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2024 Pet Parade:

A pirate ship, a pun, and an impersonation. The Story

Douglas 'Doug' Wayne Gaither, 1945-2024:

Repairman, Husband, Helper. The Story

RV Park Proposed Near Whittaker Creek:

Residential to Multi-Use Rezoning Requested. The Story

Josephus "Jos" J. H. P. Muffels, 1953 - 2024:

Adventurer, Craftsman, Loving Husband. The Story

The Spring Break 'Trophy' Regatta:

Collegiate sailors train in Oriental. The Story

The 2024 Dragon Burn:

Smoke, fire, and ash. The Story

Chowder Chow-Down:

The 2024 Oriental Woman's Club Chowder CookOff. The Story

Letters: Thanks from the Friends of the Library:

Appreciation for the helping hands. Letters To The Editor

Wes Barbour and SV Summer Wind:

A boy and his sloop. The Shipping News

"You Are Wrong.":

February Town Special Meeting. The Story

Phillip Ira Sax, 1948 - 2024:

Solo sailor, celestial navigator, dear friend. The Story

Oriental's 125th Birthday Celebration Guide:

What's happening, where and when. The Story

Resignation, with Regrets:

"This was supposed to be my forever house". The Story

An Irritated Public & A Question Left Unanswered:

Febraury 2024 Town Board Meeting. The Story

Ground Breaking: A New Library Is Coming:

Work on a dedicated space begins. The Story

Worms Damage Dock, Cause Closure:

Waiting on bids, no time frame for a fix. The Story

Anna Ice, 1938 - 2024:

Loving friend, mother, and helper. The Story

48 Hour Film Project - 2024:

Small Town Filmmakers on the Big Screen. The Story

Alan Herlands, 1949 - 2023:

Family Man, Loving Husband, Commissioner. The Story

Winterization 2.0:

Get Your Boat Ready For Freezing Temps. Captain's Blog

A More Accessible Oriental:

Public input wanted. Letters To The Editor

Gerry Crowley, 1944 - 2023:

Commodore, Sailor, Volunteer, Friend. The Story

Dragons Ring in 2024:

A new dragon joins the run. The Story

Friends Of The Dragon 2024:

It takes a village to house a dragon. The Story

Pauline and SV Elektra:

Powered by wind, sun, and music. The Shipping News

The Nativity, A Few Carols, & Lots of Lights:

The other side of The Spirit of Christmas. The Story

2023 Spirit of Christmas Parade:

Candy, kids, and Santa. The Story

Barbara Gaines, 1937 - 2023:

Mother, educator, adventurous spirit. The Story

2023 December Town Board Meeting:

Two new Commissioners & legal questions about liaison position. The Story

2023 Spirit of Christmas Schedule:

What's happening, where and when. The Story

Village Gallery Is Closing Dec 24:

Gallery Founder Judy Wayland Writes In. The Story

PCC President Retiring:

Dr. Jim Ross retires. The Story

2023 Turkey Pedal:

500 wheels and a flock of turkeys. The Story

Giving Locally 2023:

Area Non-Profits That Could Use Your Donations. The Story

The 2023 Spirit of Christmas is Coming:

How you can help out or join in. The Story

Melinda Penkava-Smith, 1959 - 2023:

Journalist, NPR Reporter, Rock DJ, Gardener, Wife & Friend. The Story

Bradley Scott Pickard, 1973 - 2023:

Adventure seeker & loving father. The Story

Election Results 2023:

Price, Roe, Litzenberger, Overcash, Crosser elected. The Story

Meet the 2023 Oriental Town Board Candidates:

The candidates up for election Nov 7. The Story

The Coati & The Mermaid:

A ring-tailed crew member not seen before. The Shipping News

A Library Building by the Numbers:

$2.159 million raised so far. The Story

Letters: An Update, Extension, and Shift:

The Whittaker Creek Channel. Letters To The Editor

Letters: Thanks, from England:

A salute from across the pond. Letters To The Editor

Hundreds Turn Up for a Chili Meltdown:

The 2023 Chili Cookoff. The Story

Letters: Thanks from The Old Theater:

