Southern Shores Realty Announces Revitalization of Shopping Center

Southern Shores Realty is proud to announce its new management and revitalization of the Southern Shores Crossing Shopping Center. The number one goal for these improvements is to have a positive impact on area residents, visitors, and businesses.  Another objective has been to make the plaza a place where both business owners and customers want to be. Major excavation occurred including clearing the grounds for enhanced road visibility.

 

 

This clearing was extremely vital to take full advantage of Southern Shores Crossing’s prime location near the intersection of N Croatan Highway and Ocean Boulevard.  With a vast number of visitors traveling North to the towns of Duck and Corolla, these shops will be seen by thousands of people every weekend. Aside from the improvements in landscaping, many of the shops in the plaza have also been renovated.

Current businesses located at Southern Shores Crossing are:

Newly re-opened Barr-ee Station Outlet: A retail shop offering discounted prices on name brand clothing and housewares. Barr-ee Station Outlet has a little bit of everything from vintage home decor to today’s men’s and women’s fashions.

Barr-ee Station Southern Shores

 

Maggie Cox, owner of Barr-ee Station, states, ” We’re back! We want people to know about the great opportunity Southern Shores Realty has offered to this shopping center. We can’t wait for the shops to fill up!”

Coastal Provisions Wine Bar & Cafe: Part of the Coastal trio of restaurants. They offer a full bar, lunch and dinner menu, sit down or to-go, event catering, and more. Known for their crab cakes, this stop will leave you coming back for more.

Clearview Wellness Chiropractor: Offering natural pain relief treatment under the caring hands of Dr. Casey Titus. Voted “Best Chiropractor on the Beach” for 2013 and 2014. Dr. Titus and her staff welcome local residents as well as visitors to the Outer Banks.

Aside from the current businesses, Southern Shores Realty is excited to announce a newly signed lease with “By the Sea Wedding Boutique”. They will offer tux rentals, female wedding attire, event planning and more. Pair By The Sea Wedding Boutique with Coastal Provisions Market and you could have your wedding planned all in one shopping center.

Southern Shores Realty is the longest operating vacation rental and management company on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. We represent over 700 Outer Banks rental properties including: long-term rentals, commercial properties, and hundreds of weekly vacation rental homes.  Browse our vacation rental homes selection today to start making your own Outer Banks vacation memories!

Outer Banks Vacationer’s Gift Guide

holiday-christmas-gift-guide

It’s that time of year again!  Holiday get-togethers aren’t far away and soon gift giving will abound!  For those of you seeking to delight an Outer Banks Vacationer/Traveler I have done some window shopping already for you.  These gift ideas are for the Outer Banks and vacation enthusiast, sorted by category and most are from local businesses, so know your purchase supports the area you love.  Enjoy – feel free to share!

blue-seaglass-jewelry-outer-banks-gift-for-herFOR HER:

Seaglass & Copper Earrings – Out of the Blue Seaglass Jewelry

Returning to my list again is sea glass jewelry!  Even though a woman may claim she has too much jewelry, it’s always appreciated.  Take a gander at these deep blue pieces of sea glass adorned by hand detailed copper suns.  They are simple, elegant, and multi-season appropriate!  Pick up this one-of-a-kind pair (literally) for $88 at Out of the Blue Seaglass Jewelry.

cape-hatteras-spyce-cologne-gift-for-himFOR HIM:

Cologne for Him – Cape Hatteras Spyce

A gift for the manly man, Cape Hatteras Spyce is an earthy, musky, seafaring scent that is spicy enough to engage the senses while remaining refreshing.  It is an exceptional product that can be used as an after-shave, cologne or just a “splash”. The amber bottle has a lighthouse on the pewter cap.  $30 at CapeHatterasSpyce.com.

canvas-beach-tote-bag-shelling-outer-banksTHE BEACHCOMBER:

Personalized Canvas Beach Tote – theAtlanticOcean Etsy

How chic!  A perfect day at the beach doesn’t require much, but bringing along a few necessities plus room for discovered treasures is a plus.   Ditch the glitz and glam for this understated yet functional canvas beach bag.  The beach goer and sheller you’re shopping for will be thrilled to see the personalization as well.  There’s a few of these left for $98 at theAtlanticOcean Etsy shop.

built-to-last-adirondak-chairs-giftTHE LOUNGER:

Recycled Plastic Adirondack Chairs – Built to Last

Who doesn’t love sitting back and relaxing in a sturdy, comfortable Adirondack chair on a deck?  Check out these chairs by Built to Last, in Moyock, NC, that  I can personally attest are extremely rugged and very well built… my family has many of them and they’re in incredible shape after nearly 10+ years of Pennsylvania weather.  It’s a worthwhile investment for their durability and quality.  $289 at Built-to-Last.com.

