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It's Sunday May 29, 2016 Dock Quote: “In the second...

News From The Village Updated Almost Daily

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The Bears Return:

Backyards As Feeding Grounds. The Story

Letters: What's In A Name Change?:

Oriental Or..... Letters To The Editor

Poll - Should Oriental Change Its Name?:

The word "Oriental" has been banned from use in federal law.. Online Poll

Old Theater Celebrates 70 Years:

Scenes from 'Music & Memories'. The Story

Firefly :

Adventure From Land To ICW And Back. The Shipping News

Singing Out About HB2:

Susan Werner's Debut of "Carolina" in Oriental. The Story

PCC President Pick Expected In May:

Four Finalists Vie To Succeed Late Cleve Cox. The Story

PAWS Pet Parade 2016:

49 Dogs Hit The Streets. The Story

Bathroom Re-opens With On Duty Compliance Officer:

Gender Identity Assured Thanks To New State Funding. World Exclusive NewsExtra

Town Docks Get Paint Color Guide:

A Quick Way For Visiting Boats To Spot Oriental's Public Docks. The Story

Five Trucks. 45 People. Three Venues. 40 Seconds Of Video.:

Apple Semi-Stealthily Visits Oriental. The Story

Letters: Sailpack Thank You:

Oriental Welcomed 5 College Teams At Regatta. Letters To The Editor

Primary Election Results March 15, 2016:

Kenny Heath, Kari Forrest Hammond Victorious. The Story

Primary Elections Mar 15 :

Early Voting Now - Bring Photo ID. The Story

It Happened In The Park :

Pictorial of Performers. The Story

Letters: On Requiring Annexation For Water:

Avoid or Repeat Walmart Experience?. Letters To The Editor

Riding The Ferry - With The Captain:

A Crew's Eye View. The Shipping News

2016 Indoor Dragon Boat Races:

One Boat, One Pool, 48 Paddlers. The Story

Letters: Graffiti Ordinance - Support & Opposition:

Nipping In Bud, or Cutting Speech?. Letters To The Editor

Oriental's Graffiti Law: Dangerous Waters:

Town Could Clamp Down On What Is Said. Guest Columnist

Willow Oak Cut Down In Lou Mac Park:

1929-2016. The Story

Walmart Closes Express Store in Oriental:

The Timeline: Two Weeks and... Gone. The Story

Oak At Lou Mac Park To Be Cut:

Spread of Rot A Safety Concern. The Story

Letters: A Town Shopping For A Grocery:

Post-Walmart, Post-T&C Oriental. Letters To The Editor

Oriental WalMart Closing: Renee Smith Interview:

Town-n-Country Manager Calls Move "Pitiful". The Story

Letters: On Oriental WalMart Closing:

Experiment Over, Now What?. Letters To The Editor

50+ Boats in New Years Day Sailing in Oriental:

23rd Instead of Football Regatta. The Story

Letters: Covering Up Graffiti:

How To Get There . Letters To The Editor

Town Board Tables Graffiti Law:

January Board Meeting. The Story

Letters: Thanks For New Years in Oriental:

One To Remember. Letters To The Editor

Dragon Run, Croaker Drop In To 2016:

Half Century of No Rain on This Parade. The Story

Abby Normal:

Positive Flotation: Boat Easier Than Apartment. The Shipping News

Friends Of The Dragon 2016:

Even A Dragon Needs A Home. The Story

First Annual Reindeer Run 5K :

100 Runners, Walkers Help Hope Clinic Raise $1700. The Story

More Cord Cutting:

Rabbit Ears For A Digital World. The Village Geek

Letters: Spirit of Christmas Thanks:

Lighted Flotilla Takes A Village. Letters To The Editor

Spirit of Christmas Parade 2015:

Merry Dinghy Christmas. The Story

The Bear Is Back:

He's a birdseed eatin' machine. The Story

Heads Up!:

You Can March Right In. Drawing The Town

2015 Spirit of Christmas Schedule:

Friday & Saturday December 11-12. The Story

silospaloozza-goers hit the grassy dance flloor last night as Saltwater Gold played. Now in its 4th year, Silospalooza featured an afternoon and evening of music. And no rain.

