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If are looking for something fun to do in Brunswick County, NC it’s a good bet that you will find it provided by the Parks and Recreation Departments of the towns. The employees of these departments are fun loving individuals who come up with ideas – and carry out those ideas – for events that are available to you on a continuing basis. You will find information about some of those upcoming events here.

Town of Oak Island, NC Parks and Recreation:
If you have missed the Summer Concert Series up to this point do not despair, there will be three more Friday evening concerts (6:30 PM – 8:30 PM) at Middleton Park. Those dates are 8/10, 8/17 and 8/24.
On 8/11, 8/16 and 8/25 you can check out Nature is Wild About Reading at the Oak Island Nature Center. Here, kids can listen to stories and make fun crafts from 11 AM until noon. Topics include: 8/11 – Seashells, 8/16 – Land and Sea Turtles, 8/25 – Trees, Leaves and Bark. Please preregister kids ages 4 and up at 278-5518.
On 8/14 at 6 PM you might enjoy the Turtle Talk offered by the OKI Sea Turtle Protection Program.
Interested in the coastal birds? Here’s one for you:
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8/15 from 2 PM until 3:30 PM you can learn all the tips and tricks of Bird Photography at a free program. You will also get tips on places nearby where you can find birds to photograph, how to stage your backyard to welcome birds, and understanding bird behavior.
How about a trip to Lake Waccamaw (fee $5) on 8/23 from 9 AM until 2 PM to see Alligators Up Close & Personal? (preregistration required)
And don’t forget the Labor Day Surf Off on 9/1.

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Boiling Spring Lakes, NC Parks and Recreation:
The Monthly Birthday Ice Cream Social is held from 12:30 PM until 1 PM the second Friday of each month. Come on out and celebrate with an ice cream sundae.
Karate for Kids is held on Mondays from 6 PM until 7 PM from August 13 through December 17.
Put your dancing shoes on and join the Line Dancing on Wednesdays at 6:30 PM.
Bring your lunch and enjoy Brown Bag Lunch and a Movie on 8/16 from 11 AM until 2 PM.
Come to Dress Like a Nerd Day and enjoy lunch and maybe win a prize on 8/22 from 12 noon until 1 PM.
Get your friends together and join in the fun for Afternoon Adult Trivia on 8/23 from 11 AM until 2 PM. Pizza, salad and cash prizes will be offered. ($5 and RSVP by 8/20)


This weekend the fun begins on Friday, December 8, 2017, in Southport, NC. Your family and friends can start the afternoon at 3 PM at the NC Maritime Museum. There a Victorian lady will take you on a Holiday History Tour. Then beginning at 5:30 PM, kids of all ages can ride on a fire engine in the Light up the Night parade. The parade will also include classic cars, bands and floats among other interesting entrants. Refreshments with Santa will be served at the fire station after the parade.

Saturday offers a full day of fun. The Winterfest Winter Craft Festival will be held in Franklin Square Park in Southport, NC from 9 AM until 4 PM. There you will find holiday decorations, gifts and food. You can even make your own wreath with instruction by members of the Southport Beautification Club for a $30 fee. A Handmade Christmas will be held at the Southport Community Building from 10 AM until 1 PM.

Also on Saturday, from 1 PM until 6 PM you can enjoy the festive decorations in a list of Southport homes that will be included in the Winterfest Christmas Tour of Homes. After dinner, you can enjoy the Winterfest Christmas Flotilla from 7 PM until  PM – or decorate your own boat and take part yourself.

If you will be in the Leland, NC area on Saturday, you might want to take in the North Brunswick Christmas Festival and Parade beginning at 10 AM. On Sunday, beginning at 1 PM you can also enjoy An 18th Century Christmas at the Brunswick Town/Fort Anderson State Historic Site. All of these wonderful festivities should get you in the mood for celebration.


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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.


