Category archive for: Home & Garden

Fun Things to do on Roanoke Island

June 5, 2012







2nd Saturdays at RIFP
Storytelling with Elizabeth II Captain Robbie
June 9th from 2-3 p.m. Small Auditorium

Captain Putnam will play video clips of the Elizabeth II under construction and under sail including a clip of its launching on November 22nd, 1983. He will also share stories about working on the ship, for the past 19 years, and sailing her to other ports as an outreach program. Free.

UNC Pembroke- Stuart Little Children’s Show
June 12th, 13th and 14th at 10:30 a.m., Indoor Theatre

Stuart Little is no ordinary mouse. Born to a family of humans, he lives in New York City with his parents, his older brother George, and Snowbell the cat. Though he’s shy and thoughtful, he’s also a true lover of adventure which is reflected in this production.
Tickets are $5 for all 6 years old and older. 5 and under-free.

UNC Pembroke – I Love you, You’re Perfect…Now Change!
June 12th, 13th, and 14th at 7 p.m., Indoor Theatre

This production takes on the comedy and tragedy of relationships with a simplicity and truthfulness that will leave you rolling in the aisles with laughter and quietly wiping tears from your eyes. Filled with the music and style from the 1980’s the audience will be inspired to explore the meaning of love and relationships. Tickets are $10 adults and 6-12 years old – $5. 5 and under are free.

A Soldier’s Life – Summer Kids Program
June 14th from 9-11 a.m., Visitors Center

Learn about the soldiers who came to Roanoke Island by exploring the Settlement Site. Participate in a military drill and make a buckler shield to take home. Ages 7 to 13 $20. Pre-register at (252)475-1500.

75th Anniversary Season – THE LOST COLONY at Waterside Theater

Over 400 years ago, 117 men, women and children sailed from Plymouth, England in an attempt to settle on Roanoke Island; they vanished just two years later. The only clue left behind was the word “CROATOAN” carved into a post. The Lost Colony is their story.









Tickets available at

Year-long highlights include beautiful winter-time Camellias, spring bulbs, colorful summer landscapes from hydrangeas to crepe myrtles, autumn hues of ornamental grasses and salvia, as well as seasonal events like an Easter Eggstravaganza, Harvest Hayday and WinterLights. The Gardens are founded and supported by The Garden Club of North Carolina.

The Gardens are located at 1411 National Park Drive Manteo, NC 27954 GPS: 35 56.2N 75 42.7w

Hours vary seasonally. Visitation is by paid admission.

Categories: Arts, Home & Garden, outer banks, Roanoke Island, Things to do, travel, Uncategorized.

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My Favorite Time of the Year

May 30, 2012

I hope these photos capture the happiness I feel when the air feels good on your skin and I’m outside and flowers are blooming and gentle breezes are blowing and the birds are chirping. I live in the most beautiful place on earth – the Outer Banks!








Carolina Jasmine on the back porch


Sago Palm

Dogwoods along Fernando Street

Categories: Environment, Home & Garden, Land Development, outer banks, Roanoke Island, Things to do, travel, Uncategorized.

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Manteo Farmer’s Market

May 5, 2012

There’s a bag of fragrant strawberries sitting on the table, along with one perfectly ripe tomato and a bar of home-made lavender soap. They smell heavenly. I found these at the Farmer’s Market in downtown Manteo this morning.

In addition to fresh produce and soaps, there were baked goods, honey, jams and jellies, pottery, weavings, art and jewelry.

These beautiful scarves were made by Beth Burns of Waterside Weavers using a process known as Nuno Felting.












Beth also makes the lavender soap that I purchased. Her soaps also come in a variety of other scents and are created from quality ingredients (organic unrefined hemp seed oil, organic extra virgin olive oil, cocoa nut oil, palm oil).

I was enamored by the funky fish and crabs by Michael Tames, a local artist. This Seahorse is my favorite, the body is made of rope – really cool looking, unfortunately my photo does not do it justice.

Categories: Arts, Home & Garden, outer banks, People of Interest, Roanoke Island, Shopping, Things to do, travel, Uncategorized.

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Happy Spring

April 10, 2012

Happy Spring from Marshes Light!

Two new homes have sprouted up at Marshes Light. Traditional Manteo styled, one with a pop of bright blue.

Home site #13 reduced: $150,000.

April is a happening month along the Outer Banks! Check out these great events and click here for more information:

  • 10th Annual OBX Bike Week
  • Flying Pirate Half Marathon
  • Storm the Beach – Obstacle Course
  • Film, Music, Theater
  • Couture by The Shores – Fashion, Fun & Food to benefit Outer Banks Relief Foundation.

Softshell Season Soon!

Categories: Arts, Dining, Environment, Food & Wine, Home & Garden, marina, Marshes Light Marina, outer banks, Running, Sporting Events, Things to do, travel.

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Outer Banks Weddings

March 27, 2012

In between work and hosting my niece and her active two year old last week, I volunteered at the Outer Banks Wedding Show on Saturday at the beautiful Sanderling Inn in Duck. It was fun greeting the brides, grooms, friends and family and seeing all the incredible tablescapes and exhibits on display.

Metro Rentals











There are lots of places to get married on the Outer Banks; here are just a few:

  • The Sanderling  in Duck, new for 2012, the  Soundside Pavilion will offer lovely water views of the Currituck Sound
  • The Currituck Club, Corolla
  • The Whalehead Club, 39 acres of spacious lawn with beautiful waterfront views of the Currituck Sound, sunsets and the nearby Currituck Lighthouse
  • 108 Budleigh, located in the heart of historic downtown Manteo on Roanoke Island
  • Elizabethan Gardens, Roanoke Island
  • The Beach









The Wedding Show was sponsored by and featured over 60 vendors. From cakes and flowers, to music and photography, everything to make a special day perfect was on display.

