It finally seems that most of the cold weather is behind us. And almost all of the cold-stunned turtles we admitted over the winter have recovered and are anxiously awaiting a ride out to warmer waters. But as you’ve learned over the years from this column and/or your visits to our hospital rehabilitating cold-stun victims can be a long and arduous journey. Twenty-plus years of experience with hundreds of cold-stuns...

Turtle Project volunteers aka “beach walkers” are the first line of defense for our sea turtles as they begin heading to Topsail to nest, officially between May 1st and the end of August. It’s a chance for you to get involved in the effort to preserve these incredible creatures who are under increasing pressure to survive as our oceans and nesting areas become less hospitable. Terry Meyer, who has...

TOPSAIL BEACH – A piece of the Surf City Swing Bridge was presented to the Historical Society of Topsail Island (HSTI) for display in the Missiles and More Museum. The presentation by Topsail artist Jeff Wenzel, was made at the March 14 HSTI luncheon and lecture. The 5-ft. steel truss and the wood base from the fender system are actual pieces from the iconic structure. The pieces were cut by Balfour Beatty and...

Sea Turtle Hospital News Although we close to the public during the winter months we’re not all off on cruises or eating bonbons and watching the soaps. We’ve been very, very busy, starting in early December when we admitted seven small cold-stunned loggerheads, most from the New England Aquarium. A “small loggerhead” in our business is anything under about fifty pounds. As the annual showing...

SURF CITY – The Pender County Tourism Development Authority hosted a press conference today to give an update on the progress of the two beach towns, Topsail Beach and Surf City, in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence. “We are open for business,” said Cathy Medlin, owner of Island Real Estate. “Our vacationers may not own a home here, but many of our vacationers have come to Topsail Island one...

Goodbye Flo! We’re finally getting our heads and properties back together after being harassed for a week by a hurricane that was moving slower than most of us could walk. The good news is that our turtles and our hospital came through unscathed. The building is steel frame with a metal roof and held up beautifully. And kudos to three of our staff who stayed on site throughout the hurricane and aftermath to make...

The 30thAutumn With TopsailFestival Celebrates Fall With Art, Beach Music, Food and Much More TOPSAIL BEACH – For the 30th year in a row, art and beach music lovers will gather in Topsail Beach, North Carolina at the Autumn With TopsailFestival. Autumn With Topsail takes place, rain or shine, from 8:00 a.m. to 8 p.m. on October 20th and 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on October 21st on the grounds of the Historic Assembly...

Sea Turtle Hospital News In our sea turtle world we refer to August as our “crossover” month; interns, hospital staff and sea turtles are all “crossing over” to another phase. Our summer interns are packing up to head out, and our regular hospital staff is heading back to work on a full-time basis. The interns did a great job with turtle care and helping with tours while we took our mornings...

Sea Turtle Hospital News Hatchlings rule! Although our turtle mamas are still technically “on the clock” with the official nesting season continuing through this month it’s their babies that have taken over the spotlight. We’re still hoping for at least sixty nests but for now hatchlings rule. With the patter of thousands of tiny flippers on Topsail it’s time for a quick review of some...

TOPSAIL BEACH – For the 30th year in a row, art and beach music lovers will gather in Topsail Beach, North Carolina at the Autumn With Topsail Festival. Autumn With Topsail takes place, rain or shine, from 8 - 8 on Oct. 20, and 9 - 4 on Oct. 21 on the grounds of the Historic Assembly Building, 720 Channel Boulevard, Topsail Beach. Admission is $5 for adults, or $8 for an adult two-day pass. Children age 12 and...

Moores Creek National Battlefield to Host Informational Meeting on How to Become a Reenactor and Get Involved in Living History Currie, NC - Have you ever visited as historic site or event and wondered "How do I become a Reenactor"? Join us on Saturday, August 25 from 10 am - 12 pm for an informational meeting and orientation as to how to get involved with Living History- i.e. Reenacting and Storytelling...

BURGAW - Pender County Tourism is pleased to release a music video. The video spotlights generations families and friends, yesterday and today, who have found Topsail Island to be a great place to vacation and fellowship. The song is written by the talented songwriter Charles Albertson, a retired North Carolina State Senator. He is widely known as “North Carolina’s Singing Senator.” Albertson...

