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Virginia Symphony to Perform at Roanoke Island Festival Park
Posted by Brindley Beach Vacations and Sales | Friday, April 20, 2018


Virginia Symphony in concert at First Flight High School last year.

It’s been a cool spring, that’s for sure, but hopefully the weather will warm up enough for a special outdoor concert treat. Saturday, April 28, the Outer Bank Forum will be binging the Virginia Symphony to Roanoke Island Festival Park in Manteo.

In case it rains, the First Flight High School auditorium is the backup plan—and it’s not a bad place at all for live music, but sitting out on the lawn in front of the Pavilion with Roanoke Sound framed behind the stage will make for a magical day of music.

The program has not yet been announced, but the Virginian Symphony has been the traditional close for the Outer Banks Forum’s season for a number of years, and the music and musicians never disappoint.

Last year the symphony’s performance featured a full array of American classics—Sousa marches, the Star Spangled Banner and more. This year? Who knows. The symphony has been featuring a lot of Star Wars music, but we’ll know when the they play the first note what they will be performing.

The long range forecast looks good at this time. The concert begins at 3:00 p.m. and if the forecast holds there will be sunshine and temperatures in the mid 60s. 

Manteo Outer Banks Outer Banks Forum Roanoke Island Festival Park Virginia Symphony

Rejuvenated Wright Memorial Bridge to Reopen
Posted by Brindley Beach Vacations and Sales | Wednesday, April 18, 2018

The twin span Wrght Memorial Bridge.

As the summer season gets closer and closer, work on the eastbound span of the Wright Memorial Bridge is wrapping up and should be done by the scheduled completion date of May 14 or maybe a bit earlier.

While the bridge has been closed, what is normally the west bound bridge has been handling incoming and outgoing traffic as a two lane highway.

There had been some concern that the unusually harsh Outer Banks weather of January and March would slow construction down, but with the announcement from NCDOT it appears that work crews have managed to keep things moving along.

According to NCDOT the repairs and renovations being made to the bridge won’t be immediately apparent to drivers but it’s work that is critical to maintaining the bridge.

The eastbound bridge was opened in 1966 and although it was never unsafe to use, its sufficiency rating had slipped to poor.

The road has been resurfaced; it was a necessary repair even though in daily use the road did not seem particularly worn.

However, the repairs that were most important were to the support structure of the bridge—the bents and pilings that support the road. 

Concrete that had deteriorated or disappeared from the substructure over the years was repaired or replaced as were damaged  or weathered railings.

The project cost was $21 million and NCDOT views the money as funds well spent. The bridge is considered one of the most important spans in the state and refurbishing the bridge is part of a series of ongoing projects designed to prolong the life of some of the state’s more important bridges.

Ncdot Outer Banks Wright Memorial Bridge

New Artificial Reefs Will Improve Offshore Fishing
Posted by Brindley Beach Vacations and Sales | Sunday, April 15, 2018


It looks like NC Marine Fisheries is moving to improve offshore fishing with some artificial reefs.

The Outer Banks Angler’s Club was just awarded a $822,000 grant to create an artificial reef eight miles south of Oregon Inlet. The grant will enable the Angler’s Club to sink sink a 100’ ship offshore and add 2000 tons of concrete and pipe. There is a possibility, according to reports of a second ship being sunk as well, although that has not been confirmed.

Most offshore of North Carolina’s artificial reefs are located in the southern part of the state. Marine Fisheries seems to be addressing the imbalance. 

Plans are already on the books to use the debris from the demolition of the Bonner Bridge to enhance four artificial reefs off the Outer Banks that have been deteriorating. The plan seems to be a win/win type of plan. As the old bridge is dismantled, the debris is cleaned in place, put on a barge and taken to the reef site.

Commercial and recreational fishermen benefit from enhanced habitat, Marine Fisheries gets the material a very good price and NCDOT doesn’t have to dispose of it.

Because the Gulf Stream passes closest to the Continental United States at Cape Hatteras, there is more deep sea fishing leaving Outer Banks docks than other part of the state. An artificial reef creates a better environment for near shore fishing and the improved reefs and new new reef will have little or no impact on fishing farther off shore.

Although the southern part of the state boasts the most artificial reefs, Dare County is second to only Wake County, where Raleigh is located, in fishing license revenue.

Artificial Reef Bonner Bridge Gulf Stream Nc Marine Fisheries Outer Banks

Tshombe Selby to Perform in Southern Shores
Posted by Brindley Beach Vacations and Sales | Friday, April 13, 2018

Tshombie Selby.

It’s always good when local talent starts the climb to the top, and that certainly seems the case with Tshombe Selby.

Next Sunday, April 22, Tshombe will be taking a break from his developing NYC career to bring. An Afternoon of Spirituals and Arias to All Saints Episcopal Church in Southern Shores.

Sponsored by The Bryan Cultural Series, this should be a remarkable afternoon (begins at 4:00 p.m.) of vocal music.

There is amazing power to his voice, yet he is able to control that power, modulate it and the result is a remarkably compelling performance.

Tshombe’s story is really one of local youth makes good in the world. He grew up in Manteo, went to high school there and off to Elizabeth City State University where he majored in vocal performance. Along with being a bus driver for the school distict, he was the assistant choir director at the Lost Colony for a couple of years, before he headed to New York to see where his career will take him.