A few of my favorite people were there too:

These folks know how to throw a wedding! For more information visit

Categories: Food & Wine, Home & Garden, outer banks, Outer Banks Weddings, People of Interest, Things to do, travel, Uncategorized.

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It’s a beautiful day on the Outer Banks

March 14, 2012

I just listed a lovely sound-front condominium at Marshes Light, took this photo today from the covered deck.

Facing east onto Shallowbag Bay











The Marshes Light boardwalk is one of very few waterfront boardwalks on the Outer Banks. This wooden walkway is roughly 2 miles in length and stretches from the marina at Marshes Light through to downtown Manteo. I love this little corner of heaven:

Facing southeast towards the marina











Along the boardwalk in Manteo is one of my favorite eateries, Poor Richard’s. Great sandwiches, soups and specials in a cozy and casual atmosphere. Eat inside or out on the porch overlooking the marina and Festival Park.

Poor Richard's

Categories: Home & Garden, Land Development, marina, Marshes Light Marina, outer banks, Roanoke Island, travel, Uncategorized.

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Unique Waterfront Property for Sale

March 5, 2012


Top floor, top right

The Area:

Historic downtown Manteo on Roanoke Island is beloved for its small town friendly atmosphere and waterfront location. Discover maritime history, live theater, art and cultural attractions, quaint shops, restaurants, First Friday Festivals and Saturday Farm Markets in Manteo, and, best of all, it’s located just minutes from the beautiful beaches of Nags Head along North Carolina’s Outer Banks.

The Property:

A one-of-a-kind, truly spectacular home in the new Marshes Light community is now available. This 3 bedroom, 3 bath home is located on the top floor of the Azalea condominiums and sits on the most eastern point of the community with panoramic views of Shallowbag Bay to the south, Roanoke Sound and Nags Head to the east, and the Marshes Lighthouse, Manteo waterfront and Roanoke Island Festival Park to the northeast. This home was enjoyed as a weekend get-away by its owners and has been lovingly cared for.



  • 1,673 square feet
  • Wrap-around covered decks
  • Tiled kitchen and baths
  • Stainless appliances
  • Marble countertops
  • Garden tub with separate walk-in shower
  • Heated master bathroom floor
  • Large walk-in closet
  • 9 1/2 ‘ ceilings with transom light windows above interior doors
  • Scrumptious upscale furniture and décor.
  • Exquisite window treatments and remote-controlled shades.
  • Parking garage with storage
  • Elevator.

Sunrise views

For more information, contact Lee Whitley at or call 252-475-9863.

Categories: Home & Garden, Land Development, marina, Marshes Light Marina, News, outer banks, Real Estate, Roanoke Island, Things to do, travel, Uncategorized.

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New Construction at Marshes Light

January 13, 2012

Renaissance Construction recently broke ground for the construction of a three bedroom home in Marshes Light on home site 7. This marks the fourth home in downtown Manteo’s newest neighborhood. Renaissance Construction is owned by Steve Daniels who is the Marshes Light preferred builder.

“I employ the best local craftsmen and personally oversee to be sure each home is well built in a timely and efficient manner.”

There are only a handful of home sites available at Marshes Light, and one or two will boast panoramic views of the Sound. Marshes Light is a unique location connected by a boardwalk to shops, restaurants, theater and Festival Park in downtown Manteo.

Categories: Home & Garden, Land Development, People of Interest, Real Estate, Roanoke Island, Uncategorized.

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“A Tapestry of Beauty”

January 11, 2012

There are many natural and beautiful places to explore along the Outer Banks. Certainly one of the most beautiful is on Roanoke Island, The Elizabethan Gardens.

“ Built as a living memorial to Sir Walter Raleigh’s lost colonists, The Gardens include a collection of Renaissance statues and Elizabethan-style buildings that let you imagine you are back in the time of Queen Elizabeth I. Spring-time tulips lead to an ever changing palette of year-round color from hydrangeas, native plants, perennials and camellias. Enjoy the colorful crepe myrtles in the Sunken Garden or the view from a sound-side 16th-century style gazebo.”

Upcoming events at the Elizabethan Gardens:

Coldest Day of the Year Plant Sale
Saturday, January 21, 10 a.m. -2 p.m.
Yard sale with books, household items, clothing, damage gift shop items, tools and more. Members receive an additional 10% off all purchases. After the sale enjoy a walk in the Gardens.

State of the Non-Profit Dinner
Wednesday, February  8, 6 – 9 p.m.
The North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island. The cost is $25. per person for Members/Friends and $30. per person for Non-Members. Please RSVP by Wednesday, February 1, 2012, call Nancy Harvey 252-473-1554 or email

Camellia Watercolor Workshop with Linda  Miller
February 14, 17, and 16, 9:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
The Gardens have over 300 Japanese camellias in the collection, represented by over 125 cultivars. Learn basic drawing skills, observation, and watercolor techniques to create a botanical painting. Each student will work at their own pace while Linda Miller consults with each student individually. Beginner to advanced welcome. Materials list provided. 3 day class for Members/Friends $135. 3 day class for Non-Members $145. Call 252-473.3234 or email for reservations

Categories: Arts, Environment, Historic Architecture, Home & Garden, outer banks, Roanoke Island, Things to do, travel, Uncategorized.

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New Year’s Resolution – Thinking Outside the Box, the Beach Box, that is

January 5, 2012

As I was stumbling the Internet the other day, I came across a blog,  The tagline is “It doesn’t have to be perfect to be beautiful.”

The gist of the current post, as with most New Year’s posts, is about setting goals. And the goals at The Nester are relative to house and home.