Sunday May 29, 2016

7:24a After a dry Saturday, getting rained on today is an OK deal. A half inch fell overnight… today will be rainy on & off.

Tropical Storm Bonnie is raining on South Carolina, and the storm has slowwwwwlllyyyy begun its turn north. Bonnie is heading our way, arriving post tropical (weakened) and delivering some tropical rains Tuesday & Wednesday. We can expect 20-25 mph winds, and 1 to 3 inches of rain.

Saturday May 28, 2016

11:30p English sheep dog – Picasso, by name – reunited with his humans.

8:35p An English Sheepdog seems to have lost her herd. The shaggy black and white dog showed up earlier this evening near the Town Beach. The dog has now made her way next door, to Claire Pittman’s porch at Neuse Drive and Ragan. If she’s yours, you’ll find her there. 249-4958.

5:42p Winds now at 35 knots / 40 mph, the system has been upgraded to Tropical Storm Bonnie.

The Southeast Weather Radar shows Bonnie arriving at the South Carolina coast:

A Bonnie tune:

7:28a OK. About that weather thing. It is beaming sunshine this morning. But rain does seem like it might sneak in later today. Checking the hour by hour forecast, the chance of rain increasing significantly after 3p.

Fear not Palloozagin. You’ll be OK. The Red Rooster bar now has a galvanized roof – your little Bunky self will stay dry. Ish.

Tropical Depression Two is heading to South Carolina for a holiday weekend. Two-eeee will likely get upgraded to a Tropical Storm today, then getting the proper name Bonnie. The storm is expected to dissipate to a sub tropical low before reaching the NC coast mid next week.

Here are the links to follow Two-eee / Bonnie:

6:01a … ShedBelly * Ken Belangia * Moores Creek * Take Kindlies * Bob Laverty * George Bailey * Rockin’ Horse * Saltwater Gold * The Del Rios * Hard Livin’ * 10 bands on the two stages at the Red Rooster at today’s 4th annual Silospalooza. Starts at 1:30 this afternoon and runs on in to the night.

Another list starts with … gloves, cloths/rags, cleaning supplies, Clorox, scrapers to remove paint. That’s for the cleanup at Holts Chapel Community Center that gets going at 9a. More details, here.

Much more going on – check out What’s Happening.

Friday May 27, 2016

5:05p Tropical Depression Two has been declared. Now with 35 mph winds, the storm is forecast to reach a max of 45 mph winds in 36 hours. Those winds will weaken before it gets to North Carolina. See the tracking chart above. The Public Advisory states:

Maximum sustained winds are near 35 mph (55 km/h) with higher gusts.
Some strengthening is forecast during the next 48 hours, and the depression is expected to become a tropical storm later tonight or on Saturday.
WIND: Tropical storm conditions are expected to first reach the SC coast by Saturday night.
RAINFALL: The depression is expected to produce total rainfall accumulations of 2 to 4 inches from the upper coast of Georgia through eastern South Carolina and into southeastern North Carolina.
STORM SURGE: Storm surge inundation of 1 to 2 feet above ground level is expected within the tropical storm warning area.

For that sitting at the Nav station feeling – TownDock.net streams NOAA Weather Radio:


NOAA confirms they will declare Tropical Depression Two at 5p today.

TownDock.net will have details and the forecast track then. Until then, here are the latest computer models (not yet the official forecast track – that doesn’t come until the storm is declared). Whatever bounce the storm takes off the SC coast… it looks like we get wet. The storm arriving here wouldn’t be until late in the weekend (at the earliest).

We may get wet anyway this weekend – not related to the potential tropical storm.

3:01p From the 3p NOAA NHC Tropical Outlook:

Shower and thunderstorm activity has become more concentrated with the area of low pressure located about 450 miles southeast of
Charleston, South Carolina. An Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunter aircraft is currently investigating the low to determine if it has acquired a well-defined surface circulation. Environmental conditions are favorable for this system to become a tropical cyclone later today or on Saturday while it moves west-northwestward
toward the southeastern United States coast.

Based on what the Hurricane Hunter aircraft finds, this could officially become a storm later this afternoon.

