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startingpoint Let’s talk roadmap about “niche envy.”
THE ORIGINAL Since the 60’s
That strange need to compare environments, work habits and behaviors with a mix of lust and resentment. To look at whatever piece of life someone’s carved out for themselves — look at our own — and think: “I wish that was me!” Then a splitsecond later go, “I hate that guy.”
Rentals • Lessons Boards • Wetsuits Surfwear • Sunglasses Sunblock • Sandals T-Shirts
For visitors, jealousy springs eternal from our summer backdrop of sun, sand and surf: The happy toddlers playing with their parents in the shoreline. The healthy adolescents frolicking in the sea. The college kids raging on to the dawn. And all the grown-ups who never seem to grow up.
For residents, it’s an endless stream of topof-the-line SUVs brimming with Brady Bunch exuberance: The MP 10 license plate that screams, “Second home.” The private school stickers lining the back windshield. Plus the associated bennies that such trappings imply, like a big salary, fat 401k and five-figure vacations we could never afford.
Apex predators and sessile crustaceans can never swap places. Humans can.
The local yells, “Sell out!” But what he really means is, “Wish I could retire in two places before I turn 60.” The visitor sneers, “Beach bum!” But what he really means is, “Must be nice to spend each day wrapped up in sunshine instead of spreadsheets.” Both perspectives
Old Nags Head Cottage Row MP 13.5 Beach Rd. Nags Head 252-441-7349 Beats digging ditches. Photo: Aimee Thibodeau
500 Club is some first mate’s true calling, the course is clear from BS to MBA to CEO. Neither evolution is easy. Real change After all, does the barnacle see the shark and requires real sacrifice, be it job security dream of roaming the ocean at the top of the and leather seats or salt air and suntans. But food chain? No. Nor does the shark see the they’re still fully doable. So if you haven’t barnacle and hope to one day post-up on done it by now, chances are you don’t really a piling and chill out with friends. And even want to. if they did, it wouldn’t matter because apex And that’s okay, too. Because sticking tight predators and sessile crustaceans can never just shows you’re doing exactly what you swap places. were born to do. Which is the true definition of a niche to begin with: likeminded species The difference? Humans can. living in some tiny corner of the planet, Any visiting banker who truly wants to slow performing highly specialized functions that down and go native need only trade his tie together our complex world. three-piece for trunks and start cleaning fish. With time he can even grow to be his Some of us just get better corners than own captain. Likewise, if joining the Fortune others. — Matt Walker are equally misinformed wastes of time. And both are prime examples of pure human folly.
Thank you for reading Outer Banks Milepost. We hope you’ve enjoyed it. If not — before chucking this issue in the nearest dumpster — please consider one of the following equally satisfying ways of expressing your disgust: Collar your pooch in an Elizabethan ruff — then watch him chew it to pieces. Make two mouse-sized hang gliders and crash them together. Or simply add it to that six-month stack of newspapers you’ve yet to recycle. (Trust us: you’ll feel better.) Then, send any and all feedback — positive, negative or just plain confused — to: email@example.com. Or light us up on Facebook with your opinions and ideas. We promise to find some way to re-purpose them.
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““I’m taking what they’re givin’, ‘cause I’m working for a livin’.” — Huey Lewis “All I need are some tasty waves, a cool buzz and I’m fine.” — Jeff Spicoli
Issue 2.2 Summer 2013
Cover: Let the fast times roll. Photo: Chris Bickford & Julie Dreelin Thanks to: Village Yoga’s Jess Moody and Katie Kennis for being models of professionalism; GFG’s Rascoe Hunt for sitting pretty; Birthday Suits for the bitchin swimwear; and the Hilton’s Kitty Hawk Pier for the venue and hospitality. Reader You Brushes & Ink Marcia Cline, Carolina Coto, Fay Davis Edwards, Travis Fowler, Dawn Gray, Chris Kemp, Ben Miller, Ben Morris, Daniel Pullen, Charlotte Quinn, Stephen Templeton Lensfolk Matt Artz, Chris Bickford, Russell Blackwood, Michelle Conner, Amy Dixon, Lori Douglas, Julie Dreelin, Tom Dugan/ESM, Bryan Elkus, Lauren Feeney, Chris Hannant, Bryan Harvey, Matt Lusk, Mickey McCarthy, Brooke Mayo, Dick Meseroll/ESM, Rob Nelson, Crystal Polston, Daniel Pullen, Ryan Rhodes, Terry Rowell, DJ Struntz, Aimee Thibodeau, Laurin Walker Penfolk Ashley Bahen, Hannah Bunn, Auntie Em, Sarah Hyde, Catherine Kozak, Andrew Lewis, Fran Marler, Adam Norko, Matt Pruett, Mary Ellen Riddle, Brendan Riley, Corinne Saunders, Clumpy White, Natalie Wolfe, Michele Young-Stone Art Director Ben Miller/Bighouse Design Big Mouth In Chief Matt Walker Blame It All On Suite P Inc. PO Box 7100 • KDH, NC 27948 252-441-6203 Use Code BB2013 To Save $2 OFF Each Adult Ticket
firstname.lastname@example.org • email@example.com Outer Banks Milepost is published quarterly (sorterly) by Suite P Inc. All contents are the property of Suite P Inc. and do not reflect the opinion of advertisers or distributors. Nor do their contents reflect that of the creative types (who would never, ever sell out). Comments, letters and submissions are usually welcome. Please include SASE for return delivery of all snail mail, however, Milepost and Suite P Inc. still aren’t responsible for any unsolicited materials. And don’t expect much else to move much faster than IST (Island Standard Time). Oh yeah: if you reprint a lick of this content you’re ripping us off. (Shame on you.) To discuss editorial ideas, find out about advertising or tell us we blew it – or just find out what the waves are doing – call 252-441-6203 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com.
roadmap gokite “Sunday Funday” by Ben Miller
www.benmillergallery.com “I’m definitely a big ‘paint from photography’ guy. For me, working off a solid foundation just comes out better than squishing colors around. I’ve done jazz musicians. Bowls of fruit. Recently, I’ve been into capturing the perspective of what you see on an average beach day. I use my iPhone like a digital life recorder, walking around and pulling the trigger on umbrellas, dogs, legs… everything. It’s kind of creepy [laughs]. Sometimes I get one good photo out of 50 hip shots. Or I’ll take several different images, orchestrate the composition on my computer and then execute it on the canvas. It’s very calculated. But I feel like something happens when it turns into paint. Might just be a flick of the brush. But in that little flick, you add so much. I think that’s what people respond to. At least I hope they do.” — Ben Miller
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SoundCheck When this guy listens, people talk.
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Another tangle of summer highlights. milepost 5
DRILLING getactive FOR ANSWERS startingpoint soundcheck
Gov. McCrory says offshore oil means new jobs for coastal NC. But what’s it mean for the jobs we already have?
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June 20, 2010 was a perfect Father’s Day on the Florida Panhandle. The sun was shining. The sea was blue. But the beach was empty. So were the hotel bars and umbrella stands. Not one person from shoreline to condo — except for the rubber-gloved workers cleaning sand and boat captains skimming for BP’s oil...
That’s the image I remember whenever someone describes offshore drilling as a financial windfall for North Carolina. Not pelicans covered in pitch. I see waiters raking in tarballs instead of tips. Charters chasing slicks instead of fish. And businesses drowning in red ink. Which is why I’m surprised at Governor Pat McCrory’s continued push to crack our continental shelf. A plea he echoed again on May 6, stating: “It’s time to… allow the states to exert the leadership that will create thousands of jobs, reduce America’s dependence on Middle Eastern oil and protect the environment.”
jobs. Tourism? $877 million and 11,260 jobs — and that’s in Dare County alone. (It also feeds almost every other paying gig from local police to hack journalists.) One spill off Cape Hatteras, and our county screeches to a halt. But it’s not just jobs and dollars that take the hit — it’s people. They’re the ones who’ll suffer years of economic cleanup. According to Bloomberg.com, besides the 10,000 BP claims still in court, April saw a flood of new suits from “casino workers whose tips declined to real estate developers who said they lost financing to build multimillion-dollar oceanfront resorts.” None of whom will see a check before their next mortgage payment.
I actually invited the Governor to discuss his position for this issue. His office politely declined. I get it: he’s a busy man; we’re a dinky rag. I also understand 66% of state residents support his position. So in hopes of inspiring an official future sit-down — and perhaps some balanced discussion in the interim — I’ll simply respond to his May statement with some factual counter points:
2. It will “reduce America’s dependence on Middle Eastern Oil and protect the environment.” Reduce? Maybe. But not for long. The Charlotte Observer says NC’s offshore oil estimates are “between 1.3 billion and 5.58 billion barrels… less than a year’s supply” and the natural gas supply is “well below the 84.2 trillion cubic feet found in the Marcellus Shale that spans New York and Pennsylvania.” The environmental threats, however, only get bigger. Roughly 40% to 60% of Louisiana’s coastal land loss is due to the energy industry’s canals and pipelines. And the 2000s had the most Gulf spills of any decade, averaging 22 per year between 2005 and 2009. But that doesn’t mean the coast can’t contribute. A 2009 report showed NC has the largest offshore wind energy resource on the East Coast with the potential to meet electricity demands “from Florida to Maine.” To his credit, McCrory is also a vocal advocate for wind — and its predicted
1. Offshore Drilling will “create thousands of jobs.” According to The Charlotte Observer, North Carolina stands to gain “$66 million to $400 million a year for the life of the reserves” and “6,700 new jobs.” But jobs don’t spring from thin air. They come from competition for resources. And in this case, petroleum threatens more sustainable industries with bigger payouts. In 2011, recreational saltwater fishing in NC generated $18 billion in sales and 22,000 jobs. Commercial fishing? $796 million and 2200 harvester
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In 2011, tourism generated $877 million and 11,260 jobs — in Dare County alone.
20,000 manufacturing jobs by 2030. The coast won’t get those jobs, either, but at least one busted turbine won’t wreck our whole season.
3. It’s time for North Carolina to “exert leadership.” By this, I assume McCrory means every state has the right to determine its own fate. But that’s exactly why the first President Bush banned Atlantic drilling in 1990 — so that one state’s decisions wouldn’t impact its neighbors. Or, in this case, its own future. By all accounts, the earliest NC would see rigs is 2030. If the Gulf started drilling in 1937, we can expect a BPsized accident within 75 years — possibly as soon as 10, since we’d use the same deep-sea technology. In either case, leaders who make these decisions will likely be gone. But coastal residents, businesses and investors will still be here. And they’ll be the ones paying the price.
Which brings us back to the Gulf. While cruising west through Alabama, we stumbled across Gov. Bob Riley surrounded by TV crews. He was pleading for families to visit, painting rosy images of empty water parks, uncrowded restaurants and deep discounts. When he asked if there were any questions, I raised my hand. First I told him I knew where his visitors were — I’d seen them on the Outer Banks since April. I also said our state was considering offshore drilling. Then, I asked him: “Would you suggest North Carolina say no to offshore drilling now so our future governor won’t have to hold a press conference and beg for tourists?” He didn’t want to talk to me, either. — Matt Walker Sources: “McCrory pushes NC energy exploration in weekly address,” bizjounals.com; “Opening Atlantic Ocean to offshore drilling likely,” Charlotteobserver.com; “Fisheries Economics of The U.S. 2011”, noaa.gov; “Travel Economic Impact Model,” nccommerce.com; “Oil spills escalated in this decade,” USA Today.com; “BP Still Uncertain Over Spill Cost at Third Anniversary,” Bloomberg.com; “Empty nets in Louisiana three years after the spill,” CNN.com; “NC governor-elect vows immediate action to begin drilling off Atlantic coast,” Southernstudies.org; “Report of the Governor’s Scientific Panel on Offshore Energy,” 2011; “Study: N.C. has ‘great potential’ for offshore wind power,” Newsobserver.com
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“He said ‘Absolutely not!’”
“Daniels Day” celebrates the farreaching impact of one local name
In August 2002, then U.S. Senator — and future presidential candidate — John Edwards was making a 100-county sweep of the state. He deemed the 67th annual “Daniels Day” a worthy stopover. Not so much for meeting local citizens, but so he could coopt some limelight from that year’s honoree, Andy Griffith. The senator was running behind schedule, so he called in a favor.
Clearly, the senator failed to recognize that Daniels Day wasn’t just some oversized family reunion, but a celebration of a single clan’s wide-reaching influence in and outside of North Carolina.
Just look at the event’s originators: Josephus Daniels was FDR’s ambassador to Mexico and the founder and publisher of the Raleigh News & Observer; Melvin R. Daniels Sr. served as the registrar of deeds in Dare County for 54 “I remember he called to see if we could start years. When organizing the first a little bit late,” remembers Roy Daniels, 61, event in 1934, they chose the event organizer since the death of his father closest Sunday to August 16, Melvin Daniels Jr. in 2011. He also recalls his the birthday of Virginia Dare, father’s swift reaction. the first English child born in the New World. But unlike the ill-
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No Jack for this Daniels; as Sec. of Navy, Josephus Daniels banned booze at sea. Photo: Library of Congress
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Woodrow Wilson — although Roy Daniels stops short of verifying the rumor.
In the early 1730s, William Daniels and his brother Thomas sailed from England to New England. Thomas stayed in Boston, but William came to Roanoke Island with a land grant in 1736. The family still owns some of that Wanchese property. And in a 1991 interview, Melvin Daniels Jr. commented about the fortune of his family’s geographic fate.
“I know he banned alcohol from the ships,” he says. “As to where the ‘cup of Joe’ came from, who knows?”
“Thank goodness that William Daniels was smart and came South,” he joked, “or I would have been born a Yankee.”
With both founders being powerful Democrats, politics became part of the family tradition, as well as the annual event. Melvin Daniels Jr. served as a state senator for 10 years as well as mayor of Elizabeth City. Manteo’s recently retired state senator, Marc Basnight — often viewed as the most powerful politician in North Carolina — is half-Daniels on his mom’s side. And the invited speaker is usually a prominent public servant or figure, including Govs. Sanford, Hunt, Easley and Perdue.
Today, the name is synonymous with everything from local seafood to airplanes to breakfast drinks. John T. Daniels took the most famous photograph of the Wright brothers’ first flight, while legend says the slang expression “cup of Joe” refers to Josephus — who banned alcohol on ships while serving as Secretary of the Navy under President
And sometimes not. Frank Daniels, the former president and publisher of the News & Observer and the grandson of Josephus Daniels, recalls one reunion in the late 1980s when a few Wanchese watermen cornered him over the newspaper’s coverage of the Oregon Inlet jetty issue.
The Daniels family is synonymous with everything from seafood to airplanes to breakfast drinks.
“They were really, really unhappy,” Daniels remembers. “They said they were going to picket the reunion unless I met with them.”
He did. And the watermen later thanked him with a cooler of fish. But, as former County Commissioner Moncie L. “Punk” Daniels According to Ken Mann, the producer of UNC- notes, the point of the event was never TV’s My Heart Will Always Be in Carolina: “No politics; it was celebration of family. doubt, if you were politically ambitious, that’s where you’d want to be seen.” “It’s a good day. It’s a fun day,” says the 80
year old, whose grandfather was the brother of Melvin Daniels Sr. “And the Daniels clan gets to brag a little bit.”
This August 18, for the 79th year, members of the Daniels family will gather at 3:30 p.m. at the Bethany United Methodist Church in Wanchese to honor their family’s legacy. As always, everyone in the community is invited to share food and camaraderie. Please be sure you bring a covered dish. And try not to be late. — Catherine Kozak Learn more about the Daniels clan — and other influential families — at the Outer Banks History Center.
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One person’s balloon bouquet is another’s beach trash What do weddings, funerals and royal coronations have in common? They’re all occasions where people like to release balloons as part of the ceremony. But while the image of colorful spheres soaring into the sky can provide a magical sense of freedom, there’s a heavy downside once they deflate. That’s the part of the party you don’t ever see. At least until you hit the beach one day and find empty rubber and tangled string littering the sand like so many crash victims — many of them clearly marked with businesses and celebrations from far, far away.
“I don’t think people mean to litter intentionally,” says Chelsea*, a recent Red Wolf Coalition intern and co-founder of BalloonsBlow.org. “But that’s the problem with balloons. You can litter a pristine area without ever knowing it or having been there.”