No Water Views Here

Which got me thinking.  I live in a 25 year old reverse-floor plan single family home. We’ve made three major renovations, but it’s still a REVERSE FLOOR PLAN. For those of you not familiar with this layout, a reverse floor plan is a house on pilings (typically 8 feet above ground), with a drive under or carport and (hopefully) an entry on the ground floor, bedrooms on the middle floor, and kitchen, living, dining and maybe an extra bedroom on the top floor. A lot of homes on the Outer Banks are built this way to take advantage of views of the ocean or sound from the upper floors.

As the trees grew in our back yard, our views of the ocean dwindled. We haven’t had a view of the water for at least 10 years. We love where we live, but we are over the stairs. We want our main living areas – the kitchen, living and master bedroom to share the same floor at ground level. But tearing down and starting over is a major expense and not in our foreseeable budget.

So we’re stuck in a mode of not doing anything, except basic maintenance. But the post at The Nester made me take pause and think about making some goals of my own. Here are a few of her ideas (I won’t list them all here, just the ones that spoke to me):

  •  What’s my favorite room in my house? Why?
  • How and where does my family hang out together?  What’s working for that room? What’s annoying in that room?
  • Is there something in my home I want to do but I’m afraid?  What if I take that risk?  What’s the worst that can happen?
  • Am I neglecting my home and not putting money into something that is needed?
  • Stop apologizing for my home.

Categories: Home & Garden, outer banks, Real Estate, Remodeling, Uncategorized.

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2011 – A Year in Photos

December 29, 2011

















Wishing you and yours a happy and healthy New Year!

Photo by Amanda Mager






Categories: Arts, Fitness, Holiday Happenings, Home & Garden, Land Development, Marshes Light Marina, outer banks, Real Estate, Roanoke Island, Things to do, Uncategorized.

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Visions of Sugar Plums

December 19, 2011

Being an active member of the Steel Magnolias at Outer Banks Bootcamps, I had to give up something during the term of this camp. For me, it’s been ongoing, sweets. I had a voracious sweet tooth as a child and have the cavities to prove it.  It’s been a relatively easy give during the summer and fall boot camps. This time of year, however, it’s been a real test of will power. I’ve taken to posting photos of the forbidden foodstuff on Facebook and I’d like to share them with you too.

Categories: Dining, Food & Wine, Holiday Happenings, Home & Garden, Things to do, Uncategorized.

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December Happenings on the Outer Banks

December 13, 2011

Dates are subject to change. Telephone area code is (252) unless otherwise specified.

Free Admission at the Aquarium on Roanoke Island with donation to “Santa Paws” program for our four-legged friends. Santa Paws needs donations of 7 lbs. of dog, puppy, cat or kitten food, rawhides, pillow cases, bleach, dog shampoo, blankets, paper towels and clumping kitty litter. All of these items will be placed under our Santa Paws Christmas Tree for delivery on December 23rd to the Outer Banks SPCA Animal Shelter in Manteo. The Aquarium is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. For more information call 252-473-3494 or visit
Bears that Care
December 1 – December 19
Outer Banks Bear Factory, MP 12.5, Across from Jockey’s Ridge. Bears that Care is a program that the Outer Banks Bear Factory has started to assist Hotline in their effort to help the children of Dare County have a good memory at Christmas. For every 16″ animal purchased the Outer Banks Bear Factory will donate an 8″ animal to Hotline for their Christmas Toy Drive. Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. and Saturday from 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.  (252) 255-5222 or


50% off Storewide Sale – The Christmas Shop, Manteo
December 3 – 31. 50% off Storewide Holiday Sale! The best sale of the year! Plus 25% off all books at Manteo Booksellers.

Art and Spirit: Sacred Works by Sixty Artists
December 3 – 22. Art Gallery at Roanoke Island Festival Park. (252) 475-1500 or

December 13-30. Elizabethan Gardens. 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. Holiday lights and music transforming The Elizabethan Gardens into an illuminated winter wonderland complete with peacocks, butterflies, deer and other garden creatures created with flowers, seeds, natural elements, as well as traditional holiday decorations. Festive trees grace the Gatehouse, Reception Hall and great Lawn. Garden plant sales will feature winter annuals; ornamental vegetables; forced bulbs; rosemary Christmas Trees; and conifers with bows. Tickets for Friends’ and Non-members: $9 for Adults; $7 for youth (ages 6-17); $4 for children (5 and under).

Dinner with Santa
December 16. Elizabethan Gardens. 6 – 9 pm prices are reduced. Celebrate the holidays with your child by dining with Santa in the magically decorated Embellished Hall at The Elizabethan Gardens. Bring your camera or purchase photos by professional photographer. Your ticket includes dinner, Santa and WinterLights. Dinner seating is at 6 pm, 7 pm, or 8 pm. Friends’ tickets: Was $35 now $25 for Adults; Was $20 now $12 for youth (ages 6-17); $6 for children (5 and younger).  Non-members tickets: Was $40 now $27 for Adults; Was $22 now $14 for youth (ages 6-17); $8 for children (5 and younger).

Kids Craft Day
December 17 & 21. Elizabethan Gardens. 10 a.m. – Noon. Arts and crafts activity, healthy snacks, lunch, story time and a special stroll through The Gardens. Kids will enjoy seasonal and will delight in seeing floral creations of peacocks, butterflies and deer! Make sure they bring their coats! Space limited to 30 children. Friends’ $15; Non-members $

Annual Centerpiece Sale

December 15. Front Porch, Nags Head & Manteo. 7 – 10 a.m. The Dare County Master Gardeners Club will be hosting their annual Centerpiece Sale Stop by and purchase some festive, handmade, holiday greenery for your home or office.


108th Annual Celebration of the Wright Brothers First Flight
December 17. Wright Brothers National Memorial. 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The daylong anniversary tribute will be held at the site of Wright’s first flight. Visitors to the site experience a replica of the Wright Brothers’ 1903 encampment and majestic, 60-foot tall granite monument perched atop a 90-foot hill that serves a striking and lasting reminder of the important historical achievement that happened on this site a century ago.

