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March 23, 2013

Britt's Donuts Now Open for 2013 Season

Summer is getting closer...how do I know?  Britt's Donuts is now open!

Britt's Donuts hours:
Fri 4:00pm until dark; Sat & Sun 8:00am to 5:00pm
Starting Memorial Day weekend, they will be open 7 days a week.
Phone: (910)707-0755

Pic of the Day: Lo Tide Run

Paul at Southern Digital Art.com captures the excitement as participants race to the finish line at this year's 9th Annual Steve Haydu St Patrick's Lo Tide Run.

Pic of the Day: USS North Carolina Battleship at Sunset

Again we are going with an OTB (over the bridge) photo for the pic of the day. Clearly this beautiful shot needs no further description. Photo by Lotus Lily-Photography.

Carolina Beach Hampton Inn Project Moving Forward

Good news, it now looks like the Hampton Inn Hotel project is moving forward and we might finally see this being constructed in the near future. Mayor Bob Lewis posted the following comment on Facbebook on March 15, 2013:

"Big thanks goes our to Mayor Pro Tem, Steve Shuttleworth who has taken the lead on working out the details to get a large developer to construct a new 108 room Hampton Inn and Suites at the CB Boardwalk. Steve has resurrected the deal and working with a bank to help remove the obstacles to getting the developer to break ground within the next couple months. Steve has given up a lot of personal and business related time to make this happen for CB."

Pic of the Day: Sunset at the Carolina Beach Lake

Michael Sing offers us this beautiful shot from the Carolina Beach Lake.

March 12, 2013

7th Annual Pleasure Island Entrepreneur of the Year

The Pleasure Island Chamber of Commerce in concert with the UNCW Entrepreneurship Center are now accepting nominations for the 7th Annual Pleasure Island Entrepreneur of the Year

Pleasure Island Chamber of CommerceCarolina Beach, NC March 11, 2013 - The mission of the Coastal Entrepreneur Awards is to help foster entrepreneurial activity — and higher paying jobs — in our region. The winners will be profiled in a special Coastal Entrepreneur Awards section in the May 10th Greater Wilmington Business Journal and honored at a large Awards breakfast May 23rd at UNCW’s Burney Center.

Last year’s recipient was Ea Ruth and Anne Brodsky of Palm Air Realty. In 2012, this prestigious award was won by Michael and Shelley McGowan of Michael’s Seafood Restaurant. In 2011 the award was won by Duke and Tracee Hagestrom, owner of Wheel Fun Rental, The Fudgeboat & Krazy Kones; the 2010 award winners were Janet and Mike Hoffer, owners of Snow’s Cut Media, Jackie Oakes, owner of Coastal K9 Bakery was the 2009 award winner and Roxanne Thompson, owner of Island Florals by Roxanne was our inaugural winner in 2008.

The Award will be presented on May 23rd at an official Awards breakfast at UNCW’s Burney Center located on the UNCW Campus
.
To qualify for nomination, the business owner must:
  • Have an aggressive and focused entrepreneurial spirit
  • Be effective and efficient in the recognition and implementation of change
  • Have experienced, rapid and significant business growth
  • Demonstrate innovativeness in their business
  • Display active community engagement and involvement
*Please provide a written synopsis verifying successful nominees meet all of the aforementioned criteria in able to be considered. 

All nominations must be submitted by 12:00 noon on March 29th, 2012, in writing to: Greg Reynolds, Pleasure Island Chamber of Commerce, Carolina Beach, NC 28428 or by email to: greg@pleasureislandnc.org. For more information call 910-458-8434.

March 11, 2013

Video: Seagull Rides Pelican in Hopes of Stealing Catch

One of the joys about fishing at the beach is that there is always room for everyone and you never feel closed in by other anglers.  So you have to empathize with this poor pelican who was minding his own business fishing near the Kure Beach Pier when a gull decided to cut in. 

The pelican was having some good luck on this cold winter day when a seagull decided he wanted a piece of the action.  Not only did gull close in on the pelican's fishing grounds, he decided to land on the pelican's back (at the 0:33 mark) with hopes of getting some of his catch.

It surely is a bird-eat-bird world out there.  Video posted on Youtube by allstonbasement1987.  (1:31 in length.)

Pic of the Day: Reflections at Fort Fisher

Evening reflections at Fort Fisher. Photo by Lotus Lily-Photography.