Chelsea grew up picking up beach trash with her family. As the years went by, they found more and more balloons — as many as 40 a day. But when they went online to research the impacts of discarded balloons, they found surprisingly little information. So, two Earth Days ago, she and her sister Danielle created a website to share photos and findings under a single message: “Balloons blow, don’t let them go.” But don’t balloons biodegrade? That’s one of many misconceptions the sisters are working to reverse. While some latex balloons (the rubbery style we use in water fights) have milepost
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the fine art of reuse “biodegradable” on their package, it can take years for them to fully break down. And Mylar, the refillable shiny material with the look and feel of space blankets (the ones you see on holidays and at hospitals in all different shapes), don’t break down at all. In either case, they stick around for years. And that gives them plenty of time to do environmental damage, particularly to wildlife. “The animals that are affected are not only in the sea,” says Chelsea. “They’re terrestrial and marine, domestic and wild. We have had pictures sent to us with balloons on glaciers, on mountains, in deserts and in rivers.”
150,000 pieces of future litter as part of his coronation. And, at press time, the Balloons Blow Facebook page had nearly 13,000 “likes.” Unfortunately, not everyone’s a fan. Chelsea and her sister have actually received phone threats. But she insists the organization’s not trying to kill balloonlovers’ buzz.
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“We’re not saying balloons are inherently evil,” she says. “We’re just asking people to keep their party or memorial tribute from becoming someone else’s problem.”
So next time you shop, tie that Harris Teeter sales tool to your shopping cart. If it’s a beach To sea turtles, they look like tasty jellyfish, birthday or wedding, secure it to the fencing. while big horn sheep see a piece of Just remember to take them with you. At the interesting foliage. No matter the species, end of any event, suck out the helium and whenever a hungry animal encounters a dispose of them properly. Or, even better, balloon it rarely ends well. The rubber blocks stash them and refill them later. And if you stomachs and intestines; strings entangle absolutely have to inflate something only to beaks and fins. And let’s not forget humans. watch it fly away? We may not eat them, but we’re the ones “Easy,” she finishes. “Blow some bubbles.” who have to clean up the mess. — Sarah Hyde Or we can choose not to release them at all. This April, BalloonsBlow.org worked with *Because of negative backlash in the past, the Netherlands residents and organizations to keep King Willem-Alexander from launching sisters do not publicize their last names.
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END OF THE INNOCENCE soundcheck
One night in August, Janet Siclari was killed. And the Outer Banks has never been the same. It was one of summer’s last steamy, heavy-with-tourists weekends. Hurricane Emily was menacing offshore that Friday, but after a week’s vacation spent with friends at a Southern Shores cottage, Janet Siclari wanted to stay one more night before heading back to New Jersey. On August 27, 1993, she and her group decided to go south to the Carolinian Hotel in Nags Head.
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At about 6:30 the next morning, a janitor found Siclari dead on the beach behind the hotel deck, naked from the waist down, her hand clutching her shorts to the fatal slash wound on her neck. The murder sent a searing shock wave across the Outer Banks.
“First of all, we couldn’t believe it happened here on the Outer Banks,” remembers Anna Sadler, a member of the Nags Head Board of Commissioners. “Those things didn’t happen here. That was big-city stuff.”
Most locals assumed the murderer was from out of town. A case of “wrong place, wrong time.” Still, the sense of unknown was unnerving for residents who didn’t usually worry about killers prowling loose on the beach.
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“This was somebody vacationing who had their life taken by a stranger,” says Sarah Downing, a Nags Head resident who at the time worked at WOBR-FM. “I think we were on pins and needles until they found the guy who did it.” As Emily aimed at Hatteras, new worries took over. On Monday, barely 48 hours after Siclari’s body was found, an evacuation order was issued. As 150,000 visitors fled the Outer Banks, investigators despaired that the murderer might escape forever in the ensuing chaos.
For decades, the Carolinian was all pool games, parties and pretty smiles... Photo: Outer Banks History Center
boyfriend, washed ashore. Sadly, in July 1997, another woman, Denise Johnson, was murdered in her Kill Devil Hills home. That case remains unsolved. Most recently, the killing of an Ohio woman, Lynn Jackheimer, made national headlines last summer. Her accused murderer, boyfriend Nathan Summerfield, still awaits trial.
But in 1993, random murder and rape like the Siclari case was unheard of here.
“I just remember the feeling that the community was infiltrated,” says Downing, today the assistant curator at the Outer Banks History Center. “I felt like the age of innocence on the Outer Banks was over.”
But he didn’t escape. He just continued going about his business on the Outer Banks. For almost five years, no one here knew the killer was one of their own. Before Siclari was killed, there were only six previous murders in Nags Head. That’s not counting the especially gruesome murder in 1991 where a headless, handless body of a nude woman, killed elsewhere by her
The three-story Carolinian opened in June 1947 and was torn down in 2001. During its ‘50s and ‘60s heyday, the hotel was the
most happening spot to hang poolside or go dancing. In the mid-90s, the Carolinian Hotel was a landmark past its prime, but with its deck bar overlooking the beach and a comedy club on the premises, it was still a popular partying spot for tourists. And when Siclari, her two girlfriends and her brother rented their two rooms that night, the hotel still had a shabby charm. Siclari, a petite 35-year-old medical technician, shared a room with her brother, who was the last person to see her alive. Robert Siclari said that when his sister returned to the room at about 2:30 a.m., she stepped outside to have a cigarette. He woke the next morning to a commotion outside, and to his horror learned that his sister had been stabbed to death. A $20,000 reward was offered for information leading to the capture of Siclari’s
upfront murderer. But hundreds of tips led nowhere.
was one of the most important cases he had prosecuted in his career.
In 1997, out of the blue police were informed of a match in the state DNA database to semen found on Siclari’s body. It was the first time in North Carolina history that a “cold hit” would identify a suspect and solve a murder mystery.
“I remember being kind of disgusted that it was a local person,” says Downing, who has lived on the Outer Banks since 1984. “[Instead of] a domestic situation — like a fight — or something that made more sense.”
The case attracted national attention because of the cold hit leading to the killer, and the impact on a small town. Court TV’s Forensic Files featured the case, and the Discovery Channel plans to air a Nightmare Next Door episode about it this summer. “I’m sure, looking back, that the Carolinian incident colored all of us,” notes Eve Turek, owner of the Yellowhouse Gallery in Nags Head, who remembers becoming more alert on her solitary walks. “We watched ourselves. I think, though, it was regarded as an isolated incident.”
Nobody knew the killer was one of their own.
Thomas Javin Berry had been picked up for a probation violation related to a previous sexual offense against a minor. A parttime roofer and fisherman in Manteo and Engelhard, investigators determined that Berry had been around Nags Head at the time of the murder. He denied the crime.
In early 1999, Berry was tried in an intense 13-day trial, during which the jury deadlocked for three days. Berry, then 33, was convicted and sentenced to two consecutive life sentences. Assistant District Attorney Robert Trivette said later that it
But Sadler says she doubts the case affected the visiting public’s perception of the Outer Banks. “It was an incident like in a horror movie,” she says. “It went away and people forgot.” — Catherine Kozak Ed note: Last summer, KDH Police reopened the unsolved Denise Johnson case. Call the station at 252449-5336 if you have info, or submit anonymous tips at www.darecommunitycrimeline.org or by calling at 252-473-3111 or (800) 745-2746.
graphiccontent gosurf outthere ...until it wasn’t. Photo: Virginian-Pilot photo by Drew C. Wilson/Outer Banks History Center
upfront soundcheck A getactive seasonal tally of recent events and their potential impacts BUZZ OF SUMMER After 17 years lying dormant, scientists expect billions of Brood II cicadas to emerge by June and fill the air with their mating calls. To some it’s the song of the season. To others it’s a nuisance. To us, a swarm of noisy teenagers hoping to get lucky sounds like normal summer behavior. (Except this lasts four weeks instead of four months.) + 3
BYE-BYE, BUSHELS? After years of rebounding, Chesapeake Bay blue crab numbers are down 61%. That can only be bad news for NC seafood-lovers as more of our blue-clawed beauties take trips north. Look for an increase in prices. A plunge in Old Bay sales. And more parents yelling at their kids to “pick that thing clean!” -4
GREASED LIGHTNING In March, members of the Paramus, NJ, Flight Club flew their biofuel-powered Cessna 500 miles to Kill Devil Hills in preparation for a future cross-country trip. The 50/50 blend of jet petrol and used cooking oil reduced overall fuel consumption by 40%, allowing for a couple extra laps over the Wright Bros. Memorial — and French Fry Alley. +3 THERE GOES THE NEIGHBORHOOD News that Andy Griffith’s widow was destroying the smaller house that her husband occupied in the ‘50s drew complaints from friends who say he hoped to make the abode a “Graceland-style” museum full of memorabilia. Now future Manteo residents will only know the legendary actor from local lore. (And TV Land.) -2
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SMACKDOWN Talk about spring-cleaning. In April, law enforcement agencies teamed up to bust a baker’s dozen of bakers… and shooters and snorters and swallowers. Some locals were surprised bonds weren’t so high, but then neither were the dealers’ customers — at least for a few days. Two weeks later, three more heroin pushers got bumped out of business. + 2 IS THAT A TANK IN YOUR POCKET OR ARE YOU JUST HAPPY TO SEE US…? Wanna move some serious weight? Try Dare Co.’s Navy bombing range, where three men were indicted on federal charges of selling government scrap metal for personal profit. Items included wire rope, counter weights and a 40,000 lb. armored personnel carrier, adding up to more than $6 million (and tons of trouble). +3 BIRTHPLACE OF BS? As if Ohio wasn’t enough, now Connecticut is rushing the cockpit. A freshly found fuzzy photo rekindled claims that Gustave Whitehead soared 50 feet over Bridgeport, CT, in 1901 — a full two years before Orville and Wilbur dusted the KDH dune
upfront line. The Smithsonian still stands by the Wrights’ super documentation. But other experts aren’t so convinced, promising future turbulence over who flew first. -4
race-to-the top every 10. You get pristine views of both sound and ocean. And it has horizontal stripes instead of a barbershop spiral. (Duh). +3
CRASH COURSE Pamphlets. PSAs. YouTube… It’s all part of the Outer Banks Pedestrian and Bicycle Coalition’s awareness effort to reduce the number of deaths and injuries that occur each summer on area roads. Local businesses are also handing out safety lights to part-time employees so drivers see more cyclists — and we all hear fewer sirens. + 5
SCHA-WING! It’s news like this that gives local golfers a woodie. For the first time ever, three Outer Banks courses made the North Carolina Golf Panel’s Top 100: The Currituck Club (71), Kilmarlic (84) and Nags Head Links (98). Add them all up and you get our handicap. (Or our bill at the 19th hole.) +3
WHAT THE FRACK? Does it make any sense for energy companies to drill for gas in the Piedmont — then pump the wastewater into our coastal aquifers? Frack, no! That’s why Dare Co. signed a resolution opposing a Senate Bill that lifted bans on injection wells. Better hope the House votes “no,” or arsenic traces will be the least of our drinking woes. -7
YOU’RE GONNA NEED A BIGGER BILLBOARD Leadfoots, lawyers and kids with small bladders — rejoice! The state Senate recently passed a bill to increase the speed limit from 70 to 75mph on certain rural interstates — including a stretch of 64 we all know and love. If the House agrees, Outer Banks visitors might get here a little faster. So they can sit on the bridge that much longer. +2
STEP RIGHT UP Four years and $5 million later, the world’s first non-lighthouse keepers — or park service employees — can now climb Bodie Island Station. How can you tell it from the Cape Hatteras beacon? Bodie offers a ranger-guided, educational tour every 45 minutes — instead of a mass
TOTAL: +7 For detailed reports on many of these stories and breaking news on a daily basis — plus page after page of local discussion — visit www.outerbanksvoice.com
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BATS#!T COMMENT OF THE MONTH!
“The Outer Banks are becoming more unfriendly for all people. It may take a Category 5 direct hit to get us back on track.” — Steve R., “Coalition pushes for safer walking and riding,” April 7, 2013
THIS IS WHY WE DON’T BUILD BRIDGES... Engineering requires a keen, scientific brain and complete accuracy when it comes to numbers. Writing? Not so much. That explains the enormous boo-boo in our spring issue’s Bonner Bridge stats [“Happy Birthday Herbert C!”], where we listed Hatteras Island’s 2007 tax revenue as $118 mil. That was supposed to read total revenue. (The tax revenue was only $6.4 million.) The good news? More current data shows the total revenue for 2007 was actually $133.9 mil. Which means the whole island just got a $15 mil raise. Too bad we can’t just raise the whole island.
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getactive Hey Em,
Like most people, we meet the same people at the beach all summer. Last year, a friend decided to introduce a puppy into the mix and it did not go well. She always forgot water and food. She never picked up after it. Once, I had to break up a fight. I felt like I spent every weekend apologizing to some poor family for getting soaked or sandy. And the whole time my friend either laughed or shrugged or just didn’t notice. When her dog burned its paws on the sand I finally said something, but her take was, “I can’t leave him at home, he’d be sad.” I’m scared this year “Cujo” will be even worse. How do I explain to my friend that her dog’s happiness is making the rest of us miserable?
I’ve been a dog mom for my entire adult life. My first puppy — wise old soul that he was — was a big experiment where I did everything wrong (though he turned out alright due to an ideal temperament and sweet nature). I had no idea of the responsibility he would require. There were many days when I accidentally left the water at home or the poop bags on the counter. He probably had to “hold it” far too long when I was new at my job and working 14-hour days to prove myself. I didn’t keep him on a leash when I should have, and because of that he once bounded gleefully up to a dog who attacked him viciously. He somehow escaped without a scratch, but it was 100% my fault that he was in that situation. I tell you this story, Dog, because there was no malintent in my heart, or a lack of desire to care for
Sincerely, Dog Tired in Currituck
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As it turns out, it took longer to train me than it took to train my pet.
community thoughtfully created make that too hard. Happiest only when he can A few years ago, I became a dog mom for the second play, restraining time. A much different creature, this new soul is him means he digs holes and covers us and anyone young at heart, intelligent, highly energetic and nearby in sand or whines when anyone of our crew stubborn, which requires me and Mr. Em to engage goes into the water without him. So, we leave him him daily with training, commands and vigorous at home. Our solution is to go get him once the day exercise. We travel with him a lot and he has his cools off and most people have left the beach to get own little pack that has snacks, chew toys, poop ready for dinner, and we can run him in the water. bags and bowls for food and water. What changed I don’t know if any of this resonates with you the most in those intervening years is that I grew up and — as it turns out — it took longer to train me about your friend but it sounds to me like she is confusing her own happiness with his and letting than it took to train my pet. her emotions motivate her decision-making. This is So here we are, three years into it with Fido #2, an easy mistake to make…because, yes, he’ll be sad and we have a good dog. But we just can’t bring at home (for a little while), but he’ll also be more him to the beach in the summer and have that comfortable. This is responsible dog ownership be enjoyable for anyone. The leash laws that our and this is why humans are considered the more him. I loved him and wanted him to be happy and safe, I just wasn’t used to thinking about anyone other than myself… I was young, single, selfcentered and immature, and it made me happy to have him around.
advanced of our two species. With our frontal lobes, we have the ability to make rational decisions. …and this is what you need to tell your friend. Honestly, simply and with a lot of compassion. You know she loves her dog, but she’s letting the emotional part of her brain rule the more advanced rational part of her brain and, in this case, that’s not working out so well for anyone but herself.
P.S. For more information on rules about pets on our beaches, check out this link: www.outerbanks. org/outerbanks-pets-on-the-beach/ Got a life question for Auntie Em? Concentrate very, very hard and maybe she’ll pick up on your brainwaves. Or just send an email to email@example.com
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NUMBERS getactive RACKET soundcheck
Every June, various weather geeks spin out stat-based predictions for the impending Tropical Season. And every year, the final tally is something completely off the charts. With that in mind we offer some quantified figures from the past 160 years. Because sometimes the best way to protect yourself is by looking behind you.
