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• Specials For Feb 24 - Mar 2 @ The Piglet •

It's Wednesday February 24, 2021 Dock Quote: “The days pass...

News From The Village Updated Almost Daily

Upcoming Events

Pamlico County Vaccine Shipments Delayed:

Winter Weather Elsewhere Stops Shipments. The Story

Brother Sister Dory Story:

Cruising on a dory named Cod. The Shipping News

A Space for Artists at Work:

Oriental Art Works. The Story

Pamlico County Receives And Delivers 500 Vaccine Doses:

Who is getting them, and a look ahead. The Story

Robert James 'Bobby' Ross, 1982 - 2021:

"He made lives bettter". The Story

Ol' Front Porch Music Festival Returns October 2021:

2021 brings a focus on North Carolina bands. The Story

Dan Giro, 1942 - 2021:

A man of many firsts. The Story

Mr. January 2021 - Tillman:

A dog takes the lead. Pet Of The Month

The COVID Vaccine - What's Up in Pamlico County:

Phase details and limited supplies. The Story

New Year’s Boat-er-lutions:

Have a better boating year. Captain's Blog

Flooding, Buckling, Potholes: Board Plans Road Repairs:

Town Board Meeting January 2021. The Story

In Honor & Memory 2020:

From the Tree of Names and Lights. The Story

The COVID-19 Vaccine In Pamlico County:

Registration Must Go Through The County Health Dept. The Story

A Hazy Instead of Football Regatta:

A baker's dozen braves the weather. The Story

A Dragon Rolls Through Oriental New Year's Eve:

Neither rain nor pandemic can stop a Dragon. The Story

Friends Of The Dragon 2021:

It takes a village to house a dragon. The Story

Letters: Keep the Cheer Going:

An appeal to keep the lights on. Letters To The Editor

Twenty Five Degrees on Christmas Night:

To winterize in Oriental?. Captain's Blog

Letters: Thanks for the Cheer:

To Santa and Fire Station 19. Letters To The Editor

Noses and Opinions, Part Deux:

Show me your chain plates. Captain's Blog

Spirit of Christmas 2020:

Additions, subtractions, and a lot more light. The Story

Light Up Oriental:

Contest brightens up Oriental's nights. The Story

2020 Spirit of Christmas Schedule:

What's happening, where and when. The Story

Alan, David Bowie, and Blue 9:

Six legs on a new voyage. The Shipping News

Development of the COVID-19 Vaccine:

Speed, safety, and the process. Guest Columnist

Giving Tuesday 2020:

The List of Area Non-Profits That Could Use Your Donation. The Story

Two Rides, One Event: 2020 Thanksgiving Day Bike Ride:

The tradition keeps rollin' on. The Story

Thank You From Ol' Front Porch:

Hope to see you in 2021. Letters To The Editor

New Mask Mandate in NC:

Masks now required inside. The Story

Ferry Returns to Full Schedule Dec 1:

Cherry Branch - Minnesott Beach Ferry. The Story

Endeavor 32 Auction at SailCraft:

Now taking bids. The Story

Abandoned Housing Tabled, Compliance Grant Approved:

Nov 2020 Town Board Meeting. The Story

The Spirit of Christmas is Coming:

Light Up Oriental. The Story

Waiting for the Right Time:

SV Luna Sea. The Shipping News

Ninety-Six Miles To Go:

WaterTribe's NC Ultra Marathon Challenge. The Story

The Classic Car Poker Run:

Driving for charity. The Story

Housing Ordinance on Hold, Fines for Illegal Dumping:

October 2020 Town Board Meeting. The Story

Pamlico Arts Accepting Applications for Arts Grants:

Submit by November 2, 2020. The Story

A Trike Made for Fishing:

Folk art goes for a ride. The Story

Music in the Creeks:

Pirate Jam returns. The Story

Opinions and Noses:

Part 1 - Everyone has them. Captain's Blog

Pamlico County November Election Information:

Sample Ballot, Voting Deadlines, How and When to Vote. The Story

A Walk on Styrontown Beach:

What the high water left behind. The Story

Old Theater’s Got Talent:

Time to show off. The Story

What's Next For Oriental's Recreation Park?:

Take the survey. The Story

Talking Trash; Recycling Changes Coming:

Town Board Meeting September 2020. The Story

Styron Accepts Plea Agreement:

Jeff Styron in his own words. The Story

Camping in the Creeks:

Spartina and Annie. The Shipping News




Oriental Yacht Club (OYC) has been a staple of the harbor scene for more than 5 decades.

