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Whalehead Club Center of Entertainment in Corolla

We just want to give a quick shout out to our Brindley Beach guests and make sure anyone staying around the Whalehead Club in Corolla or making a trip that way knows about  all the great stuff to do there.

We’re one of the proud sponsors of the Runcations Lighthouse 5K series. Every Wednesday at 7:00 a.m. on the grounds of the Whalehead Club. It’s a great way to start the day, the course has no hills and after burning off all that energy the perfect way to end your day is  . . . 

The Wednesday Wine Festival from 3-7:00 p.m. We do like the way the Whalehead Club describes the day—“Wind up and Wine Down.” The setting on the lawn of the Whalehead Club is beautiful and with wines from two local wineries, Sanctuary Vineyards and the Vineyard on the Scuppernong, it’s a great opportunity to try some of the local wines. 

Every Tuesday evening from 5:30-8:00 it’s the Tuesday Summer Concert Series, featuring some of the best local musicians around. 

The Whalehead Club is actually part of Currituck Heritage Park and visiting it is just one of the great things to do in Corolla.

Duck Town Park-Great Entertainment Value

Town of Duck town green and park.

 

We’ve spent a lot of time this summer talking about all the things there are to do on the Outer Banks, but somehow or for some reason we haven’t said much about the town of Duck, which is really an oversight on our part.

In many ways, Duck is the entertainment center of the everything north of Kitty Hawk. 

The Whalehead Club up in Corolla has scheduled events from time to time, but Duck has something happening every day of the week in its town green--and it's all free.

The day starts with yoga in the park, and after that there are a number of different activities, most of it geared to kids—story time, children’s theatre, magic shows. 

There’s lots happening in the evenings as well. Every Thursday starting at 6:30, it’s Concert in the Park with live music from the gazebo. This Friday and next Friday, it’s “Movie Night” a presentation of Children at Play. This Friday it’s Smurfs 2 followed by the Iron Giant on August 1.

The town green is a part of a beautiful town park that runs along Currituck Sound. It’s worth a visit, even if you’re not going for the entertainment.

The Center of the Outer Banks World

Gin Blossoms perfomrmiing at Roanoke Island Festival Park.

 

People who don’t live on the Outer Banks tend to think of them as a single place with one identity. But for those of us who live here, we know there are a lot of different stories to tell in the 100 or so miles that make up these barrier islands.

If there is one town that is in the middle of things, though, it’s got to be Manteo, which is on Roanoke Island.

Admittedly Manteo is a pretty long ride from Corolla (about an hour) but we’re bringing up the town, because there is so much happening there that it’s a good idea to know about it.

It has a wonderful little downtown that has a couple of sidewalk cafes, coffee shops and art galleries, but beyond that, it has really become the place to go for some of the bigger events on the Outer Banks.

The Brew Thru Summer Series at Roanoke Island Festival Park just wrapped up last night with the Spin Doctors and Gin Blossoms in concert. Performed on an outdoor stage right on the Roanoke Sound with an expansive grassy infield, it would be hard to imagine a better setting for an outdoor concert. And the Spin Doctors and Gin Blossoms really delivered.

However, any discussion of an outdoor theatre on the Outer Banks has to include the Lost Colony, which is the longest running outdoor drama in United States—77 years. What management is now doing, in addition to the Lost Colony performances, is bringing in some excellent entertainment to their Waterside Theatre.

This Sunday it will be the Lovin’ Spoonful, followed by Jars of Clay August 3rd and Marty Stuart August 17.

In addition to the evening entertainment, the North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island is about two miles past downtown Manteo. The aquarium is running the Tyrannosaurus Trek—life sized animatronic replicas of dinosaurs. Take the kids . . . pretend you’re a kid. You’ll have a great time.

Early Signs Point to Strong Outer Banks Visitation

There’s that old saying that goes, “numbers don’t lie,” and if that’s the case, it looks like the Outer Banks is headed for another record year of visitation. 

We’re only halfway to the end of the year, so it’s a little bit early to celebrate but the figures we’re seeing from the Outer Banks Visitors Bureau, who tracks these things, indicate a very strong year on tap.

Something that is particularly encouraging for us here at Brindley Beach, home rentals appear to have the strongest growth of any of the categories the OBVB tracks.