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of the Outer Banks, Inc. milepost celebrating 20 years
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date the Tropical Season officially starts in the North Atlantic Ocean; it officially ends Nov. 30
number of storms that formed last year in May
number of Dominican Republic fatalities when Olga made landfall on Dec. 11, 2007
total number of US named storms to form in Sept. between 1851 and 2011Â â€” followed by Aug. (362) and Oct. (323)
number of tropical cyclones to make landfall in North Carolina between 1851 and 2012
number of non-landfalling storms that affected NC within that same period
average number of years between storms impacting NC, either landfalling or indirectly
total days between consecutive NC hurricane landfalls in 1955 (Connie on Aug. 12 and Diane on Aug. 17)
Figures compiled from www.nc-climate.ncsu.edu; www.climatecentral.org;
16soundcheck 45% number of hours it took for 2005’s Wilma to strengthen from a tropical storm into a Category 5 hurricane — winds later reached 185 mph
estimated number of Outer Bankers who evacuated ahead of Isabel
possible first-time civil penalty for price gouging under NC law
getactive 882 mb $15.8 billion $50 billion
Wilma’s lowest recorded pressure — a record for any tropical cyclone in the Western Hemisphere
total damage attributed to Hurricane Irene — the most expensive Cat-1 in US history
55startingpoint 30 cents number of Floyd-related deaths in NC, a Cat-2 hurricane when it made landfall in 1996
number of NC deaths related to 2003’s Hurricane Isabel; also a Cat-2
average per gallon gas price increase preceding Hurricane Irene
average plywood and structural panels price increase since April 2012
Sandy’s pressure at peak intensity, the strongest of any cyclone north of Cape Hatteras
total US damage from Hurricane Sandy — second only to Katrina’s $108 billion
total number of US fatalities attributed to Sandy
total number of hurricane warnings issued by the NHC north of NC because “it was expected to lose its tropical characteristics”
Hurricane Sandy’s peak diameter — the largest of any North Atlantic cyclone
approximate distance from Norfolk to Miami
www.accuweather.com; www.aoml.noaa.gov; www.nhc.noaa.gov; www.wunderground.com and www.wikipedia.com
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milepost Royal portrait paints new possibilities for Elizabethan Gardens
profit. As boardmember Judy Barnes states at the show’s beginning: “If the portrait turns out to be authentic, it will provide an endowment for this place. It will save the Elizabethan Gardens.”
It feels like watching a football game. A real English football game. Except instead of soccer hooligans hogging the telly, it’s silverhaired arts patrons. And the star player’s not some college-age jock — she’s a wrinkled old lady from the 16th century. Maybe. She also might be a 50-year-old phony. That’s why we’ve all packed Ortega’z on a Tuesday in April. By night’s end, the reality show, Treasure Detectives, will reveal the true history of the Elizabethan Gardens’ infamous portrait of Elizabeth I. But for now, nobody knows. Well, almost nobody.
everything from frame construction to paint chemistry. Whenever an expert scores a point in her favor, screams, hoots and whistles fill the room. Whenever some egghead cries foul, boos and hisses carry halfway ‘cross the pond. Finally, after a string of nailbiters and questionable calls, we get the score. Despite the titanium residue, the unsealed oak — the unsightly mess of modern Ace hardware — it’s official: he r highness was born in the late 1500s with an estimated value of $1 million.
graphiccontent And so the drama begins. Investigators inspect gosurf
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“I had to sign a document swearing not to tell,” swears Executive Director Carl Curnutte. “My own mother can’t stand me right now.”
She’s not the only one. After all, these volunteers and supporters are the garden’s lifelong fans. Some recall when the painting was donated back in the 1950s or hung where children could wipe grubby fingers on her royal robes. They understand what a positive verdict — and a possible seven-figure price tag — could do for the cash-strapped non-
The bar erupts in celebration, then immediately hushes as they ponder, “What next?” Will the queen save the garden? Or will the garden save the queen? “That’s up to the board to decide,” says Curnutte between hearty toasts. “But don’t think tonight is the golden bullet that solves everything; we will still need support. Either way, this painting remains part of our history — and part of our future.” And the crowd goes wild. — C. White
upfront soundcheck THERE OUGHTA BEgetactive A LAW Maybe they just don’t know. Maybe they just don’t care. But every year, we bear witness to behavior unbecoming of a civilized coastal society. Use the following handy cutout to keep violators politely informed without ending up in a confrontation or the hospital. Simply check the appropriate incidents and post on a windshield or mailbox. (Then run like hell.) Because ignorance of the law is no excuse.
roadmap SUMMER BEHAVIOR VIOLATION CITATION gokite License Plate # / Rental Unit # / Table #/ Beach Access: __________________________ You’ve been witnessed engaging in the following summertime offense(s):
milepost Stiffed your server.
Detailed description of violation:
Hurled an insult.
Stole a wave.
Stomped the dunes.
Cast into a crowd. ________________________________________ graphiccontent Hogged the shower. ________________________________________ Too much skin.
Too little skin. gosurf Perved on my girl.
Pitched a fit. outthere Ditched your shopping cart.
________________________________________ ________________________________________ ________________________________________ ________________________________________ ________________________________________
Poached a cab.
Tossed a cig-butt.
Flossed a real butt. goshop
Rode my car’s butt.
Passed in the bike lane.
Parked like an a-hole. rearview Ignored the speed limit.
Broke the unloading time limit.
Pushed the limits of common courtesy.
Please refrain from similar behavior for the rest of your stay. A second violation will result in permanent revocation of your OBX sticker. Thank you in advance for you compliance. And thanks for visiting. milepost 21
getactive startingpoint COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT IS NO DAY AT THE BEACH roadmap — BUT IT CAN BE 4th Annual Surfing for Autism gokite August 9-10, Jennette s Pier ,
The sea is like a giant, salty happy-pill. One we locals can swallow regularly. But not everyone’s so lucky. This summer, three surfing-based philanthropic events will share the ocean’s healing powers to raise money, awareness and, best of all, the spirits of all who participate. That’s good news for us. Because no matter how busy and self-absorbed we get between June and August, we can still find time to park it on the beach for a few hours of fun. And if it helps someone else? Even better. Event — Hannah Bunn
After only four years, Surfing for Autism is already a staple of community activism, as surfers from local pros to living legends team up with skilled specialists to stoke out 80 kids across NC – and as far as West Virginia. Some charge the waves for the ride of their lives; others simply splash or float on the surface. Meanwhile, the whole family enjoys a weekend of Outer Banks fun while raising awareness about Autism and Asperger’s and exposing the world to surfing’s therapeutic side. “It’s a really fun day for the kids,” says Jen Lunceford, Public Relations Coordinator, “and a great opportunity for families to relax knowing their loved one is safe, accepted and celebrated.”
2nd Annual First Descents Surf Camp
June 2-14, Nags Head Beaches
A Colorado group with kayaking roots, First Descents’ goal is to How you can help: The event is totally free and relies on community support empower cancer fighters and survivors to keep the program alive and expand in the future. Businesses can donate goods and between the ages of 18 and 39 through services for participating families. Locals, come on out for the silent auction on July 20 extreme sports and outdoor challenges. from 7-9pm at Trio in Kitty Hawk. Last summer was the non-profit’s first surfing trip to the Outer Banks. This June What you get out of it: Sweet schwag from the silent auction; a broader mind they return, teaming up with Farmdog and a greater acceptance for everyone in our Outer Banks family. Surf School for two weeks of camps that give participants new thrills and lasting More information: www.surfingforautism.org experiences. “Last year, someone said she felt like she had finally gotten rid of the ‘cancer’ label,” says instructor Aaron West. “Surfing with people who knew what she had been 20th Annual Outer Banks Surfrider One-Mile through made her feel like herself Paddle Race again.” July 27, KDH Bathhouse
In a culture as slack as surfing, any event that lasts two decades deserves serious props. Since 1984, the Surfrider Foundation has galvanized the international waveriding community to protect surf spots and water quality. This annual paddle race funds local efforts — as well as annual college scholarships for three high school seniors — while surfboards, paddleboards, SUPs and kayaks swarm the sea in a one-mile battle for big prizes, and a bit of personal pride. “It does get a little competitive for the people who do it each year,” says Chairman John Wasniewski. “But for most of us it’s all good, clean fun — and a pretty easy paddle.”
How you can help: Get wet! Enter the race. If you can’t hit the beach, just buy a raffle ticket (you don’t even have to show up to win). Or help Surfrider find sponsors. “The more people we can get involved, the better,” says Wasniewski. “We’re always happy to see new faces.” What you get out of it: Free t-shirt and lunch for all participants. Prizes for the top 3 finishers in all 7 divisions.
More information: http://outerbanks.surfrider.org
Lip service! Spread the word around the Banks to keep First Descents coming back. Sponsor a participant. Donate on their website in memory of a lost loved one. Even after this camp’s over, “All donations will send a cancer fighter on another adventure.”
What you get out of it:
A hand in helping someone reclaim their life.
www.firstdescents.org or www.farmdogsurfschool.com milepost 23
LEADING BY EXAMPLE
MILEPOST INTERVIEW: How a non-profit project with outside perspective hopes to bring investment and optimism to Hatteras Village
This story starts in Duck. That’s where Charlottesville, Virginia, entrepreneur Eric Kaplan and his wife first vacationed 28 years ago. When that got too developed for their tastes, the couple shifted north to Corolla. When that boomed, they bolted for Avon and Buxton — right about the time the beach access battles were heating up. But Kaplan didn’t pay much attention to the bumper stickers and protest signs. At least not at first. “We always just went to the beach and ate seafood and enjoyed ourselves,” says the semi-retired founder of Frontline Test Equipment, which makes troubleshooting software for Bluetooth devices. “But once I bought my home in Frisco in 2010, I decided I needed to find out more about the community. So I went on a quest to understand those issues.” Kaplan went so far as to visit the HQs of different organizations involved in the lawsuits. The more he learned, the more he saw a frustrated community that needed help in the face of adversity; he also saw a beach destination that still had a
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big future. So much that he’s guaranteed $2 million of his own money to start a not-for-profit, 501(c) 3 called Hatteras Island Ocean Center, Inc. The goal is to build, fund and operate two cultural attractions in Hatteras Village: a public fishing pier/ education site/event venue (sort of a mini-Jennette’s) that’s still in the fundraising stage; and a combo of interactive nature exhibits and soundside paddle access that will open this June under the name Ocean Center Ecology Park. Along the way, Kaplan secured help from local fixtures such as wildlife specialist Lou Browning and former tourism board chair, Tim Midgett, as well as fellow part-time residents like DC native Richard Henneberry, who spent his winter framing walls and giving financial advice. Their hope is to give people more reasons to spend time in Hatteras Village and educate them about the island’s surroundings and heritage, while providing anchor points for local businesses to cater to those visitors. Yet, they still face some resistance. Some are off-island homeowners
who worry about extra people ruining their vacations; others are natives who can’t believe there’s no catch. After all: why would a bunch of fresh arrivals spend all this money and energy without expecting something in return? “I do expect something back,” Kaplan replies. “I expect to be paid back, eventually. I also expect other non-resident homeowners to join the effort. Because with just a little imagination and investment, this place could be amazing.” We sat down with board members Kaplan, Henneberry and Midgett to discuss their vision — and share in their optimism. MILEPOST: Eric, you’re obviously ground zero. What inspired you to do all this? ERIC KAPLAN: In Charlottesville, my wife and I started a not-for-profit school that’s been a wonderful experience for 20 years. I feel like now that I’m in this community, I need to
milepost graphiccontent gosurf outthere goshop rearview “We‘re not trying to shut anyone down —
we want people to open businesses. And we don’t want to change the character of the island, either. We’re just trying to change the energy.” milepost
PHOTOGRAPHY BY DANIEL PULLEN
“Anybody, anywhere, if they say they haven’t faced the thought of having to reinvent themselves, then they’re wrong. Because we’re in a different world. Everybody’s had to reinvent themselves.”
RICH HENNEBERRY: “Maybe people are leery because so many others have said, ‘I’m here to help,’ and walked away with full pockets. But helping people is like church for me. If there were a barn raising, I’d be the first guy up the ladder with my tools.”
Then you went looking for a local ambassador. What intrigued you, Tim?
TM: But isn’t that also a function of social media that everybody’s dealing with? I’m an eternal optimist. But let’s face it: the guys who are blogging are not optimists. They’re pessimists.
TIM MIDGETT: It was kind of unique circumstances at the time. It was postHurricane Irene. Our offices were essentially shut down, but Eric kept leaving messages for me. He was very persistent. And once I talked to him, I immediately saw this as a “feel good” project. We’ve taken lumps and bruises here recently, with Mother Nature and road access and things like that. And I think this type of interactive tourism is something we need more of. People can go out and enjoy the surf, enjoy the sound, enjoy the beach, but they don’t understand why the shells are there, why the fish are there, or why the tide’s coming and going. Rich, it sounds like you were born with a giving streak. RICH HENNEBERRY: Not always. But 18 years of corporate finance burned me out. Now I dedicate most of my time to three volunteer causes: helping musicians, helping veterans and ecology projects like this. But the first time Eric talked to me, I said, “No. This is the craziest project I’ve ever heard of.” [laughs] The second time, I started warming up to the idea of doing some economic development to get this place moving. And like Tim says, he’s a hard guy to say no to. EK: Really? My wife has no problem with that. [laughs]
EK: The first marketing person I ever hired said something that stuck with me: “Change equals loss.” And I think for a lot of people, it’s changing and therefore, we’re losing something. And they may not even know what they’re losing — they’re probably not even thinking about what they’re gaining — it’s just different.
But it feels like there’s been a lot of local pessimism over the past few years. We’ve heard a lot of “Hatteras isn’t what it used to be, and therefore it’s ruined.” And granted, this project won’t open Cape Point or fix the road permanently, but it is trying to increase access and giving people new reasons to visit and invest. Is that negativity just a byproduct of being in a state of flux? People having a hard time letting go of one trapeze and grabbing the next one? TM: I think the negativity you refer to is the result of more recent frustrations with the road being closed for so long after Sandy. And rightly so. I also think if people knew that bridge was coming, they wouldn’t have that fear for the future. Because this really is a feel-good project. But we are in a state of flux. Not just Hatteras Village, but all of Hatteras Island. In many ways, Hatteras hasn’t found its identity since Hurricane Isabel came through in 2003. We’re getting there, but let’s face it: if Hatteras Village had 400 hotel rooms before, now we have 150. That’s the kind of impact it had economically. Now make a leap forward from 2005 until today — the economic downturn. We’ve become a pass-thru village on the way to Ocracoke.
EK: A guy named Buddy Foster does a great job of explaining what the Village was like when he Well, she’s not the only one. Just reading was a kid. And it wasn’t just motel rooms, there online articles by Island Free Press and the was a lot of camping here. So imagine: you had Outer Banks Voice, there’s been resistance. 1000 people milling around, buying the kids Some comments say, “We don’t need this” ice cream, going to the art gallery. That doesn’t or “We won’t come back.” Why? happen anymore. People today rent big houses
RH: A lot of it is basically, “We don’t want it in our backyard, it’s going to ruin my view.” But when you hold their feet to the fire, one-onone, and say: “What’s the problem?” They can’t tell you.
do something to help. I saw a void in the fact that Frisco Pier was in disrepair so there was no fishing pier between Avon and the end of Hatteras Island. Then I met a biology teacher at Cape Hatteras who said, “I don’t have ocean access for my kids.” And that’s when it clicked: a fishing pier with research education. Then, I saw this amazing wetland area down the street and said, “Wow. We can have ocean access and sound access, all in a few hundred yards of each other.” But economic development and education are the two main themes.
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and go shopping for food. They come off the beach, they cook dinner, turn on Netflix, and they’re done. It really has changed the place. So if we can tie the central village into what we’re doing and breathe activity into this place, that would be fantastic.
One of the main reasons we wanted to talk to you is because a lot of people buy houses on the Outer Banks as rental machines without ever getting to know the area. Is part of your mission to get people with second homes to treat them as such?
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RH: Well, my wife and I made our house a home. We don’t rent it out. A lot of people can’t do that, but my word to them is to go find out about the community. Let the people who rent know about the community. Send them to community activities. But a lot of people don’t really care. They’re like, “I want my little piece of paradise. And if there’s more than one line of people on the beach, then it’s no longer paradise.” I don’t know what to say to those people. Maybe Eric has a way to convince them.
Just from this project, I’ve met Rich. He can be doing anything in the world, and he’s here picking up a hammer. Tim didn’t tell you the whole story, but when we first met, he really said, “I’ve spent the last five years trying to get off boards; the last thing I want to do is be on your board. But I think you’re on to something here.” That’s pretty special. TM: Well, in my mind, this can potentially open up another world to the people who visit. And there’s going to be more uses like this. Things are happening. And you can be progressive or you can sit back and take potshots. But the change is gonna happen. And I think it has to happen for us to persevere and move forward.
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EK: I don’t think there is a way. People seem to forget that this is a national park. They talk about their beach. But it’s not their beach, it’s our beach. This place isn’t supposed to be Nantucket. When Conrad Wirth came down and made this deal with Tim’s family, he said, “I’m going to turn this place into a national treasure that everyone gets to use.” If you don’t want to be on a shared resource, then don’t put your beach house on a national park.
It’s certainly nice to see some long-term vision. Lots of times when you see people making decisions, big picture discussion gets washed away because existing user groups say, “What’s in it for me right now?” EK: But in fairness to other people, I have the luxury — and I know Rich does, too — of being able to think long-term because I’m
TM: That is absolutely correct. But I’d say as much as 1/3 of the sales in the past two or three years have been to people who want to make Hatteras a true second home. That’s very good for the Village, I think. Every person that’s a true second homeowner, I want to reach over and hug them, because they’re [not] in it for the quick hit. They’re here because they love it.
So is this as much a psychological campaign as it is a physical project?