I want to begin by apologizing to anyone who was inconvenienced by an error in last week’s post. It seems that I was given incorrect information about the date of the safety expo. So, if you headed to the US Coast Guard station last Saturday, you will have found no expo. However, on this Saturday, from 10 AM until 2 PM, you can take the whole family to the US Coast Guard Station-Oak Island-Annual Safety Expo in Caswell Beach, NC. Here you can learn about the ways the US Coast Guard is keeping us safe while, at the same time, enjoy exploring all the kinds of safety equipment used in their operations and the safety operations of the area.

For music, sea breezes and lots of goodies, nothing beats the Southport Waterfront Market in Southport, NC on Wednesday mornings. From 8 AM until 1 PM you can stroll from tent to tent beneath the sprawling Live Oak trees, enjoy a homemade snack, meet up with friends, fill your basket with flowers, vegetables and crafts and just bask in the beauty of the day. On Monday mornings, you can repeat the experience at the Oak Island Farmers Market in Oak Island, NC while listening to the roar of the ocean and breathing the sea air. If Saturday works better for you you can head on down to the Shallotte Farmers Market in Shallotte, NC, which runs from 9 AM until 1 PM.

This evening, Thursday, June 1, begins the Southport Summer Concerts – Thursdays in the Park. Tonight’s concert will feature Blues Music with the NC Blues Kings from 6 PM until 8 PM in Franklin Square Park in Southport, NC. Bring a blanket and a picnic, bring a chair, and enjoy.

Friday evening will feature the First Friday Gallery Walk in Southport, NC. Participants include Franklin Square Gallery, Ricky Evans Gallery and Lantana’s. Stop by between 5 PM and 7 PM to experience good art, good food, good friends and drink. While you are at it, pick up that special art piece that catches your eye and give it a home. Then head on over to Oak Island, NC at 6:30 PM to enjoy the concert there.

You can choose between two events beginning at 4 PM on Sunday. Boiling Spring Lakes, NC will offer the music of Parrot Party. This concert is part of the Spring Lake Park Music Series. In Southport, NC, the NC Maritime Museum will sponsor a lawn party on the Garrison Lawn at Fort Johnston until 7 PM. Music will be provided by the Back Porch Rockers. Raffles and a bake sale will be included in this event.

(Painting by Susan Dade)


Halloween is more than a week way, but the hauntings have already begun! I’m sure you have noticed the spooky decorations that seem to have been popping up all by themselves. Fall festivals are continuing as well. They give us a chance to enjoy the lovely autumn weather in Brunswick County, NC. Tomorrow you can take part at the Fall Community Day and Fundraiser at Greenlands Farm in Bolivia, NC from 10 AM until 2 PM. There will be activities and games for the kids, farm animal rides, live music. a petting farm, an animal adoption fair by Brunswick County Animal Services, and more. funds raised will benefit the farm animal sanctuary as well as HOOF –  a nonprofit organization for education about and for rescued farm animals.

Later in the day you can head out to Boiling Spring Lakes, NC to enjoy being scared at the BSL Haunted Hayride. The fun begins at 4 PM with the hayrides beginning at dark. You can wear your own costume and do some of the scaring yourself.

Image courtesy Shelton Herald

Another fun event taking place tomorrow is the Brunswick Plantation Arts & Crafts Fair in Calabash, NC. This event will be held in the clubhouse at 8 Brunswick Drive from 9 AM until 2 PM. You will find textile arts, baskets, jewelry, bird houses, gourds, stained glass items, pottery, soaps, wood turned items, photos, wreaths, ornaments  and more. There will also be a bake sale to raise funds for local charities. Admission and parking are free.



Fall is upon us in all it’s glory of trees changing color, incredible sunsets, cooler temperatures and sunny days. Fall festivals are in full swing and Halloween is approaching with it’s parties, trick-or-treating, ghoulish costumes and silly ones. Before long Thanksgiving will arrive and many of us will get together with friends and family to celebrate each other. If you are thinking of decorating for this colorful season, remember that even though you can find decorative seasonal items in national chain stores, there are many independent, locally owned stores in the area where you can find unique decorations for the exterior as well as the interior of your home.

