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Storm Passes by the Outer Banks

12' Seas at Avalon Pier in Kill Devil Hills.

We certainly dodged a bullet on that last storm that came through, and not just the Outer Banks but a lot of our neighbors to the north as well. A little bit windy, some falling temperatures, even a flurry yesterday morning which had all the kids thinking school would be at least delayed if not called off. No such luck for the kids—school opened on time and everyone got there safely.

Farther north, of course, things were much more serious, with near hurricane force winds, plummeting temperatures, 2-3’ of snow and damaging seas in New England. But the fear of everything from Philadelphia to New York City being buried under record snowfalls never did materialize.

We’re not completely out of the woods yet on the Outer Banks. Seas are running at 8’-12’ and are predicted to stay that high through the night.  There may be some overwash on the Beach Road, especially on the north end of Kitty Hawk, although the dune line in front of Ocean Boulevard that owner Donny King anchored with Christmas trees, seems to be holding quite well.

It's enough to make a person dream of summer. Rather than dream of soft sand, warn sun and beautiful waters, take the first step toward making the dream a realtiy. Call us at Brindley Beach Vacations at (877) 642-3224 and let's pland your vacation together.

Good Read & Coffee Too in Duck

Duck's Cottage in the Waterfront Shops in Duck.

One of the problems that does come up when we write about the businesses that are open on the Outer Banks in the winter, is it seems often that they’re all concentrated in the main towns of Kitty Hawk, Kill Devil Hills, and Nags Head. To a certain extent that's probably right, but it’s not completely right and with another nor’easter due in tomorrow night, we got to thinking about what to do when the weather is not cooperating.

Reading comes to mind—maybe a good book, a trashy novel, something classic, something in between—but there is something special about turning a page and seeing what the author has to say next.

Which brings up the subject of businesses that are open in places other that the three main Outer Banks towns. 

Duck has two very good book stores . . . and they’re open year round. 

Island Books in Scarborough Fair is a classic books store with a huge collection. A neat place just to wander around, there’s an attic filled with rooms and rooms of books. Certainly a place made for browsing.

Duck’s Cottage in the Waterfront Shops is in a converted hunt club. The selection of books is not nearly as large, but they make killer espresso drinks. There’s nothing quite like sitting at a cafe table glancing through a book and watching the world go by.

Music Scene Still Happening on the OBX

Singer, songwriter, guitarist, Ruth Wyand one of the talented Outer Banks Musicians appearing at local venues.

Just because it’s winter doesn’t mean there’s nothing to do on the Outer Banks. Proof positive of that is the all the live music scheduled this weekend, and actually right on through the winter.

There is not as much to do as there is in the summer, but for anyone coming thinking about a getaway or a romantic Valentine’s Day visit, there is plenty to do on on the Outer Banks.

This is just an overview, and with a little looking and a little research, there is no doubt more entertainment can be found.

Kelly’s Outer Banks Tavern in Nags Head has set the standard for years for entertainment on the Outer Banks. With the largest bar and stage area around Mike Kelly does a great job of brining in some really good groups. Weekends are always live music and there’s something happening almost every other night. Plus free chile on Fridays.

New this year, the Outer Banks Brewing Station Kill Devil Hills is staying open in January. In the past Eric and Aubrey took off for parts unknown for the month, but this year, there’s live music all weekend and some of the best beer on the Outer Banks.

Two places in Kitty Hawk are worth checking out. Ocean Boulevard has live music every Friday night. Good place to go for wine by the glass, killer martinis and an outstanding kitchen. For couples looking for a special place to go on Valentine’s Day—OB would fit the bill.

Trio has become almost everyone’s favorite place to go for a glass of wine or a schooner of beer. Over 24 wines by the glass, 25-30 beers on tap and live music Thursday through Saturday—hard to argue with that.

Two Beautiful OBX Winter Days

Maybe it’s a mid January thaw, or a spring/summer tease, but the last two days on the Outer Banks were absolutely beautiful. A front came through late this afternoon with a reminder that it’s still winter, but even so, it’s not that cold outside.

It isn’t as warm as the summer by any means and the ocean temps are between 45 and 50 so the there’s not much fishing action off the piers or in the surf. We’re getting a lot of reports of offshore action—black fin and yellow fin tuna is being landed. At this time of the year, of course, it is weather dependent and it looks as though the offshore fleet should be able to get to the Gulf Stream for the next couple of days.