EK: Yes. I feel like Hatteras Village has lost its mojo — for lack of a better term. We’re trying to get its confidence back, just get the energy flowing. And maybe it’s naïve, but I think we can change things a little at a time.
“For those of us in the business community who have envisioned Hatteras Village as a ‘destination village’ — as opposed to a passthru on the way to Ocracoke — this is the best thing to happen in two decades.”
not worried about making the mortgage. But I also worked my butt off for more than 30 years for that freedom, so I know what it’s like to wake up and say, “Holy crap, how am I going to make payroll today?” So, I don’t want to be disrespectful of the people who need to think short-term, because if you don’t think short-term, there is no long-term. It’s finding that balance. And that’s where I think people like us can come in. We have this obligation to give back because we have a solid foundation. What’s blowing my mind — although I’m starting to get used to it — is a lot of people here don’t understand altruism. They look at me and Rich and say, “What’s in it for you guys?” RH: They can’t understand that there’s no profit. But the profit is mental. At the end of the day, I go to bed knowing I’ve helped people. So what’s the time frame? EK: The ecology center will be open by June. The pier? That’s a guessing game at this point. We have a lot more money to raise. But hopefully by completing this Ecology Park,
we can start to give back to the community and plant the seeds to help the pier become a reality. But the way we’ve got the project phased is to start with parking and a bathhouse, and then build a pier house. So even if we only create a beach access and handicap access and an event center to bring people here — because 150 people coming down to attend a wedding is a lot of money into our economy —what’s the down side?
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At least it’s not the usual: “I’m gonna go sell a bunch of t-shirts and pocket the money.” EK: Well, we are going to sell a bunch of t-shirts. But we’re using the money to fund ecology exhibits. Why? You wanna buy a shirt? [laughs] — Matt Walker
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The preceding interview was edited for space and clarity. For a complete transcription — including how the Park Service could improve their signage and why the word “environment” is dead as the dodo — go to www.outerbanksmilepost.com.
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“I’ve been trying to educate myself since I moved here. And this island is not the easiest place to live. But the more we can do things like this and get people involved, it might not be as hard to live here as it was before.”
“People talk about downward spirals, but there’re upward spirals, too. And hopefully when people see us do this, they’ll think, ‘You know what? Maybe more good things can happen.’” milepost 27
Heroes of the H i g h Season
Hot sand. Shorts. Being barefoot and shirtless. Feeling the wax between your toes. Summertime is everything I love about surfing. Even though I spend more time making surfboards than I do in the water. At Gale Force we make our own boards, provide a glassing service for other labels and do ding repair for the public at large. It all gets busier, but repairs go gangbusters in summer because everybody’s surfing. Every local, every little kid, every tourist. Twenty years ago, all the tourists rode rafts. Now the whole family takes surf lessons. People rip their fins off riding the shorebreak. They run into each other. A board blows off the racks and lands in the parking lot. Whatever it is, more people means more work. But I enjoy every step. For the first 15 years, all I did was dings, fins, hot-coating, laminating, leash plugs, glossing — everything involving resin and the stinky room. I never wanted to shape because it looked so hard. You’re a sculptor, really. Everything has to come out so even and perfect. I finally started shaping three years ago out of necessity. Now my favorite thing to do is make a board start-to-finish. If I shape one I have to take it down to the glassing room right away and start laying resin on it.
It’s cool to hate summer. But only if you live here. In the continually blurring lines between local and visitor, bitching about traffic, whining about work hours and grandstanding over the latest grocery store price-gouge remain the ultimate way to distinguish between “us” and “them.” But filter out all the self-serving frustration and you’ll find that most locals have a soft spot
It gets frustrating, because I can’t always enjoy the fun time once it gets here. But I also have days where I surf all afternoon and then work until midnight to get caught up. And the days are so long, you can leave the factory at 7pm and still have two hours to go surfing. Or if it’s flat, I’ll go take a dip. Shoot right across the bypass in my trunks and jump in the water all grimy. Even if the ocean’s upwelling and 59 degrees, it feels so good.
for the high season. It’s getting us to admit it that’s the hard part. Not so much for the following eight fixtures. They recognize exactly which side of the year cocoa-butters their bread. They also know that inside every Outer Banker’s heart lies a passion for a certain lifestyle. One that requires warm water, bright
Then there are days when there’s a real swell running. I’ll go to the factory early, then hit the beach around 10:30 with my umbrella, my cooler of beers and a couple surfboards. Families make their little impromptu camps. Boards are lying everywhere. There’s nothing better. I actually just finished a little egg shape that’s perfect for summer. And I’m dying to get on it.
sun, roaring nights and as little clothing as humanly possible. It’s that very lifestyle that first drew us all here to begin with. And that’s why they work so hard. Because, in the end, none of them would be here if it wasn’t for summer. And summer wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for them.
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JESSICA DELOS REYES
Pool Maintenance They call it “pool cleaning” but it’s so much more. First thing you do when you come to a property is make sure nothing’s broken, that all the filters and pumps are functioning properly. Then you vacuum the pool and hot tub. Balance the chemicals to get everything sanitized. Finally, you get the deck areas looking pretty. And you do that 10 to 15 times a day.
A good time is 35 minutes. A bad time is two hours. That’s when everything’s a wreck — the chemicals get unbalanced during the week and you have to go through the extra process of scrubbing to get the pool to look crystal-clear instead of green and murky. Hot tubs are scariest, because people can get sick. Use it responsibly, you’ve got maybe five uses before it needs cleaning. But if 10 drunk people are spilling beer and peeing in it, it’s a one-time shot. If it looks like that’s happening, I’ll say, “Here’s my card. Call if it starts looking dirty.” College kids are the worst, because they jam in as many people as possible. I’ve come to houses where they’ve thrown all the third-floor furniture into the pool. I’ve even found a shark in a hot tub. And, yes, I’ve had the Baby Ruth moment [laughs]. But those people are usually embarrassed and happy to see you. The most difficult times are when you come to a property and everyone’s in the water having fun and you have to ask them to stay out for three hours. That’s why we try to go so early in the morning. At 5:30am, the beach road is basically a parade of trucks with skimmers and buckets beating traffic to make sure someone’s pool is ready by 9am. The biggest nightmares are just like everybody’s, I guess — the day everything goes wrong. It’s mid-afternoon and a motor’s broke, there’s a snake in the pool, everything’s falling apart and you still have a ton of service to do. But once the season starts, the area you service becomes your own little world. You’re up at 4:30am, but by 1pm you’re finished and able to do whatever you want. Most of the time, you work outside with nobody around. So you get a lot of quiet. You get serenity. And in summer, most people don’t get that at all.
I’m very business-like by nature. I think about most things in terms of income and schedules. So, to me, summer is when I’m constantly going. I work all day and then play three nights a week. But it’s definitely fun. In fact, one of the main reasons I moved back to the Outer Banks was because I missed playing out. So many more places do live music here than five years ago. Everyone has a backyard or patio. The indoor gigs are the later gigs — the nighttime drinking crowd. The outdoor gigs are the dinnertime, family gigs. Do I like the outdoor gigs more? They tip better. So, financially, yes. And it’s nice to see kids getting into it and dancing. But the later crowd can be more fun. I get to play more of my own music and newer, alternative covers versus classic rock or folk or country. I don’t expect applause after every song, but I do want the crowd to enjoy themselves and feel like they can interact in some way. Dancing’s good. Singing’s nice, as long as they don’t come up and sing into my microphone. Even a little eye contact goes a long way. Requests are appreciated, too. I don’t play them all. Especially if I don’t know them. But it helps to gauge what they want to hear and it shows they’re paying attention. Lots of times I’ll end up adding the song to my set list. If nothing else, it keeps things different for the wait staff in places I play once a week. Just don’t ask me to sing “Freebird” [laughs]. People put strange things in your tip jar. Phone numbers, I get those a lot [laughs]. More frequently, kids come up and drop change. That’s always cute. But it’s not really about the money. Playing music is an outlet from my real job and all the other stressful things that go on in life. Last summer, this girl from Minnesota asked if she could play my guitar. She was maybe 14, so I was nervous, but she did a fantastic job. I’ve never seen someone so happy. That made my night.
NATALIE WOLFE milepost
Mosquito Control The Outer Banks has two main types of mosquitoes. The brown salt marsh mosquitoes are called Sollicitans. Albopictus are the blacker ones with little white bands on their legs — they’re container breeders. One Pepsi cap can produce several hundred in summertime, so whenever we respond to a service request, we initiate what’s called “tip and toss.” We walk around and empty flower pots, tarps, kiddie pools, old tires — anything that holds water. “Kill them before they hatch,” that’s our motto.
The nighttime spraying is a wind-drift game. We use Ultra Low Volume sprayers that blow out seven ounces of mixed product per minute in millions of microscopic droplets. So wherever the wind goes, they go. All 14 trucks are equipped with GPS for maximum efficiency. We also do nightly trappings to identify the mosquitoes and use landing rates to find out how many are present at a specific time. But 90% of our driving pattern is based on which way the wind blows. And if it’s blowing more than 15mph, lots of times we won’t even send them out. Everyone has the right to not be sprayed. Just don’t try to treat it yourself. You’d be surprised at the solutions people come up with: “Oh, I poured motor oil in that area...” Don’t do that. Call us and we’ll come deal with it properly. Citronella candles work. They irritate their feet [laughs]. Mosquitoes don’t like sunlight, which is why you feel them more in the evenings and in shadier, cooler areas. They also prefer children over adults. And lighter colors attract fewer mosquitoes than darker colors. You’re also more likely to be targeted if you eat bananas. I don’t have some deep-seeded loathing for mosquitoes. But we want people to enjoy their visit and locals to enjoy their home, and there’s a fine line between being a nuisance and a public health hazard. So I guess I just enjoy making a difference.
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My first flight was a life changer. In one lesson I realized that this was the single most important thing in the history of humanity. I spent that summer selling kites and learning to become an instructor. That was two decades ago. Now I run the program.
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Remember the band Frankie Goes To Hollywood? I had them in my class once. I got to tell them all to “relax” [laughs]. We constantly tell students to “relax your grip” and “keep your eyes up.” Because as soon as you look down, you’re no longer steering. It’s hard, but if you can control those two things, everything else just happens naturally. The distance a beginner will typically travel is about 120 to 150 feet. The average altitude is about 10 to 15 feet. But we really just try to get everyone in the air the first time.
Hang Gliding Instructor
It’s a hard job on the body, especially in summertime. The glider weighs 55 pounds and somebody’s gotta carry it back up to the top. At 10 people per lesson, that’s 55 to 60 times each day. But afterward, people are in such an unbelievably fantastic mood and it lasts the rest of the time they’re down here. So it’s amazing just seeing the effect being airborne can have on people. After the first time you thermal up to cloud base, it becomes very difficult to walk down the street without noticing how big every cloud is, whether it’s got a flat dark bottom, what the lapse rate might be, what direction the wind is blowing. It’s all-encompassing. What’s it feel like? Depends on the day. If it’s a rowdy day, it’s a rowdy flight. Like any form of aviation, mistakes can be fatal. So it’s a responsibility we take very seriously. But if you pick the right day, it’s exactly like you would imagine it. It feels effortless and wonderful, like you’ve got wings on your back. It feels just like your dreams.
Visitor Services Specialist
Education is my focus, but people are my specialty. I put all the programs together for the Pea Island and Alligator River Wildlife Refuges and teach about the different habitats and wildlife. Offseason we visit schools and groups and take our message to the people. And once summer hits, the people come to us. We do lots of canoe tours where we explore and look for animals — birds and turtles. Sometimes we’ll see bears. The alligators are the neatest critters, I think. They hide behind the water lilies and grasses. You almost don’t see them at first — until they start moving. Most people are just in awe of them, but once in a while someone gets a little freaked out. But that’s part of the fun: you don’t know what’s going to be around the next bend. We never know what we’ll see or how every critter is going to act or react. It’s not a zoo [laughs]. But every now and then we’ll come across an animal that just sits there while everyone takes pictures for as long as they like. It’s almost like they’re posing. One of our volunteers calls them “Disney Critters.” Oh, people fall off the boat all the time. Someone leans the wrong way. A person reaches out to get a dropped paddle and ends up going in after it. I’ve seen whole families go in the water trying to help each other. It’s usually pretty funny. I guess sometimes there’re folks who want to argue no matter what. But most people who come here and are interested in a program or tour aren’t in a negative mindset. They’re excited. And not just the kids. Adults make the best faces. That’s one of my favorite parts of all: seeing grownups let loose and have fun while they’re learning. I love what I do. The two parks are so different, so that helps a lot. I love seeing the different wildlife. The different habitats. And I love the variety of people. We always try to make it enjoyable. Not that we’re silly. But my husband was a Performance Art major. He used to say, “Make it like acting. You have an audience — entertain them.” So that’s what we do.
Being a summer lifeguard is a total commitment. We’ve got an average of 300 people we’re watching at any given time. And you’re basically looking for one splashy moment. It’s not something we take lightly. Because it can turn into a “Where’s Waldo” situation real fast. Boredom and fatigue are our biggest threats. That’s why we encourage our staff to mentally reset themselves. To stand up and stretch; to get off the stand and talk to people in their area. We want them to create a rapport with the patrons and make sure they understand they’ve come to a place that’s a lot bigger than their backyard pool, with a lot more people and more ways to get in trouble. You actually start to get a sixth sense for who needs real watching. In fact, we do a whole training session on analyzing everything from attire to pallor to what they carry as they come over the dune. If a bodyboarder is super-tan and fit and walking with swim-fins they probably know what they’re doing. But if they’re wearing a life jacket and nose plugs and are super pale, they probably can’t do the most efficient stroke. We get some funny questions. “When do the dolphins come out?” “What’s the shark count for the day?” But I’m from Ohio, so I get it. The first time my dad came to visit he jumped right in a rip current. That’s why our biggest mantra is to swim near a lifeguard. And always keep an eye on your kids. We see a lot of Mom thought Dad had Billy, Dad thought Mom had Billy — we can’t find Billy — and Billy ends up being down the beach with Aunt Gina. Our seafood buffet features the freshest dishes with over 70 items including Alaskan Snow Crab Legs, fresh steamed shrimp, Oysters Rockefeller, prime rib and more.
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Sf oCr At hne
The scariest moments are when you know someone is underwater and feel the pit in your stomach just sink. Luckily, those are few and far between. And on the flip side are the moments where you save someone. Or, even better, help educate them to keep trouble from happening. The key is hiring good people. All our employees are highly trained and athletic. Many have an interest in becoming an EMT or some medical profession. But they also tend to be laid-back and happy. They should be. Not many people can say “welcome to my office” and point to the ocean.
Summer weekends are rush hour on the Outer Banks. That’s when tourists are settling in, the locals are adjusting and everyone’s in the worst possible mood. My job is to keep everyone informed. And maybe give them a little smile. The traffic report gig just fell into my lap. I did a radio internship that turned into a DJ job. We were getting MP3 reports emailed to us that were pretty lackluster and not all that helpful. My boss said, “Can you do this?” And I said, “Hell, I can do better than this!” Now this is my third summer. I didn’t start out trying to be funny. The “Please, drive safe… Use your turning signals… Be alert...” — all that was sort of automatic from my experience driving here. That’s actually my serious voice. I was trying to sound like Walter Cronkite. [laugh] But it seemed to have the opposite effect. So we added the little tags and goofy bits and now that’s what people listen for. But I’m still very serious because people do crazy things here. Every time I get on the road I see someone zoom across the bypass or do a U-turn in the danger lane. So these are all important things we need to tell people: “Be aware of your surroundings. Don’t let your driving skills vacation. Don’t kill the person next to you.” Because bad things do happen. And we don’t like hearing about people getting hurt. I get all sorts of questions, “How do you get the reports? Do you fly around in a helicopter?” Some people seem legitimately surprised I’m a real person. But it’s really not that big of a deal. I just look at a few highway webcams and tell you what’s going on. And I’ve never been happier to go to work. I may not alleviate all the bitching, but at least people know somebody is out there trying to tell them what’s going on. Maybe give them a chuckle. And if you wanna laugh, hey, more power to you. Whatever keeps you listenin’, baby.
gosurf RULES SUMMER
graphiccontent Just because theyâ€™re Not posted, doesnâ€™t make them any less true.
Form Follows Function
“What is that thing?” “Who put it there?” “Why does it look that way?” “And how does it work?” We scanned the horizon for summer’s most obvious There are no silly questions features then asked the same puzzling questions. — just shapely answers Turns out the answers are one in the same.
How does Cape Hatteras hold its shape?