Chili Cookoff Success. Letters To The Editor

Rain and Roadsters:

The 2023 Oriental Classic Car Show. The Story

Town Elections Are Nov 7:

Why I am running for Oriental Town Commissioner. Letters To The Editor

A Storm, A Ripped Sail, and A Trophy Cup:

The 2023 Oriental Cup Regatta. The Story




From the 2023 Oriental In-Water Boat Show – shiny boat bits. These and other seafaring items – books, blocks, running lights, etc. – are for sale at this weekend’s In-Water Boat Show. The town free docks are already closed for vendors. Hodges Street will close to vehicle traffic Thursday at 5p.

Friday April 12, 2024

8:43a Hodges Street along the harbor is closed to vehicle traffic & boat show preparations are underway.

Gates open at noon. $10 gets you in for the whole weekend.

Cherry Branch – Minnesott Beach Ferry is on an amended schedule this morning; ferry logo only one boat is in operation.

From Cherry Branch: 9a, 10a, 11a, Noon
From Minnesott Beach: 9:30a, 10:30a, 11:30a, 12:30p.

Thursday April 11, 2024

9:53a Windy, with rain on the way today. But the weekend weather is near perfect for the Oriental In-Water Boat Show.

An 80% chance of thunderstorms this afternoon, with south winds 15-25 mph, gusts up to 40. High near 70.

This weekend, it’s a different story. Sunny and mostly sunny with highs near 70 Friday and Saturday, near 80 Sunday.

The winds will stick around Friday and Saturday: out of the southwest and west at 15-20 mph, and gusting up to 30.

Wednesday April 10, 2024

4:23p They didn’t do it. The Tree Board is innocent.

Drive down First Avenue in the Village, and between Mildred and High Streets, you’ll notice this:

Oriental Tree Board member Missy Tehnet says it was not part of their routine trimming. It was Duke Energy. The power company has the right to trim trees that may interfere with their lines.

They were supposed to take the branches with them. Otherwise, Town has to pay to absorb the cost of getting rid of them.

The Town Wide Yard Sale, scheduled for May 4, is less than a month away.

If you want to be on the official Town Yard Sale Map, you have until Friday, April, 26 to contact Marsha Paplham.

It’s easy enough – give her the address of the yard sale. She’ll put it on the map.

Contact her at 252-675-5142. Want to see what you’re in for? Check out the treasures for sale at the 2023 Town Wide Yard Sale.

9:29a The NC State’s sailing team & 17 other university teams are coming to Oriental. About 130 collegiate sailors are expected in town for the 2024 Sailpack Regatta, April 20-21.

Sailpack Coach Dana Magliola still needs help. He writes in to ask for help to house collegiate sailors. Some are from North Carolina… others from as far away as Texas and Florida:

We’ve had a good response for housing hosts, but we need a few more. We have 72 people assigned, but still need to find housing for 58 collegiate sailors.

You don’t need a ton of bedrooms or even beds to help. Couches work well and open space for air mattresses is good as most sailors have air mattresses from normal college sailing regatta travel life.

If people have whole houses they’d offer, we can ensure whichever team stays there has an adult coach with them. (House donations will also qualify for a tax-deductible contribution receipt.)

Sailors will be in town on Friday, April 19 and leave Sunday, April 21 in the late afternoon.

To help with housing, please email, text, or call Coach Dana Magliola (dana@sailpack.org, 919-946-5445).

Here’s the list of teams registered to compete in Oriental:
• Clemson
• Christopher Newpoart University
• Embry-Riddle
• Florida Tech
• University of Indiana
• Jacksonville University
• NC State
SUNY-Stony Brook
• The Citadel
• University of Florida
• University of Maryland
• University of Maryland-Baltimore County
UNC-Wilmington
• University of North Carolina
• University of Texas
• University of South Florida
• University of Virginia
• William & Mary

Tuesday April 9, 2024

3:45p Vendors, seminars, and boats. Lots of boats.

They’ll be here this Friday through Sunday for the annual Oriental In-Water Boat Show.

Take a walk along the waterfront at the harbor. Find a nautical treasure or two, or that perfect dream boat.

