FALL in Love with North Carolina’s Brunswick Islands

september and October in North Carolina’s Brunswick Islands are packed with events attracting everyone from music lovers to runners to anglers to foodies to festival goers. Adults and children alike can enjoy a variety of attractions including fishing tournaments, movie nights on the lawn, grape stomping, sandcastle building, and a surf off. Add these exciting events with mild weather and great rates on accommodations and you have the perfect recipe for a memorable fall getaway. Here’s just a taste of our fall featured events:

Sixth Annual Southport Wooden Boat Show

Southport Wooden Boat ShowThe Southport Wooden Boat Show offers a chance to admire wooden boats, and talk with those who are passionate about making and owning them. The event will feature a contest where judges will be awarding the outstanding boat in a variety of categories, “Nauti-kids” activities for the young sailors, and nautical and maritime demonstrations. Exhibits from the North Carolina Aquarium and The Ft. Fisher Underwater Archaeology Branch will be on display throughout the afternoon. There will also be a Seafood Chowder Cook-off featuring five teams competing to win cash prizes and the title of the 2015 “SWBS Chowder Champion.”

North Carolina Oyster Festival

DSC_1242_Oyster EatersThe biggest food event of the season is the 35th annual North Carolina Oyster Festival that transforms the streets of Ocean Isle Beach into an open-air walking district, and boasts the best local cuisine, arts, crafts and entertainment. An Oyster Shucking Contest features professionals competing for the state title, perhaps dreaming of the national, or even the World Championships in Galway, Ireland. Amateurs are welcome to try their luck at local recognition. An Oyster Stew Cook-off allows attendees to try and rate local chef’s best recipes. More than 15 food and beverage vendors will be there offering everything from seafood and landlubber delights, to healthy or fun festival food.  Live music will be featured throughout the weekend.

NC Festival By The Sea

P1000027This two-day event kicks off with a parade down the Holden Beach causeway –  the one day of each year that locals and guests alike can enjoy the views of the Holden Beach Bridge on foot. Hundreds can enjoy taking pictures and absorbing the sights from the top of the bridge. A horseshoe tournament and sandcastle contest entertains the more competitive while kids can enjoy face painting, kite flying and more. The festival will also feature live music, arts and crafts and food vendors.

Check out our calendar of events for a full list of fun fall events!

“Messing About in Boats” at the Southport Wooden Boat Show, Sept 27 2014

plan your next North Carolina beach vacation around the last weekend of September in Southport, and you’ll be rewarded with a special treat.  On Saturday, Sept. 27, 2014, wooden boats will line the Southport Yacht Basin, along with boat-builders, boat-enthusiasts, booths of nautical art and photography, crafts, model boats, maritime demonstrations, and plenty of fun for the kids. Now in its fifth year, the Southport Wooden Boat Show just keeps getting bigger, both from the number of entries to the size of the admiring crowd.

What’s the attraction of a wooden boat?  They’re painstakingly built or restored, visually appealing, have beautiful lines, and feel and sound very different on the water than today’s boats built of fiberglass and other man-made materials.  And, they all have stories to tell.sign_szed.tiff

For example, one of the original organizers of the show, Captain Bert Felton, discovered and rescued The Solomon T, a 1938 “Harker’s Island”-type boat. This North Carolina-built fishing vessel was lovingly restored by Captain Bert and is now on the North Carolina register of Historic Vessels, one of a vanishing breed along our coast.  This year’s Wooden Boat Show poster features the Solomon T.

Southport’s fifth-annual Wooden Boat Show also includes seafood! For just $5, buy a ticket to the Seafood Chowder Cook-Off, where you’ll receive a 2-oz portion from each of up to ­­­12 entries.  The People’s Choice” voting asks tasters to rate the chowder based on good flavor, texture, consistency, blend of spices, aroma, and color.

Also at the 2014 Southport Wooden Boat Show, a 15-foot rowing skiff will be raffled off, a design from a noted naval architect who generously donated the plans. Chesapeake Light Skiff is a very lightweight, slippery piece of wood. Gaining stability from its flat bottom, it will be perfect for inshore fishing under oars, in a rowing race, or for “just messing about.” This boat is constructed of marine plywood, all joints glued and glassed with epoxy, then completely encapsulated in three coats of epoxy resin before painting. The result is a very low maintenance craft that with minimal attention should last the lifetime of the raffle winner.

The Southport Wooden Boat Show promotes interest in the art and craft of wooden boat construction, supports efforts to preserve wooden boat construction and skills and celebrates the region’s maritime and boatbuilding history. For more information about the event, click here.

During your visit to Southport, enjoy a walking or electric cart tour of the historic architecture, and learn about the town’s long reign as a maritime port, its Revolutionary and Civil War forts, the homes of sea captains and blockade runners, and much more.  The North Carolina Maritime Museum of Southport is a must-see. For a listing of all there is to do in Southport, including delicious dining and comfortable accommodations, visit http://www.ncbrunswick.com/islands/Southport.

Southport Wooden Boat Show

Sept. 27, 2014

10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Southport Yacht Basin

Free Admission