obx-book-lovers-gift-ideaTHE BOOKWORM:

Outer Banks Tales to Remember – Charles Harry Whedbee

Any Outer Banks enthusiast would love this, but here’s a special pick for the book lover: Outer Banks Tales to Remember by Charles Harry Whedbee.  This is a classic collection of folklore and tales of old about the Outer Banks!  Pirates, merchants, Indians, and more.  $14.95 from the Island Bookstore.

obx-coffee-gift-for-travelersTHE JAVA JUNKIE:

House Roasted Coffee Blends – Front Porch Cafe

Know someone serious about coffee?  Get them a gift from the folks who are just as serious!  The crew at the Front Porch Cafe know their beans… and they carefully select and roast only the finest varieties from around the world.  The best part is your gift is coming from the good ol’ OB of X, so consider this imported from the beach!  Flavors and blends vary, $12.99 – $14.99 from Front Porch Cafe.

old-world-beer-mugs-gift_0THE BREWMEISTER:

Old World Style Wooden Mugs – GoodMoodInWood Etsy

Check these out!  No, Blackbeard never drank from them… but these beer mugs have an awesome “old world” look to them and I’m sure that adds some flavor points.  The inside is made of stainless steel, so these can hold hot drinks as well.  $67.99 for set of 4 at GoodMoodInWood Etsy shop.

anchor-bottle-stopper-wino-giftTHE WINE CONNOISSEUR:

Nautical Anchor Wine Stop – 11Main

The gift that pairs well with all wines!  Satisfy even the pickiest wine lover with this nautical bottle stop that’s sure to delight.  It’s stylish, elegant, and made of Zinc Alloy for durability.  This is a sure bet to please even the most savvy sippers.  $14.95 on 11Main.com.

bushnell-nature-spotting-scope-nature-lover-giftTHE NATURE LOVER:

Water/Fogproof Spotting Scope – Amazon.com

Shopping for a nature and wildlife lover?  Help them get up close and personal with the next pod of dolphins or flock of shorebirds they find!  This Bushnell spotting scope offers 36x magnification with the added benefits of a tabletop tripod and being 100% water & fogproof.  $117 at Amazon.com (40% off).

outer-banks-and-you-coverTHE MUSIC LOVER:

“The Outer Banks and You” Song – iTunes & Amazon

Give the gift of beach music this year with the most famous song about the Outer Banks, “The Outer Banks and You” by Jamie Trent and Southern Shores Realty!  This song is as peaceful as the lapping waves on the shore… and only $0.99 on iTunes or Amazon.com.

oru-folding-kayak-obx-gift-guideTHE ADVENTURER:

Folding Portable Kayak – Oru Kayak

It can’t hurt to gift big, right?  A few months ago I saw this being presented on the hit television show Shark Tank, and instantly realized the potential of it.  Get the outdoor enthusiast on your list one of the most revolutionary products on the market.  Endless possibilities await when you can fold up and transport a kayak like a piece of luggage.  $1,195 on OruKayak.com.

ladies-fishing-tackle-bag-gift-ideaTHE FISHERLADY:

Ladies Fishing Tackle Bag – Cabela’s

She can show off her organized gear in style!  Set up the fisherlady in your life with this 7″x16″x9″ tackle bag, dressed up with just the right amount of girl power.  Includes multiple compartments and built-in tool retractor.  Comes highly rated and recommended online.  On sale now for $14.99 on Cabelas.com.

hatteras-salt-life-obx-gift-fishermanTHE FISHERMAN:

“Hatteras” Polarized Sunglasses – SaltLife.com

Well looky here!  Get your fisherdude a new set of shades – all set to an Outer Banks tune!  They even have all the fancy treatments to them (polarization is key) “These Salt Life Hatteras mens sunglasses feature polarized polycarbonate lenses with Ri-pel front and AR5 back of lens treatments, a Salt Life logo on the side of the frames.”  $149 at SaltLife.com, you can get 10% off by signing up for their email list.

kdh-salt-rocks-foodie-gift-guideTHE CHEF:

Sea Salt from the Outer Banks – KDH Salt Rocks

Delight the cook on your holiday shopping list with a unique treat from the seas.  My recommendation is a tasty sampling of natural sea salt, all harvested from the Atlantic Ocean in Kill Devil Hills, NC!  While KDH Salt Rocks offers a wide variety of salts and rubs, I think the safest bet is to gift the sampler pack and let your foodie decide which ones to order in bulk next round.  $19.99 at KDHSaltRocks.com

eve-turek-obx-print-gift-ideaTHE PHOTOGRAPHER:

