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Nighttime Entertainment-Corolla
Posted by Brindley Beach Vacations and Sales | Sunday, August 2, 2015

A lot of times when entertainment columns are written on the Outer Banks, the concentration seems to be on what’s happening  from Duck to Manteo, and somehow Corolla gets left out of the mix. So this is for the visitors staying in Corolla looking for live music or late night entertainment.

We’re sure to miss something or some bar or restaurant, but three places worth checking our are Sundogs Raw Bar & Grill, Mike Dianna’s Grill Room and Corolla Beer Garden.

Located in Monterey Plaza, Sundogs has something happening every night—live music, on Mondays they do a live music karaoke—which is always interesting, dance party trivia. It is a 21 and over party at night, but certainly something worth checking out.

With his contacts from his Mustang Music Festival, Mike Dianna brings in a lot of national acts. Coming up this week on Thursday its Yarn, with a great acoustic sound that’s part Americana folk and a little bit bluegrass. Next up is Soul House Revival on August 19 who rocked everyone’s world at last year's Mustang Music.

One other place worth a look, is the Shack Coffee Shop and Beer Garden—the Beer Garden is what we’re interested in here. On the south end of the Winks Plaza, there’s live music from local musicians Tuesday-Thursday.

Corolla Beer Garden Mike Diannas Grill Room Mustang Music Soul House Revival Sundogs

Flying a Kite-Child's Play on the Outer Banks
Posted by Brindley Beach Vacations and Sales | Friday, July 31, 2015

Getting ready to launch a stunt kite on Jockey's Ridge.

We forget sometimes that there is joy to being a child and experiencing things for the first time. That thought comes to mind when we took an eight year old out to Jockey’s Ridge to fly a stunt kite.

The kite, a gift from his sister and her boyfriend, was a very nice kite—a Prism Kites Quantum, a little more expensive than most entry level kites, but something that should challenge him for some time and hold up really well.

It was a fairly windy in the late afternoon when we got there, the wind seemed to be hold steady around 15-18 mph.The Prism is an 84” kite, somewhat large for an eight year old, but that certainly didn’t seem to intimidate the boy.

We got the kite set up, walked the lines out, talked a little bit about safety and what to expect, propped the kite up, gave him a thumbs up and let it rip.

The wind grabs the kite, and suddenly and eight year old is dragged 10’ across the sand before the kite comes down. “Are you alright? Are you alright?”

He stands up and he’s laughing. “That was awesome!” he yells.

Some more instruction follows . . . let the kite go straight up over your head . . . there’s no pull when it’s there . . . you’ll have a chance to control it.

He nods. Back to propping the kite up. Thumbs up again. The kite goes up, over his head . . . and suddenly, this eight year old who has never flown a stunt kite before is flying his kite.

Was he still getting dragged around a bit? It was windy and he doesn’t weigh much more than 85 pounds so yes. Was he having fun? Amazing fun. Worth every second and every grain of sand.

Jockeys Ridge Outer Banks Prism Kites Stunt Kite

The View from the Top-Rating Outer Banks Lighthouses
Posted by Brindley Beach Vacations and Sales | Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Bodie Island Lighthouse, located in South Nags Head.

We’re going to hold a little bit of a contest in this blog, rating—on a purely personal level—which view from the top of an Outer Banks lighthouse is best.

The Ocracoke Lighthouse is immediately eliminated because it’s private property and cannot be climbed. That leaves Currituck Beach Lighthouse, Bodie Island and Cape Hatteras.

It’s a tough choice.

Cape Hatteras Light in Buxton, which is a bit of a drive from the northern Outer Banks, is the iconic symbol for the Outer Banks. At 210’ with its lens at 193’ it is the tallest brick lighthouse in the United States. It’s a long climb to the top and the view is amazing; the bend in the elbow of the Outer Banks can be easily seen, Buxton woods is at its base and Pamlico Sound to the west.

On the other end of the Outer Banks stands Currituck Beach Lighthouse—a beautiful red brick building that calls out to be climbed. From the top the line of the waves breading against the shore forms a crisp white line with homes lining the shoreline marching north and south. Islands dot Currituck Sound this far north and the mainland can be clearly seen.

Currituck Beach and Cape Hatteras lighthouses offer amazing vistas, but the award here is going with Bodie Island Lighthouse.

The last of the lighthouses on the Outer Banks to be repaired and made available for climbing, Bodie Island was built by the same builder and who used the same material and is a slightly smaller version of the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse. The view from the top is absolutely breathtaking. The marshes and wetlands of roll toward the sound, to the south and a little west, Oregon Inlet opens to the sea, and over the dunes immediately to the west the Atlantic Ocean rolls to the shore.

Bodie Island and Cape Hatteras are part of the National Park Service and reservations are recommended for both—required actually for Hatteras. Currituck Beach Lighthouse is operated by the Outer Banks Conservationists and can be climbed at any time. A fee is charged for climbing any of the Outer Banks lighthouses.