The surf is pretty flat right now and there doesn’t seem to be anything out there to churn it up.

It has been a mild winter so far—a bit of a storm here or there, but no snow and only a couple of days below freezing. But two days like we just had, and thoughts of summer have to come to mind. 

Which is a reminder to get those summertime reservations in if they haven’t been placed yet. Call us at here at Brindley Beach Vacations at (877) 642-3224 or make your selection online.

Outer Banks Wedding Expo Huge Success

Brindley Beach Vacations's Jennifer Franklin and Tracy Seal manning our booth at the 2015 Wedding Expo.

The Outer Banks Wedding Association Wedding Expo has come and gone and the 2015 edition seems to have been the best attended yet. And if what the vendors were telling us is accurate, it looks as though 2015 and 2016 may be record setters for weddings on the Outer Banks.

Every vendor we spoke agreed that brides and their families seem more confident in the economy going forward this year and that confidence translated into more commitments to Outer Banks wedding vendors.

The show itself was typically spectacular, if a bit exhausting. Spread across two schools there were well over 120 vendors to see and covering everything from wedding videos to floral arrangements to activities for the wedding party. 

One of the more memorable aspects of the Expo are the food vendors as the ply the guests with some of the most amazing culinary creations imaginable. A lot of food—and it’s all very, very good.

Brides—and grooms—once the day is set and plans start moving forward, contact us here at Brindley Beach Vacations. We have a huge selection of event homes that can match almost any wedding party’s needs. From our Grand Ritz Palm that can accommodate up to 150 guests to our smaller venues ideal for a more intimate gathering, we have an event  home that will match your needs.

Outer Banks 2015 Economy Looks Strong

The economic numbers for the Outer Banks for 2014 are starting to roll in and they are looking good. Through November occupancy is up almost 5%, land transfer collections are up 23% at year’s end and building permit values are up 18.2% through November. Overall it’s a picture of a growing, robust economy although all of this comes with some cautionary notes and disclaimers.

First of all, these figures are for Dare County only. Currituck County is much slower in reporting out their numbers, and there may be some variation between the two counties. Also, building permit figures are really only part of the story—by themselves they do not tell if a permit is for a house, a remodel, a shopping center or garage. 

Finally, occupancy numbers are really raw data and do not indicate how many weeks or how often properties were occupied. The figures we’ve seen seem to indicate the northern beaches are holding their own quite well and that rental homes continue to be the strongest part of the Outer Banks market, but it is a very competitive market.

And that competitive market is going to get more competitive. The strong land transfer collections and building permits are indicative of strong real estate demand and a quick visual reference shows a lot of new vacation home construction.

Property owners, it is more important than ever that your investment will shine when guest look at it. Give us a call at(877) 642-3224 or online Brindley Beach Vacations and let’s work together to make the summer of 2015 the best any of us have had.

Outer Banks Wedding Expo Promises Food, Fun and Information

Bring an appetite and walking shoes to the 2015 Outer Banks Wedding Association Wedding Expo

It’s a big weekend coming up for brides and grooms with the annual Wedding Expo scheduled this Saturday and Sunday.

We’ve mentioned before how big a part of Outer Banks life wedding have become, but it bears repeating. From Corolla to Ocracoke there are around 3000 weddings performed every year—and that figure may be low. Hard figures are difficult to come by. There are three counties involved, no one keeps records on whether the marriage takes place by the sea or on the mainland, and a marriage license issued in Asheville at the far western end of the state is valid in Nags Head.

But there are a lot of weddings on the Outer Banks, and because there are so many weddings, there are a lot of services and a lot of service providers to choose from . . . which is why the Wedding Expo is so important to couples planning on getting married on the Outer Banks. 

The Expo gathers just about every service provider on the Outer Banks under two roofs—the event sprawls across First Flight High School and First Flight Middle School in Kill Devil Hills—and turns them loose to be their most creative.

The event is a visual feast, wedding musicians provide a backdrop of beautiful music and every caterer is turning out their best and most creative foods. 

Some advice for anyone attending: comfortable walking shoes are a must, and bring a good appetite—free samples are everywhere.

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