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Summer Outdoor Activities at Mayfaire Town Center

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Are you looking for things to do outside with your family this summer? If you are going to be in the Wilmington, NC area, look no further than Mayfaire Township. Offering shopping, dining, residential properties, movies, hotels and an office park this “go to” location has something for everyone including outdoor events.

Upcoming events include family oriented fun at Barnes & Noble. Every Tuesday at 10 a.m. toddlers can participate in Toddler Storytime. Bring the entire family on Fridays at 7 p.m. for Family Storytime. Each Saturday at 11 a.m. there is a Special Storytime and each second Tuesday at 7 p.m. an American Girl Night. For those inspired by mystery a Magic House Night is offered each third Thursday of the month.

Stuff the BusA community-wide event, Stuff the Bus, will be held August 5th. Communities in Schools of Cape Fear will collect school supplies at Mayfaire Town Center in front of Regal 16 Cinema on August 5-6 from 11 a.m. – 7 p.m., and again on August 7, 12-5 p.m.

UNCWUniversity of North Carolina at Wilmington fans will enjoy UNCW Shopping Weekend August 13-14. Shops throughout Mayfaire will be offering special discounts for UNCW students.

Breast RIbbonOctober is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and Mayfaire Town Center is hosting a Run for the Ta-Tas on Saturday, October 1 with registration beginning at 6:30 a.m. This Chaser Run is one of a kind in the Wilmington area. Music and entertainment will be provided.

Heart Association

The Cape Fear Heart Walk brings thousands to walk for funds supporting lifesaving education about heart disease and stroke research. The walk will take place on October 15th in the parking lot between the Macaroni Grill and Smokey Bones on International Drive. Registration begins at 8:30 a.m.


The Coastal Carolina Auto Show allows dealerships to showcase their new and exciting models. This year’s event is sponsored by StarNews Media and will be held across from Belk on October 22-23.

Mayfaire Town Center is a designation for fun and family. The convenience to the larger Wilmington and Wrightsville Beach area makes it an easy regular favorite of residents and guests. The Township also provides living, shopping and an office park area.

Enjoy living in the Mayfaire Township. There are several communities to choose from including homes such as 557 Garden Terrace Drive 205.  When you are ready to view residential properties at Mayfaire, let us assist you as a Buyer’s Agent. Contact us for more information.

Homes Priced At More Than $5M

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We think this article written by Cece Nunn of the Starnews Online and posted in WilmingtonBiz is worth sharing.

oceanpointedriveTwo luxury homes with asking prices of more than $5 million in Wilmington were put up for sale in February, an unusual occurrence for the local market, according to a report released this week.

Of the 215 houses priced at more than $1 million in New Hanover and Brunswick counties, the two new listings mean there are only three total with prices that high, and only two homes above that price point have sold in the region in the past decade, the report said. The luxury market real estate report is compiled monthly by Just For Buyers Realty using information from the local Multiple Listing Service.

The two listed in February are at 2336 Ocean Point Drive in Landfall, which is for sale for $5.2 million and listed by Landmark Sotheby’s International Realty; and at 7903 Masonboro Sound Road, listed by Intracoastal Realty for $5.25 million, the report said.

The Ocean Point Drive Mediterranean-revival style home is 7,600 square feet with four bedrooms, seven bathrooms, a saltwater pool, gourmet outdoor kitchen and views of the Intracoastal Waterway and Atlantic Ocean. The 6,470-square-foot Masonboro Sound Road house sits on 8 acres and has 4 bedrooms and five bathrooms. It also has a pier with a boat lift, water views and a putting green, and comes with a separate three-bedroom, two-bath guest cottage.

In New Hanover County, sales of luxury homes continued a mostly upward trend, with five selling last month compared to three in February 2015. Brunswick County’s sales also increased from last February, going from none to one, the report said. In Brunswick, there are 79 homes listed in the local MLS that are priced at more than $1 million, while there are 136 in New Hanover.

