July 31, 2009

Fishing by Kayak or Stand Up Paddle Board

Check out the August 2009 edition of Wrightsville Beach Magazine for an excellent article on a new type of fishing gaining popularity in our area. Fishing by Kayak or Stand Up Paddle (SUP) is growing in popularity as people discover these exciting new ways to pursue their old interest. As you may have seen on Pleasure Island, the north end is a popular place for SUPs to ride waves. On the south end, you'll frequently see kayak fisherman working the many rocky areas. As an earlier CBToday post shows, some of these folks have even landed sharks from their kayaks.

So take the time and check out this article, you may just find yourself wanting to give it a try!

Photo Credit:
Top pic, Bottom pic

July 28, 2009

Comedy Comes to Carolina Beach August 10th

This August 10th at 8:p.m., come see Ovary Action (an all-woman stand-up comedy show) at Shanty's, 109 N. Lake Park Blvd, Carolina Beach. $5.

A brief description from the Wilmington Star: Most comedy performances take place in downtown Wilmington, but that's changing as well. Brooklin Green, who teaches improv and stand-up comedy classes in Wilmington, also coordinates Ovary Action (get it? - "overreaction"), an all-female stand-up comedy group that performs on the first Sunday of each month at the Brown Coat. O.A. packed the house recently at The Fox and Hound in Mayfaire, which led to the group getting a monthly night there. They have an upcoming performance at Shanty's in Carolina Beach that may lead to another monthly gig.

Check out the Ovary Action Myspace page

July 27, 2009

Bears and Alligators on the NC Coast

alligator oceanAs many of you have probably already read, there has been a few stories of late about alligators engaging in some body surfing activities at NC beaches (two separate incidents to be exact). Now in each of these cases, the alligators accidentally ended up in the ocean and area officials had to work diligently to get them back to their natural habitat as the sea is no place for a fresh water gator. But nonetheless, photos of a gator moving about in the ocean surf catches one's attention.

Here are a few of the recent gator surfing stories:
Wilmington Star
ENC Today
Jacksonville Daily News

So I just spent a little time looking through youtube to see if anyone captured a home video of one of these gators. Unfortunately, I didn't find any videos although there is some news footage included with some of the above stories.

But interesting enough, as I was searching youtube, I came across this fantastic video of a black bear meandering down the road at the Alligator Reserve which is near the Outer Banks. As one who has traveled up there on several occasions and eyed the 'bear crossing' road signs, I had begun to wonder if there really were bears in that area. This video answered that question.

alligator river national wildlife
So hopefully, these cuddly critters that are roaming near our Carolina shores are not enough to scare you from visiting our beautiful beaches. Personally, I would be thrilled to have one of these encounters in person. So come on down and enjoy yourselves. All is safe in coastal North Carolina.

PS. I won't mention the
shark bite that occurred last week at Holden Beach...we'll keep that story on the down low for now.

July 25, 2009

Look to the Sky Tonight: Space Shuttle/Station Visible

For all you sky watchers, look up tonight at 9:03 to see the space station/space shuttle pass overhead. Together, they are nearly 100 yards in length which makes for a very large surface to reflect the Sun's rays.

According to the NASA website, it will pass over our area at 9:03. It will come in from the North/North West and head towards the East. The visible duration will be about 4 minutes. For additional flyover dates and times, click the above NASA link.

Photo Credit

The News & Observer: Unusual High Tides Baffle Experts

The News & Observer
Martha Quillin - Staff writer
Sat, Jul. 25, 2009

Weather experts are contemplating a new mystery of the deep blue sea: why it's been deeper than usual at high tide all along the East Coast for the past several weeks.

Since June, tides have been running from 6 inches to 2 feet above what would normally be expected, even considering seasonal and lunar fluctuations. While local tidal changes are not uncommon, researchers for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration aren't sure they have ever recorded an event like this one, which is showing up all the way from Maine to Florida. In North Carolina, tides have been about a foot above normal predictions...

Read the full
News & Observer Story here

Photo Credit:
Island Gazette - Click to read the Gazette's coverage of the high tide flooding as it happened.