March 10, 2013

Arthur Newman Set for U.S. Release in April 2013

Arthur Newman is set for a limited US release on April 26, 2013.  The movie filmed in the Wilmington area in Fall 2011 and they spent about a week on Pleasure Island filming in Carolina Beach and on the beach at the Fort Fisher State Recreation Area.

The movie stars Colin Firth and Emily Blunt and centers around a man (Firth) who fakes his own death and assumes a new identity in order to escape his life.  He then moves in with a woman (Blunt) who is also trying to leave her past behind.

To view more filming photos from Carolina Beach, click here.

Here are a few shots from Fort Fisher with Colin Firth (thanks to D. Anderson)




March 8, 2013

Kure Beach's Ocean Front Park Celebrates Grand Opening April 26

Ocean Front Park – Kure Beach’s largest public green space – will hold its grand opening ceremony on Friday, April 26, followed by Kure Beach’s annual street festival on Saturday, April 27.

Kure Beach, NC – March 6, 2013 – Kure Beach, North Carolina’s small wonder, is welcoming spring this year with a two-day oceanfront celebration for the whole family. Ocean Front Park – Kure Beach’s largest public green space – will hold its grand opening ceremony on Friday, April 26, followed by Kure Beach’s annual street festival on Saturday, April 27. Both events are free and open to the public.

Ocean Front Park’s Grand Opening will kick off at 11:30 a.m. and last until 10:00 p.m. that evening. Planned activities include speeches from government officials, performances and special exhibits by local school children, and live musical performances by popular bands like South of K Bluegrass, The Imitations and Wilmington Big Band.

Ocean Front Park is located in the heart of Kure Beach’s quaint business district near the town’s iconic fishing pier. The park will feature a boardwalk, a playground, benches, swings, rain gardens, oceanfront benches and public restrooms. It will also have a “tot lot” playground for children ages 3 to 6 complete with a pirate ship, fish and turtle, perfect for climbing and exploring. One of the biggest attractions at the park is an open-air pavilion with a stage area to be used for concerts, weddings and educational events.

As part of this massive project, the existing boardwalk from K Avenue to M Avenue and one of the beach accesses was replaced in order to meet ADA standards. Atlantic Avenue also received a face-lift, with new asphalt sloping to pavers to increase storm water drainage.

Keep the fun going all weekend long by attending the 2013 Kure Beach Street Festival on Saturday. Enjoy festival food, arts and crafts, and live entertainment. Kids activities will include a clown, balloon animals and face painting. The festival begins at 11:00 a.m. and ends at 9:00 p.m. with a fireworks show over the ocean.

Trade the stress of everyday life for the natural beauty and laidback atmosphere of Kure Beach. In addition to Ocean Front Park, there are plenty of family-friendly events taking place over the next few months. Now is a great time to book a getaway to Kure Beach to enjoy these upcoming events. Lodging options range from family-owned motels to vacation rentals. Visit our website for details on special rates.

Special Programs at the North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher
Varies days/times
Whether it’s an Easter egg hunt with a reptilian twist or a St. Patrick’s Day celebration, the North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher is always an exciting and educational family destination.
The 12th Annual Alligator Easter Egg Hunt will take place on March 23, 29 and 30. Kids will have the chance to see a live baby alligator, as well as create their own special alligator egg basket and search for candy-filled “alligator eggs.” Then celebrate “green think” during St. Patrick’s Day on March 17. Activities will include a recycled craft project, guided garden tours, scavenger hunts, games and prizes. There will be two behind-the-scenes tours highlighting the Aquarium’s conservation and sustainability efforts. Registration is also now open for the Aquarium’s various summer camps. Space is limited advance registration is required for many of these special programs, so make sure to visit the website to pre-register.

Pleasure Island Chowder Cook-Off
April 13, 2013 beginning at 11:00 a.m.
A favorite event for 16 years, this year’s 17th annual event will once again feature an all-day lineup of area chefs and their award-winning chowder, live music and children’s activities. Make sure you bring your appetite along with you to Carolina Beach Lake Park!

Bluegrass by the River Festival
May 4, 2013 beginning at 11:30 a.m.
Back by popular demand, this second annual event will feature live music by a variety of bluegrass bands, clogging and an open jam session. Pickers of all kinds are invited to bring their instruments and enjoy bluegrass…island style. The event will take place at Fort Fisher Air Force Recreation Area.

Confederate Memorial Day
May 11, 2013 – 3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
This annual memorial service at Fort Fisher State Historic Site honors the sacrifice of Confederate defenders of Fort Fisher. The event is free and open to the public.