11:20a A lot of police vehicles raced through town and over the bridge toward Arapahoe this morning. Sheriff’s Dept says gunshots had been reported. What they found was a house that was accidentally hit, aka, “someone was target practicing where they shouldn’t have been target practicing.”


7:49a No declared storm yet, but it seems surely imminent. Now a 90% chance of a storm being declared in the next 48 hours, NOAA states “ The projected track (early as it may be) has the system heading towards the South Carolina coast. Computer models suggest a SC landfall – although the wet storm could then turn our way:

A calming reminder – this is not forecast to become a hurricane. The system at most would be a named tropical storm (Bonnie), and could just be an unnamed tropical depression. Early computer models suggest a maximum of 40 knot winds.

NOAA is sending an aircraft to look at the system this afternoon.

6:01a Pamlico Community College’s Board has picked Dr. Jim Ross to be the school’s next president.
Jim RossDr. Ross has served for the past three years as VP at Piedmont Virginia Community College in Charlottesville. There, according to a press release late Thursday, “he increased overall fundraising by 40%, increased annual campaign revenues by 60%, and increased amount from grant awards by more than 100%.” (Full press release here.)

Ross is the author of two books, “The Only Way To Lead”, a 149-page biography of a college president, and “Social security disability benefits: How to get them! How to keep them!”. He states on his LinkenIn page that some 50,000 books have sold. Ross has appeared on the NBC Today Show to discuss his books.

He will succeed the late Cleve Cox who was PCC’s president for 6 years. A search has been on for the school’s 5th president since last fall. Pending approval by the state community college board, Jim Ross is to become PCC’s president on July 25.

Action-packed weekend ahead … Silospalooza’s upped its game to 10 bands this year. It starts Saturday at 1:30p. Tomorrow from 9a-1p, there’s a volunteer clean-up at Holt Chapel Community Center.

Kayaking and paddling, anyone? You’ve got 2 days of it on tap – the organizers have put together some cool water routes all over the county… Or maybe you like land more and want to get your hands in some dirt. There’s a veggie garden workshop Saturday morn.

From the TownDock.net Fashion Desk…

piglet The Oriental Piggly Wiggly grocery store is a month and a half from opening but you may already be seeing “Piglet” t-shirts around town.

If you’re just joining our broadcast in progress, Piglet is the name some have given to the Oriental “Pig” as it will be smaller than owner Billy Flockhart’s Grantsboro store. The shirts with the wee pig and “OiNC” acronym are for sale at that emporium.

And speaking of naming things, status-quo-ers seem to have the lead in the Oriental name change poll. Some more views, alternatives, here.

Thursday May 26, 2016

3:10p The chance of Storm Bonnie increased a bit this afternoon. The latest is a 60% chance of storm formation in the next 48 hours. From NOAA:

Environmental conditions are expected to become more conducive for a tropical or subtropical cyclone to form on Friday or Saturday while the system moves west-northwestward or northwestward toward the southeastern United States coast.

1:38p A half dozen bands was impressive but this year’s Silospalooza will feature 10 – yep, ten – bands starting at 1:30p on Saturday. The schedule – right here – has bands playing on the Red Rooster’s big stage and also on the new, more intimate stage under the bar roof.

8:37a Bonnie is getting more likely. From the National Hurricane Center:

A low pressure area centered between Bermuda and the Bahamas is gradually becoming better defined while shower activity is increasing. Environmental conditions are expected to become more conducive for tropical or subtropical cyclone formation on Friday while the system moves west-northwestward or northwestward toward the southeastern United States coast. An Air Force reconnaissance plane will investigate this low on Friday.
  • Formation chance through 48 hours…medium…50 percent
  • Formation chance through 5 days…high…70 percent

7:14a A year ago there were frequent reports of a bear (or maybe two) around and about Oriental. The bear(s) are back. Bear sightings (and busted bird feeders) are reported in Oriental and around the county.

7:01a Pondering Bonnie. An update coming around or just after 8a on the potential tropical system.