Sea Turtle Hospital And it’s “déjà vu all over again.” No sooner did we send twelve of our kids out on their own than we had to turn around to wash, rinse and release another sixteen. So back to the beach we went last Wednesday with a caravan of big and small, long term and short term hospital graduates. We were incredibly appreciative that “Sunny” and “Remora”...

And they’re off - at least the first group of twelve of our thirty plus rehabilitated patients. At an early assembly of staff and invited guests Jean began the day with a short ceremony that included memories of volunteers we’ve lost in the past year, commemoration of D-Day (more on that in a bit) the awarding of the figurative hospital “key,” (our dress blue shirt) to new volunteers and finally...

PENDER COUNTY - The Wilmington Shark and Pender County Tourism is teaming up to host Pender County Night, July 28. All youth softball and baseball leagues will get free admission, including coaches. “I think we’ve hit a home run with Pender County Night at the Wilmington Sharks,” said Tammy Proctor, tourism director. “Anyone wishing to attend can purchase discounted tickets online for...

Sea Turtle Hospital News Those crazy Kemp’s are still going after our local pier pickings. They’re being snagged so quickly that we no sooner get one in, “de-hook” them and get them settled in a tank than we’re getting another phone call with one or more en-route. Veteran anglers pretty much know the drill by now, but if it’s your first close-up with a hooked turtle the two most...

Sea Turtle Hospital News Winter may have finally departed our coast but the memory lingers on – at least as far as cold-stunned turtles go. We’re getting in our crop of what we call “spring greens,” small greens that have probably been stunned, warmed up and stunned again, possibly multiple times. They’ve finally become debilitated enough to strand, emaciated and covered in barnacles and...

During a September 2017 Pender County Board of Commissioners resoundingly approved the idea of naming a portion of US Hwy 17 after Ambassador Mattie R. Sharpless, a Hampstead native. On May 10, Pender County turned out to honor one of their own as the idea became a reality. A dedication ceremony, conducted on the steps of Manhollow Missionary Baptist Church, named a portion of US Hwy 17 was named in honor of Sharpless. Sharpless,...

Scallywags Weekend is almost here! This May 4-6 event will celebrate all things pirates and mateys! This family-friendly event will include a pirate encampment, parrots, a low country shrimp, Blackbeard's Market, boat rides aboard the Tiki Queen and the pirate ship, The Raven. Go to our Facebook page, Scallywags Weekend for updates and news. One of the activities of the weekend is the Scavenger Hunt. Visit these...

Scallywags Weekend has several components - a movie night, a pirate encampment, a low country shrimp boil, Pirate Olympics, a scavenger hunt, Blackbeard's Market, and rides aboard The Raven and a Pirate Show at The Raven! The weekend will kickoff Friday, May 4, with the Pirate Encampment and the movie, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales at Soundside Park. The movie will begin around 8:15 p.m. Bring...

Moores Creek National Battlefield to Host Jr. Ranger Day - Saturday, April 28, 2018 Currie, NC - Join Moores Creek National Battlefield this Saturday, April 28 from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. for a FREE family-friendly event that is fun for all ages. Several Living Historians will be set up in the Patriots Field Demonstration Area providing hands-on demonstrations of 18th Century Colonial Trades and Military Life. March...

Nine Jewish refugee families rescued from the Holocaust in Germany by a heroic effort in 1939 were settled in an obscure rural community near Burgaw, North Carolina. A North Carolina Highway Historical Marker to commemorate this will be dedicated Wednesday, April 18, at 2 p.m. at Pender County Public Library in Burgaw. A special guest will be Ann Wolf Loeb who arrived at Van Eeden from Germany with her family in 1940....

Sea Turtle Hospital News We all know who the Queen of the hospital is (Jean) but there’s another lady who is definitely the royalty in Sea Turtle Bay: “Snookie.” Snookie is a three-hundred-plus-pound loggerhead who was transferred to us from the Marine Mammal Stranding Center in Brigantine, NJ on October 30, 2016. She had stranded multiple times near Avalon, and when it became apparent that she...

Pender Pawzapalooza: a doggone good time for pet owners BURGAW – It’s a Fido and Family walk in the park as Burgaw’s Rotary Park hosts Pender Pawzapalooza April 14, 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. “We are proud of our animal shelter and we are pleased to sponsor Pender Pawzapalooza,” said Tammy Proctor, Pender County tourism director. The event will feature a pet fun walk utilizing parts of the Osgood...