“Sunset Dunes” Landscape Photography Print – Yellowhouse Gallery

Share along some OBX inspiration with this beautiful print by local photographer and gallery owner, Eve Turek.  The Outer Banks is special for many people for many reasons, and it’s easy to get lost in this scene of beautiful sea oats contrasting the vivid sky colors.  Comes 10″x20″ matted in house.  $60 YellowhouseGallery.com

outer-banks-book-giftKID FRIENDLY:

Captain Stumpy the Pirate Cat – Paperback Book by Jeremy Bliven

Treat the little buccaneers to this tale of Captain Stumpy’s encounters with his enemy, Fluff Bucket!  This story of cooperation was created by locals Jeremy Bliven and his father Herbert.  There are other books in the series that the kiddos can add to their Captain Stumpy collection, all the while supporting the local OBX economy!  $14.95 on OBXStore.com.

outer-banks-dog-treats-giftPET FRIENDLY:

Homemade & Wholesome Local Treats – Salty Paws Biscuits

Who can forget about our beloved furbabies?  When I’m making a trip home or just need a special gift for a four-legged loved one I always turn to this local store for their fantastic, safe, healthy, homemade treats!  1lb assorted bag for $10.50 at SaltyPawsBiscuits.com.

outer-banks-christmas-ornamentsHOUSEWARMING:

OBX Lighthouse Christmas Ornaments – Seashell Shack

Give the gift of light this Christmas with a set of lighthouse ornaments made on the Outer Banks.  Bodie Island, Cape Hatteras, Currituck, Ocracoke Island, and Cape Lookout included.  Measure 3″ in height.  What a wonderful addition to the tree these would be!  $32.50 on SeashellShack.com.

outer-banks-christmas-gift-card_0ANYONE:

Outer Banks Vacation Gift Card – Southern Shores Realty

Share the joy of an Outer Banks vacation with the ones you love!  Using Giftly.com, you can send a special gift to family and friends for any denomination that may be used for a Southern Shores Realty Outer Banks Vacation!  You can’t get any closer to the Outer Banks than actually being here.  Giftly.com is not affiliated with Southern Shores Realty and you should carefully read the terms and conditions when using this service.  Any amount at Giftly.com.


Done Reading?  Make Sure you check out our other Christmas articles here:  Outer Banks Christmas Traditions & Outer Banks December Events.

Outer Banks Beach Report October 10, 2014

It has been absolutely breathtaking this fall on the Outer Banks.  This October is no exception!  We’ve missed making our beach report videos ever so dearly, and couldn’t contain ourselves any longer.  Take in the sights and sounds from Jennette’s Pier in Nags Head, NC and the Avalon Pier in Kill Devil Hills, NC.

Before you hit the play button, check out our Early Bird discounts for 2015.  They are limited time offers but a great chance to save hundreds of dollars off your vacation rental and have everything all set before the holidays.  Thanks for stopping by, don’t forget to share!  Take care.  – Bob.

Why we love the off-season on the Outer Banks

Off Season on the Outer Banks

duckroad_0Before I became a resident of the beautiful Outer Banks, I lived in a town outside of Richmond, VA. Every Summer I couldn’t wait to get here. We have always stayed, and continue to stay in Duck. The only adjustment my family has made over the years is when we come. We switched from 4th of July week to early June when it’s not as hot. Once we arrived, we were so over-the-moon with excitement we didn’t know what to do first. By the time Thursday arrived during our Sunday-to-Sunday rental, reality started setting in. My vacation was soon coming to an end.

Thankfully, my grandparents and I think alike. One week on the Outer Banks out of the entire year just isn’t enough. They started coming 3 times a year; one week in February, one week in July, and one week in November. Before I transferred to my now alma mater University of Hawai’i, I attended Old Dominion University. This worked out perfect.  I was close enough to the Outer Banks that I was able to visit them all 3 times they came. This was my first time visiting the Outer Banks in the “off-season”. I then realized the year-round beauty this place offers. Before moving to Hawai’i, I knew the Outer Banks was where I would return someday.