The luxury home market is soft compared to overall real estate sales in the region, but “we’ve definitely been seeing increases in the number of homes that are being sold on the high end,” said Kathleen Baylies, broker-in-charge at Just For Buyers Realty, on Friday.

Both New Hanover and Brunswick saw an increase in the number of luxury homes that went under contract in February in a year-over-year comparison – from four to seven in New Hanover and one to two in Brunswick.

In Pender County, the 13,000-square-foot home at 561 Ashton Lake Road in Burgaw came on the market Dec. 17 and is priced at $4.5 million, Baylies said. Located on a 20-acre site, the mansion includes six bedrooms, nine bathrooms, a gym, playroom, sauna, game room, bowling alley and saltwater pool. It also has a 35-acre lake and geothermal heat and air conditioning, according to its listing.

February 2016 luxury home market
New Hanover County
Feb. 2015 / Feb. 2016
Brunswick County
Feb. 2015 / Feb. 2016
Newly listed 20 / 24 7 / 5
Highest new listing $4,195,000 / $5,250,000 $1,689,000 / $1,625,000
Under contract 4 / 7 1 / 2
Closed 3 / 5 0 / 2
Most expensive closed $1,250,000 / $2,712,500 n/a /$1,000,000

When you are ready to invest in a multi-million dollar home it is especially important to have the right Buyer’s Agent. Coastal Realty Connections works hard to help ensure the success of every client. Contact us for information on representation.


Best places Entertaining Dogs

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If you are “owned” by a dog, then you know how important it is to have the perfect home for your four legged friend.  Everything from the number of stairs to a fenced back yard can come into play when looking for the ideal home for your furry family members.  Most homes can be modified to accommodate special needs for pets but more importantly is the neighborhood pet friendly?  Some planned communities are thinking ahead and including dog parks as an amenity for residents to enjoy while some provide sidewalks and trails where you can exercise your dog on-leash.   Once you have pinpointed your area of interest, stop by a park or pet store and ask pet owners if they recommend any neighborhoods or communities that they know to be dog friendly.  Other pet owners are usually very happy to share information like their favorite pet store, veterinarian, groomer and their favorite place to take their own dog.  You can also drive around a specific neighborhood taking note of the number of homes with dogs or if there are folks out walking their dogs.  This is often a good indicator of a dog friendly neighborhood.  Keep in mind if you are considering a planned community or neighborhood with a Home Owners Association, you will want to obtain the Bylaws and Restrictions to make yourself aware of any rules that might not work for you and your pet.  Fencing for example, may be required to be constructed of certain materials or may have height restrictions. Just make sure you know what is or isn’t permitted.

If you are relocating to a whole new town, make sure that you inquire about local ordinances and license laws. Since animal welfare laws are different in every city, it will be important to know before you buy or rent, what is expected from you as a dog owner.  Certain cities in the country even have bans on particular breeds which may prevent you from living in city or county limits.  As always it is important to be informed!  Hopefully you are working with a REALTOR who should be able to help you navigate your pet friendly quest.

If you live in Brunswick or New Hanover Counties and are looking for a fun new place to take your dogs for some exercise and play time, there are a surprising number of options!  If you dog is considered part of the family, then you know how hard it is to leave them at home sometimes. Along the south eastern coast of NC, Oak Island is a year round, dog friendly beach.  Other area beaches allow dogs on leash only during certain times of the year, deemed as “off season.”  You might also be surprised to find out there are dog-friendly restaurants and bars too!  Here are some of our favorites!