Here’s an easy summer science experiment for you. Next time you leave the beach, haul straight home and empty your vehicle. Boards and chairs. Umbrellas and coolers. Even the kids and the dog. Pile everything up at the top of your driveway, spray it all off and leave the hose running. Now follow the stream as it travels downhill. Notice how the sand settles more in some places and less in others? That’s how granules of rock built most of coastal North Carolina. It’s also the basic process that created Cape Hatteras and the whole Outer Banks over the last few thousand years. And it’s the same process that keeps the barrier islands in place today. “Twenty thousand years ago, at the end of the last ice age, sea level was much lower and there were no barrier islands,” says Dr. JP Walsh, Associate Professor in the Department of Geological Sciences at East Carolina University and Interim Co-Program Head for Coastal Processes at the UNC Coastal Studies Institute. “Rivers drained across and eroded the exposed landscape, causing some areas to be higher than others. So as sea level rose, currents and waves caused deposits to form around the newly flooded land. Those same marine sedimentary areas remained anchor points for what we call the Outer Banks.”
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So how much higher are these “marine sedimentary areas”? Not much. Maybe tens of feet. Hardly enough to notice from a geographic perspective. But even the slightest bumps in topography are enough to catch a few grains of sand — just like your driveway. So long as the water keeps flowing in the right direction. “In the case of North Carolina, the ‘hose’ of predominant ocean water flow doesn’t aim at us from directly offshore,” Walsh continues. “It’s running from north to south along the coast. That’s why we have Cape Hatteras. Buxton is an old high spot that creates a transition. And Cape Hatteras is tied to that location.” Sure, there are localized currents and summer doldrums that complicate the dynamics. And an occasional hurricane can reverse the whole process. But our net annual sand movement still runs down the coast thanks to roughly 40 nor’easters a year. So, as crazy at it sounds, those destructive weather systems that puncture dune lines and swallow pavement are all part of the constructive coastal phenomenon that will keep our sandbar’s skinny summer figure intact for years to come. “Some places are more at risk for localized erosion than others,” says Walsh, “but as a whole, barrier islands aren’t really that fragile at all. They’re very persistent, strong features because the ocean maintains them continually.” Spitting image. Photo: Matt Lusk
Now if we could only access them continually. — Matt Walker milepost 39
The walk back’s not nearly as fun. Photo: Bryan Elkus
Why won’t my kite do that? You’re running and cursing. Your kite’s flopping and dragging. Meanwhile, some Superman is out at sea, flying, twisting and doing back-flips. Even when he falls, his kite instantly rebounds like a jet-powered parachute, then whips him toward the beach, where he zips past, snickering at your piece of bat-faced plastic. So what’s his kite got that yours don’t?
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Lots. Because his “arc kite” is engineered for equal parts speed, stability, agility and safety. The C shape is different from other parafoil kites (think paragliding) in that it cups the wind at its apex, allowing for maximum friction, maintaining precise control of airflow at its bowed tips. It also has an inflatable frame that won’t sink and a complex four-line (sometimes fiveline) steering system. “Actually, everything is intuitive and easy to do,” says Naish Kiteboarding kite technician Des Walsh, shrugging off the complexity. “We’re using highly refined set-ups these days.” That refining process has been going on for 30 years. In the 1980s, Kiwi kite-maker Peter Lynn began tooling with power kites, which were traditionally used to pull things like barges and buggies. Drawing from the parafoil parachute — rather than the WWII-era round canopy chute
— Lynn found that by constructing an inflatable double-skinned design, he could make recreational power kites that were both incredibly agile and floatable (a key improvement when you’re a mile offshore). Lynn’s patented approach soon caught the attention of talented Hawaiian windsurfers Robby Naish and Laird Hamilton. With drowning no longer a concern, and performance drastically improving, Naish, Hamilton and other pioneers… well, took off. Today, while the semi-circle shape hasn’t changed, kite size, design and line systems come in dozens of varieties. They also allow riders to control the size of their “wind window” — the slice of sky directly above, in front of, and to the left and right of them. “Shorter lines make a smaller wind window, so the kite won’t create as much power,” explains Walsh. “Longer lines equal more power. So, a beginner starts with a smaller kite and shorter lines. But the skilled waverider or freestyler will also use shorter lines for increased maneuverability.” Which is probably what Superman is flying. You, on the other hand, should just go buy a more user-friendly, traditional model. Don’t worry. On the drive back, you’ll probably see your pal hitchhiking his way home. Then it’ll be your turn to fly past and laugh. — Andrew Lewis
How come pelicans fly in a line? Imagine this summertime scenario: A string of vehicles flies down the bypass. One giant SUV leads the pack a few miles over the speed limit. Behind it, a line of 11 cars and trucks follows at safe, two-second intervals. When the SUV shifts left, so do the others. When it veers right, they do the same. And when the SUV tires, it signals, shifts left again, and falls back to the middle, letting the next car take the lead. Then all 12 patient drivers resume their flow down the retail-lined highway in perfect harmony. Pure fantasy? Perhaps in traffic. But that’s exactly what pelicans do when they fly in a line. “It’s the same thing as drafting in auto racing,” says Coastal Carolina Community College’s
Cruise Control. Photo: Lauren Kaplan
Dr. Mark Shields, who’s currently updating the entry on pelicans for Birds of North America. “The lead bird creates a slipstream behind it that the others fly in, which allows them to fly as fast without expending as much energy.” More into Top Gun than NASCAR? Well, next time a squadron of Navy jets roars off the beach, look up. That tight cluster isn’t just to impress chicks below. It’s more bird-inspired aerodynamics. According to Shields, “When birds fly in V-formation, the air coming off the wingtips of the bird in front reduces drag and provides some lift for the bird behind.”
It also works in pairs. One difference? While close-flying fighter pilots will communicate via hand signals, pelicans don’t talk at all. “Except for some low grunts,” he adds. “Only made during certain breeding displays and while on the ground.” And as much as we like to anthropomorphize their graceful antics by imagining they’re surfing the waves as they skim the surface — or “doing the wave” as their wings move in succession — that’s not true, either. “It looks like a lot of fun, but that isn’t why they do it,” says Shields. “Small currents of air rise up over the waves, providing lift for the pelicans without the need for much
flapping. And flapping their wings in unison may help reduce fatigue.” Unless you’re in front. That bird does all the work. Just like the lead SUV — reading the red lights, watching for blue lights, hitting the brakes and dodging the wrecks. The difference? Pelicans know when to take a break. And they don’t give two hoots who’s in front. “When the lead bird tires, it simply drops back in the flock,” says Shields. “There is no one leader. They all take turns.” A driver can only dream. — Natalie Wolfe milepost 41
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How do polarized lenses work? Maybe you had too much too fast. Maybe it’s just high noon in July. But with the exception of a swimsuit, there is no piece of beach attire more crucial than a pair of shades. With them, your eyes are more relaxed; your whole day more chill. Without them, prepare to spend every second of your sunny day squinting and blocking your eyes, wishing you had Vishnu’s many hands to stack over your face like some half-assed Venetian blinds. Which is funny: because that’s pretty much what polarized lenses do.
Venetian goddess. Photo: Chris Bickford
From there, just tint it the right color, and apply it to any glass surface. In fact, the bulk of these “blinds” ends up on modern technology to keep you from seeing your reflection when you’re watching TV or screaming at your laptop. But flat screens are flat; sunglasses are curved. That substantially increases the level of difficulty. It can also jack up the price. “Low-cost lenses are made flat and bent to shape, so that ‘venetian blind’ gets all bent and twisted,” says Carson. “Premium eyewear companies use injection molding, capturing the polarization into the lens material itself, so it can’t peel or rub off. It’s the hardest thing we do optically. But it’s also the most expensive.”
“Venetian blinds are one of the best ways to describe polarization,” says Eric Carlson, Vice President of Product and Design for Smith Optics. “Whenever light gets reflected off of anything it gets sort of dirty and mixed up. Let’s say you’re sitting on the beach, you’ve got light coming off the sand, the water, the clouds, sky — polarization bounces all the glare off and filters The payoff? A less strained eye. Some increased snob appeal. A happier hangover. Plus the ability to gaze out on the shimmering sea, glittering sand and colorful eye candy, and get the light, so the blue stays blue, the white stays white, and it’s not all muddied together.” nothing in return but clean, vibrant hues and maybe a few unclean thoughts. So how come you can’t see these blinds sitting a centimeter off your eyeballs? And how do Just remember to take them off your head before you hop in the water. they install them in your little face windows? Well, start with some rolls of polyvinyl acetate (PVA), plastic sheets with the consistency of food service film. Stretched fives times its natural — Dale Pelon length, that sheet becomes only microns thick, pulling the PVA’s chain molecules into long, invisible parallel lines. milepost 43
Smile-high club. Photo: Mickey McCarthy
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You call that thing a monument?
Face it: the Wright Brothers National Memorial is no Mt. Rushmore. It’s not even Stonehenge. The outline’s clunky. It weighs 80 tons. In fact, of the thousands of first-time visitors who zip through town each year, not one automatically looks west and thinks: “Bet you that big hunk of granite in the distance represents man’s single greatest achievement since the wheel.” The irony? It’s not meant for us groundlings. To really understand the monument’s message — and the Wright Brothers’ impact — requires a more pulled-back view. So pulled back, in fact, that all you see is an open field, a green hill and a giant, unmistakable star that screams loud and clear: “This is the very spot that rocked your world and altered the course of Man himself.” “Pilots really like it,” understates David Daniels, Superintendent of the Dare County Regional Airport in Manteo. “The pattern restricts them from flying over it, but it happens. Some will bring in two planes, so one pilot can take the picture of the other with the monument in the background.” Can’t see it from on high? Then get within inches. Even better, take the tour. You’ll learn how Depression-era architects Richards and Poor made sure every detail conveys the essence of flight. How the 60-foot pyramidal shape represents the very “pylons” that marked turns in early 20th century airplane races. That the prevalent edge points toward Wilbur and Orville’s first takeoff spot — emphasizing the word “genius” — while sloping lines stand in relief on two sides to produce the swooping image of a pair of wings. Standing there, looking upward, the whole thing tapers toward the heavens with a dramatic effect that — in the words of resident historian Darrell Collins — “Simulates a gigantic bird on top of Kill Devil Hill about to take flight into outer space.” Not a bad bit of foresight for a piece dedicated in 1932 — a quarter-century before Sputnik broke the earth’s atmosphere. Which is why the national park draws a half-million visitors every year. But while you gaze up in awe, don’t lose sight of your feet. Because you’re standing on what just may be the memorial’s most gripping feature. From above, it’s the 46’ x 33’ star-shaped foundation that draws flocks of flying zealots to pay homage like aviation’s personal Mecca. Soaring overhead, each one can look down and instantly connect with the two brothers who granted humans the power to break free of earth’s gravity over 100 years prior. And from that lofty perspective, you don’t need anyone to tell you to be impressed. From the air, all you do is go, “Wow.” — Brendan Riley milepost 45
Where do bait balls come from?
Blame it on Shark Week. Or Blue Planet. Or any other undersea cable show they run all summer. Watching massive, silvery schools deftly darting in unison from scary marine predators, it’s easy to picture “bait balls” as a coordinated escape effort. But while bait balls may be one of the ocean’s most dramatic and beautiful survival dances, they’re hardly choreographed. In fact, it’s really just one giant panic attack. milepost
“Schooling fishes form bait balls for the same reasons humans will cluster in chaotic situations,” says Mark Sullivan, an Associate Professor of Marine Sciences at Stockton College. “It’s the selfish herd effect.” Fly to Pamplona, Spain, in July — or just switch channels — and you’ll see people willingly demonstrate this same behavior. Except instead of swimming from bull sharks they’re running from bulls. But horns
or teeth, feet or fins, it’s the same animal response to a life-or-death situation: do everything possible to keep that hulking beast off your heels, even if it means diving in front of your best friend and letting them take the hit. “It is a last-ditch effort,” says Sullivan, “where the fish basically come together in order to form a sort of super organism to try and head off as much casualty as possible.
If you’re in a group of 500, your odds of getting picked off are greatly reduced.” So how do baitfish form and maintain this “super organism structure”? With reactionary instincts that combine eyesight, alarm pheromones and lateral lines — tiny hair cell-clustered canals that run along the fishes’ sides. Just like Pamplona’s runners listen for directional cues from those around them, baitfish follow those in the school who
Circle of life. Photo: Matt Lusk
are emitting alarm pheromones. Meanwhile, the lateral lines help them feel the directional changes and stay closely packed. In the bedlam of a full-scale attack from all sides, the fish on the exterior of the ball are constantly fleeing for safety toward the interior, causing the ball to compress and gyrate from one direction to another — often straight into the waiting jaws of another predator. But while the defense
mechanism ultimately fails in the face of a superior species, Sullivan reminds us that the bait ball is just organized enough to ensure the school’s survival. Even if some individuals end up getting lost in the anarchy. “It’s sort of a best-thing-we-got tactic,” he says. Kind of like watching Shark Week for the sixtieth time. — Andrew Lewis
What the hell is “Carolina Flare”? Stroll down any marina, and you’ll see sportfishing boats standing at attention. Lined up, bows stretched outward, they look like decorated soldiers ready for their next assignment. But while they each wear different colored uniforms, they all model the same outline: the hull curved upward and outward at the bow. That striking silhouette is also their primary weapon. It’s called “Carolina Flare.” “It really started as a necessity,” says Dr. John Conoley, who — along with his brothers, Neal and Jim — wrote the book on the subject. “After World War II, folks had more disposable income. Commercial fishermen realized they could take people out fishing and make more money in a shorter time versus the back-breaking work they’d been doing.” Prior to that, traditional boats for commercial and sport
fishing — such as Core Sounders and Shad boats — were suited for shallow waters and netting. They featured long, sweeping lines, bulging sides and a round stern. With this shift in demand, boat builders adjusted their designs, combining “sharp entry” and “exaggerated spray rails” to allow for a broader range, longer trips and a dryer ride in more dicey waters. “The flare design adds buoyancy,” says the co-author of Carolina Flare: Outer Banks Building and Sportfishing Heritage, “and deflects water for vessels running in areas of ugly inlets and long swells.” They also incorporated an “S-Frame” or “S-Curve” design on the sides, which opens up the interior space for living quarters. Over the years, space-age materials offered still more evolution in the world of boat building. Instead of
A brilliant design that’s worthy of reflection. Photo: Matt Lusk
a “plank on frame” method of building by hand from the keel up, today’s modern style is known as “cold molded” where the boat is built upside-down from the keel, using everything from carbon and Kevlar to various foams. “It’s an incredible process,” says Conoley. “So precise that boats in the 85-foot range can be produced that perform within a hundredth of an inch.” One thing that hasn’t changed in the past 60 years? The experience. In the morning, charters leave before dawn. At the end of the day, they return, flags taut in the breeze and iceboxes full. The captains do the parking. The mates do the cleaning. And customers do the fibbing. Boasting about lost trophies, false bravery and tall tales of fish all but jumping into the boat. — Fran Marler milepost 49
Why do fishing piers always look so beat up? A crooked smile. A tattered flag. A tangle of rods. A topple of cans. The similarities between a wooden fishing pier and its more familiar residents may seem eerily connected. But while those other features get their look from too many rough seasons, the pier itself is born bent out of shape. That’s what keeps it standing there, no matter how much the weather knocks it around. “Fishing piers are constantly beat back and forth,” says Steve Faithful, foreman for Portsmouth, Virginia’s, Hodges and Hodges Enterprises, which repaired both Nags Head Pier and Avalon Pier this past winter. “Believe it or not, they move over time.” It starts at the base. As sand shifts, it creates ditches, and pilings swing one way; later, different currents or storms will cause pilings to pitch the other way. The use of crooked pilings — aptly called “battle piles”— is how engineers combat this onslaught of ocean currents, tides, surf and wind. They may wobble, shake and shift, but at least they stay upright. milepost
“The battle piles work like a kickstand,” Faithful continues. “If you just use straight piles, the whole pier will go leaning on you.” So while it looks rickety, the design is really quite refined. Even modern Jennette’s is set in concrete. Go underneath, and you’ll see “center piles” running straight down the middle with the battle piles set purposefully askew on either side. (Or if you’re too busy texting, plug “/||\” into your smart phone for a clearer picture.) One exception? The Army Corps of Engineers’ Field Research Facility (FRF) — aka Duck Pier. Since 1977, this 1840-foot platform — the longest research pier in the world — has collected data and performed experiments. So were they just clueless? “No, the pier was also designed to survive years of storms and hurricanes,” says research oceanographer, Dr. Jeffrey Hanson. “And they clearly knew what they were doing as the pier has sustained zero damage in 35 years of pounding abuse by the ocean.”