The off season is technically defined from Labor Day to Memorial Day. The Outer Banks doesn’t have steady traffic year round. We are a vacation destination so it’s either full swing all day every day or it’s what we call our “off season”. Outer Banks residents look forward to the off-season as much as we look forward to Summer time. We love the warm weather, business, and meeting people from all over the world during our busy Summer months. Here are some things to look forward to in the off-season:

 

[playbuzz-item url=”//www.playbuzz.com/katlynsmith10/why-we-love-the-off-season-on-obx”]

 

 

Outer Banks Marathon Weekend

Outer Banks Marathon & Southern Fried Half Marathon

obx-marathon-november-outer-banksCalling all types of runners! Outer Banks Sporting Events has a race for every type of runner out there, all on the same weekend too. In November a diaper dash, Family Fun Run, 5k, Southern 6 miler, 10k, Southern Fried half marathon, and the big Outer Banks Marathon hit the roads and trails of our beautiful Dare county.  This big weekend all goes down November 7-9. Typically, weather this early in November is perfect for running. It may take you a couple miles to get warmed up. but the air is clean and crisp, very low humidity, and there is a nice breeze.  The weekend is packed with races and related events such as a pasta party and post race party.  The schedule below is from the Outer Banks Sporting Events website and most times are to be determined.

Race EXPO and Packet Pick-up

November 7 l 12-7pm l Dare County Youth Center

This is where runners can pick up their bibs, event t-shirt, some free running swag and grab any last minute gear they may need. Past vendors have included Sound Feet Shoes, TRI Sports, Roanoke Island Running Company and much more! There will also be a second day to the expo on Saturday November 8 from 9AM – 6PM. Parking is limited so I would advise riding together and possibly be prepared for walking.

Outer Banks 10k

November 8 l First Flight High School

New for 2014, they upped the ante from an 8k to now a 10k. This is an out-and-back course that all begins and ends on the First Flight High School track. From the track to a dirt road, to road, to trails in Nags Head Woods, this race will give you a run for your money. This race is also a part of “The Challenge”. Paired with the Marathon, if you run both this and the Marathon you walk away with 3 medals for the weekend. There is a time limit of 1:45 and is walker friendly. Due to the off-road part of the course this it’s not stroller or wheelchair friendly. I would also recommend for runners to arrive fairly early to FFHS. There are so many events and races going on that parking can fill up rather quickly. I would also recommend leaving any extra belongings in the car just to be on the safe side because there won’t be a bag check at these races.

Buccaneer 5k

November 8 l First Flight High School

The Kelly Hospitality Group presents the Buccaneer 5k. This is an out-and-back course that runs the first half of the 10k. Be prepared for track, dirt road, road, and trail running. This is a timed event and is part of “The Challenge” with the half marathon. This race you have to pre-register for on OBSE’s website. This course goes off road and is not stroller or wheelchair friendly. I would also recommend not bringing a back to the starting line with you because there won’t be a bag-check. Last year, we warmed up and then shedded our extra layers. We just left them in a pile and no one seemed to mess with them.

Family Fun Run

map-of-high-schoolNovember 8 l First Flight High School

This is a great race for the whole family! Run, jog, or walk 1.2 miles and claim your finisher medals and event shirts. There will be games and activities before and after the race.The best part, you can do it together as a family. Strollers are welcome on the Fun Run course.

Diaper Dash

November 8 l 11:45 AM l First Flight High School

For the littlest of littlest runners! This race is for all kids ages 1 -3 to have the opportunity to dash across the finish line under the arch. This race welcomes parents to accompany the kids and is free for all participants!

On top of these great races going on Saturday morning there are also the “Super Saturday Events” including pirates, walk the plank, pirate toss, face painting, Kitty Hawk Kites Rock climbing wall and much more!

What better way to end a day like that and also prep for Sunday’s races than by going to a pasta party? The Ramada Plaza Oceanfront of Nags Head is hosting a pasta dinner that includes two seatings with one from 5PM – 6PM and the second from 6PM – 7PM. Each dinner seating has a limit of 200 people at each.  Children 5 and under eat free, 5-11 are $5, adults 12 and up are $12. So stop by and load up on your carbs before another day of races begins.

Sunday… oh Sunday! The day I just started training for. (That’s 4 months of training by the way) I am getting nervous just writing about it. Sunday is where the events take a sharp turn from the “fun run” to 26.2 miles. You might wonder how a race that long can even fit on the Outer Banks when you’re only running from Kitty Hawk to Manteo, but trust me they find a way. Sunday is when the 6 miler, half marathon, and marathon all take place.

