Antiques, art and health – an odd combination? Not necessarily. There are events involving each of these coming up in Southport, NC. And you can find places offering all of them in Brunswick County, NC. In Southport, NC there are antiques shops on E. Moore Street: Northrup Antiques Mall has two stories of antiques vendors where you can find Civil War Artifacts, silver items, glassware, antique furniture and toys. Among its treasures, Southport Antiques carries quilts, rugs, porcelain, folk art and linens. On N. Howe Street is Magnolia Gifts & Antiques where you will find a large selection of gifts, decorative accessories and jewelry on the first floor and antiques on the second floor. You can stroll to Waterfront Gifts & Antiques on S. Howe Street where you can browse gifts, jewelry, greeting cards and accessories as well as antiques. This Sunday, February 28, you can take your own antiques to the PEO Annual Antique Appraisal Fair.

The arts are an important part of the Southport, NC area and there are many artists living here as well. On Howe Street you will find locally owned galleries including: Lantana’s Gallery & Fine Gifts, ART @ 211/The Ricky Evans Gallery, The Galleria and ArtShak Studio, Gallery and Sculpture Garden. On E. West Street, just behind Franklin Square Park is Franklin Square Gallery which is run by a non-profit association of artists. All of these galleries feature the work of local artists and the quality of the art is amazing. Don’t miss the Associated Artists of Southport Spring Art Show at Franklin Square Gallery beginning on Tuesday, March 1 or the Awards Reception on Friday March 4.

In Southport, NC there are many services, facilities, people and businesses that support health and wellness. You can stop at Live Oak Nutrition for healthy foodstuffs and vitamins. You can take classes or work out at one of the fitness centers. You can even visit an acupuncturist while you are here. And on Saturday, February 27, you can check out the Health Expo at the high school.



(Image courtesy of the Southport Historical Society)

A host of amazing history can be found in the Southport, NC area. The Southport Visitors Center located in the Fort Johnston Garrison House on Davis Street is a great place to begin. You will find a fascinating wall display of the history of the area, historical artifacts and playbills from the films that were made in Southport, NC. A free brochure for the Southport Trail, a self-guided tour, is available as is information from one of the friendly and knowledgeable volunteers who will be happy to answer your questions.

Adjacent to the visitors’ center is the North Carolina Maritime Museum at Southport. You can wander through the museum on your own or take a guided tour through the exhibits of maritime life from the time of the American Indians to the present. Included is a pirate exhibit as well as interactive exhibits such as a deep diving research periscope and a nautical knot board. You can purchase souvenirs including pirate memorabilia from the gift shop as well.

You can participate in a lantern lit Ghost Walk and Historical Southport Bicycle Tours are available as well. If you prefer to stroll the tree lined streets there are a number of sites you will not want to miss. Southport’s oldest churches, The Chapel of Cross at St. Philip’s on E. Moore Street and Trinity United Methodist Church on E. Nash Street are lovely to behold yet distinctly different. You can visit The Grove at Franklin Square Park on Howe Street where the low walls were constructed of ballast stones used in ships more than 100 years ago. Stroll to Keziah Memorial Park on W. Moore Street where the main attraction is the Indian Trail Tree estimated to be more than 800 years old. At the corner of Nash and Rhett Streets you will find the Old Brunswick County Jail and across Rhett Street, the Old Smithville Burying Ground.

For a special historical event taking place in nearby Winnabow, NC this weekend, check out the Fort Anderson Civil War Living History event.

To introduce your sons to the Knights of the Round Table why not take them to the event, A Perfect Knight, in Boiling Spring Lakes, NC on Saturday afternoon. (Oops, sorry, sold out – plan for next year!)Picture


Valentine’s Day is nearly here and all the traditions prevail. The florists in Brunswick County, NC are swamped with orders for red roses and are frantically trying to fulfill them all. Restaurant reservations are nearly filled and a number of restaurants are offering special Valentine’s Day menus. The jewelry stores have seen an upswing in sales recently. Many of these sales include hearts on the necklaces, bracelets, earrings and rings. The shops are full of Valentine’s Day cards and candy in heart shaped boxes. This is all wonderful. However, if you are considering doing something special to celebrate, here are a few ideas:

Why not take to the air? High Tide Helicopters and Brunswick Air, both located at the Cape Fear Regional Jetport in Oak Island, NC, offer tours of the area with a different – and beautiful – perspective. What a fun way to celebrate!

Instead of heading home after the festivities, why not book one of the historic and lovely Bed & Breakfasts. You can spend a cozy evening together and wake up to a scrumptious prepared breakfast the next morning. Even better, book it for the weekend!

If the ocean is your passion, you might consider booking a house on the beach. The winter rates are still in effect, and this is the time of the year when you can watch the sun rise and set over the ocean. Just imagine going to sleep with the sound of the sea as your lullaby!

(Photo courtesy of Keith Green)

A Quaint Historic Seaport

Southport, a quaint, historic seaport, is situated at the confluence of the Intracoastal Waterway and the Cape Fear River where it flows out to meet the Atlantic Ocean. This is the place for people who genuinely want to kick back and enjoy beautiful coastal scenery. The town makes for an interesting day trip. Leave the car — parking is free — and just walk around as you discover shops, restaurants and pleasing views. It’s an extremely casual community that invites visitors to pause and savor a slow pace of life that is fast disappearing in nearby areas. A lovely, leisurely stroll, Riverwalk, begins at Waterfront Park and winds along the riverfront, through the Old Yacht Basin and on to the Southport Marina.

The town is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and history buffs will especially appreciate a visit for its beautiful old homes and historic cemeteries. The Captain Thompson Home, for example, offers a glimpse into the life of a Civil War Blockade Runner. The literary set will enjoy a visit to the Adkins-Ruark House, (now the Robert Ruark Inn Bed & Breakfast) where author Robert Ruark lived as a young boy with his grandparents. Ruark’s novels, including The Old Man and the Boy, give readers insight into Southport life years ago.

Once known as the best kept secret in North Carolina, this lovely little village with its live oak–lined streets is now being discovered. New shops, restaurants and hotels are springing up in the area as well as in the town, affording residents better choices without the necessity of traveling out of town. New housing developments abound. The Southport Marina has been completely redone and the movies have discovered the town – again. The first movie filmed here was Crimes of the Heart, in the 1980s. There have been several others since that time including Safe Haven which was filmed in the summer of 2012. The TV series, Under the Dome, was also filmed in Southport.