Dog Parks

PM Pups at dog park shallotte approved (1)

Bald Head Island
North Bald Head Wynd

Oak Island Dog Park
Dolphin Street, between 47th and 46th Streets


Holden Beach Dog Park
146 Scotch Bonnet Dr
Holden Beach, NC 28462


Shallotte Dog Park
5550 Main St,
Shallotte, NC 28459


Town Creek Park
6420 Ocean Highway East in Winnabow  

Abbey Nature Trail
10200 Hwy 17 N
Wilmington, NC


Ogden Dog Park
Market St and Gordon Rd
Wilmington, NC, US
(910) 798-7620


Hugh McRae Park-Dog Park
1799 S College Rd
Wilmington, NC, US 28403
(910) 798-7630


Wilmington Dog Park
3405 Park Avenue (Within Empie Park)



Dog Friendly Restaurants and Bars (outdoor seating)


The George on the Riverwalk in Wilmington,         Front Street Brewery, Wilmington
Java Dog Coffee House, Wilmington                                     Rucker John’s on Carolina Beach Rd.
Brusters Real Ice Cream-Wilmington                                    Dairy Queen Wilmington
Lazy Pirate-Carolina Beach                                            Gibby’s Dock and Dine-Carolina Beach
Casa Matta-Carolina Beach                                             Seawitch Café and Tiki Bar-Carolina Beach
Fishy Fishy Café-Southport                                            Calabash Deli, Calabash
Fibber McGee’s-Sunset Beach                                           Shagger Jack’s-Oak Island
Inlet View Bar and Grill-Shallotte                                 San Jose -by Lowes Foods in Shallotte

Now get out there and have some fun with your furry friends!!!

Why we have the Cape Fear River Pilots

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Since Europeans first viewed the area, the river known ominously as the Cape Fear has been vital to the fortunes of both buccaneers and businessmen. History shows it was the pirate Stede Bonnet – by most accounts a poor sailor who already had been convicted as a pirate and pardoned – who may have realized the river’s name. After returning to piracy, he tried to escape capture in the early 1700’s by hiding up the Cape Fear. But he forgot the first rule of pirates – always have more than one escape route. Bonnet was caught as soon as the British reached the mouth of the river.

Union vessels didn’t have as much luck with the blockade runners of the Confederacy, who continued to escape capture and bring needed supplies back to the port at Wilmington during the Civil War. In fact, Wilmington was the last port open to blockade runners. When it finally fell in early 1865, it signaled the end of Confederate hopes.

Since then, though, most seagoing traffic hasn’t needed an escape route – merely a North Carolina berth. That meant the Cape Fear River in Wilmington, and the deep water harbor at Morehead City. When North Carolina’s first major port development began in the 1850s at Morehead City, harbor pilots began bringing in ships through Beaufort Inlet.In Wilmington, the river pilots became crucial during the Union blockade of the South during the Civil War. They would steam down the coastline and bring back needed supplies to the port, making Wilmington the last port open to blockade runners.Graphic Cape Fear Pilot Assoc (2)

In the years before modern dredging and channel deepening of the river, known ominously as the Cape Fear, captains used local pilots to maneuver the sandbars at the entrance of the harbor and of Frying Pan Shoals, more than 20 miles offshore. “Think of the captain of a large ship at Cape Fear as a blind man entering an immense, strange house, cluttered with unfamiliar furniture and other hazards, with only one entrance and one exit,” writes Jim McNeil in Masters of the Shoals.

Because of the pilots’ daring runs and narrow escapes, they often were romanticized in publications as “dandies of the town,” according to an article excerpted in Masters of the Shoals. “They wore fine ruffled shirts, tight fitting boots, long black coats and plug hats,” the author writes. “Every boy hoped someday to become a pilot.” “Without pilots, captains would be burdened. There is so much paperwork involved in every port visit, and (captains) go to so many ports around the world that they can’t know each river and port,” says Kirby. Federal regulations say that all “coastwise seagoing vessels propelled by machinery and subject to inspection” must be under the direction of a qualified pilot, along with vessels “not authorized by their certificate of inspection to proceed beyond (a specified) boundary line which are in excess of 1,600 tons, propelled by machinery and subject to inspection.” In more understandable terms, that means: “Every freighter, every big ship you see coming in this port has got a pilot in it,” said Scott Aldridge, river pilot and former president of the Cape Fear River Pilots Association.