A cautionary note has to come with this—these figures are only through May and we’re not sure how June is going to turn out. With so many schools in the northeast having to stay in session an extra one and sometimes two weeks to make up for the snow days, we’re still waiting to find out what the impact was on the month.

However, July and August are as packed as ever and with more and more activities a part of the Fall scene, there’s a lot of reason for optimism about how the year is going to turn out.

Bike Riding and the Outer Banks

Here at Brindley Beach we’ve written a lot about how great a place the Outer Banks is for running, but for some reason we haven’t really talked about bike riding too much. That’s a mistake on our part, because it would be hard to find a better place to ride a bike than the Outer Banks.

For our visitors in Corolla, the whole area around Corolla Village and Corolla Light is designed for bike riding. Nicely shaded multi-use paths and no hills make this area the perfect place for a family bike ride. South of Timbuck II the shoulder of NC 12 serves as a bike path, and it’s not suitable for younger riders.

For our visitors in Duck and Southern Shores, miles of interconnecting bike paths make northern Dare County the perfect place for a family outing or a more challenging ride. Actually the Outer Banks bike trails are interconnected all the way from Duck to South Nags Head.

It is possible to ride from the the Sanderling in Duck all the way to the Wright Brothers Monument in Kill Devil Hills on bike paths. Should you decide to take the challenge, it’s a 33 or 34 mile round trip, so take extra water. 

The Outer Banks Visitor’s Bureau has a bike map on their website that is helpful, especially in identifying some of the easier rides.

Morning Joe on the Outer Banks

It’s early morning, a good time to be lazy, and in this case that extends all the way to “too lazy to brew a pot of coffee.”

No problem—there’s actually a lot of coffee shops on the Outer Banks, most of them locally owned, and all of them very good.

We’ll get Starbucks out of the way first because, that’s not locally owned (of course), but located in the Marketplace in Southern Shores it has become a great place to meet.

Now that the corporate giant is out of the way, we can talk about all the local places to get a cappuccino, and start up there in Corolla with the Outer Banks Coffee Company. They roast their own coffee, and a cup of brew from them is full bodied and very good. The shop is on Ocean Trail in the strip of stores that is in front of the Food Lion shopping center.

The Village of Duck has two very good coffee shops. Take your pick, you won’t go wrong. 

Duck’s Cottage is really half coffee shop and half bookstore in what was once a hunting lodge. It’s on the south end of the Waterfront Shops in its own building with a small seating area inside and couple of tabls on the porch. 

Just down the road Sweet T’s, has a thoroughly pleasant outdoor seating area on their porch. Shaded by trees it sits back from the road and just has a nice relaxing atmosphere about it.

Two places in Kitty Hawk are right across the Bypass from one another.

Necla Rader has done a great job in creating a very comfortable classic coffee house feel at Outer Bean Juice and Java. Great baked goods in the morning and some very interesting lunch specials later in the day.

The Good Life is a little bit of everything—coffee shop, bakery and restaurant. With a large seating area, it’s great for meeting friends.

Finally, Front Porch Cafe—which is as close to a chain as there is on the Outer Banks. Three locations . . . Kill Devil Hills at MP6 (that’s the name of the strip center) is just a couple of blocks up from our newest Brindley Beach office in KDH. There are also Front Porch Cafes in Nags Head and Manteo.

 

Outer Banks July 4th Celebrations-Delayed But Better Than Ever

There is something unique, special, perhaps memorable about watching 4th of July fireworks at the edge of the continent. It is as though the shoreline is alight with a declaration for all to see that here is a great nation celebrating its heritage.

Hurricane Arthur forced everyone on the Outer Banks to reschedule their fireworks. Because of that, the place to be last night was almost anywhere between the Avalon Pier in Kill Devil Hills and the Nags Head Pier in Nags Head

Avalon started their fireworks first but ten minutes later, the Nags Head Pier started in and for about fifteen minutes, no matter which way you turned on the beach, the sky was filled with blue and green and red sparkles and the concussive boom of rockets firing into the night sky.

It would be hard to imagine a more perfect setting—the evening was pleasantly cool with a very light breeze. The tide was out and the sound of the surf crashing then rolling to shore was a backdrop to the sound of the rockets as they sped into the sky. Families crowded the beach, there were a few sparklers out, one or two roman candles and a remarkable feeling that this was the right place to be at this time.

The July 4th celebrations are not quite finished yet. There is still a chance to see some spectacular pyrotechnics at the Whalehead Club on Monday night.

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