Are you aching to feel the sand between your toes? Check out the sights along the coast or inland? Enjoy some food and drinks from hot spots favored by the locals? Well, then check out all the action near WithersRavenel’s Wilmington office, along with our newest office in Southern Pines.
As it is Sept. 10, let’s celebrate what makes the 910 so great. So, just in time for the peak of hurricane season (yikes!), tie yourself down as you tie one on, or just have some fun, at some 910 area code favorites. Here’s what our office staffers have to recommend as the top places to eat, drink, and visit:
ERIK VINSON, SENIOR DESIGNER:
In Brunswick County, we have the Oyster Festival in October. It’s a great time with live bands, small business vendors, food, beer, and of course ¦ oysters!
In Calabash, we have seafood restaurants with fresh seafood ¦ right off the boat!
We also have the Oak Island Lighthouse to visit.
Southport is a quaint, busy little place to visit with waterfront eating and shopping.
In Shallotte, we have the Red Hare Brewery on Main Street. You can go in, have some brews and order from Wing & Fish Company next door. Outside, you can play cornhole, drink your beers and have a grand ole time!
TROY BEASLEY, SENIOR ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENTIST:
The best burger in town is hands down from Winnie’s Tavern, a small local bar/restaurant in Downtown Wilmington near the port. The Carolina Burger is my favorite, but a close second is the Trailer Park Burger. All the burgers are delicious, but don’t make the mistake of passing on their Cajun fried okra, or their Cajun fried pork rinds. Did I mention the fried bologna sandwich?
It’s not a secret, but Britt’s Donuts in Carolina Beach is the best doughnut you’ll ever eat. The long line can be discouraging, but if you can hang in there, the reward is worth the wait. Local tip: You can bypass the line and walk right up to the counter and order a coffee and doughnut to “eat in” and a dozen “to go.”
Obviously, we have the beaches as our main attractions, but spending an evening downtown on the Cape Fear River is a lot of fun. The Riverwalk along the river is a great spot to take in a beautiful sunset with the Battleship and Cape Fear Memorial Bridge as some very cool backdrops. There are a lot of shops, restaurants and bars along the Riverwalk as well.
If you’re a history buff, check out Fort Fisher State Historic Site. This is always a very cool place to walk around because so much of the original earthworks are still intact, and it’s easy to let your imagination run wild.
If you really like hotdogs, do yourself a favor and make a pilgrimage to Paul’s Place Famous Hotdogs just a few miles north in Rocky Point. You have to try their version of “all the way,” which consists of mustard, onion and their homemade relish.
Portland Grille near Wrightsville Beach is another favorite of mine. The food is delicious and the menu will tempt your more adventurous side. I highly recommend trying the Sika Venison Tenderloin.
DON MIZELLE, DIRECTOR OF PROJECT DELIVERY:
North Carolina Azalea Festival
Surf City section of the Mountains to Sea Trail
JOE BOYD, PROFESSIONAL ENGINEER, CIVIL AND UTILITIES:
Best Burrito Spot in North Carolina, not just Wilmington, is Flaming Amy’s Burrito Barn. Try the Pineapple JalapeÃ±o salsa and, if you don’t want to be able to walk out, get the Double Bypass Burrito.
We have a battleship here, USS North Carolina, also known as the “Show Boat” from its original commission days in 1941. Make time to visit the first battleship to go into the Pacific theatre after Pearl Harbor.
JOHN SCOTT, DESIGNER:
Surf City has the Karen Beasley Sea Turtle Rescue and Rehabilitation Center
Stanley Rehder Carnivorous Plant Garden
The NC Aquarium at Fort Fisher
Brunswick Town is a neat, historical area, as well, with ruins of a colonial site.
KEN ORIE, PROFESSIONAL ENGINEER, FUNDING & ASSET MANAGEMENT:
Be sure to check out the World’s Largest Frying Pan in Rose Hill!
SOUTHERN PINES AREA
TODD ST. JOHN, PROFESSIONAL ENGINEER, UTILITIES:
Check out Weymouth Woods Sandhills Nature Preserve. A longleaf pine forest preserve with trails and much more.
Martin Park in Southern Pines is a 50-acre dog park where your four-legged friends can roam free. Some folks have said it is one of the nation’s top dog parks. The nice thing for us is that the park abuts our office complex and serves as a great place for lunchtime exercise.
We also have Granny’s Donuts in Aberdeen, which is way better than the big-name chains.
MICHAEL WICKER, PROFESSIONAL ENGINEER, UTILITIES:
There are more than 60 golf courses in Moore County and the surrounding areas. Pinehurst No. 2 is one of the most well-known courses in the country, but there are numerous places to enjoy a round. The Carolina Hotel is also on the Pinehurst Golf Resort grounds, and worth checking out.
Old Bethesda Church and Cemetery in Aberdeen is pretty neat, but then my 3rd and 4th great grandparents on my grandmother’s side of the family from the 1700s are buried there!
During peach season, there are orchard stands and homemade ice cream for sale out toward West End and Candor.
LEONARD MCBRYDE III, PROFESSIONAL ENGINEER, UTILITIES:
Southern Pines and Pinehurst have scenic, historic downtowns where you can walk from shop to shop. Pinehurst has the “Live After Five” where they close off downtown from traffic and have concerts on the Village Greens. Southern Pines has “First Friday,” where every first Friday of the month they have a concert downtown and they too close off downtown to traffic. There are tons of restaurants and entertainment venues, too. My favorite is Beefeater’s in Southern Pines.
DID YOU MISS OUR 828 FEATURE?
To find out about all there is to do in Western North Carolina near our Asheville office, click here.