Wednesday February 24, 2021

9:44a There’s a new restaurant in town – Rick’s BBQ on Broad St. TownDock stopped in to meet the owners, Rick & Gwen Ledbetter. Rick ran a BBQ restaurant before in Maryland… and it served NC BBQ. It turns out Rick has some NC roots.

Rick and Gwen first visited Oriental a few years ago, and decided this was the place. They’ve moved to town, and started Rick’s BBQ. TownDock visited Rick… here’s his story and what’s cookin:

Rick’s BBQ is take-out only initially, open Wed to Sun, 11a until. Rick says “until” is when they run out. They might be open til 5, or they may close earlier if the BBQ sells out. 802 Broad St, phone 252-249-6400.

TownDock has sampled BBQ & ribs, and spoken to several folks who have, too. So far rave reviews.

8:55a TownDock crew visited Bow To Stern yesterday. While we were there, local sailor George Sechrist pulled in with a gift for the youth sailing program – a Laser sailboat.


(click photos for the big view)

George was responding to a shoutout Jim Edwards made a couple weeks ago on TownDock, seeking Laser sailboats for young sailors:

Bow to Stern Boating is in need of Laser Sailboats for our youth sailing program. They need to be in usable condition. Will purchase and or take donations. 2020 did not stop our kids from having a great safe, fun, and educational experience and 2021 is going to bring even more opportunities for the kids to get out on the water. It takes a village! Please give us a call to discuss, 252-249-2424. Thank you.

6:48a Winter has been relentless cold & wet. This week finally delivers some thermal justice.

Yesterday’s high in Oriental reached 64. Today temps are forecast to be near 70. Here’s are today’s expected highs across eastern North Carolina:

Oriental NC Forecast
Neuse River Marine Forecast
Pamlico Sound Marine Forecast

It’s getting closer:


SPRING COUNTDOWN

Tuesday February 23, 2021

3:50p Spring arrives March 20. Today’s sunshine in the air got TownDock crew thinking about spring events. With vaccine distribution & rollout improving, is it possible some “normal” Oriental spring events might happen?

sailpack logoThe Sailpack Regatta usually lands in late April, bringing collegiate sailors to Oriental to compete on the Neuse.

TownDock talked with Bow To Stern’s Jim Edwards (who provides the boats and event organization)… and it seems there is a maybe for a 2021 regatta, a smaller version, April 23-24:




3:04p Manfred Rott brought about the end of an overly aggressive raccoon late last week. The animal’s behavior prompted fear of the ‘R’ word: rabies.

TownDock.net spoke with Pamlico County Animal Control officer Berkley Hill to clear things up. He reports that rabies is not active in the county.

There are, however, cases of canine distemper. Thirty cases in the county over the last two months. It’s showing up in raccoons and foxes.

Read the full press release here.

If you see an animal acting strangely, call Animal Control at 252-745-3203.

Click here to see artist Laura Turgeon’s interpretation of the erstwhile ‘rabbit’ raccoon.

6:50a Weather we’ve been waiting and longing for…. arrives today. At least three days with no rain. A hint that spring (25 days away) really will happen.

Sunny, dry, high low 60s today… forecast into the mid 60s Wednesday.

If the kind weather makes you thinking of boating, gentle 5-10 knot winds on the Neuse, freshening to 10-15 this afternoon.