UNC Greensboro Amahl and the Night Visitors
December 18. 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. Indoor Theatre at Roanoke Island Festival Park. The tender, heartwarming story of Amahl and the Night Visitors is one of the most popular of American operas. Tickets are $10 adults and $5 for those 12 and under.

Let’s Eat!
December 21. NC Aquarium on Roanoke Island. 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. For ages 8-12. Spend a day learning what it takes to feed our sharks, sting rays, otters, and other residents. Campers will get to observe mealtime in action for some of the animals as they feast. Cost: $25 per camp. Closed toe shoes and a bag lunch required each day.

“Snakes, Gators, & Frogs, Oh My!”
December 29 NC Aquarium on Roanoke Island. 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. For ages 8-12. The Aquarium has so much more to see than just fish. See how many reptiles and amphibians live at the Aquarium and learn about their care and interesting behaviors. Cost: $25 per camp. Closed toe shoes and a bag lunch required each day.

Categories: Arts, Dining, Holiday Happenings, Home & Garden, outer banks, People of Interest, Pets, Roanoke Island, Things to do, travel, Uncategorized.

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Visions of an Upscale Small Town Waterfront

December 7, 2011

This is the architect’s rendering of Marshes Light in Manteo, NC. Retail shops and restaurants along the water, homes and condominiums nearby, and a bustling marina. This new community is located within walking distance on a soundside boardwalk to historic Manteo with a variety of dining, shopping and cultural activities.

Categories: Arts, Historic Architecture, Home & Garden, Land Development, marina, Marshes Light Marina, outer banks, Real Estate, Roanoke Island, Things to do, travel, Uncategorized.

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Manteo Community Comes Together

November 16, 2011

Categories: Environment, Fall Weather, Home & Garden, outer banks, Things to do, Uncategorized.

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Outer Banks Real Estate – Sharing the Benefits of the CMA

October 26, 2011

I was approached by a neighbor recently about listing her home in Southern Shores for sale. Having been focused on Marshes Light in downtown Manteo for several years, I told her I was a bit rusty in the market outside of Marshes Light, but would welcome the opportunity to prepare a CMA, or comparative market analysis. After all, this would also reveal my own home’s current worth.

Our local realtor group uses a multiple listing service by Paragon. We recently converted to the newest version and it’s been a bit of a chore learning the new technology. It does have a great CMA wizard and it allowed me to enter information about the subject property (which can later be converted it to an active listing) and gather comparable properties, both active, sold and under contract listings. Using the wizard, I was able to prepare an attractive, easy to understand presentation that gave my neighbor a clear idea of what her property is worth in today’s market.

I also learned that the real estate market is strong on the Outer Banks.  On a national level, a recent CNN Money article states that “home prices continued a winning streak in August, the fifth straight month of price gains, but remain lower on a year-over-year basis.”

This new listing caught my eye:

Southern Shores west-side, 3 bedroom, 2 1/2 bath home sits on a large lot with pool has a newly renovated professional kitchen with stainless appliances and granite counter tops. There are lots of decks overlooking a large pool. The home was built in 1989 by Olin Finch, and will appeal to a year-round family or rental investment buyer. $419,000. MLS 72296.

Categories: Home & Garden, outer banks, Real Estate, Uncategorized.

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Enjoy the Outer Banks this Fall

October 21, 2011


October 22 – Autumn Finale with Brent Heath
12noon-2p.m. Workshop for Adults Autumn Finale with Fall Flowering Bulbs – We’ll guide you through the process of adding interesting, new colors to your garden that will change it from a ‘waning garden’ to a colorful, end of the season gala. For more information contact

October 29 – Harvest Hay Day
Fun, food and festivities; stuff a scarecrow and learn at our discovery stations. Hot cider, pumpkin pie and bonfires are sure to warm your heart. We will also crown Miss Mum and The Chrysanthemum King this year (For children 6 and under.)

October 29 – Harvest Hoedown ~ Diamonds and Denim
Evening Adult Fund Raising Event for the Elizabethan Gardens. Wear your blue jeans with your diamonds and have a good old fashion hoedown with dancing, food and seasonal harvest fun like hay rides and dancing. Enjoy the harvest moon as well as a silent and live auction. Ticket Price $50 per person. Contact


October 27 – Trick or Treat Under the Sea
Popular event! 6 – 8:30 p.m. Ghosts and strange aquatic creatures will greet children as they enjoy this “spooktacular” event. Hosting the event is Count Sharkula who always scares up lots of ghoulish fun. Crazy costume contests, creepy crafts, spine-tingling scream contests and yummy munchies are just a few of the things to howl about. Tickets are limited. (252) 473-3494 or


November 4 – First Friday
Manteo Waterfront. 4– 8 p.m. Historic Inn Tour from 4 – 6 p.m. (tour maps at Dare County Arts Council), Live music from 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. (Blue grass to Jazz to Classic Rock ‘n Roll), Boutiques and Restaurants open late, Enjoy family friendly activities, Famous rock climbing wall, Historical interpreters in period costumes and more.

November 4 – 29 Art, Automata and Christmas Clocks by Michael Davis
Art Gallery at Roanoke Island Festival Park. (252) 475-1500 or

November 4 – 30 Nancy Pederson: A Fiber Exhibit (Vault Gallery)
Dare County Arts Council. Opening Reception Friday, 6 pm – 8pm. For more information, please call (252) 473-5558;

November 5 – South Arts Film Festival – Ahead of Time
7 p.m. Indoor Theatre at Roanoke Island Festival Park. The event is sponsored by the Dare County Arts Council. Tickets are $12 and can be purchased at For more information call 252-473-5558 or visit

November 12 -Outer Banks Jewelry Expo
Art Gallery at Roanoke Island Festival Park. Local and regional designers showcase a wide variety of their jewelry and metal work in this expo. Demonstrations included. (252) 475-1500 or


November 12 – Outer Banks 8K, Buccaneer 5K & Fun Run
The Outer Banks 8K is an out-and-back course which will start in Kill Devil Hills at the First Flight High School track (in front of the grandstand), continue through Nags Head Woods Maritime Forest and finish at the track. The course is partly on a dirt road and is walker-friendly.