Check out the scene from the 2023 Oriental In-Water Boat Show here.

9:18a Birding. It’s a thing in and around Oriental.

Pamlico Community College holds quarterly classes teaching students to identify birds, venturing out on early-morning birding field trips.

But if you’re just looking to take a walk around the village and get to know the birds in town, PCC can help with that too.

The Birding Apps Exploration class at PCC takes students through the apps available to help identify, photograph, and record birds in your area. The two-session class starts this Wednesday, April 10. has changed dates: Mondays, April 29 & May 6. It’s free. All you need to do is register.

Partly sunny and high today in the mid 70s. Southwest winds at 10 – 15 mph.

Oriental NC Forecast
Neuse River Marine Forecast
Oriental Water Level Gauge
Weather Radar

Monday April 8, 2024

11:57a Sunday morning, John Bee’s Hunter 42 SV Pathfinder II caught fire at the SailCraft Marina Docks (adjacent to but separate from SailCraft Services boatyard).

John and his black lab Jack are liveaboards who have been visiting Oriental for years.

Pathfinder was towed away from the dock to Zimmerman Marine and held in the travel lift overnight.

There’s a solar eclipse today. While Oriental is far from the direct path, the town will be treated to a partial solar eclipse.

At about 2p, the moon will pass between us and the sun, casting a shadow on the sun. We’ll see about 70% of the sun covered – the maximum we can view from Oriental, NC – around 3:15p.

It will start slipping away again, and the sun will fully reemerge about 4:30p.

We’ve been treated to the full eclipse show before, back in 2017. Check out the coverage from Lou Mac Park and the 2017 eclipse viewing here.

Friday April 5, 2024

2:36p ODC – the Oriental Dinghy Club – holds races about once a month. This weekend, there’s two races: a keel-boat race Saturday, and a dinghy race Sunday, both beginning at 1p.

ODC Commodore Bob Slook tells more:

Tonight there’s live music at The Red Rooster and New Village Brewery.

The Mad Fiddler plays on the Bantam Stage at the Red Rooster at 7p (behind The Silos). Down the road, Patrick Bliss plays at the Brewery Beer Garden starting at 5p. Tanja’s Hell Fat Food Truck is also on site, serving from 5-8p.

Saturday morning, the Oriental Farmer’s Market opens at 8a and runs until 11p. Over at The Wildlife Ramp, the Oriental Treed Board celebrates Arbor Day and honors Bob Parker with a tree planting at 9a.

At 11a Saturday in Lou Mac Park is the memorial for TownDock.net co-founder Melinda Penkava-Smith. If you’re local and can bring a folding chair, bring it along. There will be chairs on hand for those traveling from out of town (and simply if you need one).

At 7:30p at The Old Theater, the Pamlico Community Band performs their Spring Concert. It’s free to attend.

It’s all in What’s Happening.

9:15a Saturday morning at 9a, Oriental’s Tree Board holds an Arbor Day Celebration and Memorial Tree Planting at the WildLife Ramp.

There’s just one problem. Janet Chinea of the Tree Board writes in:
There has been a white truck parked on top of the site where we will be planting the Arbor Day memorial tree at the NC Wildlife ramp tomorrow morning. We need the truck to be moved but can’t identify the owner.

It’s been there all week. Anyone who knows the owner, please have them call John Deaton, chair, at 252-670-6178; or just move the truck. Thanks.

Have some library books you need to return? Want to check some out? Need to borrow wi-fi hotspot?

The Pamlico County Library’s Book / Tech mobile is in town for their monthly visit. Find them at the Piggly Wiggly today from 10a-noon.

Thursday April 4, 2024

9:24a 94 years. It’s an impressive age. And Rolf Anselm achieved it today.

Rolf is a stone skipping champion and owned an original Amphicar. He has been a sailor, captain, pilot and engineer.

Read more about Rolf – from his 90th birthday – here.

Stop by The Bean on Hodges Street around 11a and wish Rolf a Happy Birthday.

Wednesday April 3, 2024

11:11a Found at Nautical Wheeler’s: one stuffed bear.