About Kure Beach
Kure Beach, North Carolina’s small wonder, offers a naturally beautiful setting and small-town atmosphere. The coastal beach community, with its relaxed pace, lets visitors unplug and reconnect while they enjoy an undeveloped beach and signature state attractions, including the Fort Fisher State Historic Site and the North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher. For more information, go to www.VisitKureBeachNC.com or call (800) 631-1460. Find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/KureBeachNC and Twitter @KureBeachNC.

Navigate Toward What’s Important with a Spring Holiday in Wilmington, N.C.’s Historic River District & Island Beaches

As the spring holiday season approaches, destinations that provide meaningful experiences are especially popular. This spring, navigate toward what’s important to you. Surrounded by water, Wilmington, North Carolina’s historic river district and the island beaches of Carolina Beach, Kure Beach and Wrightsville Beach offer a single destination with multiple vacation choices. From the river to the sea, Wilmington, N.C. & Island Beaches is an affordable destination with accommodations in all price ranges, as well as budget-friendly attractions, tours, and restaurants. Great shoulder-season rates plus kid-friendly activities add up to a meaningful spring coastal getaway that won’t break the bank. To plan your visit, call 1-866-266-9690 or email visit@wilmingtonandbeaches.com and request a free 2013 official visitors guide. Or visit the website www.GoWilmingtonAndBeaches.com where you’ll find seasonal specials, events and experiences. 

HERE’S A SAMPLING OF HOLIDAY-THEME EVENTS FOR THE ENTIRE FAMILY:
 
MARCH 23, 29 & 30: ALLIGATOR EGG HUNT. 10am & 1pm. See a live baby alligator and learn about these fascinating animals. Next, create an alligator egg basket and search for candy-filled “alligator eggs.” Recommended for ages 3-10; must be accompanied by an adult. Admission charge for kids and adults. Pre-registration required (by March 23 & March 27). NC Aquarium at Fort Fisher, Kure Beach; 910-458-7468; www.ncaquariums.com/fort-fisher
 
MARCH 28: SPRING EGG-VENTURE AT HALYBURTON PARK. 9am-12noon. Join the ‘eggcitement’ at Halyburton Park. Programs include Animal Eggs & Nests, Egglympics, Storytime, and Spring Nature Hike. Egg hunts for children ages 3-5, 6-7 and 8-10 will take place at 9:30, 10:30, and 11:30. Space is limited; pre-registration required. Admission charge. Halyburton Park, 4099 S. 17th St., Wilmington. 910-341-0075; www.halyburtonpark.com

MARCH 29-30: BUGS & BUTTERFLIES SPRING EVENT. 9am-12noon. Learn about local insects and participate in egg-citing art activities, face-painting, gardening, spring outdoor games, and more. Museum admission charge includes event. Children’s Museum of Wilmington; www.playwilmington.org
 
MARCH 29: EASTER EGG HUNT & CARNIVAL AT BATTLESHIP PARK. 10am-2pm. Kids ages 2-9 are invited to join Buddy the Battleship Bunny for continuous egg hunts, inflatable bounce house, pony rides, petting zoo, and more. Admission charge; pre-registration required. Battleship Park, Wilmington; 910-251-5797; www.battleshipnc.com
 
MARCH 29-31: EASTER ‘BUNNY’- DRAWN CARRIAGE TOURS. 11am-10pm (March 29-30) & 10am-4pm (March 31), weather permitting. Experience the beauty of spring in historic Wilmington via a ‘Bunny’ horse-drawn carriage or trolley. Treats for kids. Admission charge. Market & Water sts., Downtown Wilmington; 910-251-8889; www.horsedrawntours.com

MARCH 31: MASONBORO ISLAND EASTER EGG HUNT. 11am; 1pm & 3pm. Experience a unique Easter boat trip and egg hunt when you cruise to Masonboro Island, one of the largest marine sanctuary islands in Southeast N.C. Adults must accompany children. Admission charge; advance reservations. Wrightsville Beach Scenic Tours departs across from Blockade Runner Resort, 275 Waynick Blvd., Wrightsville Beach. 910-200-4002; www.wrightsvillebeachscenictours.com

Wilmington, North Carolina’s historic river district and the island beaches of Carolina Beach, Kure Beach and Wrightsville Beach are a convenient drive along major highways, including I-40 and U.S. 74, both with easy access from I-95. For seasonal specials and experiences, or to download an official visitors guide or a complete event calendar, visit www.GoWilmingtonAndBeaches.com. For last-minute hotel discounts, visit www.sunnysavers.com.

