THANKSGIVING, ART & A FLOTILLA

I am sure most people are busy with Thanksgiving preparations, or looking forward to sharing the day with family, friends and loved ones. But don’t forget to be thankful for those family members, friends, or even acquaintances who are alone. This time of year can be a bit sad for them. Give thanks for their presence in your life by including them in your celebration. Invite them to share the day in your home, or take a plate full of Thanksgiving goodies by their homes and spend some time with them.

The day after Thanksgiving, of course, has become known as Black Friday, and the day after that as Shop Small (or local) Saturday. Please remember when you are planning your holiday gifts that a gift of art is a gift from the heart and it helps to sustain the artists who made it. There is a number of places in Brunswick County, NC where you can shop for original art. One of them is the annual Smith Island Art League Thanksgiving Show, which will be held on Friday and Saturday, November 24th and 25th, at the Bald Head Island Association Center in Bald Head Island, NC. Browsing is welcomed as well.

Flotillas are some of the loveliest of parades – parades on the water – that are held during the holiday season. The first flotilla of the season, the Ocean Isle Beach Flotilla, will be held on Saturday, November 25, in Ocean Isle Beach, NC, beginning at dusk. This flotilla will include a party afterwards as well as an auction to benefit a local Brunswick County charity.

If you decide to skip the shopping on Friday, you can take the kids and head on over to Wilmington, NC – just across the Cape Fear River. There you can enjoy the Battleship NORTH CAROLINA Battleship Ho Ho Ho. This event promises to be interesting and fun for adults and children alike. Be sure to take your camera for greats pics.

Santa at the Battleship

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Veteran’s Day

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This is my daddy. He served with the US Coast Guard in the South Pacific during World War II. I had not yet been born, so I don’t remember him from that time. But I do know that as a young man, he had played piano in the Brass Rail in Tampa, FL where he was from. My mother tells me that he was a fun loving young man when she met him and until they told her that he had been shipped out, but could not tell her where. She was pregnant and alone in the Sheepshead Bay area of New York City. She eventually learned that they had sent him to California and shipped him out from there. By the time he got home, his first born, my older sister, was nine months old. When he came home, he was not the same fun loving man who had left. His hands shook so badly he could barely hold a coffee cup. I am sure he suffered from what is now known as PTSD. He never talked about the war. I think it was too painful for him. It was not until a few years before his death at age 88 that we finally learned a few particulars. Daddy was a signalman on the ship. He stood at the bow of the ship displaying signal flags by hand while bullets flew all around him. He watched his best friend die beside him. He saw a Kamakazi pilot fly so close to him that he could see the pilot smile at him and salute before the plane plowed into another ship. Within the first year after the war, daddy saw his only brother die of cancer and his only son die of SIDS. In his years of marriage, he fathered six daughters. Daddy was the only veteran with whom I had close relationship. I know you have had a relationship with a veteran – your daddy, your mom, your brother, your sister, your husband, your wife. Tomorrow, Saturday, November 11, is Veterans Day. Honor them.

 

ART, ART & ART

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No, I’m not stuttering. This weekend seems dedicated to the arts in Southport, NC and Oak Island, NC, and good timing, too. All of a sudden it’s November and we all wonder where the year went. Many of us have not even thought about Christmas shopping yet, much less having started to find those special unique gifts for our loved ones. If unique is what you want; if handmade is what you want; if local is what you want, then the best place to find it is where you find art. After all, art is not just paintings. Check out Arts by the Shore in Oak Island, NC this weekend and you will see just what I mean. There will be a reception and awards ceremony on Sunday afternoon where you can meet the artists who created your favorite pieces. You can even vote for a People’s Choice award.

Tonight, Friday, is the first Friday of November. The First Friday Gallery Walk in Southport, NC gives you another chance to search for those special gifts, or, perhaps something for yourself or your home. The galleries involved in this event offer yummy munchies and drinks free of charge as well. So, take yourself down to Franklin Square Gallery for paintings and pottery; to Ricky Evans Art @ 211 for paintings, pottery, stained glass and more; and to Lantana’s Gallery & Fine Gifts for a whole range of interesting things.

Franklin Square Gallery will be featuring the opening of their Holiday Boutique. If you don’t find what you are looking for, come back again and again. Admission is free and the items in the boutique will be changing as local artists bring in more and more.

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BOATS, CARS AND A FESTIVAL

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(Photo courtesy Keith Green)

Halloween weekend is coming up and so is a whole bunch of fun events. Kids in costumes will be haunting Trunk or Treat events and/or knocking on doors and calling out, “Trick or Treat!” They will roam the streets as ghouls and goblins and witches flying on broomsticks. On Saturday afternoon you will find a host of pirates congregated in the Yacht Basin in Southport, NC, and most of them will be adults. Pirates in the streets! Pirates on the water! Pirates everywhere! They will be making ready for the Stede Bonnet Regatta. After the regatta the air will be filled with music at the Provision Company and a whole lot of dancing will be going on.