Meanwhile – a Bonnie tune (maybe it needs new lyrics):

Wednesday May 25, 2016

Coming off last week’s showing of the Rosenwald movie, you have a chance to convert some of that spirit into helping clean up the 95-year-old former school this Saturday.

A number of folks have asked what they should bring and what kind of tasks need to be done. There’s now a list. See it here. It’s Saturday 9a-1p.

Busy Memorial Day weekend on tap. Silozpalooza Saturday afternoon and night. Free workshop on starting your veggie garden. Paddling in Pamlico’s couple of days of kayaking local waters. Memorial Day Service on Monday. Slews of things in What’s Happening.

And looking way far ahead, the Ol’ Front Porch Music Fest in October is looking for musicians to transform those front porches in to stages. Know of any? Here’s the application form.

Do the bears sit in the woods? The answer: not all the time. They’re back to making the rounds beyond the woods. They’re traipsing through yards from Florence to Oriental. That story and The Bear Chronicles, coming up.

In the meantime, if you don’t want bears in your yard, it may be time to consider human behavior. That bird feeder you leave out at night? The propane grill you didn’t scrub clean last time you used it? Scraps of food in the garbage cans and compost pile?

Bunky, that’s like a Times Square of neon signs, all screaming “EAT HERE.” Adjust accordingly.

Tuesday May 24, 2016

8:39a Hurricane season doesn’t officially begin until next week, but Mom Nature maybe didn’t get the memo. A tropical system may be developing south of the Bahamas. Maybe.

May tropical storms can happen. Storm Beryl hit Florida & Georgia May 27, 2012
There really isn’t any other info than that, although the above two sentences could be part of a 45 minute discussion on the Weather Channel. IF (big IF) a tropical depression forms, it might become a storm. IF it does… Bonnie is the name on tap.

It could take a couple days for anything to develop (or not) and have actual useful information. Until then, it’s a bunch of yada yada bla bla.

But – wait a minute. Bonnie is a “B”. What happened to the “A” name? Hurricane Alex – actually occurred in January. Only the second January hurricane on record. Alex developed southwest of Bermuda and then fizzled out at sea.

7:01a Traditional Orientalites may feel relived. Oriental has taken a sizeable lead over Shipwreck in the name the town with a banned name poll…

Still, “Shipwreck” has been popular. Check your anchoring gear lately?

Perfect day ahead in our town. Sunshine & about 80. Perfect sleeping tonight, low 60.

This Saturday is SILOSPALOOZA. You’ll be taking your lawn chair out for a day of music & fun at The Silos, starting early afternoon. Check out some photos from past SilosPaloooooozaaasss:

One attendee from the 2015 SilosPalooza won’t be coming:
red the rooster
“Red” was mega popular at the paloooza, strutting his stuff. Unfortunately, the following week another red creature visited Red. A fox. Nuthin’ but feathers. RIP Red.

Monday May 23, 2016

3:07p The afternoon crowd may have had an early beer. Shipwreck has taken the lead.

2:10p Should Oriental change its name? So far, most people say no. But – ‘Shipwreck’ is surprisingly popular.

Ya gotta admit, seeing the hailing port “Shipwreck” on 3,000 boats would be impressive.

9:59a OK. There really is some odd news out there about the name “Oriental.”
Over the weekend in the national news was story regarding federal law. The new ruling removes several words from being allowed to describe an individual in federal law. Among the words – “Oriental.” Here is the story on CNN. It is on a lot of major news sites.

The law wasn’t just signed by the President. It was passed unanimously both both the House & Senate. Unanimously. When does that ever happen?

So. Here we are. Now our town was not named after an old term for Asian. We were named after a shipwreck. But inquiring minds want to know. What do we do?

Sunday May 22, 2016

9:03a Get your outdoor activities in this morning. Rain is likely to visit later this afternoon.

Today is National Maritime Day.

National Maritime Day is a United States “holiday” (who gets it off?) created to recognize the maritime industry. It is observed on May 22, the date in 1819 that the American steamship Savannah set sail from Savannah, Georgia on the first ever transoceanic voyage under steam power. National Maritime day was created by Congress in 1933.

We can celebrate it in Oriental by admiring the boats in the harbor.