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Takes a lickin’, keeps on stickin’. Frisco Pier. Photo: Daniel Pullen
Mainly because of its unique construction. Not only are the pilings steel-wrapped concrete, each one goes 50 feet into the ocean floor. That keeps them stable without being angled. Wooden piers? “Most go down about 20 feet,” says Faithful, “until we either reach the more stable ‘shell layer’ or run out of pile.” The method still works surprisingly well. Otherwise, you’d see a flotilla of piers after each hurricane instead of the occasional chunk of treated lumber. But in Faithful’s view, Mother Nature cannot be contained; his crew simply tries to postpone the inevitable for as long as possible. And when one of the old salts takes a hit… “We just come in and add piles where sections got beat out of it.” Each time they add a little more life. And a lot more character. — Corinne Saunders
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gosurf outthere Eye of the glider. Photo: Daniel Pullen
ALL PUMPED UP Mat rider Jamie McClellan takes the very concept of fun — and inflates it
For every beach pastime you’ll indulge in this summer, there’s somebody who takes those fun-and-games seriously. From volleyball to sandcastle building, what most see as whimsical boredom-blockers or drunken recreation, another sees as an underappreciated art form with unlimited potential. Jamie McClellan loves to surf. Lives to surf. And he’s actually quite good at it. The only difference between him and other rippers is his choice of equipment: he rides air mats. “Most people don’t know what to make of it,” says the 31-year-old Avon resident, clutching what looks like a partially inflated beach raft. “After a day of pumping surf last summer, though, this old guy approached me afterwards. Somehow he understood. He said, ‘I saw you going twice as fast as anyone out there.’” Jamie’s romance with riding waves began at his grandfather’s beach shack in Sandbridge, VA, where rafts abounded: awkward handles, nylon rope, Hawaiian Punch paintjobs and all. Once he was a teenager, Outer Banks trips became a regular thing as Jamie experimented with boards of all sorts — though bodysurfing brought him the most pleasure. Enrolling at the College of Charleston, the wimpy waves of Folly Beach placated him somewhat before a 2001 automobile accident re-routed his destiny. Driving along a narrow downtown street, another driver t-boned Jamie, sending his solidsteel Yukon through an iron rod gate, a tree and into a brick house, compressing his back and knees. “I was out of the water for a year with lots of physical therapy,” he remembers. “Everything short of having to learn how to walk again. After that, it was hard to ride a surfboard.” Serendipitously, Jamie’s college buddy loaned him a twin-keel kneeboard. During an abnormally hollow day in Folly Beach, he successfully navigated dozens of tuberides, something he had never before experienced standing up. “Okay, this is different,” he thought. “Here’s something I can physically do. And I’m expending less effort for more reward.” Completely fascinated, Jamie began researching alternative surfcraft, which ultimately led him to legendary board designer/filmmaker George Greenough. An American ex-pat living in Australia, Greenough’s 1970 movie, The Innermost Limits of Pure Fun, put kneeboard and mat-riding on the map with surfer-view perspectives of Australia’s most hollow waves — decades before GoPro cameras. “What George wanted to accomplish was to build a kneeboard that would handle like his air mats would,” says Jamie. “I met a kid in South Carolina who sold me a Flex Spoon kneeboard. Then I started looking into how far that rabbit hole goes.” Watching Jamie torpedo down the wave of the day during an Avon session this April, hands behind his back (not for showboating but for ergonomic function), one can easily see how milepost
MORE THAN A BODY SHOP!
Greenough was able to capture such spellbinding imagery with a heavy camera strapped to his back. Though Greenough accomplished all this on a $10 beach toy, the learning curve was daunting. Jamie bought five rafts at the Kitty Hawk Wal-Mart in 2004 and rode them for eight months before the light clicked — or rather, the bubble burst.
There’s no friction at all. Pure release equals pure speed.
“I’d been out a half-hour when the raft burst a pinhole,” he says. “You’d think it would stop working, but the opposite happened. The air blew out the back end. It accelerated so fast and shot me so far down the line, it blew my mind. And it’s not like I skidded out sideways to the beach. My line held. I took off in first gear and matched the wave’s speed the whole ride.” Here’s the concept: the mat lies flat so there’s no drag. Once you squeeze and roll the outside rail, you twist at the hip with your legs as the counterweight — just like an airplane’s rear wings control its turns. Then there’s that big round rail up front that holds and tracks, but when the rear corner flattens out, there’s no friction at all. Pure release equals pure speed. “The ideal setup is taking off on an outside capper that rockets you across a flat section and links up behind the main wall,” says Jamie. “Once that wall stands up toward the inside, you’re already going full-speed.” Today, Jamie boasts a quiver of air mats handmade by Paul Gross, Greenough’s longtime collaborator who runs the California company 4th Gear Flyer. His bigwave mats — which are smaller, thicker and intentionally slower — work best on punchy Hatteras beachbreaks. Still, he reckons it takes ten years to get anywhere near driving a mat to its potential. Hence the slim, but core, following. “There are little nucleuses of mat riders,” he says. “Byron Shire in Australia is the hub of
the real-deal guys while California has the most. Maybe 1000 people in the world own one, 40 guys actually ride them on a regular basis, and a dozen at best are really good at it.” Jamie met a few while attending Australia’s Bond University, a prestigious private college located right behind the iconic pointbreak Burleigh Heads. He spent the next two years sampling Queensland’s greatest waves, all of which are notoriously crowded.
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“I’d go way outside and wait for bombs with the kayakers,” he says. “The mat covered 300 yards of flat spot at full speed, so I was getting three or four long barrels in a row — just back to back to back.” Back home, the lineups are mellower — but reaching them is tougher. Air mats are zero buoyancy, meaning they’ll float themselves but not you, so duck-diving is not an option, no matter how much air you blow.
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“It’s a long, slow process,” says Jamie. “Normally, I’ll walk and breathe into it so by the time I get to the beach it’s blown up. You’ll make yourself dizzy if you huff and puff too much, especially in winter. On big days I’ll swim out and drag it behind me or push it in front like a kickboard in a pool, and inflate it out the back. The plus side is I can swim down to the bottom and let an entire set pass over.” Once he gets outside, he waits. And waits. And waits. While most alternative waveriding equipment — SUP’s, ocean kayaks, jet-ski-assisted surfing — get demonized for being vehicles for wave hogs, Jamie’s rarified pursuit is all about cherry picking the choicest gems. And enjoying the blessings of being patient. “I feel like I get rewarded for that karma,” he finishes. “I rarely have a bad session, because I’m always sitting way out the back. I get the wave of the day because I’m not being greedy and no one’s paying attention. They think I’m just some kooky tourist kicking a quarter-mile past everyone. But when that big one comes, the whole lineup sees how dedicated I am.” — Matt Pruett
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For Purple Martin watchers, Mann’s Harbor’s annual roost is a sight to behold “The sky is so much larger here.” So remarked beloved Outer Banker Betty Dean “Bebop” Fearing upon returning home from her travels in Europe. And if you’ve spent even one day on our coast, you know it’s true. Between stop-what-you’re-doing sunsets on the sound, the eye wall of a hurricane passing over the island, or fireworks on the Fourth of July, the Outer Banks azure has a siren-like ability to make us crane our necks and gladly surrender. But there’s another supernal phenomenon that’s big enough to show up on Doppler radar, yet remains little known even to longtime sky gazers: the roosting of the Purple Martins.
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“To see all of the birds in fluid flight above you really is breathtaking,” says Alisa Esposito, Co-Chair and Educator with the Coastal Carolina Purple Martin Society (CCPMS). “It’s a spiritual experience.”
Every year, between June and August, 120,000 shimmering Purple Martins converge on the Mann’s Harbor Bridge. At dusk they roost for the night; in the morning they take flight again. Of course, the bridge hardly tops the list of tourist attractions — and locals are too busy beaching, barhopping or busting butt to stop and make the trek across Roanoke Island — so Esposito leads tours to generate awareness of the avian spectacle. But more than an admirer and advocate of these birds, she is also a caregiver who plays a crucial role in the Martins’ survival by maintaining a neighborhood of wooden birdhouses and gourds on her farm in Columbia, NC.
Historically, Native Americans would set out gourds for Purple Martins, a practice European settlers adopted when they arrived in North America. Over hundreds of years, the birds stopped using natural cavities. Today, Purple Martins east of the Rocky Mountains will only nest in human-supplied housing. That proximity to people offers protection from predators and creates a special bond between the Martins and their landlords.
“Every single Purple Martin you see at any roost is there because people have a relationship with these birds,” explains Esposito. “I see a lot of love in the sky when I’m down at the roost because I know all the care that went into their survival.”
After a 2,600-mile migratory flight from their overwinter in Brazil, the Martins start arriving around Eastern North Carolina in March. They spend the spring raising their young until they have fledged and can fly back and forth to the bridge come summer. The birds flock to the Mann’s Harbor roost nightly from 150 miles around. Each morning they fly back to their man-made houses to stake their claim on the property for next year and avoid any territorial disputes with late nesters.
“You can see them coming in for miles around some nights,” says Mann’s Harbor resident Jenny Hawk. “It looks like there are millions of them. It’s incredible, definitely worth the drive to come see it.”
Just watch your speed. Aside from promoting these fascinating birds, the CCPMS aims to raise public awareness about the dangers that arise when roosting birds meet rushing traffic. A 2005 study found that an estimated 3,600 were killed over the course of a year, with 77% of birds being hit in the morning by an average of 22 vehicles. Between 2002 and 2006, organizations including the CCPMS worked with NC DOT to push for fencing around the base of the bridge to protect Martins and motorists alike. But due to the bridge’s age and the high cost of the project, they eventually resolved to slow down traffic and urge drivers to
take the newer, faster Virginia Dare Bridge during roost activity times. Still, sometimes even 25mph can be too fast, which is why Esposito hopes to raise awareness for motorists to be especially aware during our peak travel season. “There are people that just don’t want to slow down; they just don’t see the value in these birds,” she says. “I don’t know if we’ll ever reach those people, but it’s definitely my goal. Because one car can kill 100 birds, that’s all it takes.”
Every year, between June and August, 120,000 shimmering birds converge ON THE BRIDGE.
This year, there are more outreach possibilities than ever in the roost’s 30-year history. The CCPMS and other organizations collaborated to build a parking lot and public-use pier with handicap deck on land donated to the county by Malcolm Fearing to memorialize his sister, “Bebop.” Spectators can launch kayaks and canoes or even book a tour on the Crystal Dawn to witness the roosting event on summer evenings. And the CCPMS conducts public education onsite, Thursday nights from the last two weeks of July until the first two weeks in August. Come fall, both birds and spectators will abandon the bridge. The Martins head to Brazil. The humans for homes near and far. But next summer they’ll return to the Outer Banks right around the same time, where Esposito, and others like her, will be waiting. “Each year, I’ve got my ear to the sky,” says Esposito, looking upward as Martins flit and dart from their perches in the morning sun. “I can’t wait for them to come back. They’re like family.” — Hannah Bunn
For more info on the Mann’s Harbor roost and the Coastal Carolina Purple Martin Society, go to www.purplemartinroost.com.
Esposito’s flighty neighbors. Photo: Chris Hannant
CRAWLER. endnotes PEELER. SHEDDER. EAT’ER. Softshell crabs and how they wriggle their way onto your plate
“Uh, ma’am, what are these things sticking out from my sandwich?” “I’m pretty sure this is NOT what I ordered.”
“Just how am I supposed to eat this?” Those are just a few rookie questions coursing through restaurants this season. But locals and seafood freaks know today’s special is not monsters or spiders or some combo of the two. It’s our good friend the blue crab in its softest, most delectable state.
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Like all arthropods, blue crabs must shed their exoskeleton to grow. Each time they molt, about once a month, their new shell underneath is at least 1/3 bigger, and so tender you can chew right through them. Clean and cook them, you’ve got a sweet, salty dinner in its simplest form. How do they get there? That’s a more complex tale. One that starts way back in winter.
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Clean and cook them, you’ve got a sweet, salty dinner in its simplest form.
“Our industry is very dependent on the weather,” says local crabber Jeff Pruitt. “As long as the water stays cold there won’t be any crabs; it’s basically a waiting game for the water to warm.”
So, while we pine away for our first beach day, crabbers are busy making use of their down time. When February hits, they mend equipment and make new pots. And once the mercury starts climbing sometime in April, savvy watermen make a break for shallow waters.
“We look for what we call ‘crawlers,’” says Pruitt. “The female blue crabs are so desperate to find a place to hide once they’re ready to molt their shell, we can throw out an empty pot and bring crabs home.”
May brings the largest number of crabs year after year. Seasoned watermen have the patterns down to such precise science, they can catch the crabs while they are still hard then wait for them to go through the molting process.
“The full moon or new moon triggers the reproductive cycle in females,” Pruitt explains. “They look for a male to keep them safe, so we use this to our advantage by placing our traps in deeper water and using live male crabs as bait.”
The crabs are then transferred to what is called a “flow through shedder system,” where they will molt their outer shell within three to five days. Crabbers keep the salinity balanced for optimum taste, and spend the whole month monitoring for “peelers” — ones that are ready to shed — around the clock. Like ticking time bombs, the crabs must be checked every four hours because once they go soft there is a very small window before the shell starts to harden.
“You miss one four-hour shift,” laments Pruitt, “and everything can be ruined.”
Hard box of soft candy. Photo: Matt Lusk
Any crabs that don’t molt get released back into the wild. And all softies must hit the streets within 24 hours. That where Murray Bridges comes in. For 30 years, he’s made sure the crabs get from fishermen to retail markets and onto your plate. “Our big run normally starts in May,” says the owner of Endurance Seafood. “On average we are shipping around 3000 dozen per day, depending on the size.” All told, the crabs spend less than 12 hours in Bridges’ possession before scurrying off to some faraway skillet. As the first distributor to ship out of state, today 90% of his stock goes to New York. But a few manage to stick around. You can find them in any area seafood outlet, along with plenty of advice on what to do next. “We sell our crabs live, clean them for you and tell you exactly how to cook them,” promises Kristina Brodeur of Carawan’s Seafood.
“Marine fisheries suggests eating any crab within the same day unless you want to freeze them. In that case, pre-clean them, wrap individually without water and they will keep up to six months.” But why wait? The fresher the softie, the better it tastes. Some local retailers even cook them for you on-site. Just be careful where you order. While modern chefs may prepare them marinated, sautéed or even grilled, the old salt outlets know better. “Some like it done that way,” snorts Sandra Austin of Austin’s Seafood. “I never have — and I never would.” Her suggestion? Dredge it in egg. Roll it in House Autry Seafood Breader. Drop it in a fryer and slap it on a bun. Now, stick it in your mouth — legs and all — and prepare your taste buds for the ultimate in crunchy crab sensation. A mix of sweet flavor and salty tradition like nothing in our modern world. — Fran Marler milepost 57
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Meet the sketchiest dude on Broadway. Photo: Nancy LeVine/ BrownEyesGallery.com
From brilliant costumes to Broadway careers, William Ivey Long helps turn fantasy into reality
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Outer Bankers can be a lowbrow bunch. Ty Pennington locks down a local girl and the grapevine goes nuts. Al Bundy’s annual visits turns folks Ted Bundy crazy. Don’t even bring up last fall’s Guy Fieri freak-out. Meanwhile, William Ivey Long can visit Manteo each spring with nary a whisper — despite being the biggest name in Broadway costume design. “My joking way of describing myself is to say that I’m on-time, I’m on-budget and award-winning,” laughs the Carolina native with five Tony awards. “I just keep saying it and I guess a few people believe me.” It all began backstage at The Lost Colony when he was just a boy. While Dad worked as director and Mom played Elizabeth, Long discovered his calling at the hem of legendary costume designer Irene Smart Rains. (He sewed his first costume at the age of five: an Elizabethan ruff for his dog, Manteo.) Today, Ivey’s resume boasts more than 60 Broadway shows — including hits like The Producers, Hairspray, Cabaret and Chicago — plus countless other productions. Last June, he even became chair of the American Theatre Wing, founder and co-sponsor of the prestigious Tony’s. Yet, despite juggling multiple projects non-stop, Long always returns to his roots to help nurture theater’s next generation. “I’m just passing on the same basic things that Irene taught me,” the production designer says humbly. “How to read a play. How to make clothes. Except she didn’t work on Broadway and I do. So hopefully I have a few more things to show them.” We caught up with Mr. Long between celebrating the New York opening of Cinderella, flying to Chicago for Big Fish and returning to Roanoke Island for his 43rd season.