Bodie Island Lighthouse Cape Hatteras Lighthouse Currituck Beach Lighthouse National Park Service Ocracoke Outer Banks

Exciting Events for Week on Outer Banks
Posted by Brindley Beach Vacations and Sales | Sunday, July 26, 2015

We have a great week of events coming up on the Outer Banks. A couple of fun races and a day eating watermelon and spitting seeds.

The Kitty Hawk Kites Annual Watermelon Festival is Thursday, July 30 from 10:00 – 4:00. Held at the Jockey’s Ridge Crossing store in Nags Head it is a day of wacky fun and—not surprisingly—lots of watermelons. 

There is a watermelon ice cream eating contest, a watermelon seed spitting contest, watermelon relay races and lots of things for the whole family to do. 

There are two races coming up that runners may wish to check out. The Brindley Beach sponsored Lighthouse 5K at is run on a flat easy course looping around the Whalehead Club and Currituck Beach Lighthouse. Starting time is 8:00a.m. every Wednesday through out the summer, so if the race this Wednesday doesn’t work out, check out next week's race on Wednesday.

The other race is the Sandbar 5K in Kitty Hawk. Proceeds benefit the Outer Banks Relief Foundation that helps local families in need. 

The race leaves from the beach access by the Black Pelican and goes north. The course is all beach and sand, so don’t look for record breaking times. Start time is 7:30 a.m.

Black Pelican Brindley Beach Currituck Beach Lighthouse Kitty Hawk Kites Lighthouse 5k Outer Banks Relief Foundation Sandbar 5k Watermelon Festival Whalehead Club

Wine a Little at the Cotton Gin
Posted by Brindley Beach Vacations and Sales | Friday, July 24, 2015

The Outer Banks has just about everything any vacationing family could want but within easy—very easy—driving distance there are some really fun things to do.

One of the best events going is Sanctuary Vineyard’s Thursday Acoustic Sunset Wine Down.

Held on the grounds of the Cotton Gin in Jarvisburg it’s about a 15 or 20 minute drive from the end of the Wright Memorial Bridge. The setting is beautiful on the north end of the store amidst towering pines; there’s live music and wine tasting. 

Even though it’s about wine tasting, this is a very family friendly event; lot’s of room to spread out under the pines, there are some picnic tables and the live music is always acoustic. Best of all, for the adults, the Sanctuary Vineyard wines have been showing steady improvement and some of them have gone from being good and drinkable to bering very good and very drinkable.

For folks who may not wish to drive to the Vineyard, Kitty Hawk Kites offers a pontoon trip across Currituck Sound with their Sanctuary Vineyards and Historic Tour leaving from Duck. The trip is offered throughout the week, but on Thursdays they take extra time to allow passengers to enjoy the music and setting at the Thursday Wine Down.

Cotton Gin Currituck Sound Kitty Hawk Kites Outer Banks Sanctuary Vineyards Wright Memorial Bridge

Med Flights Covers Outer Banks Beaches
Posted by Brindley Beach Vacations and Sales | Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Stretched over 83 miles of shoreline and a good sized chunk of the mainland, getting around Dare County can be a challenge, and that’s especially true for emergency medical services. That was the thinking of Dare County commissioners over 25 years ago when they invested in their first Medflight helicopter. 

Over the years, that commitment on the part of the commissioners to a medical helicopter that serves all of the county has been a part of Dare County life.

That commitment was underscored this spring when the county purchased the first Airbus Helicopters EC145 T2 to be used in the country. Delivery was in April, and by all accounts it’s a significant upgrade over any of the helicopters the county was flying before.

This particular aircraft is a little larger, with more range and speed than previous models—actually outperforms similar helicopters from other manufacturers. The price tag is up there—a little over $8 million, although the county is getting what amounts to a trade in credit on their old helicopter.

Medflights are use primarily to transport the most critically injured or ill to a hospital that is equipped to handle the injury or illness.

Airbus Helicopters Dare County Medflight Outer Banks

Skimming the Waters of the Outer Banks
Posted by Brindley Beach Vacations and Sales | Sunday, July 19, 2015

Sometimes walking long the beaches of the Outer Banks turns up the most surprising things . . . like a full-fledged skimboard competition in Kill Devil Hills this weekend. 

As it turns out, the Outer Banks Skim Jam is an annual event sponsored by Skimcity, one of the largest makers of skimboards. 

If the contest flew a little bit under our radar, it certainly did not fly under the radar of a lot of people. There were what looked like a few hundred spectators on hand, and lots of young kids with skimboards trying to nail the moves of the pros.

Skimboarding certainly isn’t as well known as surfing, but watching the competition it was clear these were athletes who had taken the time to be at the top of their game. Fast, calling for impeccable timing and surprisingly graceful, it was great way to spend some time on the beach.

This was a professional and amateur competition and the structure of the competition brackets looks to be the same as surf brackets, so for parents with kids who want to get more involved in the sport, it's worth a look.

Kill Devil Hills Outer Banks Skimboarding Skimcity

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