He’s not soloing at the Met yet, but all indications are things are going well for him and he’s following his dream.

Tshombe’s concerts will be a wonderful opportunity to hear a wonderful vocalist at the top of his game.

Tickets are $15 and are available at Duck's Cottage Coffee & Books in Duck, Downtown Books in Manteo, Grays Dept. Store in Kitty Hawk BS Sea Green Gallery in Nags Head.

Bryan Cultural Series Lost Colony Manteo Southern Shores Tshombe Selby

That's a Big Tuna
Posted by Brindley Beach Vacations and Sales | Wednesday, April 11, 2018

It took a while for it to be confirmed, but North Carolina has a new state record for a bluefin tuna. Weighing in at 877 pounds, the catch was landed by retired Army General Scott Chambers, of Townsend, Del back on St. Patrick’s Day.

It was an Outer Banks catch—Capt. Dennis Endee’s A-Salt Weapon docked at Pirate’s Cove on Roanoke Island took the general out. And landing the fish included a two and a half hour battle followed by 90 minutes just to get it in the boat.

The Outer Banks catch shatters the old state bluefin record of 805 pounds. Caught on the last day of the trophy season, the fish 9’5” long and measured 79” at its greatest girth.

Caught on the last day that a bluefin tun longer than 73” can be kept, the bluefin was not the only behemoth landed this season from North Carolina waters. Beaufort reported a bluefin weighing more than 1000 pounds, but because the fish was sold to a dealer it was not eligible to be a trophy.

According to reports, General Chambers gave his friends a lot of tuna steaks and his wife has been busy creating tuna recipes.

Bluefin Tuna Outer Banks Pirates Cove Roanoke Island Wicked Tuna

Blackbeard's Flag to Grace NC Ferries
Posted by Brindley Beach Vacations and Sales | Sunday, April 8, 2018

Ferry Division Director Harold Thomas, Blackbeard 300 Committee Chair LaRae Umfleet, and Ferry Division Deputy Director Jed Dixon display Blackbeard flag.

It was 300 years ago that Blackbeard the Pirate’s reign of terror on coastal shipping was ended when Captain Robert Maynard of the Royal Navy trapped the pirate off Ocracoke and took his head back to Virginia in triumph.

The date was November 22, 1718. Lt. Maynard had been dispatched by Governor Spotswood of   Virginia to the waters of North Carolina to take care of the Blackbeard problem once and for all. The Governor’s frustration with North Carolina’s inaction had been growing for some time and his suspicion that the pirate had found more than one friendly port of the pirate to offload his goods in North Carolina was probably well-founded…never proven, but then again, it has never been disproved.

Blackbeard’s most famous ship was the Queen Anne’s Revenge, a ship he scuttled off the southern coast of North Carolina when he temporarily attempted the life of a country squire living near Edenton.

It was an unsuccessful attempt at rehabilitation and within a year he was back at sea…for the last time.

However, the legend Queen Anne’s Revenge lived on and in 1996, the wreckage of a wooden ship with cannon was located in the waters near Beaufort Inlet. The remains have been positively identified as the Queen Anne’s Revenge.

 In commemoration the death of Blackbeard 300 years ago, N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources has put together a traveling show about the pirate and Queen Anne’s Revenge.

Look for the exhibit to be at the Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum in Hatteras June 2-July 29.

Blackbeard Graveyard Of The Atlantic Hatteras Ocracoke Queen Annes Revenge

Great Spring Evening Greets First Official Manteo First Friday
Posted by Brindley Beach Vacations and Sales | Friday, April 6, 2018

Great weather greeted Manteo First Friday visitors. Perfect for a sidewalk cafe meal.

We had our first official First Friday of the year in Downtown Manteo tonight and the Outer Banks weather could not have been more cooperative.

Tomorrow and Sunday looks like a different story, but this first First Friday was jut about perfect…And the crowds reflected that.

It was a glorious night to sit at a sidewalk cafe and have a bite to eat or to stroll around and listen to some music.

The old County Courthouse is now the Dare County Arts Council Gallery, which has become the center of the First Friday celebration.

Upstairs at the Gallery, Suzanne Tate, the author of the Suzanne Tate Nature Series of books for children and the artists James Melvin were celebrating a 30 year partnership and the release of their 39th book. The latest book is Merri-Lee Monarch, a Tale of a Big Trip.

The story is based on a true event. There is a swarm of butterflies—officially called a Kaleidoscope— that migrate between South Nags Head and the mountains of Mexico every year.

The subject fascinated Suzanne and she researched extensively to write her book about the Big Trip.

Compared to her other book, there is a bit more text and a little more explaining what happens to in the life cycles of butterflies. Te book is still very appropriate for children ages 3-7, but there is a bit more writing than usual.

Along with the writing, Melvin’s artwork may be the best he has done of the Nature Series. The use of color and texture is outstanding.

The DCAC Gallery was packed tonight, and the crowds certainly seemed to spill over to the Manteo Waterfront—a great evening and a great way to welcome spring to the Outer Banks.

Dcac First Friday Gallery James Melvin Maneo Outer Banks Suzanne Tate

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