Buccaneer 5K & Fun Run presented by Kelly Hospitality Group
An out-and-back course (part of the Outer Banks 8K course), which begins at First Flight High School (FFHS) track in Kill Devil Hills, enters and returns along Old Nags Head Woods Road, and finishes at FFHS.

November 13 – Outer Banks Marathon and Half Marathon
The marathon starts in Kitty Hawk, the half marathon will begin in Nags Head, near the largest sand dune on the East Coast at Jockey’s Ridge State Park and both cross the beautiful Washington-Baum Bridge and finish on Roanoke Island. or register online at

November 24 – Annual Outer Banks Gobbler 5K and Little Giblet Fun Run
8 a.m. Run, walk, stroll through the picturesque Village of Nags Head and enjoy views of the Roanoke Sound! Post Race Feast! Pumpkin Cheesecake to the Overall Finisher who gets bragging rights at the 2011 Outer Banks Gobbler! Presented by the Outer Banks Running Club. Register at


November 19 – 14th Annual Manteo Rotary Rockfish Rodeo
Outdoor Pavilion at Roanoke Island Festival Park. A fishing tournament sponsored by the Manteo Rotary. (252) 473-6644 or

For more fishing information, check out

Categories: Arts, Environment, Fall Weather, Fitness, Holiday Happenings, Home & Garden, outer banks, Roanoke Island, Sporting Events, Things to do, travel, Uncategorized.

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Living Shoreline Project at Marshes Light

October 17, 2011

About a month ago, the Town of Manteo provided a dump truck load of fossil/spent oyster shells to Marshes Light.  This past Saturday (October 15) a group of volunteers bagged the shells for placement along the marsh to help stabilize an eroding expanse of coastal marsh – one of the last of its kind in Town limits.  The bagged shells will be used much like rip rap or wood and vinyl bulkheads; however, this method utilizes natural materials.

The volunteer effort was part of an overall project aimed at creating a “living shoreline” to protect a Juncus marsh that is part of the Marshes Light Development in downtown historic Manteo.  The “living shoreline” stabilization will allow the marsh to regenerate along its eroding fringe and return valuable oyster shells to our waters.  These shells will also provide a great home to numerous marine creatures.

Thriving coastal marshes are vital to the overall health of our estuary, effectively filtering nutrients, fine sediments and toxins from overland runoff.  These critical habitats also support fisheries and protected resources by improving water quality and buffering shorelines.

It was an interesting process and hard, dirty work. We used UV resistant netting material (used and recommended in the aquaculture industry) which was stretched over a piece of PVC pipe that was about 36” long and 8” in diameter.  Wearing thick gloves, we placed the shells into the pipe with bag stretched and when full, the pipe was pulled out of the bag and the bag tied.  Each bag was estimated to weigh about 30-35 pounds!

Once the necessary permits are in place, the next step will be to load the bags onto a barge and haul them over to the marsh.  The Town also plans to install native marsh plants along the landward side of the stabilized shoreline next spring.

 This project is an on-going and volunteer collaborative effort between Marshes Light new home community, the Town of Manteo, Quible & Associates, P.C., and our many friends!  Check back in early next spring for information about volunteering for more projects along the Manteo waterfront.

I want to give special thanks to Marshes Light owners, Bob & Joan Ciardi (and friends), Jim Lambie and Jeff & Carol Nease for their hard work!

Categories: Environment, Fall Weather, Home & Garden, Land Development, marina, Marshes Light Marina, outer banks, Roanoke Island, T Shirts, Things to do, travel, Uncategorized.

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What the market stats are saying about the Outer Banks Real Estate Market!

September 20, 2011

This article is reprinted with permission.

By Hugh “Scooter” Willey, Jr. (email: hughwilleysunrealtynccom)
NC Real Estate Broker with Sun Realty of the Outer Banks

The real estate market has been a bruising one, for both pockets and egos, over the past several years. Yet, signs of stabilization are beginning to show in the Outer Banks Real Estate Market. Buyers are in all earnestness beginning to search for homes, sensing the “bottom” is near (or passed), inventory is down (good for sellers) and ‘bank owned” properties have slowed. It is also noteworthy that as a resort community the median sales price is increasing.

For those interested in the Outer Banks Real Estate Market, I have posted the following comparison of the first 8 months of 2011 to the first 8 months of 2010 (source: Outer Banks Association of Realtors MLS).

Overall Sales

Total Property Sales
2010 2011 Change
Residential 919 923 *
Land 167 201 +20%
Commercial 11 15 +36%
Total 1097 1137 +4%

* Insignificant

Distressed Property Sales

Distressed Property Sales
2010 2011 Change
Potential Short Sale 102 128 +25%
Bank Owned 247 231 -7%
Total 349 359 +3%

Median Sale Price

Median Sale Price
2010 2011 Change
Single Family Residential $300,000 $343,154 +14%
Condo $199,000 $183,233 -8%
All Residential $269,900 $297,522 +11%


Current Inventory
2010 2011 Change
Residential 2191 1849 -16%
Land 1325 1146 -14%
Commercial 124 147 +19%
Total 3640 3142 -14%

Categories: Home & Garden, Land Development, Real Estate, Uncategorized.