Monday February 22, 2021

5:19p The Pamlico County Health Department received it’s overdue (delayed by weather) shipment of vaccine earlier today. Health Director Scott Lenhart tells TownDock.net that 600 doses arrived today, 500 targeted for 1st doses, and 100 for second doses. The health dept has been making calls today, setting up appointments to get that vaccine into arms.

Lenhart says a second shipment just targeted for 2nd doses is expected later this week. As of today 2,666 people in Pamlico County have been vaccinated with the first dose and 1,152 with both doses. 20.95% of Pamlico County has now had the 1st dose, 9.05% both doses. More info on the Coronavirus in North Carolina page.

3:01p The 2020 Oriental Classic Car Show got COVID cancelled last October. It is now set for October 16, 2021, when hopefully life will have returned to closer to normal.

There was a 2020 car event that did happen… a Classic Car Poker Run in October. The Poker Run is an inherently more “socially distant” event. It went so well in October, that another is planned for this spring, April 10, 2021. Poker Run information and registration info is now online at orientalclassiccarshow.com.

FYI, while it is called the Classic Car Poker Run – there is no actual stipulation of what cars can enter. It does attract some classic wheels, but organizers tell TownDock that you are welcome to show up in your newer ride too.

Here’s a look at the 2020 Classic Car Poker Run.

2020 was almost eventless, so with some anticipation October 2021 has several events now scheduled:

The Ol’ Front Porch Music Festival is set for Oct 8-10. The Oriental Cup Regatta, Oct 15-17. The Oriental Classic Car Show the same weekend, Oct 16. The 13th Annual Chili Cookoff is Sat Oct 23. Capping the month, Bow to Stern Boating hosts Oriental’s second Halloween Regatta, Sat Oct 31.

It’s all in What’s Happening.

8:52a The clouds are out and the rain may make an appearance today, but temps will warm up to near 60. Oriental hasn’t been that warm since last Wednesday.

S winds will be at 15 – 20 mph, with gusts up to 35.

A small craft advisory is in effect on the Pamlico Sound, from noon today until this evening. Se winds 10 – 15 kt, becoming S 20 – 25 kt with gusts up to 30 kt. Waves 1 foot, building to 2 – 3 Ft.

Oriental NC Forecast
Neuse River Marine Forecast
Pamlico Sound Marine Forecast
TownDock Radar
Neuse River at Oriental Water Level Gauge
TownDock streams NOAA Weather Radio Online

Sunday February 21, 2021

6:03p Clouds come in later tonight, and Monday likely (70%) brings rain. But starting Tuesday, we get a much needed sunshine warm~ish Doctor recommend for mental health forecast:

Oriental NC Forecast
Neuse River Marine Forecast
Pamlico Sound Marine Forecast

11:20a If you braved last night’s cold, the evening sky offered up something not seen in a while. A sky full of bright stars, and a clear half-moon.

Overnight the low dipped down to 26, and with sunny high just forecast to reach the mid 40s this afternoon.

Sea shanties, which are hardly new, have huge new popularity lately. So much so that sea shanties became the subject of an SNL skit last night:

TownDock crew have been known to sing a shanty at times (kindly away from most human ears). Here’s a favorite – Haul Away Joe, a traditional sea shanty performed by many. This version is magic – four English lads singing around a kitchen table:

If you’re in Sea Shanty mode, you might also check out the movie Fisherman’s Friends on Netflix.

And there’s always Sea Shanty Bernie:

Saturday February 20, 2021

11:44a Just a bit of blue sky out there with the clouds. It will clear more this afternoon… those clear skies will bring a low tonight near 25.

Countin’ down til spring…

8:47a The angry (and likely rabid) racoon that attacked Manfred Rott on Harbor Way, won’t be bothering anybody else. A few days ago Manfred had to beat the racoon back with a walking stick. The next time he saw it, 2nd amendment rights may have been involved. From Manfred:

Possibly rabid, angry, attacking raccoon on Harbour Way has been dispatched. We do not know if there is another.