July 24, 2009

WWAY -- Cape Fear Pride Pleasure Island: Historic Fort Fisher

Click pic to view video from News Channel 3

Carolina Beach Boardwalk Makeover Announces Jazz Under the Stars

CAROLINA BEACH, NC JULY 22, 2009: The Carolina Beach Boardwalk Makeover is excited to promote the monthly Jazz Under the Stars event as part of the Boardwalk Blast Summer Event Series. Jazz Under the Stars is held on the beach stage in front of the Carolina Beach Boardwalk from 9-11pm and is free. This Saturday, July 25 will feature Lee Venters and Vermillian Sands.

Jazz Under the Stars will be held monthly through September. Bands and dates are as follows:
August 22: The Wahl Project
September 5: El Jaye Johnson

The Boardwalk Blast is a summer event series consisting of over 100 events including live & DJ music, dancing, kids activities, bingo and more at the Carolina Beach Boardwalk, all summer long, six days a week.

The schedule is as follows:
· Tuesday is Family Night 6-8pm includes bounce house, kids’ activities, variety shows, story telling, arts & crafts. Free·
Wednesday is Cash Bingo 6-8pm, Cash prizes up to $1,000. Nominal fee to play.
· Thursday features Live Music at the Gazebo 6:30-9:30pm. Great local or regional bands perform at the Gazebo stage before and after the fireworks display at the Boardwalk. Free
· Sunday Trop Rock DJ 6-8pm. Island country & Carribean tropical rock music. Time to relax and enjoy before the movie at the lake! Free

Also, don’t miss the Battle of the Bands Competition from 2-5pm on the Beach Stage on August 8. Free.

Also offered at the Carolina Beach Boardwalk this summer are free surf lessons on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 1-3 PM at the Boardwalk Welcome Center plus arts, crafts, bocce ball and volleyball available for FREE on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays from 4-7pm.

“This is our version of a stimulus plan,” said marketing committee member Sharon Lyons. “We wanted to offer free or very economical events for families and people of all ages to enjoy this summer.

”In conjunction with funding from the Town of Carolina Beach and a grant from the Cape Fear Garden Club, more landscaping has been done to create a terrific setting for these summer events at the Gazebo area and throughout the Boardwalk.

The Boardwalk Makeover is a not-for profit organization dedicated to preserving the Carolina Beach Boardwalk. It is staffed entirely by hardworking volunteers. For more information, go to

Carolina Beach Boardwalk Summer Series Announces Updated Schedule for Season

CAROLINA BEACH, NC JULY 22, 2009: The Carolina Beach Boardwalk Makeover would like to announce a few changes to schedule of the Boardwalk Blast Summer Event Series that will continue throughout the rest of the summer.

The Boardwalk Blast is a summer event series consisting of over 100 events including live & DJ music, dancing, kids activities, bingo and more at the Carolina Beach Boardwalk, all summer long, several nights a week.

The schedule is as follows:
· Tuesday is Family Night 6-8pm includes bounce house, kids’ activities, variety shows, karaoke, arts & crafts. Free
· Wednesday is Cash Bingo 6-8pm, Cash prizes up to $1,000. Nominal fee to play.
· Thursday features Live Music at the Gazebo 6:30-9:30pm. Great local or regional bands perform at the Gazebo stage before and after the fireworks display at the Boardwalk. Free
· Sunday Trop Rock DJ 6-8pm. Island country & Carribean tropical rock music. Time to relax and enjoy before the movie at the lake! Free

Also don’t miss the last daytime Battle of the Bands Competition from 2-5pm on the Beach Stage on Aug 8 and Jazz Under the Stars from 9-11pm. Upcoming Jazz dates are: July 25 Aug. 22 Sept. 5. Free.“We still have a lot of the summer left, with plenty of good music to see,” emphasized organizer Brett Keeler.

In conjunction with funding from the Town of Carolina Beach and a grant from the Cape Fear Garden Club, more landscaping has been done to create a terrific setting for these summer events as well as the amusements at the Gazebo area and throughout the Boardwalk.