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Spotlight On: Manteo

July 27, 2011

Marshes Light Marina & Community

The Town of Manteo is known for its exceptional downtown waterfront, Victorian-inspired architecture and the large selection of bed and breakfasts in the Outer Banks. Situated on the eastern side of Roanoke Island, Manteo lies between the North Carolina mainland and the barrier islands of the Outer Banks along the Shallowbag Bay.

The town’s theme is decidedly nautical, with the daily weather reports coming in the form of flags flying from the Manteo Weather Tower. Beacons of light from the Roanoke Marshes Lighthouse still guide boats in safely, and charming shops and cafes line the city’s waterfront.

While the residents of Manteo embrace the modern charms of the seaside village, they are also keenly aware of the island’s historical importance. Over 420 years ago, a group of 117 men, women and children, with the blessing of Queen Elizabeth I, settled on the island. An ideal location for an English settlement because of its lush vegetation and mild climate, they established a colony only to subsequently disappear. “The Lost Colony,” as it has come to be known, today remains one of history’s biggest mysteries.

Three hundred years later, Union forces took control of the waters of northeastern North Carolina, and the groundwork of modern Manteo was laid when freed slaves lived and worked on the island. Nearly 4,000 freed slaves had become part of this ‘Freedman’s Colony’ until its official closing in 1867.

Today, the town’s tree-lined streets, shops, restaurants, fishing charters and bed and breakfasts reflect its history while keeping one foot firmly planted in the present as well.

Marshes Light

Close to history and close to the water, Marshes Light is a one-of-a-kind waterfront community located within walking distance of the shops and restaurants of historic downtown Manteo. The last opportunity for new construction within the historic district, Marshes Light includes homesites, single-family homes and marina villa homes in addition to a host of amenities including a 60-slip marina, all while reflecting Manteo’s unique character and charm.

Mayo Boddie, chairman of developer Boddie-Noell, pointed out, “I have always loved Manteo, and it’s why we decided to develop Marshes Light there. I own a condo there, I dock my boat there, and I love to spend time there, which is why I’ve been so passionate about Marshes Light and about connecting the community to historic downtown Manteo.”

(This article originally appeared in Ideal Living Magazine.)

Categories: Historic Architecture, Home & Garden, Land Development, marina, Marshes Light Marina, outer banks, Real Estate, Roanoke Island, travel, Uncategorized.

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NC Coastal Reserve Upcoming Events

July 19, 2011

The North Carolina Coastal Reserve is offering a series of FREE upcoming events on the Outer Banks on estuaries and estuarine shorelines for a variety of audiences.

 Please forward this information to anyone interested…

 For the public:

 For Teacher & Educators:

 For Marine Contractors, Environmental Consultants, & Engineers:

 For Estuarine-Front Property Owners, Realtors, & Developers:

Can’t make an event? Follow our “Did You Know” Campaign about N.C.’s estuaries, shoreline stabilization, and sea level rise on Facebook or Twitter!

Questions? Contact Caitlin Hamer at or 252-838-0887.

Categories: Home & Garden, Land Development, marina, Marshes Light Marina, outer banks, People of Interest, Things to do, Uncategorized.

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Whitley House Salad

May 2, 2011

My favorite salad right now has baby kale sprouts, baby lettuce (growing in a pot on my deck), , hearts of romaine, purple onion, celery, spinach, red grapes, avocado (optional), and feta cheese and walnuts.  I like the onions and celery super thinly sliced and crisped in an ice bath while I’m preparing the rest of the salad and dressing. I suggest a good Feta cheese, the kind that comes in a block (with liquid), not the “crumbles.”

It gets pulled together in a most delicious way with this dressing:

The dressing is “Global House Salad” from Jadine Sayer (

  • 1/2 tsp minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup olive oil (I use an Italian extra virgin cold pressed olive oil)
  • 2 TBS balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1/4 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/8 tsp Sriracha sauce (Thai hot sauce)
  • Pinch of freshly ground black pepper & a smidge of kosher salt.
  • Whisk all the ingredients tother.

Toast the walnuts in the oven at 400 for a minute or two, or stove top. Be sure to watch them so they don’t burn. Assemble salad, layering lettuce, grapes, celery, onions, avocado, walnuts and sprouts on top, add dressing to taste.

Categories: Dining, Home & Garden, Recipes, Things to do, Uncategorized.

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Coors Cottage Transformed to Discover Marshes Light Get-Away

April 14, 2011

We’re in the process of outfitting our beloved Coors Cottage to be our new guest accommodations for Marshes Light. Previously, our guests enjoyed staying at the Marina Villas, in a three bedroom condominium. As a matter of fact, the last guests who stayed there, fell in love and immediately purchased it – hence the move.

Check out these adorable dishes that Mrs. C found in Hilton Head. They’ll work well with the white dishes and mugs I found at a local store.

The Coors Cottage will bring a new dimension to a visit at Marshes Light. A 2009 Parade of Homes winner, the Coors Cottage blends historical detail and craftsmanship of the past with an upscale, gourmet kitchen and an open and inviting floor plan.

How about a soak in the tub after a full day?

Located on stately Fernando Street, the Coors Cottage is just a short walk to downtown Manteo and quaint shops, restaurants, and Festival Park.

Categories: Arts, Historic Architecture, Home & Garden, outer banks, Real Estate, Roanoke Island, Things to do, travel, Uncategorized.

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Outer Banks Summer Camps for Kids

April 7, 2011

(Information reposted from the individual websites of the organizations shown below.)

JENNETTE’S PIER, NAGS HEAD   Grand Opening – May 21, 2011
Get ready for lots of family fun and solid conservation education in a perfect outdoor classroom setting— on the beach and over the waves! Upon reopening in May 2011, Jennette’s Pier will offer a wide variety of classes, camps, sleepovers, and get-wet adventures in keeping with the Aquariums’ mission to inspire appreciation and conservation of North Carolina’s aquatic environments.