MILEPOST: What’s the creative process like? Do the ideas just come to you? WILLIAM IVEY LONG: They do. In fact, sometimes they come in the middle of the night. I keep small yellow legal pads by the bed because otherwise, I’d never go back to sleep. But I’m also a Luddite. Do you know what that means? It means I have 12 computers in my office but can’t turn on a single one [laughs]. And I only use my cell phone when I go to foreign countries — like Chicago. That allows me to walk down the street and dream. So take us from a sketch to a final design. Is it draft after draft, or are they pretty solid out of the gate? It’s a little of each. For example, Big Fish is set in the ‘40s and ‘50s; it’s real people wearing real clothes. So if you can go to a vintage store or you have a 1940s suit in your collection, I’m all for it. We recycle all sorts of things because many projects you want worn-out blue jeans or shoes that are broken in. So costume people have been “green” since before the term existed. Now, skip to Cinderella — that’s a fairy tale. You don’t want the characters to look like they’re straight from Macy’s. So I start with a drawing, then I find references, then I pick fabric. And then I go work with the drapers, the people who make each costume to the measurements of that actor or actress. Who are you thinking about mostly — the audience? The actor? Or does it change? I work for one person: the director. But I do have this snarky little phrase: “Smiles after a
fitting,” meaning the actor has to leave a fitting happy. In other words, we’ve talked about the character and how this particular costume fits into the arc of the story. Sometimes the first fitting is almost all talking and drawings and trying on existing things. So I make the actor happy first and then — above and beyond — it’s always the director. This year, The Lost Colony has a new director — an old friend of mine — Ira David Wood from Raleigh. He wants us to shift the feeling on two characters this year, so we’ll make some new costumes. Then it’s fitting whatever people are hired. The director always tweaks some things and that’s what keeps it interesting.
“historical dramas are thrilling. They’re like trying to make oil paintings come alive”.
You’ve been called a stickler for originality. Does that make historical dramas like The Lost Colony harder? Actually, it’s thrilling. It’s like trying to make oil paintings come alive. For years, the Indians in the play were just wearing pelts of wild beasts. But there’s a documented intelligence dispatch they discovered that says, “Today, Walter Raleigh, the knight, was parading savages all around the court and he had dressed them in brown taffeta in the latest style.” So now they’re dressed in brown taffeta but their capes are made of animal skin. That’s more recent history that we’ve been able to add.
You once found a shower curtain in New York City that inspired a dress for Hairspray. Have you ever found anything in Manteo that ended up on Broadway? Yes, I have. There used to be a cloth place owned by the Bridges family called the Cloth Barn. We called it “Bridges’ Barn.” For years I would go shopping down there and drive things back up to New York to use in my shows. But then Mr. and Mrs. Bridges died and Broadway is the sadder for it. I loved them so much. They supported me since I was a kid. Is that lifelong connection part of the reason you keep doing The Lost Colony? You obviously don’t need the work. Well, the main reason is I enjoy meeting the next crowd of enthusiastic theater kids. And I always try to help alumni when they come to New York, because people helped me. Joe Layton, for instance — who directed The Lost Colony for 22 years — was one of my mentors. So was Fred Voelpel, who designed the costumes for Joe Layton. Most importantly for me was Irene Smart Rains, who was born in Wanchese of all places and was the second costume designer of The Lost Colony through many, many years. She taught me to sew. I became interested in costumes sitting under the cutting table playing with her scraps. I think that’s the nature of learning. You can go to school and study, but it’s also “monkey see, monkey do.” It’s passed down from person to person. So, how much of costume design is function, and how much is fashion? Is it more about conveying the story or dazzling the audience? I’d say it’s both. Cinderella is heavier on dazzling the audience because it’s a fairy tale. We’re all familiar with the story, but there’s a sense of wonder and magic that’s inherent. All of us who work in the theater are storytellers. But in addition to telling the story and being true to history, you want to show them things they’ve never seen before. That element of showmanship is crucial. Even in a historical pageant drama like The Lost Colony you try to surprise. And there are always ways to surprise. — Harold N. Modd
Ed. Note: At press-time, news broke that Long will be up for his sixth Tony on June 9. Furthermore, The Lost Colony will receive a “Tony Honors for Excellence in the Theater” award in a special ceremony on June 8. To see Long’s costume and set designs — as well as his other work — go to www.williamiveylong.com.
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Every summer, major acts hit the beach. Chris Whitehurst makes sure they sizzle.
Next time you go see a band, stop watching the frontman and look for the sound guy. He might be standing in the shadows next to the mixing board. (That’s the big black box with all the dials, lights and switches.) Or way in back, contemplating the volume. Or you might find him up by the stage, turning monitors, swapping microphones or just making sure the folks down front can feel the bass. Actually, he could be anywhere in the building from the balcony to the circuit breaker, listening for echoes or hunting down the elusive “60 cycle hum.” At least that’s what he should be doing — if he’s any good.
“Running sound is like hosting a big cookout,” explains 45-year-old Chris Whitehurst. “You start out prepping and setting everything up so once it’s on the grill you can walk around and make sure everyone’s enjoying themselves. The key is you can’t forget to go flip stuff [laughs].”
more than 20 years, Whitehurst gosurf For “Sometimes has been the Outer Banks’ most it’s mixing. in-demand audio chef for shows big and small. Not that he intended outthere Sometimes to be. Like most musically inclined, transplants, Chris’ it’s fixing”. post-college simple dream was to chill on the
beach all day and rock clubs all night. He even came prepared with his own sound equipment. But having a PA and speakers is a lot like owning a pick-up truck: people start asking you to deliver the goods. After a lifetime of fiddling around while ripping guitar leads, Chris realized he had a natural knack for running patch chords and turning knobs.
“My first job was a soundman at Port O’ Call,” he recalls. “I went in one night and Chopper — Jerry Dallas — was mixing this reggae band. They sounded horrible. I couldn’t take it. Finally, I went up and said, ‘Hey, you want me to fix that for you?’ And that was the beginning of a beautiful relationship.”
Ten-gallon hat; 24-track mind. Photo: C. White
Since then Whitehurst’s basically worked every local venue from drunken clubs to high school auditoriums, outdoor music festivals to tiny living rooms. In the process he’s done sound for big players on their way up or down. Lukas Nelson and Dave Matthews. Cracker, Clutch and Blue Oyster Cult. Percy Sledge and 2 Live Crew. (Not to mention, tightening levels on his own local outfits like the Little Kings, 1100 Pounds and Ask Fester.) This year, he finally teamed up with fellow engineer and musician Matt Hoggard to start his own business, Sea Level Sound. But job or hobby, headliner or has-been, Virginia Symphony or the Vagina Monologues — his approach never varies. “My first priority is always the audience,” he explains. “Because if the audience is happy then the band is happy. “ Which is why Chris spends so much time working the crowd. At 6’4” he’s easy to follow, his salt-and-pepper buzzcut changing hues beneath the stage lights as he bobs and weaves between bodies. Any spot in the room can sound different, so he keeps tabs on every square foot, making sure the quality flows to all corners in proper fashion. He’ll stop to listen and get feedback from friends and strangers to make sure he’s not missing anything — then it’s back to the mixer for minor adjustments. Or major ones. “Sometimes it’s mixing,” he laughs, “and sometimes it’s fixing. More than anything, I’m allergic to bad sound. So I try really hard to keep my finger off the ‘suck’ button.”
It’s not easy. Keeping the music on point takes more than just a laser ear. It also requires the muscles of a furniture mover. The patience of a pre-school teacher. The focus of a Wimbledon line judge. And the duct-tape skills of MacGyver himself. It also means not getting to play as much as he wants. But between set-up and breakdown, Chris gets to collaborate with almost every act that comes to plug in an amp. And that makes it the most electrifying gig on the whole beach. “Sometimes the band comes up after and says, “That was amazing; we really felt the energy,’” he says. “And that’s nice. But the best parts are those fleeting moments when the sound comes out of the speakers and surges through the crowd and disappears. It’s here and it’s gone. Like lightning.” — Leo Gibson
REELING IN THE YEARS
Looking back at last summer’s Pirate’s Cove Billfish Tournament
You’ve heard about the one that got away. The Pirate’s Cove Billfish Tournament is about the one that returns to the dock. “It’s a points-based tournament,” explains local photographer Matt Lusk. “So you earn points for every marlin or sailfish you get to the boat and let go. But if a crew catches a big blue marlin over 400 pounds, they’re allowed to bring it back to weigh for a shot at the grand prize. That’s when you really see a crowd.” In between, families gather each afternoon to see what edible fish hits the scales, from tasty tuna to toothy wahoo to glorious dorado. Kids leer. Mates cheer. At night, you can swill beer. And come week’s end, three lucky Skippers float away feeling like Thurston Howell. (2012’s repeat champ, Bi-Op-Sea, took home $224,329.) With the tourney celebrating its 30th anniversary Aug. 12-16 — and the 24th Annual Alice Kelly Memorial kicking things off for the ladies Aug. 10-11 — you can bet every slip will be bustling come 3pm. These photos from 2012 are just a sampler of what you might see while walking the planks. All photos @Matt Lusk
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gosurf outthere goshop Blowing Smoke rearviewat Flies On an island chain two hundred miles long the sun emerges like a hot waitress come to fill our pints with beer. She can boil the Atlantic, whipping and licking the sand that’s flip-flopped, stinging-hot, on the backs of my calves. Dad’s beer is warm in the sun. Mom is burned red, her skin peeling like last night’s shrimp. Overhead, pelicans glide in a V. Below, seagulls feast on peanut butter and jelly. Mom’s egg salad is too damn smelly, even for them. My nephew crashes into everyone with his boogie board, Frisbee and skimboard. I like watching him fall, but I think there should be a law about these toys. My nephew’s name is Mike, but that’s beside the point. My niece can’t shake the sand from her Hannah Montana beach towel. It clings to the hem, hides in the smallest fold. She shakes harder, unleashing pellets on the couple beside us. “Where are they from? The Show-Me State?“ “No. You’ve got a friend in Pennsylvania.” This means you! We all do. My Nana, who got stung by a jelly twice today, says she’s never seen so many people from the Garden State. We should plant sunflowers.
Illustration: Chris Kemp
The wind shifts, blowing black flies west to east, across the scrub and sea oats to feast on our Banana Boat and Coppertone rubbed thighs, oiled and baking brown. I’m determined to get a tan. Uncle Joe says that the only thing to do to get rid of them is, “Smoke a cigarette.” We’re coughing, blowing smoke at flies. Now the baby is crying while big kites are flying across the bypass on the tallest dune. A biplane cuts the blue in two: All-You-Can-Eat Shrimp, 4 to 6. The beach empties like a sandy-bottomed ballroom, a few stragglers on the steps. The starry shades pulled tight. The sun sizzles pink and squats down, a heavy-set bearded man, his shirt too small, his gut too round, over the sound. The hot waitress is counting her tips so the night shift can begin. — Michele Young-Stone milepost 65
Spend five days with members of The Lost Colony Company creating a special theatrical performance for family and friends.
June 24 – June 28 (Rising 1st Graders to 9 years old)
July 8 – July 12 (Rising 1st Graders to 9 years old)
July 22 – July 26 (Ages 10 to 16) Contact Lance Culpepper at (252) 473-4226
PUSS IN BOOTS Tuesdays and Wednesdays from June 18 – August 14 2:00 pm – At the Sound Stage Theatre All Tickets: $7.50
Tickets Sales: (252) 473-6000 This magical tale for children delivers a happy ending perfect for a summer afternoon in a comfortable air conditioned theatre. Use Code MP2013 To Save $2 OFF Each Adult Ticket
What’s summer without porch time? Get the answer — and some history — with Chicamacomico Life-Saving Station’s “Porch Talks” every Mon-Fri, June 3-Aug. 30. Daily topics run from famous shipwrecks to Nights In Rodanthe. Plus — on June 5, July 3 and Aug. 7 — crewmembers from the Coast Guard Rescue of the HMS Bounty describe their harrowing mission into Hurricane Sandy. Talks start at 2pm. Deets at www.chicamacomico. net. • For more drama down south, fly over to Real Watersports’ Triple S Invitational, where world-famous kiteboarders compete daily — and party nightly — June 1-7. Full sched at www.realwatersports.com. • Honor thy “father of flexible wings” when the 31st Annual Rogallo Kite Festival soars over Jockey’s Ridge June 8-9 with colorful tributes in all sizes and shapes. Visit www.kittyhawk.com for more. • The canvas does miracles at June 8-9’s 10th Annual Duck Cup Regatta. Be at NorBanks HQ at 11am as vessels embark on a race around the Currituck Lighthouse (Sat) and Wright Memorial Bridge (Sun). And circle back for June 22’s Summer Sailstice and Aug. 10’s Youth Regatta for sailing campers. Deets at www.norbanks.com. • Jennette’s Pier’s 3rd Annual Family Fishing Tournament returns June 8, 7am-1pm (Rain date: June 15). Grab granny and the young’ns and hook up on this fun-for-all free-for-all. Learn more at www.jennettespier.net. • Or hop aboard the Miss Hatteras and head to the Gulf Stream for June 8’s North Carolina Coastal Federation Offshore Fishing Fundraiser. ($95 for members; $120 for non-members.) Register in advance at www.nccoast.org. • And on June 19, the Fritz Boyden Annual Youth Fishing Tournament wants all kids to drop the remote, grab a rod and head to the nearest pier for a shot at free prizes. Divisions are 4-9 and 10-16. More deets at www. nagsheadsurffishingclub.org. • Find family-friendly Fri nights at Windmill Point with this summer’s Movies on the Sound. Pay $10 to park and watch flicks like Hook ( June 7); ET ( June 28); and Willy Wonka ( July 12). Full movie list at www.childrenatplayobx.com. And come back each Thurs in June and July for the Windmill Point Art Fair’s collection of creativity, 10am-3pm. Both events benefit the Children At Play Museum. • Local theatre fans and/or cheapskates can see The Lost Colony for free on June 7, 14 & 21. Just bring your Dare Co. license and a non-perishable food item. Miss it? The 76-year-old symphonic drama runs nightly through Aug. 23. (And kids can see Puss In Boots at 2pm, June 18-Aug. 14.) Tix and Behind the Scenes tour details at www.thelostcolony.org. • Run away! Run home! Run from your relatives! Whatever your reason, Runcations has races, including: National Running Day ( June 5); OBX Sunrise 5k & Little Kids Crab Crawl ( June 19); Sunset Spectacular 5k and Carolina Pig Pickin’ ( June 26); 2nd Annual Sun Realty Outer Banks Firecracker & Freedom 5k ( July 4), plus two series: Corolla’s Lighthouse 5k (every Wed, July 10-Aug. 14) and the Village of Nags Head 5k (every Sun., July 11-Aug. 15). Dash over to www.runcations.com for locations, times and registration. • June 15-16, watch teams from two to 20 wear funny costumes — and plenty of sand — when Storm the Beach mixes crawls, swims and obstacles. Register online through June 10; sign-up on-site June 15. More at www.stormthebeach.org. • For some more stand-up competition, check out the Bic SUP One Design Challenge (Kitty Hawk Surf Co. in Manteo, June 13, July 25, Aug. 20; or NorBanks in Duck, June 23, July 21, Aug. 1.). Bic provides the board and paddle; you bring the muscle. More at www.bicsuponedesign.com. And come back to Manteo on July 13 when SUPtastic combines a WPA-sanctioned race with free demos for rookies. More at www.khsurf.com. • Your garage is a mess — and you need some new surf gear. Solve both problems when Surf-o-Rama! comes to Secret Spot Surf Shop on June 15, swapping retro/vintage music, art and boards. Follow Evolution Surf Shop’s Facebook page for updates. • No idea what to do with that stick you just bought? Whalebone Surf Shop offers surf lessons through Aug. 30. Three students per cute instructor. For a good time, call 252-441-6747. • You don’t need to ride waves to celebrate International Surfing Day. Just be at Bonnett St. in Nags Head on June 20 to paddle out, clean the beach, grill some Boar’s Head and share some stoke. Then show more support for Surfrider by heading up to the KDH Bathhouse for July 28’s 20th Annual Paddle Race. More at outerbanks.surfrider.org. • On June 22, help the North Carolina Beach Buggy Association show our coast some lovin’ as Operation Beach Respect removes trash from all open Hatteras and Ocracoke access ramps. More at www.ncbba.org. • June 30’s Open Water Swim swarms Manteo’s Ole Swimming Hole with a sanctioned race for ages 11 and up. Proceeds benefit OBX Swim
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Club. More at www. obxswimclub.com. • Cover your ta-tas — while saving a few — by buying a t-shirt commemorating Birthday Suits’ 30th birthday. Proceeds go to the American Cancer Society. More at www. birthday-suits.com. • Calling all word nerds: be at Duck’s Cottage Downtown Books in Manteo every First Friday for special book signings. On June 7, Sarah Downing will etch copies of Hidden History of the Outer Banks, 5-8pm. July 3, it’s best-selling children’s author Suzanne Tate and her newest Davy Sand Dollar, 2-4pm. And Aug. 2, Danny Bernstein will autograph The Mountains To Sea Trail Across North Carolina, 5-8pm. (P.S. Downing will be at the Duck location on July 26, 9am-12pm, while Bernstein heads north Aug. 2, 10am-12pm.) • First Friday also marks Dare Co. Arts Council’s opening receptions for featured artists, 6-8pm. On June 7, see Lisa Lemair’s fiber and jewelry plus paintings by Gary Crane. July 5 focuses on photographer Keri Pampuch. And Aug. 2, it’s paintings by Petie Brigham. Go to www.darearts.org for details, plus info on painting classes by Munroe Bell and Fay Davis Edwards. • “The town of Manteo plans to be awesome. Daily.” Mayor Jamie Daniels ain’t kidding. Besides First Friday’s live music, later store hours and cool restaurant specials — and the Farmer’s Market each Sat., 8am-12pm — now there’s Tuesdays in Manteo. Come out for arts and crafts, scavenger hunts (register with Downtown Books) and boat rides at The Creef Boat House. Plus, Full Moon Café and Brewery gives free tours at 2pm. Reservations required; 252-473-MOON. More at www.townofmanteo.com. • Come back to the Full Moon on the 2nd Thurs of every month for Outer Banks SPCA’s “Pints for Pups” — or find them at the Farmer’s Market most weekends (www.obxspca.org). • Then there’s Second Saturdays at the Outer Banks History Center, 10-11am. Enjoy expanded presentations on their Dare County in the 1930s exhibit, including: June 8’s firsthand accounts of FDR’s presidential visit; the debate over Frank Stick’s Fort Raleigh log cabins on July 13; and learn a Depression-era dance craze called The Big Apple on Aug. 10. More at www.obhistorycenter.net. • Boogie over to Roanoke Island Festival Park for more summer theatrics. June 13-14, UNC Greensboro performs Best of Broadway’s greatest musical hits. And July 18-19, it’s The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged), an irreverent, fast-paced Bard-a-palooza. (Shows start at 7pm; tix are $10 for Dare Co. Arts Gallery houses Keri Pampuch’s “Wreckless Abandon” photo exhibit, July 1-30.