Saturday May 21, 2016

9:52a Outdoor events planned for today have been rescheduled. The ODC Pursuit race has been moved to Sat Jun 4. The PCC Golf Tournament is looking for better weather tomorrow at Minnesott Country Club.

A half inch of rain fell overnight. While rain does threaten today, the hour by hour forecast indicates the afternoon may be dry.

6:59a A 90% chance of rain ahead. Rain is visible all around us in the weather radar:

Friday May 20, 2016

11:22a Lot of talk in town today about the documentary, Rosenwald at the Old Theater last night.

Why would a movie about the businessman who built up Sears fill every seat in the house?

The film was about Julius Rosenwald who a century ago offered to partially pay for building primary schools for black students in the rural – and segregated – South. In the 1920’s one of those “Rosenwald schools” was built on Janeiro Road a few miles outside Oriental, and served as a school until 1963.

Many last night commented that they’d had no idea of this history. Some in the audience though, had lived it. Former students from that school, which is now the Holt’s Chapel Community Center, were at the Old Theater last night.

Which brings up an oft-repeated comment today – that the movie brought together the most racially diverse crowd in Oriental in many peoples memories.

Another topic – how to capitalize on that by taking a lead from what Rosenwald did and work to restore and renovate the HCCC. Getting it national historic status. Having it used more.

One step in that direction is next Saturday’s clean up day.

8:30a Fridays in Otown don’t get much busier than this. Tonight you have decisions:

  • PMS presents The Adrian Duke Project (7 piece New Orleans style jazz) 7p at River Dunes.
  • Friday Flicks serves up In the Heart of the Sea @ 7:30p.
  • Tunes on tap from Silver Creek starting @ 7p at The Red Rooster (behind The Silos).

Saturday looks like rain – so the PCC Foundation takes to the links SUNDAY @ Minnesott Country Club. You can still register to play…

Thursday May 19, 2016

1:55p Water pressure is back. The folks at Town Hall say it may be a few minutes before you get full pressure (up to an hour), but that H20 is again flowing in town.

Town Manager Diane Miller adds “There is no water boil advisory.” Go ahead. Drink it up.

Here at TownDock World Headquarters water seems to be again flowing fine…

1:30p We could have water in our taps again soon. Town Manager Diane Miller says the Town crew fixing a low-lying pipe is ALMOST done.”

She provided an explanation for why one break shut down the water in town.

The trouble began around noon as the public works team was making a scheduled replacement of a water meter on a 2” pipe leading the main to a lot. In working to connect the meter to it, Miller says, “the line crumbled in their hands.”

To stop the flow of gushing water they turned off what a map showed as the two closest valves. No go.

Diane Miller:

After turning those off, the problem still wasn’t isolated. This means there is another valve somewhere allowing water to get to the broken line. They needed it dry to finish the repair.

So they opened the nearest hydrants to try and drain the lines- problem was that the broken line was lower than everything else, so the drainage was slow and steady- they only needed 2 minutes of no water flow to get it fixed.

When that didn’t work, they shut off the towers, so that gravity wasn’t pulling the water from the tanks and continuing to fill the repair space.

Miller says that when she checked at the water plant earlier this hour, ‘‘Our pressure is still up at 47.4 so as long as they can get it fixed before the pressure drops too low, we will not have to boil water.’‘

She suggests that a better map of Oriental’s water system could make a difference and help avoid systemwide shutdownsin the future. “The project we budgeted for a match to a grant / GIS equipment allows our entire system to be mapped properly including ALL the valves,” Miller says, adding that that “should help us find all the nearest valves more accurately to where we are working.”


“All the water in town has had to be shut off.”

That’s the word from Town Hall a moment ago. Cause: a burst in a water main line on Hwy 55 across from the Town n Country at 12:05.

No estimate yet on when the agua will come out of our faucets again. Crews are working on it.

We’ll keep you posted. (That way you don’t have to tie up the phones at Town Hall, okay, Bunky-modo?)