A full schedule of activities is currently being planned for the summer of 2011, including school and scout  programs, invertebrate labs, plankton studies, science camps, marine mammal studies, sea turtle night treks, fishing workshops, surfing lessons, and many others. Some programs and activities will be free, while others will require pre-registration and fees. Parents, teachers, and group leaders: Be sure to check back on this page for updates as the calendar of events is constructed.

Children’s Gardening Camp
Monday, July 11– Friday, July 15, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., for ages 6 – 11 years old. This is a weeklong camp that combines the fun of gardening, educational opportunities and food! Children will learn what herbs and spices were grown in the 1500’s and how we use those same herbs today for kid’s favorite foods like pizza and pasta! Children will be planning, planting and harvesting pizza ingredients from our very own Elizabethan edible garden. Each day the children will have a morning stroll through The Gardens, a “Bugs, Bees and Wiggle Worms” class, “Scratch and Sniff” activity, digging and planting in the edible garden, lunch and story time. Parents are invited on Friday to eat what the children have prepared with fresh herbs. After hour’s camp time also available at an extra charge. Members/Friends $125. Non Members $135.

August 17
Bug Bonanza ~ Bees, Butterflies and Wiggly Worms. Children’s Workshop.


History Diggers Camp
July 11 – July 15, 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., for ages 5 – 6 years old. Summer campers will learn the differences and similarities between American Indian and Elizabethan English culture in a fun filled week of exploring the living history exhibits at Roanoke Island Festival Park and completing craft projects. $70 members of Elizabeth II/ $80 non-members.

Pathfinders Camp
July 18– July 22, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., for ages 10 – 13 years old.
August 8 – August 12, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., for ages 7 – 9 years old.
Summer campers will explore Roanoke Island Festival Park as Thomas Harriot and John White explored Roanoke Island and the Outer Banks in 1585. Each camper will create a booklet containing their own plant and wildlife observations and participate in hands-on activities in American Indian Town, the Military Settlement, and the Elizabeth II. The camp concludes with an overnight campout at Roanoke Island Festival Park. $140 members of Elizabeth II/ $160 non-members.

Outdoor Adventure Camp
August 15 – August 19, 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., for ages 5 – 6 years old. Summer campers will learn about the unique environment of Roanoke Island and the Outer Banks. Each day campers will participate in a craft and a hands-on activity related to blue crabs, wind turbines, oyster reefs, native plant life and more! $70 members of Elizabeth II/$80 non-members.

NC AQUARIUM Summer Day Camps

Registration opens on April 1st for all summer camps. Space is limited. NC Aquarium Society Members receive a 10% discount on all  camp fees. For additional information, or to register your camper, contact our registrar at 252-473-3494, ext. 232.

Sea Squirts
Session I: June 21 – 24, 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. For rising 1st graders. Each session is limited to 10 campers. Young Aquarium campers will learn about our many aquatic environments by exploring the NC Aquarium on Roanoke Island one day and the Nature Conservancy’s Nags Head Woods Preserve three days. These half days will be packed with hikes, water adventures, animal encounters, crafts, and more! $125.

Session II: July 19 – 22, 9 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Young Aquarium campers will have the opportunity to explore the Aquarium and learn more about our animal residents. Sea Squirts will have extra helping hands this week from teen campers in our new Eco-Educators program, as they play animal games, go on scavenger hunts, make crafts, and more! $125.

Jr. Aquatic Adventures
Session I: June 21 – 24, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. (Tuesday through Friday) for ages 7-9
Session II: July 5 – 8
Session III: August 2 – 5. Each session is limited to 12 campers. Campers will embark on a week of fun and dive into science as we explore the Outer Banks with daily field trips, meet Aquarium animals up close, make camp crafts, splash on a snorkeling venture, and much more. The camp week concludes at the end of the day on Friday with a social and private Aquarium tour for campers and their parents! $150.

Aquatic Adventures
July 26 – 29, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. (Tuesday through Friday) for ages 10-12.
Friday Overnight at the Aquarium. Space is limited to 12 campers. This week of camp will start where the Junior Aquatic Adventure camp left off – expect more in depth field trips to the Nature Conservancy’s Nags Head Woods Preserve, the beach, a nearby salt marsh, and other natural sites on the Outer Banks. The week culminates in a Friday evening overnight at the Aquarium. $165.

Nocturnal Explorers
Session I: June 14-17, 5:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m. (Tuesday through Friday) for ages 9-12.
Friday Overnight at the Aquarium. Each session is limited to 10 campers. Get plenty of rest because campers will be busy as day turns to night! We will explore the beach, the sounds, the Aquarium, and Nags Head Woods to investigate sea turtles, nocturnal animals, the night sky, and more. The week will conclude with an overnight at the Aquarium on Friday. $150.

Session II: August 2-5, 5:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m. (Tuesday through Friday) for ages 9-12.
Get plenty of rest because campers will be busy as day turns to night! We will explore the Aquarium and Roanoke Island after dark to investigate nocturnal animals, astronomy, and more. The week will conclude with an overnight at the Aquarium on Friday. $150.

Aquarist Camp 
Session I: July 11 – 15, 8:30 am – 3:30 pm, Monday through Friday) for ages 11-13.
Session II: August 8-12. Each session is limited to 12 campers. Have you ever wondered how we feed hundreds of animals, where we get all that salt water, or how we treat a sick fish? This week of camp will be packed with hands-on activities to show kids what it is like to spend time working behind the scenes at the Aquarium. Campers will help feed our animals, prepare food, clean exhibits, go on a collecting trip, set up a small home aquarium, and learn more about what it takes to care for animals at the Aquarium. A portion of each day will be spent behind the scenes. $175.