8:36a Barometer has been on the rise, as winds subside: From the Oriental Weather Station:



click image for larger view

7:09a It’s deep fog over the village right now. After that lifts, a sunny & dry day is ahead.

Oriental NC Forecast
Neuse River at Oriental Water Level Gauge
Neuse River Marine Forecast
Pamlico Sound Marine Forecast

Friday February 19, 2021

4:45p Today almost an inch of rain (so far), added to yesterday’s wet and we are over 2.6 inches. More coming this evening, so the total rainfall will be near 3 inches. The hour-by-hour forecast predicts the wet will end around the 8 o’clock hour tonight.

A dry weekend is ahead, and then to really look forward to a dry and warm spell mid next week.

Jasmine Tasty Thai Food Truck is at the brewery now until 8 tonight.

2:52p We have been fortunate to avoid the extreme winter weather that much of the country has received this past week. However, it is having an effect locally. Pamlico County’s shipments of COVID vaccine have been delayed by this weather.

7:55a Yesterday, over 1 1/2 inches of rain. Another half inch since midnight. So far over 2 inches have fallen from this wet low pressure system. Another very wet day is on tap as, as the front remains stalled offshore. More rain expected today and tonight, with a Flash Flood Watch in effect through this evening.

Saturday & Sunday the sun returns, and the forecast promises it won’t rain. While sunny, the weekend will be cool, highs just in the low to mid 40s. Monday, rain cruelly returns, but starting Tuesday we get some warm and dry weather. Tuesday & Wednesday sunny & near 60, Thursday brings sunshine and welcome highs near 70.

Oriental NC Forecast
Neuse River Marine Forecast
Pamlico Sound Marine Forecast
Neuse River at Oriental Water Level Gauge
Newport Morehead City NC Weather Radar
TownDock streams NOAA Weather Radio Online

Thursday February 18, 2021

5:15p The Oriental Weather Station has recorded 1.23 inches today. The forecast indicates another 1 to 2 inches of rain could fall tonight and Friday before this low pressure system departs.

The Flash Flood Watch continues through Friday night, but lets calibrate that for Oriental. The high rains will cause pooling on low lying streets and property, but Oriental doesn’t “flood” because it rains 2 or 3 inches.

Flooding in this area is caused by significant wind tides, which happen from high northeast and east winds. The forecast is for modest north winds becoming northwest, which will allow water levels to drop. Which they have been… water levels were at 1.75 ft above normal this morning, they are now down to 1 ft.

While these rains won’t cause flooding in Oriental, they are causing high water levels on the Neuse River inland – check the gauge at Goldsboro.

2:19p 3/4” of rain so far… more expected tonight & Friday. Check out weather radar – zoom out once the radar page opens – you’ll see a band of precipitation is running from Florida to the northeast.

Water levels peaked at 1.75 ft overnight… they’ve gone down as wind shifted today… now 1.3 ft, and dropping.

Oriental NC Forecast
Neuse River Marine Forecast
Pamlico Sound Marine Forecast
Neuse River at Oriental Water Level Gauge
Newport Morehead City NC Weather Radar
TownDock streams NOAA Weather Radio Online

If you’re on or near Harbor Way (off White farm Rd leading to Sea Harbour Marina), be careful if you see a racoon. That racoon may not be well – Bob Miller writes in:

Manfred Rott on Harbor Way says this morning a racoon came at him very aggressively. He had to hit him with a walking stick several times before it would back off. He notified animal control. Anyone in the Harbor Way neighborhood should be cautious and keep pets inside. Racoons will die of rabies in 1 – 3 days according to the internet.

10:05a Elmer, with more wet visiting, y’all need something to hope for. Fortunately, it’s coming.

Saturday and Sunday, sunshine & dry, highs low to mid 40s. Monday damp, but then Tuesday is forecast for sun & mid 50s, Wednesday and Thursday sunny and near 60.

Less than 30 days til spring.