Southern Fried Half Marathon

November 9 l Nags Head, NC

This is the first race of the day starting at 7AM. This race begins near Jockey’s Ridge in Nags Head and finishes with the full marathon at the waterfront in Manteo. This was my second half marathon I had ever ran. Last year, as I was standing at our sponsor booth for Southern Shores Realty at the expo, I began thinking I should run the half (not having ran or trained at all).  Then I started thinking a little crazier “forget that, I’ll run ‘The Challenge’ and take home 3 medals instead of just one”. I asked if it was okay for me walk around and take a look at all the booths. I came back with a runner packet and a full weekend of running ahead of me. I went home and convinced my boyfriend, who ran track in college, to run the races too.

medal5kThe 5k was great, my boyfriend and I both took home medals. I won in my age group and he won 2nd overall. (No wonder his family called him speedy as a kid) Next morning was the morning of the half marathon. It was chilly but warm enough to wear shorts and a t-shirt. I ran a slower pace than what’s normal for me now. On top of the lack of training and being out of shape it was more about running with my friend and his dad. The two of them have ran many races but wanted to make sure they got in a half marathon, together. The first 8 miles went great, and then we turned the bend to head towards the little bridge and the Washington Baum Bridge. We had a head wind of about 25 mph, uphill, with about 3 miles of the course in sight. For me, it always makes it harder when you can see a lot of the course ahead of you, it seems like your not gaining any ground. We made it up, and then back down the bridge and into Manteo we went.

The crowd along the course was getting thicker so I knew we had to be near the finish line. As I listen to these strangers cheering me on, my eyes filled up with tears. These people don’t know me, whether they are here to support another runner or not, they are still screaming for me to make it. That is the postive energy at races that I love being around. A little while longer and sure enough, there it was. FINALLY! We crossed the finish line. A lovely volunteer congratulated me and hung those well earned two medals around my neck. If you haven’t noticed by reading my running blogs, medals are what I look forward to. I picture the national anthem being played standing on my own personal podium as that medal is hung around my neck, very Olympic of me I know. I searched for my boyfriend to congratulate him and ask how his race went. (speedy of course) We wrapped up tight in our thermal space blankets to keep warm and enjoyed the post race party. Needless to say, the lack of training led to about a week of limping, hobbling, and wobbling around for both of us. Some of my recommendations for this race: scope out the starting point the day before, arrive early race morning in order to get parking, dont be afraid to take an easy warm up lap around the block, go to the bathroom as much as needed, check your bag, and lastly, take in every moment and view as you pass by.

The Outer Banks Marathon

November 9 l Kitty Hawk, NC

After the start of the half marathon, the full gets underway soon after at 7:20AM on Woods Road in Kitty Hawk. This is a North Carolina USA Track and Field State Championship race, a Boston Marathon qualifying race, and also my very first soon to be marathon. It’s required to maintain a 16 min mile pace, as NCDOT has to close the bridge to runners by 1:30. This course is beautiful and takes you through so many different parts of the Outer Banks. From Kitty Hawk, all the way to the Waterfront in Manteo, the course is laid out perfectly.

I got this great idea after having such an awesome half marathon this past May at the Flying Pirate; it’s time to run a marathon. I also love the Red Sox and have always wanted to go to Boston, so why not try and qualify for the Boston Marathon while I’m at it? Go big or go home I always say. It’s just a goal, a reachable goal with the training plan I have,  a healthy diet, rest, and water. I will most definitely be bummed if I don’t qualify, but hopefully the glory of finishing my first full marathon will overcome that. As long as I don’t miss my goal time of 3 hours and 35 minutes by something crazy like 10 seconds, all is good!  Wish me lots of luck and a pain-free 26.2 miles! Photo: OuterBanksReliefFoundation.com

marathon-image

 

Southern Fried 6

November 9 l Nags Head, NC

Shortly after the start of the full marathon on Sunday, the Southern 6 miler gets underway. This course also finishes with the marathoners and half marathoners at the waterfront in Manteo. Finisher medals await you and the rest of the runners at the finish line. This run is meant to be just for fun and will not be timed.

Don’t forget about the post race block party! This is the best part of the whole race weekennd. (besides the medal) You get to celebrate your achievement with free snacks, beverages, a beer garden, food, swag, and live music by Johnny Waters and Company until 2PM. The Half Marathon awards will be at 10AM with the full marathon awards beginning at noon. I remember walking away from this race last year thinking what a flawless execution by Outer Banks Sporting Events. Everything was so well organized, the food was excellent, the party was great, and the medals were beautiful, and the running times were correct. Whether you’re ready to run 1 mile, 3.1 miles, 6.2 miles, or all the way up to 26.2 miles, this weekend has everything you’re looking for. If you’re feeling up to it, head to the OBSE website to register!

marathon-gifgoodIf you are coming to the Outer Banks this weekend as support, the ice go-getter, the massager, the congratulator, the photographer, the living proof of accomplishment, and the cheerleader, don’t forget your Southern Shores Realty Cowbell. This will save your vocal chords and assure you that your cheering will be heard. The 2012 Blue edition set the standard, as the 2013 Silver edition topped it. Stop by our sponsor booth at the marathon expo to catch the reveal and claim your 2014 Southern Shores Realty Cowbell.