In the Port of Wilmington 90 miles south of Morehead City, eight river pilots guide ships from a sea buoy in the Atlantic Ocean, past Bald Head and Jaybird shoals, and up the Cape Fear River.
“You have to navigate all the turns and bends in the river,” said Wes Kirby, then president of the Wilmington/Cape Fear Pilots Association. “Every bend has localized shoaling.” As river pilots bring the ships close to their berth in the Wilmington port, the docking pilots take over and use tugboats to push the vessel alongside its berth. Docking pilots also use tugs to undock vessels and turn them around so they can head down the river and out to sea.

Pilots have been around North Carolina ports for hundreds of years.

“Without pilots, shipping would come to a halt.”

sourced: Cape Fear Pilots Association – Wilmington,NC

NC Sea Turtle Nests Numbers Rebound in 2015

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Graphic Sea Turtle Rebound (2) SOUTHEASTERN N.C. — Following a disappointing 2014, sea turtle nests along the North Carolina coast are making a comeback. At the end of the nesting season last summer, the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission reported a 58 percent decline in nests on the state’s beaches with only 565 recorded. The previous year had seen 1,303. But this summer, local beaches are reporting quite the opposite.

Patrick Amico, a ranger with the Fort Fisher State Recreation Area, said nesting numbers along the 7-mile stretch of beach he oversees at the southern tip of New Hanover County are at a record-high 83 as of this week. “So far, we are 31 nests higher than our previous record within last 30 years of data collection,” he said, noting they expect to see a few more before the season is over. Each year, sea turtle nesting is a cyclical occurrence, when nest numbers vary from years of diminished numbers followed by dramatic turnarounds. “Last year was very low, so we expected a rebound,” Amico said. “But we are definitely surprised by how much of a rebound we have seen.” Eileen Ramsdale with the Oak Island Sea Turtle Protection Program said the Brunswick County islands have seen 96 nests so far this season and nearly 40 have already hatched. That number is reminiscent of 2013, when Oak Island saw 93 nests, and is more than triple the 31 nests seen last year. “It is a banner year and a record year for us,” Ramsdale said. “But it is not outrageously high compared to the year before last. It comes in cycles.”

The fluctuation in nests can, in part, be attributed to female turtles’ tendency to reproduce every two to three years, causing some years to be less fruitful than others. This summer Carolina Beach has seen 14 nests — already a dozen more than the New Hanover County town saw all of last year, said Nancy Busovne, coordinator of the Pleasure Island Sea Turtle Project. Kure Beach, meanwhile, has seen 11. On Topsail Island’s 26 miles of coastline, Terry Meyer, director of the island’s nesting program, said they began this year with a bang and brazen prediction that they might hit 100 nests after only seeing 53 last year. As of Wednesday, they had 64.

While that is up from last year, Meyer said DNA results from the nests have shown that some of their local turtles are sharing their nests with other beaches. “The DNA results have been interesting,” she said. “Each turtle nests multiple times, but some use other habitats.” She said there have been indications that turtles nesting at Topsail Island have also nested at Camp Lejeune, Wrightsville Beach and Cape Lookout.

And it isn’t just loggerhead turtles that are visiting the Tar Heel State’s beaches. Just adding to their record year, Amico said Fort Fisher played host to a Kemp’s Ridley nest this summer and tests show it had a 100-percent success rate for its hatchlings. Kemp’s Ridleys are the smallest marine turtles in the world, and one of the most endangered. “That is rare for North Carolina and we think it is the only confirmed nest of its kind this year,” Amico said.

Female sea turtles have returned in force to the state’s beaches in 2015. Here are the number of nests recorded at some local beaches so far this year:

Fort Fisher State Rec.
2015* – 83
2014 – 18

Bald Head Island
2015* – 98
2014 – 33

Oak Island
2015* – 96
2014 – 31

Carolina Beach
2015* – 14
2014 – 2

Kure Beach
2015* – 11
2014 – 3

Topsail Island
2015* – 64
2014 – 53

*Nesting season generally runs through August

Sources: N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission; local turtle nesting projects; Bald Head Island Conversancy
Star News: Hunter Ingram
Photo Courtesy Tobi DeFalco

North Carolina Marinas

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Graphic Marina add economy blog (2) In a recent article by the Southport Stateport Pilot‘s Staff Writer Lee Hinnant, he highlights the ways in which marinas contribute to the local economy.