The Boardwalk Makeover is a not-for profit organization dedicated to preserving the Carolina Beach Boardwalk. It is staffed entirely by hardworking volunteers. For more information, go to www.boardwalkmakeover.org

July 22, 2009

Water Spouts from GA to SC

The Post and Courier (Charleston, SC) reports that yesterday was a busy weather morning from Tybee Island, GA to Isle of Palms, SC as four separate waterspouts formed close to shore. Fortunately for us, some observers had their cameras handy and were able to capture some images.

Check out the Article/Photos

Photo Credit: From the article

July 21, 2009

Breast Cancer Awareness Fundraiser (Bachelor Auction) Aug 2nd @ The Last Resort

WHAT: Breast Cancer Awareness Fund-raiser- The Last Resort -1st Annual “Save The Ta Ta’s Bachelor Auction.
WHERE: To Be Held At The Last Resort 600 Lake Park Blvd Carolina Beach NC
DATE: August 2nd, 2009- Proceeds and donations benefit NHRMC Coastal Care Van

TIME: 6:00 p.m – 9:00 p.m (Bachelor Auction Begins at 7:00 P.M)

The Last Resort, a Carolina Beach Bar, announces the 1st Annual “Save The Ta -Ta’s - Bachelor Auction for Breast Cancer Awareness.” For some it’s celebration of living life cancer free, and for others it will bring about awareness of options for early Breast Cancer screening initiatives. The Last Resort is a membership club of local people helping a local organization fight a world wide problem – Breast Cancer, Said Kim Lewis, The Last Resort. We have joined forces with several other local businesses on Pleasure Island and surrounding area businesses, with the sole purpose of raising funds for breast cancer awareness and assistance. In a world none too untouched by the prevalence of cancer, it is a rewarding when members of a community come together out of pure compassion simply to help make a difference and offer support. The Last Resort, a Carolina Beach Bar, and its members are compassionate people who are zealous about making lasting connections while serving others in need. Breast Cancer knows no boundary, be it age, gender, socio economic status, or geographical location. One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. However, the key to saving lives is early detection. For this reason, we have decided to donate the proceeds of our Bachelor Auction to Coastal Care Van.

NHRMC Coastal Care Van provides uninsured women with the opportunity to receive a mammography and support. This is the areas only mobile cancer screening van. The success of the Coastal Care Van project has not only provided early diagnosis and comfort to hundreds of area women, but has helped save lives. This is an important service because many women fail to get regular mammograms simply because they have no insurance or cannot afford the expensive testing. Early detection is critical in the fight for breast cancer.

“We wanted to put together a fun, friendly, accessible event,” Kim Lewis, shareholder in The Last Resort explains. “We want to bring together our members, and the community for a great cause and a exciting event, rather than just hold out our hands and ask for money!” The event’s main beneficiary is NHRMC’ Coastal Care Van (CCV), a paramount program for victims of breast cancer working tirelessly to provide mammograms for local women who otherwise could not afford them. CCV also provides “comfort bags’ for local women with breast cancer, filled with consoling and useful items. We selected the Coastal Care Van because it is local and we would rather see the money raised donated to a local cause rather than give a check to a national organization.

With The Last Resort leading the charge, the idea of a Pleasure Island Bachelor Auction came about several months ago, and the event quickly formed as eligible bachelors signed up to be auctioned off. “Several of our members are breast cancer survivors, or have loved ones who have suffered from breast cancer, so it really hits home for us. We thought that a Bachelor Auction would be a fun way to get local involvement where our members and citizens of Pleasure Island can come out and help fight breast cancer.” Said Kim Lewis.