Bridgers Old Fashioned General Store in Southport, NC is a great locally owned shop with goodies galore and more: (

At Sunset River Marketplace in Calabash, NC you will find seasonal decorations as well as decorations for year round display in your home – all made by area artists and artisans: (

(The Artist’s Chair by Marsha Thomas)

Don’t miss the North Carolina Festival by the Sea in Holden Beach, NC this weekend (October 25 & 26, 2014) where you will find all kinds of arts and crafts for decorating your home – and more! (

Festival by the Sea Poster

Festivals & Fish


Easter weekend has arrived and the streets of the Brunswick Islands are lined with cars full of folks on their way to take part in entertaining events. Many of these people will stay for the week after Easter and if the weather permits they will be spending their time on the beaches swimming, sun bathing, walking, searching for shells, walking their dogs, playing with their kids – in short – enjoying everything available to them at the beach. When the weekend arrives again, they will find more options including:

Days at the Docks, April 26 & 27


This popular festival is held under the amazing bridge that leads to the island of Holden Beach. Folks from all over NC as well as from out of state have made attending this festival a yearly tradition. Here, they participate in arts, crafts, music, food, tournaments, games and the signature Bopple Race. Don’t know what a Bopple Race is? Check out the link above.

Women Anglers in Training, April 26 & 27


Obviously, for women only – a chance to get away by yourself and learn all the tricks of the trade when it comes to fishing. Give dad and the kids a the weekend to spend together while you enjoy Saturday learning or increasing your knowledge about fishing and Sunday either fishing from the pier or from a fishing boat. Pre registration is required for this event, so be sure to contact the Oak Island Recreation Center.


What the Dickens is Going On?


Yes, I know, it is not yet Thanksgiving. However, once Thanksgiving has arrived and you have feasted you fill of food, and the relatives have gone home again – or you have gone home again – the madness of preparing for Christmas will begin. So, why not enjoy a bit of Christmas early, in a leisurely fashion, before the crazy rush. Besides, you will very likely be able to find some of the gifts you will need at this festival as well.

On November 22nd and 23rd, the streets of Southport will be transformed into “everything Dickens” by the Brunswick Arts Council with the cooperation of the City of Southport. The arts council website explains it this way: “There will be singing groups, juried artists and specialty craftsmen; a gingerbread village, a Christmas tree and costume contest; and, of course, FOOD and FROTH. On display will be the new 48’ touring train exhibit from the Wilmington Train Museum and the very recent award winning exhibit “Fantasy under the Sea” by The Wood-turners. The popular high teas will again be served locally! Merchants and Restaurants in Southport will be poised for the increased activity that the festival brings their way. Trolley rides and fun for all ages! The event will end with “A Tribute to Charles Dickens Candlelight Ceremony and ringing and singing in the holidays!”

The official schedule looks like this:

Friday – November 22, 2013
6:30 to 8:30 Southport Community Building – 223 East Bay St.
6:30 – 8:30 Olde English Victorian Social Gathering under the Tent
 A Welcome by Festival officials
 Cash Pub; beer, wine, traditional cider
 Costume Contest voting – selection of winner at 7:15
 Victorian apparel is optional – but encouraged!
 Victorian music ensemble
 2013 Student artwork display
 Silent Auction items
 Dickens Festival Student Artwork holiday cards

7:30 – 8:30 2013 Dickens Musical Revue ($10 ticket, $5 children 7-12, 6 or less, free)
 Cash Pub remains open, beer and wine and traditional cider