Pic of the Day: Pink Skies at the North End

This Pic of the Day was sent to us by Lynda F. Turbeville and was taken by her son who uses the name Jynxx Midnite for his photography.

The photo was taken at Freeman Park or more commonly known as the North End.

Video: Visitor's Rave Reviews About Kure Beach

What do visitors have to say about Kure Beach? Check out this tourism video from the Wilmington and Beaches CVB.

Video: Clamming in the Carolinas

The ins & outs of clamming. From the southern OBX. 05:28 in length and very relaxing to watch.  This how-to video was posted on Youtube by Bryan Goodwin.

Pic of the Day: Nightime in Downtown Wilmington, NC

Although we typically feature photos from Pleasure Island for the Pic of the Day, we occasionally branch out when presented with a fantastic shot. Here's a night photo from 3rd Street in downtown Wilmington. Photo by Chris Brehmer Photography.

March 5, 2013

SkyWatch Bird Rescue Fundraiser at Might As Well March 20, 2013

Skywatch is hosting a fundraiser at Might As Well on March 20, 2013 from 7:00pm to 2:00am.
 
SkyWatch is the only licensed/certified bird rescue-rehabilitation organization in the area and serves Pleasure Island along with the rest of NH county. Local animal control (via 911) will not respond to bird calls but will generally give out SkyWatch's number instead. As a 501(c)3 It operates solely on donations.  

They will have 1/2 priced martinis and 1/2 priced bottles of wine.  Please stop by for some dinner or an app and some drinks!

They will also be raffling off prizes throughout the night! Raffle tickets are 1 for $1 or 6 for $5.

If you bring in five (new or used) beach/bath towels, you will receive a free raffle ticket! Towels are something Skywatch is ALWAYS in need of and this way, you also get something in return.

Skywatch will also be re-naming some of the martinis to coordinate with the bird theme.  If you have a unique martini recipe, please let them know and they will passs it along to the bartender.
 
Please spread the word and invite your friends. 10% of total sales from 7pm-2am go to Skywatch for the building of a new sanctuary!
 

Spring is Ideal for Active Vacation in Wilmington, N.C. & Island Beaches

Spring is the ideal time for an active vacation in Wilmington, North Carolina’s historic river district and the island beaches of Carolina Beach, Kure Beach, and Wrightsville Beach. Fitness trails from the river to the sea make it easy to stay fit while enjoying a coastal vacation. More than 54 parks and gardens include the 1.75-mile Wilmington Riverwalk in the historic river district and Wilmington’s new Gary Shell Cross-City Trail, an off-road, multi-use trail with bicycle and pedestrian access to numerous recreational and cultural sites.

On the island of Wrightsville Beach, visitors and locals walk and jog along The Loop, a fitness trail that circles the town’s park. Two North Carolina state parks are located on Pleasure Island: Carolina Beach State Park and Fort Fisher State Recreation Area, both of which offer hiking and cycling along trails, as well as fishing and other recreational activities. Kure Beach boasts a new oceanfront park and the area’s only disc golf course. Surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, the Cape Fear River, and numerous marshes and channels, there are abundant recreational opportunities for fishing, boating, and paddling.
 
Wilmington is a Bicycle Friendly Community, as designated by the League of American Bicyclists. Bike routes and maps can be found online at www.wmpo.org/WMBPC/index.html. For cyclists, Blue Clay Trail offers an intermediate level mountain bike trail: http://sirbikesalot.com/entry.php?fid=56. Cape Fear Cyclists post ride calendars on their website at www.capefearcyclists.org. Runners can find information on races and weekly runs by connecting with the Wilmington Roadrunners www.wilmingtonroadrunners.org. Surfers can find daily surf reports and competition information online at www.surfchex.com, www.wblivesurf.com, and www.hotwaxsurfshop.com.
 
With all this activity it’s easy to see why Wilmington is a “North Carolina Fit Community” (www.fitcommunitync.com) and ranks on RelocateAmerica.com’s Top 10 Recreation Cities list (2010). Wilmington and the destination’s fitness-oriented beach towns of Carolina, Kure, and Wrightsville also host sports events throughout the year.

Wilmington’s inaugural Susan G. Komen-Race for the Cure gets the season off to a running start on Saturday, March 2, followed by the Azalea Triathlon on March 9, the Quintiles Wrightsville Beach Marathon and Half-Marathon on March 17, and the Wrightsville Beach Biathlon on March 23. From 5k and 10k races to marathons and triathlons, surf and standup paddle competitions, soccer tournaments, and exciting events take place nearly every weekend March through May and beyond.