More than just places to tie-up and buy fuel and ice, marinas are substantial contributors to the economy and gateways to some of the nest spots on the Cape Feat coast.

With thriving restaurants, an inn, real estate sales and other businesses, Bald Head Island Marina is like a second village square. Everyone who visits the island passes through, wither on private boats or the large passenger ferries.

At South Harbor Village in Oak Island, the marina helps support two large restaurants and several small businesses overlooking the water. Just up the Intracoastal Waterway at St. James, the marina anchors a market, restaurant and Tiki hut. One of the area’s top seafood restaurants and a motel overlook Blue Water Point Marina. At the heart of it all is Southport Marina. During the past decade, Preston Development has turned what was an aging marina into a first class facility that has garnered numerous awards. There are 10 full-time employees and two part-time workers. Businesses based at Southport Marina include a boat brokerage, a boating club, a boat rental company, a sail supplier and an American Sailing Association-certified sailing academy. Seven charter Companies and Zimmerman Marine Service also call the marina home.

There’s a waiting list for the boat dry stack and manager Hank Whitley said that’s no happy accident. “We’ve put a lot of effort, headache and heartache to do it right,” he said. “It’s a big deal for us and a major revenue stream to bring folks from elsewhere.”

The boaters who stayed at Southport Marina less than a month increased by about 150 last year to more than 1,500. Whitley estimates that one-quarter of the marina’s business is with transients. “We think of ourselves at concierges,” Whitley said. “The biggest thing about the impact is that just about every single one of them want to go out and eat somewhere in town.” The visitors who boat to Southport also need provisions, fuel and marine parts and services.

“It’s the same thing as a hotel,” said Cindy Brochure, tourism director for the City of Southport. “If they like you they will come back.” Brochure said the marina’s awards and favorable mention in publications such as Sail Magazine have helped introduce Southport to many newcomers. “We have big-city amenities in a small town. It’s an economic boost when these people come in.” Brochure called the area marinas “a year around economic development tool” and said her office enjoys handing out information about the community. “It’s like having a stop on the interstate highway” she said.

A 2008 study of the southeastern region of NC stated that marinas employed 783 people and had a secondary economic impact of $305-million in sales.


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Graphic BHI Terminal Goin BlogContractors have built about 150 feet of Bald Head Island’s terminal groin, an arm-shaped pile of giant rocks designed to trap sand and reduce erosion on South Beach.

Crews are digging a 32- to 40-foot-wide trench in the sand, then placing rock-filled geotextile mattresses on the leveled surface. After that, they’re stacking large boulders on the specially constructed mattress pads.

Work is going slowly because the contractors have to pump water from the excavation and make sure the construction area is perfectly flat and at exactly the correct elevation, said Chris McCall, shoreline protection manager and assistant village manager.

“The terminal groin is moving along,” McCall said. “They are putting the rocks in place.” Orion Marine Group crews place a six-by-20-foot mattress on the construction centerline, then place additional pads on each side of the center mattress.

The mattresses go down first so that the heavy boulders won’t subside into the sand.

McCall said the crew was averaging eight to 10 mattresses a day. They are staging mainland operations just east of American Marine Co. on the Intracoastal Waterway at Oak Island.

When finished, the terminal groin will be 1,300 feet long and reach into the Atlantic about 300 feet. It is designed to capture some, but not all, of the sand that washes by in the longshore current.

Four community-based terminal groins are allowed in North Carolina under a 2011 law. Other beaches seeking to build groins are Holden Beach, Ocean Isle Beach and Figure Eight Island.

Construction is expected to wrap up in October. Technicians will monitor the groin’s performance for at least two years before the project engineer decides whether to add another 600 feet to the structure.

Source State Port Pilot