Saturday – November 23, 2013
10:00 to 6:00 Franklin Square Park – 130 E. West St.
Pre-qualified (juried) artists and craftsmen and/or exhibitors sell their hand-made, one of kind creations. Food and froth for sale – some specialty selections!
10:00 to 1:00 Franklin Square Park – Children’s Contest – 130 E. West St.
Vote for your favorite Children’s Victorian Costume – selection of the winner at 1:00 on Franklin Square Park Stage, must be present to win
10:00 to 4:15 Southport Baptist Church, Christian Ministries Center (CMC) – Contests – Corner of Howe and Nash across the street from the church
View a Display of Christmas Trees/Wreaths/Gingerbread Houses
Vote for the best of show; selection of winners at 5:30 at Franklin Square Park Stage
Raffle of Christmas trees/wreaths to support the advancement of arts and culture in schools and the community must be present to win or to return to the festival Saturday evening to “fetch” your tree by 9pm
Raffle drawing at 5:30 at Franklin Sq. Park
Photo Ops on the grounds at Southport Baptist Church, Santa will be there most of the day! Bring your camera! 2013 Charles 

10:00 to 5:30 Gymnasium – Exhibits – Corner of Atlantic and E. West
Three exhibits in the Gymnasium ($3 ticket, no charge for children 12 and under. Children 12 and under must be accompanied by a ticket holding adult, 21 years or older)
 Wilmington Railroad Museum Train Exhibit
 Wilmington Wood-turners Prize-winning exhibit “Fantasy of the Sea”. Best in show award in Florida
 Victorian Village collection

10:00 to 5:00 Franklin Square Park Stage – 130 E. West St.
Performances throughout the day for children and adults
Dickens Actors stroll through the park and merchant areas
10:00 to 12:15 Trinity United Methodist Church – Murrow Hall – Corner of Nash and Atlantic
Mr. Fezziwig’s Ball ($5 ticket, $3 children 7-12, 6 or less, free)
 10:00 to 10:30 performance #1
 10:45 to 11:15 performance #2
 11:30 to 12:15 performance #3

12:00 to 2:30 Southport Community Building – 223 E. Bay St.
12:00 – 2:30 Olde English Victorian Social Gathering under the tent
 A Welcome by Festival officials
 Cash Pub; beer, wine, traditional cider
 Costume Contest voting – announcement of winner at 12:45
 Victorian apparel is optional – but encouraged!
 Victorian music ensemble
 2013 Student artwork display
 Silent Auction items
 Dickens Festival Student Artwork holiday cards

1:00 – 2:00 2013 Dickens Musical Revue ($10 ticket, $5 children 7-12, 6 or less, free)
3:30 to 5:30 Southport Baptist Church – Sanctuary – 200 Howe St.
Performance by Susan Savia, Soloist from Wilmington followed by Oakwood Waits, Carolers from Raleigh ($10 ticket, $5 children 7-12, 6 or less, free)
3:30 to 5:00 Trinity United Methodist Church – Murrow Hall – Corner of Nash and Atlantic
“The Night before Christmas Carol” – written by Dr. Eliot Engel, performed by David zum Brennen ($10 ticket, $5 children 7-12, 6 or less, free)
6:00 to 6:45 Franklin Square Park – 130 E. West St.
Tribute to Charles Dickens by Candlelight – ringing and singing in the holidays!
 Special Dickens Reading
 Tree lighting in Franklin Square Park
 Carolers
 Holiday wishes by the Festival Queen, Southport Mayor Howard and Jeanette Serens, President, Brunswick Arts Council
 Ringing and singing in the holidays!

Contact info:
· (Jeanette) phone 910-547-0690 or (h) 910-371-2641 for sponsorships and donations
· (Meg) phone 910-508-8116 or (h) 754-5102 for festival information
· (John) phone 631-334-7428 or (h) 755-5383 for festival information

Advance purchase of tickets for the indoor venues located at:
Southport-Oak Island Chamber of Commerce
Shallotte Chamber of Commerce
North Brunswick Chamber of Commerce
Southport Visitor Center
Ricky Evans Gallery – Southport
On line at
At the door