Spring spectator sports heat up in April and May when Wilmington’s professional soccer (Wilmington Hammerheads) and baseball (Wilmington Sharks) teams take to the fields. In mid-May, the Seaside Soccer Classic brings youth soccer players from across the Southeast. These are just a few of the highlights. Following is a roundup of spring sports events:
 
RACES
March 2: Susan G. Komen-Race for The Cure (5k walk/run). 8:30am. A USATF Certified 5K route (1-mile route also available). Downtown Wilmington (2nd & Market streets). http://komennctc.org/
 
March 9: Azalea Triathlon. 8am. UNCW Natatorium and campus. http://www.setupevents.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=event_detail&eventID=2184
 
March 2: Cardinal Strut 5k & 10k. 8am. Holly Tree Elementary School, Wilmington. http://www.cardinalstrut.com/
 
March 15: SAO Midnight 5k for Ovarian Cancer. 11:59pm. UNC-Wilmington, Wilmington. http://www.active.com/running/wilmington-nc/sao-midnight-5k-for-ovarian-cancer-2013
 
March 16: 9th Annual Steve Haydu St. Patrick’s Lo-Tide Run. 8am. Carolina Beach Boardwalk, Carolina Beach. http://www.lotiderun.org/
 
March 16: Quintiles Wrightsville Beach 5k. 5pm. Mayfaire Town Center, Wilmington. http://its-go-time.com/wrightsville-beach-marathon-5k-march-16
 
March 17: Quintiles Wrightsville Beach Half Marathon & Marathon. 6:15am. Wrightsville Beach. http://www.wrightsvillebeachmarathon.com/
 
March 23: Blue Ribbon Run 5k. 4pm. Autumn Hall, Wilmington. http://its-go-time.com/event-registration?ee=52
 
March 23: Wrightsville Beach Biathlon. 9am. Stand-up Paddleboard and Run. Blockade Runner Resort, Wrightsville Beach. http://wbb.eventbrite.com/#
 
March 24: Poplar Grove Plantation Peanut 5k. 8am. Abbey Nature Preserve, Poplar Grove Plantation. http://www.poplargrove.com/5k_run.htm 
 
 
April 4: 2nd Annual Donut Dash. 6pm. UNC-Wilmington, Wilmington. http://its-go-time.com/event-registration?ee=66
 
April 6: Azalea-Big Buddy 5k/10k/Fun Walk. 8am. Mayfaire Town Centre, Wilmington. 910-392-8180; http://www.ncazaleafestival.org/events/azalea-5k10kfun-walk-2013/
 
April 7: Paws4People 5k/10k. 9am. UNCW University Station, Wilmington. www.p4pwilmington5k.com 
 
April 13: Son Run 5k. 8:30am. Wrightsville Beach Park. http://wilmingtonroadrunners.org/events
 
April 21: 5k Race for the Planet. 7am register; 8am race. Earth Day event. NC Aquarium at Fort Fisher, Kure Beach. 910-458-7468; http://www.ncaquariums.com/fort-fisher/5k-race-for-the-planet-2
 
April 27: Coastal NC Run for Autism. 8am. Mayfaire Town Center, Wilmington. http://www.kintera.org/faf/home/default.asp?ievent=1052901
 
April 27: The Great Glow Run 5k. 8pm. Hugh MacRae Park, Wilmington. http://www.greatglowrun.com/
 
April 27: Step Up For Soldiers Combat Mud Run. 8am. National Guard Armory, Wilmington.
 
June 13: NewBridge Bank Bridge to Bridge. 6pm. CFCC Schwartz Center, Downtown Wilmington.
 