Included in the night’s events will be a DJ starting at 6:00 p.m. Adding to the festivities; door prizes, raffles and give-a-ways and of course pink drink specials. “Save The Ta Ta’s, The Last Resorts 1st Annual Bachelor Auction,” is offers guests an evening of fun, laughter and fundraising…

Here’s How It Works: Approximately 12 unmarried men from throughout Wilmington and the Pleasure Island area will be strutting their stuff, donating a night on the town to the highest bidder, all for a great cause. Ranging in age from their mid-20s to their early-60s, these men-about-town each come bearing unique prize packages they have assembled themselves, meaning that the women in the audience will be “winning” not just the pleasure of a given bachelor’s company but an exciting assortment of dining and/or entertainment options, getaways and more. We’ve found a diverse cross –section of single unmarried men from across the area.”

This fun-filled evening is open to everyone, and also features drawings and door prizes — so even if you’re not in the market for a bachelor at the moment, you can still take part in the action. One hundred percent of the proceeds from this event’s live auction will go to the Coastal Care Van.

Lewis adds. “If you would like to make a donation of some sort because you cannot attend our event, you can always come by The Last Resort and drop it off ahead of time. Any little bit will help the cause.” Recognizing that supporting one another, giving back to the community and remembering all our friends and loved ones who suffer from breast cancer is the reason for this event. All donations are welcome and appreciated!

Learn more about the NHRMC Coastal Care Van: Coastal Care Van

**The Last Resort is a Carolina Beach Bar, located at 600 Lake Park Blvd Carolina Beach, NC.

July 19, 2009

Casting Call: The Notebook Muscial

Here is some exciting news for the Wilmington area. I spoke with Joy Galeotti (One Tree Hill & Everly) this morning and she is looking for local theater actors for her upcoming musical production of Nicholas Spark's The Notebook. She recently met with Mr. Sparks and obtained the rights to move forward with her musical adaption of the book and her goal is to make it to Broadway. But first, she has to put together a workshop which she is planning to do right here in Wilmington.

If you are an actor/actress and would like to be part of this exciting opportunity, please visit their website for audition information.


Wilmington Star: Day At The Beach Pleasure Island

Check out these 30 wonderful photos taken of Pleasure Island by Star photographer Matt Born.

View the Photo Gallery

CRUNCH Equals a Whole Lot of Snapping Turtle

If in the next two weeks you are heading up to the Morehead City area, make sure to make a detour to the North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores. Until July 31st they will have on exhibit a 4 foot alligator snapping turtle that tips the scales at 165lbs. This 'little beauty' goes by the name Crunch and is on lend from the Blackwater Turtle Refuge in Indiana.

Crunch can be seen anytime the Aquarium is open. In addition, Crunch will be the topic of Tankside Talks every Saturday at 10 a.m. while he is at the Aquarium. There is no extra charge for the presentations, and advance registration is not required.

The Aquarium is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily; open until 9 p.m. on July 16, July 30 and Aug. 13 for Family Nights. Admission is $8 for ages 18-61; $7 ages 62 and up; $6 ages 6-17; no charge for ages 5 and under and members of the North Carolina Aquariums. The Aquarium is five miles west of Atlantic Beach at 1 Roosevelt Blvd., Atlantic Beach, NC 28512. See
http://www.ncaquariums.com/ or call 252-247-4003 for more information.

To learn more about Crunch, check out this excellent video.

July 18, 2009

Island Ice Factory 25% Off

According to the Seawatch Happenings blog, you can get 25% off all pint and quart orders at the Island Ice Factory through Sunday, July 18th. Just mention the Seawatch Happenings announcement and you'll receive the discount.

I've visited the Island Ice Factory on several occasions and I must say, their limoncello gelato is spot on! So now with 25% off, it is the perfect time to head to the Carolina Beach boardwalk and try them for yourselves. You won't be disappointed.

Bottom line, Trash Harms

In the last month, I've come across two stories which directly show the devastation that trash can cause on our marine life.

In June, a pygmy sperm whale and her nursing calf were found rolling in the surf at Sullivan's Island outside of Charleston. As reported in the Post and Courier, the mother was unable to eat and was in severe pain. The young calf was unable to survive without the mother and would not leave her side. When found, the two were still alive but just too sick to survive. Following their death, a necropsy revealed that the mother had died due to ingesting a black plastic garbage bag.