8:40a Rain is forecast for today, tonight and Friday. It isn’t expected to rain all the time, but rather we’ll get multiple rounds of precipitation, with periods of cloudy overcast “dry” (not raining may be a better description) in between. Rain today up to a half inch, up to an inch tonight, and Friday could see 3/4 to an inch. Our area is expected to see over 2 inches total from this latest wet visit.

The winds have shifted more north (from northeast), which will push less water down from the Pamlico Sound. They are forecast to shift northwest Friday, which usually sees water levels modestly subside. While we are in a Flash Flood Watch through Friday night, this doesn’t look like a significant high water event.

On the rivers inland, it’s a different story. Moderate to major flooding expected:

7:05a Our winter has been cold & wet (Monday was a welcome exception). This week however, compared to most of the country, we have been fortunate to be in a relatively warm spot. This map shows the lowest temperatures from Sunday through Wednesday… eastern NC was one of few places that stayed above freezing:


click map for the big cold view

Wednesday February 17, 2021

3:36p That brief visit from the sun was sweet. Alas, that glowing thing in the sky is again hidden. And now back to rain – two to three inches expected between tonight and Friday.

A Flash Flood Watch has been issued for all of Eastern NC for tonight through Friday. Given the heavy rains are coming at the same time as northeast winds are forecast on the Neuse River and Pamlico Sound… water levels will rise in and near Oriental. The soggy land can’t soak up any more rain, so be aware if you are in (or travel through) a low lying area.

Oriental NC Forecast
Neuse River Marine Forecast
Pamlico Sound Marine Forecast
Neuse River at Oriental Water Level Gauge
Newport Morehead City NC Weather Radar
TownDock streams NOAA Weather Radio Online

11:10 Today may be OK, but we have had weeks of cold & wet winter weather. TownDock visited with Keith Bruno at Endurance Seafood to find out about winter fishing:

The Bruno’s Endurance Seafood has fresh Speckled Trout right now, along with clams and oysters. You can contact Keith at Endurance Seafood, 252-249-2558.

8:03a Wheres the promised sunshine? Overcast clouds have joined us early morning, but the forecast still is for a mostly sunny day to emerge. It’s cooler (yesterday was a temporary hint of spring), highs just into the mid 40s.

If you’re thinking of taking a boat out to the Neuse, northeast winds 10-15 today. Those northeast winds will push up water levels.

Thursday and Friday bring more %$#@! wet, but look forward to a sunny & dry weekend, again high mid 40s.

The next warm day? Next week / Tuesday is forecast for sunshine & mid 50s.

Longing for spring… 31 days to go.

Tuesday February 16, 2021

1:14p There’s a reason this site is called TownDock. Almost two decades ago it was named after Oriental’s international airport – the town dock. It’s where visiting cruising vessels can dock for free, up to 48 hours. Visitors sometimes come from a few miles away, and other times come from the other side of the world.

The town dock hosts vessels of all description. Most are sail, but power vessels are frequent visitors too. As visitors are usually liveaboards, the vessels tend to be in the 30 to 45 ft range, with full facilities onboard.

The above just makes some recent visitors all the more interesting. They were onboard a wooden 23 ft dory. It’s only “facilities” are a piece of canvas to temporarily enclose the bow from inclement weather. Meet brother and sister (really) Evan and Ariana Alexay, living and traveling onboard a simple wooden boat, bound for a more southern latitude.

12:55p New vaccine numbers for Pamlico County: 2,498 people have received the first dose and 863 with both vaccine doses as of today. That’s 19.63% of Pamlico County with the 1st dose, 6.78% both doses.

The above numbers include both those that have been vaccinated in the county, AND all those that have received the vaccine elsewhere. While most are getting the vaccine from the Pamlico Health Dept, many local residents have gotten the vaccine at Vidant Health in Greenville, others in New Bern and elsewhere. The numbers TownDock (and the state of NC) reports reflect where people live, not where they got the vaccine.

8:40a Mister Sun arrives earlier than forecast.