May 18: 2013 Patriot Rush 5k & 1-mile walk/run. 8am. Grace Baptist Church & Wilmington Christian Academy, Wilmington. http://its-go-time.com/event-registration?ee=58
 
May 25: Flashback 5k & 10k. 8am. Mayfaire Town Center, Wilmington. http://wilmingtonroadrunners.org/events/icalevent.detail/2013/02/21/132/-
 
May 30: Wilma Dash. 6pm. A women’s only walk/run through Wilmington’s historic district. Begins at Coastline Event & Conference Center, Wilmington. http://www.wilmaontheweb.com/Wilma-Dash
 
SURF COMPETITIONS
May 18-19: 11th Annual Kona Waterman’s Classic. Longboard surf competition (day 1) & standup paddleboard race (day 2). Crystal Pier at The Oceanic, Wrightsville Beach. http://wblasurf.org/2013/02/20/2013-kona-waterman-classic 
 
April 25-28: Carolina Cup Stand Up Paddleboard Event. A national qualifier race for the World SUP Championships. Blockade Runner Resort, Wrightsville Beach.http://wrightsvillebeachpaddleclub.com/about-the-carolina-cup 
 
August 17-18: Wrightsville Beach Wahine Classic. Women’s surf competition. South end of Wrightsville Beach. http://wblasurf.org/category/events/
 
SPECATOR SPORTS
April 9-August 17: Wilmington Hammerheads Soccer Season Begins! April 9-August 17. Home games at Legion Stadium, Wilmington. www.wilmingtonhammerheads.com
 
May 18-19: Seaside Soccer Classic. Cape Fear Regional Soccer Park & others, Wilmington. 910-392-0306; www.capefearsoccer.com
 
May 28-August 5: Wilmington Sharks Baseball Season Begins! May 28-August 5. Home games at Legion Stadium, Wilmington. www.wilmingtonsharks.com
 
It’s not only easy to stay fit while on vacation in Wilmington, North Carolina and the island beaches of Carolina Beach, Kure Beach and Wrightsville Beach, it’s also an easy drive from Raleigh, Durham and Greensboro along I-40 and from the Charlotte area along US 74, with easy access from I-95. For more information on seasonal specials, featured events and experiences, visit www.GoWilmingtonAndBeaches.com. For a free Visitors Guide to Wilmington, North Carolina's historic river district and the island beaches of Carolina Beach, Kure Beach, and Wrightsville Beach, please call 866-266-9690, or email visit@wilmingtonandbeaches.com.

Pic of the Day: Carolina Beach Surfer Catches Air

Stress relief CB-style. Photo by Michael Sing Photography.

Video: Visitor's Rave Reviews About Carolina Beach

What do visitors have to say about Carolina Beach?  Check out this tourism video from the Wilmington and Beaches CVB.

Pic of the Day: Carolina Beach Boardwalk in February

The time for quiet days at the board warlk is quickly coming to an end. Photo by Lotus Lily-Photography.

WECT: Photos - Whale of a Weekend at aquarium

Sarah Crandall, WECT
March 2nd, 2013

(WECT) – The NC Aquarium at Fort Fisher’s Whale of a Weekend event kicked off Saturday, and an estimated 2,000 visitors came to check out two new exhibits, according to an aquarium spokesperson.

Read the full story and view photos here.
Photo from article

Pic of the Day: Sunrise at the Tiki Bar

Good morning Ocean Grill and Tiki Bar in Carolina Beach Photo by Ian Smith Photography.

Star News: Smoking ban enforcement bill not gathering much support

By Ashley Withers - Star News
February 25, 2013

A bill to give New Hanover beach towns the power to enforce smoking bans on the beaches has hit a ‘snag,’ according to one local lawmaker...

Wrightsville Beach voters approved a smoking ban on the town’s beaches in November with the support of about 65 percent of voters. The Carolina Beach Town Council also passed a smoking ban in August...
 
But there’s a conflicting law that says parts of the beach that have been nourished are under state control, bringing up serious enforcement questions when it comes to the smoking ban...
 
Read the full article here.
Photo from article

Star News: Visitors to area state parks were 10 percent of N.C. total in 2012

February 27, 2013
By Kate Elizabeth Queram - Star News

Visitors to three state parks in Southeastern North Carolina accounted for more than 10 percent of park attendance statewide last year, a slight increase from 2011, according to data from the N.C. Division of Parks and Recreation.

In 2012, 1.46 million people spent time at Fort Fisher, Lake Waccamaw and Carolina Beach State Park, comprising 10.3 percent of the record 14.2 million people who entered parks and recreation sites throughout North Carolina...

Read the full story with breakdown on park attendance here.

Pic of the Day: Winter Chill at Fort Fisher

Winter's day at Fort Fisher. Photo by Mancuso Photography White Sage Digital Arts

 

Video: Time Lapse Video from Carolina Beach

Time-lapse video by Michael Sing showing the beauty of Carolina Beach. What a truly beautiful day it was on the island.


Pic of the Day: Wintertime at the Carolina Beach State Park

Carolina Beach State Park on a cold winter day. Photo by Lotus Lily-Photography.