Hook, Line, & Sinker Fishing Camp – NEW for Summer 2011!
June 28 – July 1, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. (Tuesday through Friday) for ages 10-12. Space is limited to 12 campers. From baiting hooks to landing their catch, campers will learn the basics of saltwater fishing. Topics covered include tackle, bait, fish identification, fishing safety, ethical angling, casting, and fish cleaning. Campers will venture to a new fishing spot each day to see what’s biting! The week concludes with a fish dinner on Friday evening at the Aquarium. $175.

Eco-Educators – NEW for Summer 2011!
July 18 – 22, 8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. (Monday through Friday) for ages 13-16. Each session is limited to 8 campers. Our new Eco-Educators camp is suited for both new and veteran campers willing to assist younger Sea Squirt campers. Teens will not only train to help with children attending “Sea Squirts” camp, but will also spend the rest of their week training at the touch tanks, assisting with public programming, and learning what it’s like to help out in other areas of the Aquarium. The week provides a sample of what it may be like to be an Aquarium volunteer. $165.]

Categories: Home & Garden, outer banks, Roanoke Island, Things to do, travel, Uncategorized.

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April on the Outer Banks

March 29, 2011

April 1
Matt McGuire and Communion.  The Outer Banks Brewing Station, Kill Devil Hills. 10:30 p.m. Unique blend of rock – blues – southern rock with a sprinkle of jazz. (252) 449-2739.

April 2
Dare County Master Gardeners Yard Sale. Baum Center, Kill Devil Hills. 8 a.m. – 12 noon.

April 1 – 30
Michael Lay: New Works in Printmaking and Graphics (Vault Gallery)
Phil Cameron: Recent Works (Front Gallery)
Dare County Arts Council, Manteo. Opening Reception for both shows on Friday, April 1st from 6pm – 8pm. For more information, please call (252) 473-5558 or

April 1 – 3
Theatre of Dare presents “Diamond Studs” a rip roaring country and western rendition of the Jesse James saga that had New York critics stomping their feet to the music.  Shows are Fridays & Saturdays at 7:30pm, Sundays at 2:00pm, at the COA Roanoke Island Campus (formerly Manteo Middle School).  Tickets are $13 in advance, $15 at the door, and $8. or (252) 261-4064.

April 8
DANCING THROUGH THE DECADES ~ at Outer Banks Brewing Station.  Music starts at 9:30 p.m. Benefits Heron Pond Montessori and Outer Banks Relief Foundation. (252) 449-2739.

April 9
The Lost Colony Gala – Fire & Ice Gala. 7:00 to Midnight. Wright Brothers Memorial Pavilion, Kill Devil Hills. Individual Tickets $100.00. Black Tie Optional.  Reserve online

April 9 – 10
Flying Pirate Half Marathon. Outer Banks Half Marathoners, here’s your chance to see the first half of the Outer Banks Marathon course.

April 16
RIFP Performance Series: Western Carolina University Catamount Singers & Electric Soul
Indoor Theatre at Roanoke Island Festival Park. 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. The shows are free and open to the public. (252) 475-1500 or

April 16
Casting Call for Character Actors & Other Skallywags. Pamlico Jack’s in Nags Head.

April 16
The Elizabethan Gardens on Roanoke Island is offering two exciting art classes for new and experienced artists and photographers of all ages. Classes begin Saturday, April 16, 2011 from 10 a.m. till noon.

Photographing Nature with Jeff Lewis
Art in The Gardens

April 16 – 24
9th Annual Outer Banks Bike Week. Packed full with entertainment, great food, events and special attractions. Bike shows, poker runs, guided tours, party nights, tattoo and bikini contests, over 100 vendors, live music, outdoor concerts, pig pickin and more! www.

April 21 – May 1
Ocean Rodeo Kiteboarding Hatteras Crew Gathering. Join us and up to 40 other Crew Members for a week of riding and demos in Hatteras NC! Registration is required. 1-877-FLY-THIS, 252-441-4124 or email

April 22
Third Annual Easter Egg Hunt Outdoor Pavilion at Roanoke Island Festival Park. 1 p.m. Presented by East Carolina Radio. Participants are asked to bring a canned food item for the dare County Food Pantry. Over 3,000 eggs will be hidden with several age categories. (252) 475-1500 or visit

April 22 – 23
Easter Eggstravaganza & Fly Into Spring. Kitty Hawk Kites Annual Easter Eggstravaganza – Located at the Kitty Hawk Kites store in Nags Head (mp 12.5). Kites show on top of Jockey’s Ridge. 11:00AM to 1:00PM. 1-877-FLY-THIS, 252-441-4124 or email

April 23
Elizabethan Gardens Easter Eggstravaganza – Fun Family Event. 10 a.m. – 1p.m. or 2 p.m. Featuring over 40,000 blooming bulbs and traditional egg hunt with live Easter bunnies for photo opportunities, bake sale, educational crafts, games of hopscotch, bean bags and an Easter bonnet and hat contest for girls and boys as well as adults. Prizes will be awarded for the Easter Bonnet & Hat Contest. Please visit our website for an update on times.

Big Shout-Out to all my Peeps!

April 23
Bunny Hop 5K & Jelly Bean Fun Run. Kitty Hawk, 9 a.m.  A fundraiser for the local OBX GO FAR (Go Out For A Run) Children’s Program. Proceeds from this race will help to support our local youth running program that serves over 300 children in Dare County. For more information contact:

April 28 – 30
Watercolor Art Class with Linda Miller 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The Elizabethan Gardens. Two or three day classes, working with flora from The Elizabethan Garden’s greenhouses and grounds. 2 Day Class Members/Friends: $100. 3 Day Class Members/Friends: $135. 2 Day Class Non Members: $115. 3 Day Class Non Members: $145. Price includes admission to The Gardens.

Categories: Arts, Holiday Happenings, Home & Garden, outer banks, People of Interest, Roanoke Island, Sporting Events, Things to do, travel, Uncategorized.

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