Between 10 AM and 4 PM even some of the cars at the Classic Cars Rock ‘n Roll event in Southport, NC will be dressed in costume for a spooky vehicle contest. There will be a classic car show along with more contests and dancing in the streets in the afternoon.

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The North Carolina Festival by the Sea will be held in Holden Beach, NC on Saturday and Sunday. So, if you prefer to spend Saturday at the events in Southport, NC, you can always head to Holden Beach, NC on Sunday and make a weekend of it. Kicking off with a parade, this event will offer activities and fun for adults and kids alike. So, get on out of the house in this beautiful fall weather and enjoy.

North Carolina Festival by the Sea in Holden Beach

FALL = HAYRIDES AND OYSTERS

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Even in ‘the olden days’ when I was young, a favorite fall activity was going on a hayride. Back then we sang songs together, our voices ringing on the crisp fall air, as we huddled together for warmth in the hay telling stories and jokes. In Boiling Spring Lakes, NC, on Saturday, October 21, you can enjoy a very special kind of hayride – a Haunted Hayride. What fun! This annual event is different every year, so if you attended before, prepare to be scared out of your wits again.

Also this weekend, you have two days (Saturday and Sunday) to head out to Ocean Isle Beach, NC and enjoy everything oysters at the North Carolina Oyster Festival. With music, dancing, eating, shucking, crafts, oyster stew, and so much more, you are sure to find something(s) to make your day memorable.

There will be something special happening in the northern part of the Brunswick County, NC that will be of interest to history buffs and kids who enjoy learning at reenactments. Port Brunswick Days will be held at the Brunswick Town/Fort Anderson State Historic Site in Winnabow, NC. From 10 AM until 4 PM on both Saturday and Sunday, living historians will wear 18th century clothes and demonstrate how life was lived during those times. You, too, can take part in activities such as candle dipping, militia drilling, sitting in the stocks and other experiences that will take you back to that previous time.

FLYING, FISHING & PUMPKINS

Most people who are spending a day at an airport are not happy about it. Most likely, they are there because they have to be there because of cancelled flights or other irritating events. But I am suggesting that you choose to spend at least part of this Saturday, October 14, at the Cape Fear Regional Jetport in Oak Island, NC. There will be happenings afoot. The Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) Chapter 939 will have a 1928 Ford Tri-Motor Aircraft available for your inspection and picture taking opportunities starting today, October 12 through Sunday, October 15. So, if Saturday is not a good day for you to stop by, you have three other days to do so. However, if you decide to make it on Saturday, you can also enjoy a pancake breakfast from 8:30 AM until 11 AM for a $5.00 fee. For free, you can enjoy the music of the Brunswick Big Band from 3 PM until 5 PM. You can also enjoy a flight aboard the airplane any of the four days of the event by booking in advance at FLYTHEFORD.ORG or by calling (877) 952-5395. Walk-up flights will be available for a bit more.

Also on Saturday, from 4 PM until 8 PM, you can enjoy the Barktoberfest at Check Six Brewing Company in Southport, NC.  At this event you will enjoy an Assistance Dog Demonstration, a puppy meet and greet, beer, music, food, a homemade dog biscuit giveaway and a 50/50 raffle. Proceeds will benefit Paws4vets.

For food, fun and fishing, check out the Fall brawl King Classic at the Ocean Isle Fishing Center in Ocean Isle Beach, NC. This event will begin on Friday, October 13 and will run through Sunday, October 15.

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For another fun family event, you can head on down to Indigo Farms in Calabash, NC. Pumpkin Day will take place on Saturday, October 14. Here, you will enjoy all kinds of activities and can pick your Halloween pumpkin from their pumpkin patch.

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FISHING TOURNAMENTS & FARM TOUR

Fishing tournament season is upon us and the fun begins today, October 5, in Southport, NC, with the U.S. Open King Mackerel Tournament registration, entertainment and captains meeting at the Southport Marina. Fishing will begin on Friday with more entertainment on Saturday afternoon and the awards ceremony on Saturday evening. As you can see, this event is not just for the fishermen. It’s an enjoyable time for everyone.

Also, on Saturday, your kids up to age 15 can enjoy the fun of fishing, from 10 AM until noon, on the City Pier, in Southport, NC, at Captain Charlie’s Kids Fishing Tournament.  This is a great way to get your kids hooked on fishing. They might even win the U.S. Open King Mackerel Tournament someday.

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On Saturday afternoon, from 3 PM until 5 PM, you can enjoy the Farm Tapas and Farm Tour at Greenlands Farm on Midway Road, in Bolivia, NC. There is a fee and reservations are required (910-253-7934). You can learn about sustainable farming; meet the rescued farm animals and free range chickens; see a goat milking demonstration and more. Proceeds benefit HOOF, their non-profit farm animal sanctuary.

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