endnotes adults; $5 6-12; free for five and under; visit roanokeisland.com for more.) • And on June 29, RIFP welcomes Straight No Chaser to the Outdoor Pavilion. This wacky, a cappella ten-piece is a YouTube sensation thanks to no-band interpretations of everything from Beyonce to “Bohemian Rhapsody” to “Don’t Stop Believin’”. Tix and times at www. ticketmaster.com. • On that note, you might as well check OuterBanksLiveMusic.com and OBXEntertainment.com for most current musical events. But for the too lazy, too old or just plain Amish, read on for what we know of the summer lineup. • On June 8, race to Elizabeth City’s East Carolina Speedway as the Great American Music Reunion brings back Nantucket, The Robbin Thompson Band, bluegrass by Nu-Blu and Eric Clapton recreationist Slowhand. Tix are $20; www. greatamericanmusicreunion.com. • On June 10, hold tight as the Hackensaw Boys chug into the Outer Banks Brewing Station. Then Appetite For Destruction does Axl ( June 28) and Who’s Bad? goes Jack-O ( July 20) before Keller Williams noodles through on Aug. 2. More at www.obbrewing.com. • June 10 kicks off Kelly’s series of national acts with Donavon “Hands off my ‘Stache” Frankenreiter,
followed by ‘90s ska-kings Less Than Jake ( June 18) and rising reggae star Collie Buddz ( June 23). Blaze away your July with skapunk by Authority Zero ( July 2), plus reggae-inspired Passafire ( July 16) and Tribal Seeds (Aug. 15). And on Aug. 13, JJ Grey and Mofro serves up a soulful plate of funky southern rock. Book tix at www.kellysrestaurant.com. • Oh Ralph Stanley, where art thou? He’s at Manteo’s Water Side Theatre (aka the Lost Colony stage) on July 7 with his Clinch Mountain Boys and bluegrass classics like “Man of Constant Sorrow” and “O Death.” (Tickets are $25.) And July 21, come back for two-time CMA Female Vocalist of the Year Kathy Mattea. (Tix are $30-$50.) More at www.thelostcolony.org. • Country fans would be crazy to miss chanteuse Laura Martier
Oh say can you sea oats? Fireworks fly on July 4. Photo: Crystal Polston
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endnotes channel Patsy Cline at Kitty Hawk’s Outer Banks Jubilee on Wed. nights, June 12-Aug 14. And, June 22, look for prime pickers Code Blue. More weekly events at www. outerbanksjubilee.com • Punk fans jump into The Pit with indie documentary Hardcore Norfolk on June 15. DJ Incean and Misha blow up the Foam Party on June 29. And we all go to Rehab on Aug. 3. Plus, there’s the weekly smorgasbord of Teen Nights (Mon, Wed and Fri), Mug Night (Thurs) and Euro Night (Sun). Dig in at www.pitsurf.com. • Cool down? Heat up? Do both with weekly poolside concerts at Avon’s Koru Beach Klub: Antero ( June 6); The Doerfels ( June 11); Band of Oz ( June 20); Proverbial ( June 27); Kirsten Thien ( July 4); The Hound Dogs Family Band ( July 11); the Embers ( July 18); Sol Driven Train ( July 25); The Original Wailers (Aug. 8); The Rhondels (Aug. 15) Dave Matthews Tribute Band (Aug. 22); and Yo Mama’s Big Fat Booty Band (Aug. 29). Shows start at 6pm; more at www.koruvillage.com. • Duck’s Summer Music Series jams Duck Town Park most every Thurs: Carbon Jam ( June 27), Kirsten Thien ( July 11), Redhorse Black ( July 18), Whiskey Creek ( July 25), Lizzy Ross Band (Aug. 1), and Lipbone Redding (Aug. 8). And the Singer/Songwriter Series takes Tues in July: Rebekah Tod ( July 2), Chez Says ( July 9), Travas Hunter ( July 9), Barefoot Wade ( July 23), and the Zen Monkeys ( July 30). Shows start at 6:30pm and are fully free. (Get there early.) Details at www.townofduck.com. • Goombay’s gets busy every Sat with irregular performances by Sol Element ( June 15, July 27, Aug. 17), the Wet Boys ( June 22, Aug. 10), Zack Mexico ( June 19, Aug. 31) and Family Tree ( June 8, Aug. 10). Plus, one-night stands with the Hound Dogs ( July 6), Big Daddy Love ( July 20) and Formula (Aug. 24). Heaps o’ haps at www.goombays.com. • Trio has tasty, vintage rock each Thurs with Aquarium and bold bluegrass on Fri thanks to Jug Tucker. Look for Wed and Sat nights to rotate talent like Dark Water Rising ( June 8), Circus Mutt ( July 28) and Lizzy Ross ( July 31). • Hit the Rundown Café’s Hula Deck and you’ll see BC, Craig Honeycutt, Dan McIsaac, Steve Hauser, Hannah Buckley and Marc
Criminger. Check rundowncafe.com for the full rundown. • The Bonzer Shack’s Mon-Sun lineup shakes out like so: Dissl–Soto, Rick Agudelo, The Advocates, BC, Shaky Town, Denny Blue and The Break. • Like duskier sounds? Spread out on the Cotton Gin’s north lawn in Grandy with Acoustic Sunsets every Thurs, 5:30-8:30pm, for live music, winetasting, and some pet and kid-friendly fun. More at www.cottongin.com. • Or watch the day sizzle out from the sound’s other side, as Blue Point’s new deck and bar stars artists like Ruth Wyand and Dan McIsaac. Weekly schedule at www.thebluepoint.com. • Bad Bean in KDH has you bookended. On the first Sat of every month, join Blackbeard and Ninja DJ for Beats and Brew Night; then finish off the final Sat with Al-Key and Josh Martier’s Tiki Disco. Get both spicy scoops at www.badbeanobx.com. • And pop next door to Mom’s Sweet Shop on Thurs, June 6 to see cigar box guitars by ace of bass Ed Tupper; then come back July 11 when local shooter Michelle Conner shows off her travel snaps. See www. momssweetshopobx.com. • The Christian Music Summer Concert Series runs every Mon at Kitty Hawk’s The Good Life Eatery. Join host Kim Kalman at 7pm to benefit the Beach Food Pantry and Interfaith Community Outreach. Visit www.kimkalman.com for more. • Go see Natalie Wolfe at Sea Ranch’s Beachside Bistro on a bimonthly basis (every other Sat, June 1-Aug. 24), or catch her odd nights at Chilli Pepper’s ( June 3, July 1, Aug. 12) and evening jams at Fishhead’s (Aug. 3, 31). • And Art’s Place plans to… well, they don’t plan too much (at least not too soon.) But expect a 2nd Annual Summer ‘Soul’stice party the week of June 21 — and something sweet for the Fourth of July. • Oh say can you see the fireworks? If you can’t, you’re not trying. Festival Park’s July 4th Celebration blows away Manteo with an 8pm performance by the Army Ground Forces Band followed by an explosive display at 9:30. (Gates open at 6pm.) Nags Head Pier’s big show flares up at 9:25pm. (Helpful hint: Jockey’s Ridge offers a commanding view of the ocean and Roanoke Island.) Or zip south as Avon Pier launches the light show at 9:15. • Less flash, but still fun,
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endnotes Island Farm in Manteo trips back to Independence Day 1850 with a tribute of musket fire, ox-rides and a reading of our fabled declaration. 10am-4pm. More at www.theislandfarm. com. • Burn fat, not fireworks with the Killer Dunes 2-Miler and Liberty Sands Fun Run at Jockey’s Ridge. Get all the grueling details at www.outerbanksrunningclub.org. • Duck’s Fourth of July Parade starts moving at 9am and finishes with a Duck Town Park party with Ruth Wyand. Full route at www.townofduck.com. • Keep heading north to hit Corolla’s 21st Annual Independence Day Celebration & Fireworks at Currituck Heritage Park. Food, fun and fabulous music start at 5pm; fireworks fly at dusk. More at www.whaleheadclub.org. • The Whalehead Club keeps the good times flowing all summer with Wednesday Wine Festivals, 3-7pm, starting June 5. Join the Whalehead Gallery, Sanctuary Vineyards, Vineyard on the Scuppernong and Corolla Wine, Cigar, and Gourmet for local, national and international vintages. ($20 to indulge; free for nondrinking adults and all kids.) And the Summer Concert Series will run on the South Lawn every Tues, July 9–Aug. 28, 6–8pm. Pets on a leash are welcome at both free events. • And don’t forget the 12th Annual Under the Oaks Arts Festival, June 19-20. More than 100 unique artists, plus musical entertainment, food and children’s activities. Admission is free; $5 parking donation requested. More at www. whaleheadclub.org. • Paint a horse of a different color every Tues and Thurs at the Wild Horse Museum in Corolla (10am-1pm) and Scarborough Faire in Duck (2:30-4:30pm), $5-$7 suggested donation. And ride a gentled Spanish Mustang each Wed (2-5pm) and Fri (10:30am-1:30pm) at Scarborough Faire. More at www.corollawildhorses. com. • Think this issue’s cover ladies know how to stay in shape? Find out firsthand in Duck Village Yoga’s classes for all age groups — including Kids Yoga every Wed through Aug. 28, 12-1pm. And stay tuned for an end-of-summer fiesta fundraiser for the Water’s Edge Project, which helps Third World coastal communities. More at www.duckvillageyoga.com. • More into real ducks? And gators? And red wolves? And bears? Get to Roanoke Island’s National Wildlife Refuge Center for a range of learning opportunities. Or sign up for adventures like Pea Island’s Bird Walks (Wed-Fri, 8-9:30pm), Beach Walks (Wed, 9-10am) and Canoe Tours (Thurs, 9am-12pm; Wed and Fri 10am-12pm). Meanwhile, Alligator River offers Tram Tours (Tues, 8:30-11am), Canoe Tours (Wed and Fri, 9am-12pm; Thurs, 10am-12pm); a Bear Necessities safari (Wed, 5:30-7pm) and one-of-a-kind Red Wolf Howlings (Wed, 7:309pm). Call 252-216-9464 for reservations. • Saving sea turtles is no laughing matter. Except on July 2, when NEST and KDH’s OBX Comedy Club present comic Mike Riccadonna at the Ramada Inn for just $26. (More info at www.nestonline.org.) Or get the full list of weekly crack-ups in Corolla and KDH at www.comedyclubobx.com. • And saving humans is no easy task. Be at Jennette’s Pier July 10-11 to watch the region’s ocean rescue teams compete in the Mid-Atlantic Lifeguard Competition, showing off skills from swimming to saving methods to the always-popular Mouth-to-Mouth Marathon. (Ewwww… just kidding.) Keep an eye on www.jennettespier.net for real details. • Wine. Beer. Food. Art. Music by Mojo Collins, Joe Mapp, Old Enough to Know Better and the Jazzmen. Do you really need another reason to jam over to Manteo’s Red Nose Wine Festival on July 11? Okay, then: net funds benefit the Outer Banks Relief Foundation. More at www.
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rednosewinefestival.com. • The Elizabethan Gardens tingles kids’ noses — and other senses — every day of the week. Minty Monday tickles the tastebuds. Storybook Tuesday delights the ears. A Peter Rabbit musical dazzles the eyeballs on Wed and Thurs. Select Thurs afternoons savor Tea with the Queen. And Fragrant Fridays feature a touch-andsmell tour. Get times and prices at www.elizabethangardens.org. (P.S. For more ways to distract your gremlins, go to www.outerbankschild.com.) • July 20-21, the Wright Flight Kite Festival celebrates 35 years of floating fabric right inside Wright Bros Memorial. Adults pay just $4; kids pay zip. More at www.kittyhawk.com. • Race over to Kitty Hawk’s historic Old Station on Aug. 4 for the 12th Annual OBX Sandbar 5k. Huff and puff with hundreds of others to help the Outer Banks Relief Foundation — then help yourself to cold beer. $30 before July 31. More at www. outerbanksrelieffoundation.com. • Who invited all these VB wave hogs? The NC Chapter of the Atlantic Surfing Federation. At least for Aug. 4-5’s season-opening contest with the VA chapter. Register at www.atlanticsurfing. org. • From spitting tubes to spitting seeds. The 6th Annual Watermelon Festival will smash into Kitty Hawk Kites’ Nags Head store on Aug. 8 with dunk tanks, raffles and other sweet events. (More at www.kittyhawk.org.) And come back Aug. 10 for Kitty Hawk Surf Co.’s Hobie Fun Day for races and free rides. More at www.khsurf.com. • Aug. 14-15, the New World Festival of the Arts returns to Manteo for the 32nd summer, drawing more than 80 selected “Smile!” The artists for a juried event. Don’t try Christmas Shop buying the judges — but please buy reveals paintings by Jeffrey Batchelor, plenty of art. And for some “out of this June 20-July 10. world” paintings, visit The Christmas Shop and Island Gallery, June 20 - July 10, for serious surrealism by Jeffrey Batchelor. Details at www.outerbankschristmas.com. • The oldest baby in the New World celebrates her birthday on Aug. 16 with Virginia Dare Faire’s free Indian invasions, field games, red soldier patrols and more. (10am start at the Lost Colony; 1pm finish with cake and ice cream in front of the Elizabethan Gardens.) Stick around for Virginia Dare Night, as live babies play the Lost Colony’s lil’ lady. “But my child is so much cuter…” Prove it. Bring your Honey Boo Boo to July 27’s baby auditions, 10am sharp at the Lost Colony building. More at www.thelostcolony.org. • Head to the Wright Bros. Memorial for Aug. 19’s National Aviation Day and high-five two of our county’s favorite tourists — and tourist attractions. Event details at www.nps.gov/wrbr. • Jennette’s Pier is the big wave magnet as summer ends. Start with Aug. 10’s feel-good 4th Annual Surfing for Autism event. Aug. 16’s Arnette Cashpot Series dangles $3k in prize money for all willing entrants. (Beach registration starts at 6:30am.) Then, Aug. 17-18, the Rip Curl Grom Search gives hidden talent a shot at international attention. (Register early at www.ripcurl.com.) And a little gremmie told us WRV’s Outer Banks Pro has moved to Labor Day Weekend with the waiting period starting Aug. 29. Get stoked at www.waveridingvehicles.com. • Expect spectator activity to really spike Aug. 23-25 when the Extreme Volleyball Professionals circuit posts up at Jennette’s for two days of big competition — and teeny bikinis. More at www.evptour.com. • And if that ain’t enough peg-leg material, the Outer Banks Pirate Festival staggers to town Aug. 24-26, promising pirate history, storytelling, reenactments, shows and more eyepatches than a summer camp for BB gun victims. Open up and say “aargh” at www.outerbankspiratefestival.com.
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