7:14a The country is thermally confused. This morning it is 4 degrees in Dallas, Texas. 11 degrees in San Antonio.

But here in Otown: 59 right now… with a forecast for a high near 70 by midday.

Sunshine arrives this afternoon, but the clear skies will bring cooling. Afternoon temps dip back in to the 50s, then mid 30s tonight. Wednesday we enjoy all sunshine, high mid 40s.

Sunshine seems a distant memory. It will be a very welcome visitor.

Oriental NC Forecast
Neuse River Marine Forecast
Newport Morehead City NC Weather Radar

Monday February 15, 2021

4:09p Good news – County Manager Tim Buck tells TownDock.net that the Pamlico County Health Department is receiving 600 vaccine doses again this week. That’s 400 dedicated to the first shot, 200 to the second.

To register for the vaccine in Pamlico County:
1. Fill in the online vaccine registration form for PCHD at this link, or
2. Email Pamlico County Health Department at c19vac@pamlicocounty.org, or
3. Call the Health Department at 252-745-5111.

As of today 2,352 people in Pamlico County have been vaccinated with the first dose and 843 with both doses. 18.48% of Pamlico County has now had the 1st dose, 6.62% both doses.

Those are better numbers than most counties in our state.

10:38a Some call it Washington’s Birthday, some call it Presidents Day. It’s a federal holiday that is always celebrated on the third Monday of February. The first incarnation of this holiday was in 1796 – to commemorate George Washington’s birthday – which is February 22. It became Presidents Day in 1971, combining George’s birthday with Abe Lincolns (Feb 12).

A salute to George, who wasn’t afraid of cold weather boating. Here’s George crossing the Delaware in December 1776. No pilothouse or diesel heater (George did have a nice hat).

Closed today: the post office… banks. Town Hall is open.

7:53a It may be cloudy, even a tad gloomy. But today (daytime today) has a feature not experienced in recent days:

It isn’t going to rain.

OK. There may be some mist, some drizzle. But not the endless cold rain that came down all day Sunday. Sunday saw 1.4 inches.

Rain is expected to return tonight. We even may get a thunderstorm. Temperatures are expected to rise tonight… into the mid 60s after midnight.

Tuesday actually has some thermal excitement in store. While the morning may see rain (50% chance)… Tuesday afternoon brings partly sunny skies and a very welcome high near 70. Wednesday, all sunshine, but cooling down to a high near 50. Thursday and Friday wet is expected to return… grab that vitamin D while you can.

Oriental NC Forecast
Neuse River Marine Forecast
Newport Morehead City NC Weather Radar

Just 33 days til spring. The spring equinox is March 20, 5:37a.

Sunday February 14, 2021

9:12 Cool and rainy, rinse and repeat. Temps staying near 40 this Valentine’s Day.

M&Ms starts serving their Valentine’s Day Special Menu at noon. You can get yours to-go, or make a reservation to dine-in.

Saturday February 13, 2021

sandy heart 2:12p Valentine’s Day is tomorrow. If you find yourself in need of a gift – for yourself or someone else – you have several local choices.

Grab some roses at the Piglet. Check out Nautical Wheelers for champagne and bubble bath. A massage gift certificate from Serendipity Spa. Marsha’s Cottage can keep you warm with scarves, wraps and sweaters.

The Provision Company can supply the tools or anchor line you or your sweetie might be needing.

If you’d like to get a jump on Valentine’s Day dinner, Meraki Mediterranean Kafe has baklava cheesecake and a pork tenderloin skewer platter from 3-8 at the Brewery.

M&M’s is taking reservations for lunch and dinner on Sunday.

9:11a The great 2021 Vitamin D shortage continues.

radar image showing rain over eastern north carolina
Click for the big radar view

More rain today. More rain & drizzle Sunday. Monday we celebrate George Washington’s birthday… and George is actually bringing us a partly sunny day.

Oriental NC Forecast
TownDock.net Weather Radar
Neuse River at Oriental Water Level Gauge
TownDock streams NOAA Weather Radio Online