Here is the town crew at work on the break:

10:56a Beautiful air today. Refreshing to just breathe in, it might even help dry off the water-saturated ground. Okay, that’s asking a lot and anyway, the Oriental Weather Forecast has more rain the next 3 days. Otherwise known as The Weekend

All the more reason to get outside today…

What’s happening?. Tonight – the Rosenwald documentary is showing at the Old Theater.

Tomorrow night you’ve got yourself a hat trick of options, too.

Looking a bit farther down the road, The 3rd Annual Ol’ Front Porch Music Fest is coming in October. Can’t have a fest without the tunes. Know any musicians who play rootsy music? The OFPMF wants to hear — and hear from — Them… Musicians who would like to perform may apply by filling out the application, which can be seen here….

Even if you’re not musically inclined, you can pitch in and help organize the ever-growing OFPMF shebang. Contact Dottie Osmun 252-617-0540 or dottieosmun @ gmail.com

More on the Oct 15 fest is here.

Wednesday May 18, 2016

We’ve gotten an inch and a half of rain since last evening. The Oriental Weather Forecast has things clearing up – or at least not deluging on us – by this afternoon.

Temps won’t be rising above the 70’s into at least early next week – but Sat and Sun could be a wet slog with …. yep …more rain.

A busy couple of evenings ahead. Tomorrow night at the Old Theater, the documentary Rosenwald is showing. It focuses on the Sears executive who a century ago helped pay for 5,000 schoolhouses in the South for black students.

They had a distinctive look, these Rosenwald Schools. A prime example stands today outside Oriental on Janeiro Road – what is now the Holts Chapel Community Center.

There’s an effort underway to spruce up the HCCC, and make some renovations so that it would be used more. Maybe even get on the National Historic Register. The showing of the movie about Julius Rosenwald is one step in that direction. (Another – a cleanup day – comes up in a week.)

Also ahead Friday night has lots going on. Old Theater’s showing, In The Heart of the Sea. Pamlico Musical Society brings The Adrian Duke Project to River Dunes amphitheater. Silver Creek’s at the Red Rooster. Saturday is PCC’s golf tourney at Minnesott Golf & Country Club.

Tuesday May 17, 2016

More cool air. Aaaaaahhhhh. The Oriental Weather Forecast has temps staying below the 80 degree mark thru the weekend. Alas, it won’t always be dry, cool air. Goodly chance o’ rain this afternoon, some tomorrow and again on Saturday.

Oriental food stores in the news…. Over the past month 600 people have responded to the survey that’ll help Billy Flockhart figure how to stock his new Piggly Wiggly grocery in Oriental, now slated to open in July. if you’ve not taken the survey, you may want to get on it pronto, Bunkly-Wunkly. Survey ends this week. Click here.

Billy says the survey so far shows that the Oriental Pig – aka Piglet – will have a number of items on its shelves not found at the Piggly Wiggly he owns and operates in Grantsboro.

It’s been half a year since Oriental lost its 4 decade old indy grocer, Town-n-Country. Then, in January, the Walmart Express went and eleft town without a full service grocery. But contrary to some reports, Oriental has not been bereft of all food.

Last fall, Provision Company manager Pat Stockwell began selling produce from four local farms. It seemed improbable that a marine supply/clothing store would branch off that way, but it has found a niche that’s been working out. Also for sale: sustainably and organically raised meats; cheeses; breads, local dairy – these fill several cases and freezers. And the Prov Co has added beer and wine and more grocery shelf space, too.

In all of that, the Provision Company has more fully lived up to its name and filled a real need for those in town and visiting boaters, who can now really “provision.” For updates on what’s for sale, check out Oriental Goes Local.

Thing to remember is that, 5 years ago, the future looked grim for customers seeking boat bits, let alone groceries. The Provision Company was on the verge of closing for good, when in May 2011, Mark Henley, who owns McCotter Marine in little Washington bought the Provision Company. Happy 5th Anniversary – and many more for the chandlery/grocery on Hodges.

Monday May 16, 2016

“He spoiled his dog, invited strangers to dinner, and hated to wear a tie.”

The quote is from Bob Pittman’s obituary. A service celebrating Bob’s life is 3p today at the Oriental United Methodist Church.

Some crisp air visited overnight… the low was 50. Sunshine, dry and near 70 is today’s forecast.