Yesterday, the Bradenton Herald reported that a endangered Kemp's ridley sea turtle is being treated at Sarasota's Mote Marine Laboratory's Sea Turtle Hospital after ingesting a black balloon. "Balloons can look like jellyfish or squid - things sea turtles like to eat," said Senior Biologist Kristen Mazzarella. The good news is that the turtle is expected to survive.

So bottom line, if you see trash on the beach or floating in the surf, please take the time to pick it up and put it in the proper receptacle. You just never know when such a simple good deed may save a life down the road.

Photo Credit: Pics from the respective articles.

July 14, 2009

Carolina Beach Is The Top Beach For Readers Of AAA's Home & Away Magazine

Carolina Newswire

Carolina Beach, N.C. — Carolina Beach, N.C. is the top choice for vacationing motorists from Ohio, according to the results of a readers' poll that appeared in Home & Away magazine's July/August 2009 issue. Home & Away, an American Automobile Association (AAA) publication distributed to over 580,000 drivers in Ohio, placed Carolina Beach atop a list of five favorite beach destinations including Poipu, Hawaii; Sanibel Island, Florida; Virginia Beach, Virginia; and Seabrook Island, South Carolina.

In an article entitled “Shifting Sand, Shining Surf,” the Home & Away editorial staff reported that Ohioans head for their favorite beach for “sun, surf, wildlife watching, outdoor recreation, water sports, family fun, food, respite and more.” They raved that visitors can't go wrong by choosing to vacation in Carolina Beach because they “can kayak and more on the town's Cape Fear River side, and they can play in the ocean or along open stretches of sand on the Atlantic side.”

Carolina Beach (CarolinaBeachstories.com), the affordable alternative to high-priced beach resorts, is located on Pleasure Island, a barrier island just south of historic Wilmington, N.C. This year the town unveiled a new boardwalk which offers everything from arcade games and homemade treats to surrey bike rentals and shopping. In addition, there are seaside amusements ― including a Ferris wheel and popular rides like the Scrambler, Tilt-a-whirl and Hang Ten ― just steps from the boardwalk. Every Thursday, visitors can enjoy live music from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. at the Gazebo Stage located on Cape Fear Boulevard near the Boardwalk, followed by a fireworks display on the beach. On Sundays, free, family-friendly first-run movies are shown at Carolina Beach Lake Park and include such favorites as Madagascar II, Monsters vs Aliens, and Night at the Museum II.

Details of all the events and activities happening in Carolina Beach this summer can be found online at www.CarolinaBeachStories.com or by calling 800-351-5102.

The results of the reader poll are online at http://www.homeandawaymagazine.com/content.cfm?a=1167 .

About Carolina Beach Carolina Beach is located 15 miles south of Wilmington, N.C., on the northern end of Pleasure Island, the larger of two barrier islands on the Cape Fear Coast. This charming seaside town of approximately 4,700 permanent residents offers a variety of accommodations and attractions, as well as several miles of Atlantic oceanfront and natural sand dunes, marinas and offshore fishing excursions.

July 12, 2009

The Carolina Beach Boardwalk is Thriving

Check out this great article in today's Wilmington Star
(PS. The pic is from the story)

Merchants, visitors say boardwalk overhaul gaining traction

Carolina Beach Amusement

Sea Turtles Galore at Fort Fisher State Recreation Area

Thank you to our blog reader Jeff. Yesterday, he gave a heads up that there were some sea turtle nests at the Fort Fisher State Recreation Area. So yesterday afternoon I headed out with the camera to check them out and soak up a little sun It was a gorgeous day in the mid 80's with no humidity. A steady ocean breeze was providing nature's ever present air conditioning.

Well to my surprise, I ended up counting eight nests along the 4x4 driving area. Two of the nests were in the roped off bird nesting areas and the remainder were on the beach strand As one picture shows, there was one spot where three nests were visible in one short stretch of beach.