If you need accommodations for the weekend, we have what you need to ensure a great night sleep. Check out our Outer Banks Fall vacation rentals.

Outer Banks Events l November 2014

A vacation on the Outer Banks in November is where to go for a slow down from the fast pace of holiday shopping, traffic, and masses of people in the malls. Driving across that bridge, traffic free, will automatically bring you the sigh of “finally, I’m home again”. That is one of many qualities I appreciate most on the Outer Banks, the empty beaches filled with nothing but peace, quiet, sea glass, driftwood, and puppies running free.

graveyard-of-the-atlanticGraveyard of the Atlantic Museum Volunteer Day

When? November 7

Where? Hatteras, NC

From 10AM – 1PM you can have a meet and greet with active volunteers, enjoy some tasty lunch, explore open volunteer opportunities that may be of interest to you. There will also be a guest speaker who inspires the room. Free admission.

 

fall_restaurant_weekFall Restaurant Week

When? October 31 – November 8

Where? Kill Devil Hills, NC 

If you can’t make it for Taste of the Beach, this is a smaller version that goes on in the Fall. Restaurants from up and down the beach put together a special menu at a special price and really let their talent shine. New this year, a Fish Taco Taste-off!

capehatterasanglersclub_0Cape Hatteras Anglers Club Surf Fishing Invitational

When? November 5-8

Where? Cape Hatteras, NC

Founded in 1957, the Cape Hatteras Angler Club held it’s first surf fishing invitational. With intentions to bring visitors to the area, they wanted to show that surf fishing is best in the Fall. So keep an eye out for fishing lines when walking the beaches this weekend.

manns_harbor_holiday_craft_show6th Annual Manns Harbor Holiday Craft Show

When? November 7-8

Where? Manns Harbor, NC

The craft show is so big it’s indoors and outdoors. With well over 20 vendors selling holiday gifts, decor, jewelry, jams, jellies, and so much more, you could be here a while. Breakfast and lunch will be sold both days. Admission is free along with door prizes and a 50/50 raffle.

obx-marathon-november-outer-banksOuter Banks Marathon & Half Marathon

When? November 7-9

Where? Kitty Hawk to Manteo, NC

This is one of the biggest running weekends on the beach. From Kitty Hawk, through Nags Head Woods, and ending at the waterfront in Manteo, this race sees it all, and so do it’s victims. There is a race for every distance runner in the family including a marathon, half marathon, 6 miler, 10k, 5k, and a family fun run!

pbrclassicPBR Classic Red & Blue Fishing Tournament

When? November 7-9

Where? Avon Fishing Pier, NC

Avon Fishing Pier hosts this First Annual PBR Classic Red & Blue Fishing Tournament. The pier will keep its doors open around the clock for this event. The main focus of this tournament will be on Red Drum and Blue Fish and the best part… cash prizes! Welcome party Friday night and an awards lunch Sunday with a raffle.

wagsandwhiskersgalaWags and Whiskers Gala

When? November 21

Where? Pamlico Jack’s in Nags Head, NC

Why not come together and celebrate the unconditional love our animals give us? This is a great way to return what they do for us on a daily basis. Hosted by Pamlico Jack’s restaurant in Nags Head from 7PM – 11PM. Eat, drink, and dance as we all support the five awesome organizations that support our animals.

3rdannualsurfinturkeytrot_03rd Annual Surfin Turkey 5k

When? November 27

Where? Hatteras, NC

Hosted by Hatteras Village and presented by Hatteras Island Youth Education Fund. What better way to begin your day of giving thanks than by running with your family and supporting a local organization at the same time? Hot pancakes and micro-brews await you at the finish line.

advice5kturkeytrot19th Annual Advice 5k Turkey Trot

When? November 27

Where? Duck, NC

Sponsored by Advice 5¢ bed and breakfast, this is a great community tradition for the town of Duck. You can start your Thanksgiving Day off with a 5k run or walk with your closest friends and family. Registration opens up September 2nd at 6AM and with a 600-person capacity, it fills up quick!

chicamacomicosendofseasonfestivitiesChicamacomico’s End of Season Festivities

When? November 28

Where? Rodanthe, NC

End of season festivities!! It all begins the day after Thanksgiving, Friday, November 28. Santa (yes, SANTA!!) will be here from 1PM-3PM. The season long raffle will finally be drawn, a ton of goodies and photos too. Free admission with the donation of a nonperishable item per person, if not then $2 admission.

hangingwithsantaobxHanging with Santa

When? November 28-29

Where? Nags Head, NC

Spread the holiday cheer with Kitty Hawk Kites in Nags Head, NC across from Jockey’s Ridge. They will hold their annual “Hanging with Santa” event from November 28-29. Snag a picture with Santa and a demonstration hang glider. As all of their events, this is free and open to the public.