4th Annual Wrightsville Beach Biathlon March 23, 2013

The Blockade Runner Beach Resort will host the Fourth Annual Wrightsville Beach Biathlon. This biathlon is unique due to the fact that it replaces swimming with the growing sport of paddleboarding. Like swimming, paddleboarding is an upper body exercise, however, paddleboarding allows the biathlon to take place when the water is cold. Also unique to the event, the run portion will take place totally on the oceanfront sand. This hard sand 4-mile course will present a different challenge than the typical paved road race.
 
The Biathletes will start the paddleboard segment regatta style at the resorts harbor side pier. They will then paddle a 4-mile course around Money Island and return to the Blockade Runners sound side beach. The biathletes will transition to the run portion of the event where they will cross to the ocean side through the public access beside the hotel. The run will be north to Johnny Mercer’s pier then south to the Oceanic Pier finishing oceanfront at the Resort.
 
The winners will receive complimentary weekends at the Blockade Runner along with over $1000 in prizes donated by Coastal Urge. The patio awards ceremony immediately follows the race and includes burgers and beers for the athletes and their families.
 
The race will start rain or shine at 10:30am Saturday, March 23rd 2013. The Blockade Runner will offer a special race rate, which will include a paddleboard storage and complimentary breakfast. With the race taking place in close proximity to the island this will be an excellent spectator event. Don’t miss this unique race experience!
 
For Special Race Rates at Blockade Runner Beach Resort Click Here!

Wrightsville Beach Biathlon Race Course
For information and registration please contact:
Blockade Runner @ 910-256-2251 or visit www.blockade-runner.com

Video: 2013 Polar Plunge at Carolina Beach

The 2013 Polar Plunge was again a huge success at Carolina Beach.  Greg George posted the following video from the event on Youtube.  Enjoy.

Pic of the Day: Winter Sky at Fort Fisher

Beautiful Fort Fisher. Photo by Ned Leary Photography

Pic of the Day: Wintertime at the Carolina Beach Lake

Carolina Beach Lake. Photo by Michael Sing Photography.

WECT: Carolina Beach town leaders look to expand boardwalk

Feb 23, 2013 4:32
By: Ben Powell - WECT

CAROLINA BEACH, NC (WECT) – Carolina Beach town leaders are discussing a possible boardwalk expansion plan at their town hall meeting on Tuesday night.

Mayor Bob Lewis wants town council members to consider using $2,500 to draw up plans that could double the size of the existing boardwalk...

Lewis says the plan would not use tax payer dollars. Instead, the town wants to use $1.2 million of leftover grant money from the NC Aquarium Pier Project, which was never built. The town would first have to get clearance from state legislators.

Read the full article here
Photo credit

Video: Tourism Video for Fort Fisher State Historic Site

Fort Fisher is the site of the largest land-sea battle of the Civil War. This North Carolina State Historic Site was built by the Confederacy and served as an important port until it's fall in 1865.

Video: Tourism Video for Fort Fisher Aquarium

One of the state's biggest attractions and treasured landmark is the NC Aquarium at Fort Fisher. This recreation area features sharks, touch tanks, and even an albino alligator.

Pic of the Day: Pair of Deer at Fort Fisher

Young love captured at Fort Fisher by Ian Smith Photography.

Bear's paws and gallbladders ending up on black market

Multi-agency Operation Something Bruin Documents Scores of Violations

State and federal wildlife officials in North Carolina and Georgia announced an undercover operation today that involved about 80 wildlife violators and some 980 violations.

Primary violations documented by Operation Something Bruin stem from illegal bear hunting but include an array of state wildlife and game law charges. Some suspects could also face federal charges.

Investigators say some of the bears were killed so that their paws and gallbladders could be sold on the black market.  (WYFF)

The four-year investigation, the largest of its kind in recent years, targeted poachers in North Carolina and Georgia, with work in some adjacent states. Included in Georgia are eight defendants facing a total of 136 state charges.

Dan Forster, director of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ Wildlife Resources Division, said Operation Something Bruin is a great example of a multi-agency effort with a unified goal: protecting a public trust resource that provides “tremendous natural, social and economic benefits to citizens.”

“It is incumbent upon us to ensure that we have sustainable natural resources for the public to enjoy for generations,” Forster said. “And particularly in these economic times, it’s critical for us to work across geopolitical boundaries with other agencies to provide the best possible protection for the resource.”