BTW, the reason there are cages over the nests is to protect the eggs from red foxes who roam the island. For years now, it has been a constant battle to keep foxes at bay and give both sea turtle and bird eggs a chance to hatch. It is extremely important that everyone who visits the ocean front park do their part and leave the beach cleaner than they found it. When folks leave trash or food scraps behind, it attracts land predators to the beach jeopardizing all the nests.

July 9, 2009

The Grove Project: The Fat Pelican Is an Experience

David, over at The Grove Project, recently wrote a review on the Fat Pelican. He obviously had a good time and gave them an impressive 5 out of 5 star rating. As a matter of fact, if you look at the final sentence in his review, he sums it all up quite well, "you don’t go to the Fat Pelican just to drink a beer… you go to drink a beer at the Fat Pelican."

Check out the detailed review along with some great photos at
The Grove Project.

Photo is from the article.

Leatherback Sea Turtle Nests on Carolina Beach

Today's Wilmington Star is reporting that a Leatherback sea turtle has nested on Carolina Beach. This behemoth of a turtle is described as being half the size of a VW Beetle. The Pleasure Island Sea Turtle Project is overseeing the welfare of the nest and will begin a 24 hour watch in about six weeks when it is expected that the hatchlings may emerge. What makes this story so unique is this is only the second time that a Leatherback sea turtle has nested on a NC beach as they typically do not nest this far north. The Leatherbacks are the largest turtles on Earth and can weigh up to 2,000 pounds and be over six feet in length.

According to the PISTP website, there are currently 4 nest sights in Carolina Beach and none in Kure Beach. Last year, there were 8 nests in CB and 9 in KB so be on the lookout for more sites as we are just nearing the halfway point of the nesting season (May thru Oct).

Read the full Wilmington Star article here.

(Leatherback off the coast of Gabon, Africa)

Photo Credit

Beware of the Sand as Bellyaches May Loom

According to researchers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the Environmental Protection Agency, beach-goers who play in the sand are at a greater risk of contracting gastrointestinal diseases and diarrhea. They found that beach sand may occasionally be contaminated with fecal contamination due to runoff or wildlife droppings. Based on their study of 27,000 beach-goers, they found that 13% of people who dug sand with their hands and 23% of people who were buried in the sand ended up with some form of negative health issue. But when you look at the overall beach going population, including people who didn't get overly touchy with the sand, less than 10% of all beach-goers showed any signs of illness.

Bottom-line, they recommend that if you go to the beach and play in the sand, just wash your hands. And to be honest with you, is anyone really surprised by this? After all, the beach is the wild west for many vacationers. I mean, where else do you go on vacation where you might end up being asked to pee on someones leg who has been stung by a jellyfish? And about those seagulls, don't you feel lucky if you can go an entire week without taking a hit from one of their doo strikes? So forget this article and go embrace the beach. And if you happen to be one of the unlucky ones who end up with a tummy ache, take solace in knowing that you won't even notice your stomach pain over your 2nd degree sunburn.

Read the complete story
Photo Credit:
sand dining, seagull, sunbathe

July 6, 2009

Masonboro Island Litter

Masonboro Island, which is an uninhabited barrier island between Carolina Beach and Wrightsville Beach, is a popular destination during the holidays. Unfortunately for most of us, some visitors to the island choose to ignore their civic responsibilities and leave garbage behind for 'others' to worry about. But we are fortunate in that we have citizens who are decent people and are willing to put themselves out to help keep our beaches and oceans clean. Thank you to all who are helping clean up the mess that was left behind on Masonboro Island following this year's 4th of July.

Photo Credit: Floating bag

July 4, 2009

Shark Love, Jaws Style

In keeping with this blog's love of the movie Jaws, and in celebrating the 34th anniversary of the films release (June 19, 1975), we present to you the soon to be released sequel titled Must Love Jaws. What better way to celebrate the 4th then to remember the summer of 1975 when Hollywood made us think twice about swimming too far out....

In order to keep this posting somewhat relevant to Carolina Beach or at least NC,
here are some recent photos that were taken off Atlantic Beach, NC of a Great White Shark that took an interest in a charter fishing boat.

CB Today Logo (placeholder)

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