kits-with-lites_0Kites with Lights

When? November 29

Where? Nags Head, NC

Kitty Hawk Kites welcomes you to celebrate the end of another great year and to bring on the holiday season. This will be held on the dunes of Jockey’s Ridge, across the street from their store in Nags Head. This is one of the coolest way to see holiday lights, flying high in the sky. Photo: Kitty Hawk Kites.

island-farm-pumpkin-patchIsland Foodways

When? November 28-30

Where? Manteo, NC

Come to Island Farms the days following Thanksgiving for fall food traditions and share how Roanoke Island families prepared for winter during the 1850’s. Activities will include hearth cooking, food preservation, candle making, ox drawn wagon rides and more. Admission $6, $5 with a nonperishable food donation.


If you are thinking about spending Thanksgiving, or anytime in November for that matter, you won’t regret it. The holidays are meant to be time spent with family and relaxing. Why not relax with your family on the Outer Banks? Check out Why Fall Vacations Rock and browse our homes to find your perfect Outer Banks Fall Vacation Getaway! Don’t forget to look at any remaining 2014 Outer Banks Vacation specials.

My Outer Banks Wedding Story – The Big Day

Finally, after months of preparation, a move from NC from PA, and dozens of meetings with vendors, our big day was on the way!

Our Outer Banks wedding week arrived much faster than we knew it.  Family was pouring in from across the country to be nestled in with us on the beach for the week.  Almost 100 of our closest friends and family made the trip for our special day.  I was headquartered at “Groom Central”, and Nina tucked away in the “Bride-to-be Castle.”

The days leading up to the wedding were very hazy in my mind.  I was so busy with last minute preparations that it was hard to savor all the company around me and loved ones pouring into town.  My nerves were in such a tight bundle.  Nina and I waited until this wedding week to reflect on our love for each other, and write our vows and promises that we would each read aloud on our day.  We would be apart in two separate houses to clear our minds and allow us to think deeply.  The twist: we constructed them like letters to one another… sure to cause the world’s most intense outpouring of emotions!

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Friday, September 13th, 2013 came faster than I ever could have imagined.  Forecasts were calling for a chance of rain, but I had no doubt the day would be perfect… no matter what.  I remember waking up, and feeling numb.  From the top of my head to the tips of my toes, everything felt empty of any kind of pain or negativity.  I got up from my bed and walked up to the top floor living area (one of the best memory making routines to perform in a beach house).  I remember seeing my mother, who was always up before me, and noticing the same calmed emotions, tied tightly within her as well.

thanks-for-breakfastI didn’t have much of an appetite that morning.  My sister was gracious enough to prepare me a nice bowl of fruit so that something could reside in my stomach and give me fuel for the “butterflies.”  My other relatives staying in the home slowly started to wake up and greet me out on the deck (with coffee of course).  I was still Bob that morning… but the aura that hung in the air in the hours leading up to the wedding was something I will never ever forget.  It was an equal blend of excitement, nervousness, awareness, and legacy.  It truly was the “first day” of the rest of my life.

“Getting ready” time came before I knew it as well (boy, I sound unprepared).  Suits and outfits had all been wrangled up from Norfolk the day before, and my groomsmen were on their way to our house.  Before the official strip down of our casual clothes, I gave all my “soldiers of the day” a heartfelt gift (consisting mostly of Kraken Rum themed paraphernalia).  We started getting ready.  Our photographer and videographer arrived during this time but I had almost no clue when.  I think a bus filled with nitroglycerin could have ran into a telephone pole outside and I wouldn’t have processed it.  After a last minute, touch-up, shave job and correcting some wardrobe malfunctions, it was time to go.  It was all happening so fast!

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calming-my-nervesWe drove to Jennette’s Pier, all stuffed in my black turbo charged beauty.  We snagged a great parking spot, emptied out of the car, and performed one of the best “cool-guy” walks since the last Calvin Klein fashion show.  The girls were on the way, and I needed to be quarantined as to not spoil first sight of my bride.  The children’s classroom in the pier served well as my temporary chambers.  All the while my men were on standby;  guarding door windows and monitoring for Nina’s arrival.  Nina arrived, as planned, and the lockdown room emptied to all but me and my best man / best friend / brother Adam.  The other groomsmen were needed to perform welcoming and ushering.  There were some sentimental and emotional words exchanged, calming reassurances, and eventually a pirate fight with some toys in the room (that’s how we Kissells do).