Officers with Georgia DNR and the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission infiltrated poaching circles to document violations including bear baiting; illegal take of bears, deer and other wildlife; illegal use of dogs; illegal operation of bear pens in North Carolina; and, guiding hunts on national forest lands without the required permits.

Operation Something Bruin partners also included the U.S. Forest Service, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Park Service.

Officers began making arrests Tuesday, Feb. 19. Totals given for violators and violations are approximate.

This investigation will help safeguard wildlife by making poachers pay now, and making would-be violators think twice before breaking laws that conserve natural resources.

For those who persist in wildlife theft, Something Bruin will help agencies better train officers to catch them – an effort strongly supported by hunters and anglers, our nation’s first conservationists.

Col. Eddie Henderson, chief of the Wildlife Resources Division’s Law Enforcement Section, emphasized that the effort also reinforces the public’s role in helping combat poaching and conserve wildlife.

“Conservation officers cannot be everywhere,” Henderson said. “The public can be a great asset by reporting poaching and suspicious activity through their state’s toll-free report-a-violation line.

“Wildlife belongs to everyone. Reporting poaching helps us protect something the public owns.”

Learn more at www.operationsomethingbruin.org or www.georgiawildlife.com/operationsomethingbruin.

March 3, 2013

Photo: Remberring Two Socks

Beautiful shot of Two Socks who was struck and killed by a vehicle while walking along the shoreline in Corolla on May 27, 2012. When driving on the beach, please be mindful of all forms of wildlife and drive slowly.

Photo by the Corolla Wild Hose Fund.

Pic of the Day: Civil War Reenactment at Fort Fisher

Photo by Ian Smith Photography "A shot from the civil war event at Ft Fisher - Jan 13 2013"

Video: Time Lapse Sunrise at the Carolina Beach Pier

Here's a very cool time-lapse sunrise video from Michael Sing Photography featuring a sunrise at the Carolina Beach Pier. Enjoy!

Star News: Big Apple Bakery to open on Pleasure Island

By Paul Stephen - Star News
February 18, 2013

The rise and shine on Pleasure Island is about to get a bit more pleasurable with Big Apple Bakery opening in the coming weeks. Owner Shelly McGowan, who also captains the neighboring Michael’s Seafood in Carolina Beach, says her new project will fill a void she’s felt since leaving her childhood home in New York 16 years ago.

“I’ve basically been searching for an ideal bakery since I moved here,” she said with a laugh Monday afternoon...

Read the full article here
Photo from article

Pic of the Day: Magestic Sunset at Fort Fisher

Sunset at Fort Fisher. Photo by Ned Leary Photography. http://www.nedleary.com/

Pic of the Day: The Mightly Lone Tree at Fort Fisher

'One Tree Hill' at Fort Fisher. Photo by Ian Smith Photography.

Pic of the Day: Fort Fisher Oak Trees

Organized chaos at Fort Fisher. Photo by Mancuso Photography White Sage Digital Arts.

PIc of the Day: Carolina Beach Boat Basin

Carolina Beach serenity. Photo by Michael Sing Photography.

Pic of the Day: The Final Hour at the South End

Good night from the South End (Freeman Park at Carolina Beach). Photo by Ian Smith Photography

Pic of the Day: Sunrise at Fort Fisher

Good morning from Fort Fisher. Photo by Kim Heritage Gordon.



For 2012, the Number of Shark Attacks in North Carolina Drop


The 2012 ISAF numbers have just been released. There were 80 confirmed cases of unprovoked shark attacks on humans worldwide in 2012. The majority of those incidents happened in the United States, where there were 53 shark attacks in 2012,... which is the highest yearly total since 2000.

As has been the norm for decades, Florida again had most (49%) of the unprovoked attacks in the United States. The total of 26 Florida bites was similar to the 2001-2010 decade's yearly average of 23. Additional U.S. attacks were recorded in Hawaii (10), California (5), South Carolina (5), North Carolina (2), and Georgia, Massachusetts, New York, Oregon and Puerto Rico (one each).

More info here: http://www.flmnh.ufl.edu/fish/sharks/isaf/2012summary.html

Video: Carolina Beach Wedding

Here's a video of a wedding at Ft. Fisher, NC. The reception was held a beach house and they capped the evening on a party boat.  The video was posted on Youtube by Billy Beach.

Photo: Harbor Seal at the Outer Banks Fishing Pier

This photos is from Tina Marie DiNenna Jernigan and shows a harbor seal enjoying a bit of sun at the Outer Banks Fishing Pier.
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