of clicks she’s made a donation to our Save Our Stories campaign. The entire process has barely interrupted our conversation. In the time it takes to enjoy a few bites of our lunch, my colleague has explored our [...]

By |2019-04-13T16:10:30-04:00April 13th, 2019|Blog|0 Comments


A mid morning diner counter brings that bit of quiet, inviting conversation. The breakfast crowd gone, the lunch folks have yet to arrive. It’s rare the counter at Mary’s offers this kind of silence. The woman seated beside me offers a warm hello as the server is re-filling both our cups with fresh Joe. [...]

By |2019-04-13T12:19:34-04:00April 13th, 2019|Blog|0 Comments

A Note About Office Coffee

That intoxicating scent filling the office is the first thing to enjoy. Arriving next are a few moments of genuine friendship as we sit together to share our thoughts for the coming day. Before we speak, we sip; savoring something that is worth taking very seriously...coffee. Our museum staff knows that I consider the [...]

By |2019-04-04T15:42:13-04:00April 4th, 2019|Blog|0 Comments

Save Our Stories

This month, the museum launches our Save Our Stories campaign. It’s a wonderful feeling, after all that hard work renovating the building last year, to begin working on expanding our exhibits and outreach. Our first step, is asking you for help. Along with raising funds, the Save Our Stories campaign offers three main elements [...]

By |2019-03-18T10:35:56-04:00March 15th, 2019|Blog|0 Comments

The Norwegian Lady Ceremony

We invite and encourage everyone to attend the upcoming Norwegian Lady Ceremony, to be held on Saturday, March 23, at 1pm. The ceremony takes place at the Norwegian Lady statue, at 25th Street on the Virginia Beach boardwalk and is free to attend. Supported by the Norwegian Lady Plaza Foundation, the Ladies Auxiliary of [...]

By |2019-03-18T12:16:13-04:00March 15th, 2019|Blog|0 Comments

Keeping Company With John

We talk to him by name. Bid him good morning, good night, and refer to John in everyday, normal conversation. Some days it's kind of like he's right here with us. Still working at the Station he reported for duty at for 34 years. John Woodhouse Sparrow was a local boy from Princess Anne [...]

By |2019-01-25T17:55:34-04:00January 25th, 2019|Blog|0 Comments

Dresen, Like the Salad

"It's pronounced dress-en, like the salad." Jessica casually puts me at ease during her interview with her simple explanation of how to say her name right. She doesn't know that I've spent the last two weeks interviewing over a dozen candidates for the Assistant Store Manager position. Jessica Dresen established herself as the right [...]

By |2019-01-18T16:27:44-04:00January 18th, 2019|Blog|1 Comment

Committed to Community

The question kept coming up, "What's going to be in this area?" The answer was always the same; People.  This time last year we were laying out plans for the new exhibits while contractors were hard at work on the building renovations. It was a huge task, with more than a dozen new exhibit [...]

By |2019-01-18T16:31:29-04:00January 18th, 2019|Blog|0 Comments

Fourteen Hours

Fourteen Hours The day is already steaming. It’s just before 8 am and the Virginia Beach Boardwalk has a steady flow of early bird cyclers, walkers and runners making their way through the dense soup of summertime humidity. I assume the tourist position of stopping, crouching, and pointing my phone at the 3 mile concrete [...]

By |2018-08-31T11:25:03-04:00August 31st, 2018|Blog|0 Comments


Rocket-Ships Heather lights up the room. She walks into the space and it becomes naturally brighter. It’s impossible not to notice her confidence. With eyes firm on the horizon, she’s already taking the steps for propelling her promising career in a new direction. In short, Heather knows where she’s going. She hadn’t quite nailed [...]

By |2018-11-24T15:01:14-04:00July 28th, 2018|#GivingTuesday2018, Blog|0 Comments

I Am Not Alone

The sound is distinct. Boots on an old wooden floor. One. Two. Three. Three steps. It is well past 9pm, and I am the last one in the museum cleaning up after an evening tour program, getting ready to lock up and call it a night. The sound comes from directly above me, in the [...]

By |2018-07-21T16:08:05-04:00July 21st, 2018|Blog|0 Comments

Community Yoga at the Beach

We just showed up and rolled out our mats. The grassy area sun drenched and filling with an eclectic mix of wellness seekers. A group of strangers, young and old, brought together by one simple idea; Community Yoga. After an hour of practice, we weren't strangers anymore. We lingered together after class had finished. We [...]

By |2018-06-18T13:45:59-04:00June 18th, 2018|Blog|0 Comments