I was called to action by our day-of coordinator, and placed into one last waiting area before lining up for our processional.  I was now on the top floor of the pier, and I found myself transfixed and gazing out through the windows at the beach outside.  It was so comforting.  I had been this nervous only one other time in my life, and I found solace viewing the sun, sand, and waves outside.  It was a beautiful day.  I knew this would be the case.  This day had been made for two special people, and I could see it looking out.  All those “flashbacks” people talk about having before a life changing event… I definitely had them, and recounted from first glance through my entire relationship with Nina in a matter of seconds while looking out that window.

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Window gazing time was done.  I was now moving to get into line with our officiant, Jay.  This was my first small glance of all the people in attendance.  My first glance of all the decorations.  It was glorious.  My time to walk came, again, sooner than expected.  I saw the bridesmaids on one side and my groomsmen on the other.  They were there for me, for us, things were getting very, very real now!  Jay leaned over to me once I was fixed in my spot and whispered “This is it!”  A command order was issued from my brain to my spine: “Initiate tingle sequence.”  We then started walking.  I knew people were looking at me.  I knew I could take time to try to find their eyes and acknowledge them…. but, I could not.  I was like a deer caught in high-beaming headlights.  We reached our spot and everything paused.  My eyes were fixed at the doors I just walked out of, knowing full well that my everything was about to take her steps out.  This was it.  I’ve always dreamt of it.  It was happening… right now.

The music started.  My spine was already primed for the tingling to come.  Everyone stood.  I found my viewing lane… and there she was.

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I looked at her, she looked at me.  We both knew the joyful gravity of the day.  Our eyes swelled with it.  I’d never seen such a beautiful being before.

Nina was handed off under blessing from both of her parents, I exchanged hugs and my promises to them, and then it was just the two of us together.  I didn’t manage to process some of Jay’s initial introductions… but I did catch “..enjoy this moment… get lost in it..”.  We really got lost in it…. and will never get out of it.

The ceremony proceeded with readings from Nina’s brother, Michael and my sister, Sara… both of who performed eloquently and created even more shivers and goose bumps.  Before I knew it, it was time for us to read our vows to each other.  I had volunteered to read Nina’s words for me first.  I’ve never babbled so much in my life.  Five years prior I had passed my semester’s public speaking course after only 2 weeks, yet now I had issue articulating even the smallest details.  My emotions were fully engaged.  I managed to finish, but required a tissue immediately after.

Nina took her turn right after.  She started off smooth initially, but the memories, feelings, and promises entwined and scribed onto that sheet of notepaper made things equally as aquatic on her end.

We had made our promises to each other, then performed traditional vows as well.  We placed our rings on each other, were pronounced “Husband and Wife”, and then savored the best kiss ever and the first of our new life together!

It was time to celebrate!

We carefully planned out a cocktail hour to entertain our guests while we took a majority of our photos with family and the bridal party on the beach.  Blackened scallops, crab dip, and traditional Italian bruschetta stood no chance against hungry, emotional wedding guests.

We returned in and lined up for our official introduction!  The crowd certainly wasn’t ready for our walk-out song, but it charged the two of us up just as we wanted.  We also broke out into a dubstep routine immediately after our first dance.

The next hour was spent attempting to eat some of our food that was brought to us.  Although the feast of medium rare steak loin, garlic mashed red skin potatoes, mahi-mahi fish tacos, and oyster stew were tempting… neither of us managed to have any time to eat!

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I will never, ever forget the speeches given that day.  My brother’s and sister in-law’s were both so personal yet relatable, and it really kept the blubbering going.  A long-time family friend, Pastor Charlie Reber told everyone a story that truly gives me an emotional rollercoaster ride.  He said that when the old Jennette’s Pier was torn down after storm damage and the new one built, so many of the old-timers were asking dozens of questions and wondering why the Good Lord would make it so a grand establishment was built instead of a plain ol’ fishing pier.  He turned and looked directly at me and said “Well, now I know…. he built it for you Bobby.”

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We danced, we played games; it seemed like everybody in attendance was really having a blast!  We also had a photobooth in the equation that made an awesome area for total embarrassment and entertainment when needed!  The photobooth pictures are absolutely hysterical… you have to get one of those for your wedding guests to make complete fools of themselves. (more of our photos here)

The day was fantastic.  When you hear people say that their wedding day was the best day of their life, they aren’t lying.  That day was the best day of my life.  The day was perfect from start to finish, and we were so incredibly blessed by the family and friends that traveled near and far to be with us that day.  Marrying the person I love most in this world was such a feeling.  It’s hard to explain.

The entire day I felt no negativity, no pain, no worries… all was going to be as it should, then and forever.

Wedding videography by Crystal Blue Productions
Wedding photography by Terry & Sarah Photography
Wedding officiating by Rev. Jay Bowman