Staff found it Monday night at closing time. If it’s yours, swing by the store on Broad Street or call 252-249-0359.

Winds have picked up. Southwest at 15-20 mph and gusting to 35 mph. Some rain today, but sunny or mostly sunny for the rest of the week. Temps will be cooler tomorrow – mid 60s in the day, low 40s at night.

9:48a A Community Garden is coming to Oriental this spring. You’re invited to get involved and learn to grow your own vegetables.

The Oriental United Methodist Church provides the land and water: raised beds in the grass parking lot at the corner of Church St and 3rd Ave.

You provide the help: five hours a month and $20 a year to help keep the garden growing.

Learn form experienced gardeners and take home produce you helped grow. You don’t need to attend OUMC to join the Community Garden.

Call, text, or email Jim Kellenberger with any questions: 919-621-0362 or Jimkellenberger05@gmail.com

8:18a Commissioners met Tuesday night at 6p for their monthly Board meeting, the first since the time was changed from 8a.

On the agenda: two rezoning requests. One for a change from residential to mixed-use commercial zone off Shorey Drive and the other moved a mixed-use zoning line further into a residentially zoned part of the parcel.

Residents from both areas showed up at the meeting to voice their concerns – the meeting was once again standing room only.

Commissioners did not pass either zoning request.

Tuesday April 2, 2024

9:52a Seen on South Avenue: Free Gus.

Gus lives on South Avenue along the waterfront. But for years he roamed all over town, on his own.

In February, he was photographed at First and Factory Streets in the Village, with an unauthorized chicken dinner.

Gus has been put on house arrest. TownDock.net spoke with Animal Control Officer Berkley Hill to find out why.

Hill says Gus has been declared a potentially dangerous dog – in line with Pamlico County’s ordinances. His free-roaming privileges were revoked: he must be leashed at all times when outside.

The chicken was not the inciting incident, said Hill, because fowl are not considered pets.

It was a pet bunny.

Hill says adults witnessed Gus attack and kill a child’s pet bunny in front of the child. This happened February 29.

There were other reports on Gus, Hill said, of him behaving aggressively with other dogs or dogs and their owners. But they were all verbal, “and that’s called hearsay. I can’t act on hearsay.”

Gus is a leashed dog for the next two years. After that, pending good behavior, the ruling can be appealed and Gus can be off leash again.

Says Hill, “animals that are loose get into trouble.”

5:42a The Town Board’s monthly meeting is today – at a new time: 6p this evening. It’s a 6 month trial run to see if more people are able to attend.

The first week in April also marks the return of two weekly summer events: live music at The Red Rooster Friday nights at 7p and the Wednesday Night Sail.

Sailors meet on the water at marker 1SC. Warning horn is at 5:25p. Sailing begins at 5:30p. Don’t have a boat or looking for crew? Contact Joe Valinoti and he’ll help out.

Sad news to share: long-time Oriental resident Doug Gaither has passed away. His story is here.

Monday April 1, 2024

6:03p There were 57 quadrupeds at Saturday’s Pet Parade. All were dogs.

Some costumes had career ambitions. It’s all right here for your two eyes.

9:05a Partly sunny and 80 today, mid 80s Tuesday.

Oriental NC Forecast
Neuse River Marine Forecast

The aircraft carrier will not be able to visit Oriental this year.

Sunday March 31, 2024

11:07a At sunrise earlier today:

Marker 2 at the entrance of the Whittaker Creek channel:

On the Neuse:

The sunrise service at Lou Mac Park:

(Frank Roe photo)

Saturday March 30, 2024

2:52p Oriental’s International Airport is back. Town dock #1 has been out of commission for weeks for needed repairs. It all was completed today, and the free dock is back and waiting for customers.


The new, beefier pilings are a bit higher than the few old ones that remain. No cleats installed yet, but you know how to tie a clove hitch. Or at least a triple granny.

Salute to Cahoon Construction, who did the job quickly once hired (the town had to go through a bidding process).

7:05a Sunny & mid 70s today, near 80 Sunday.

You lucky dog.

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

Friday March 29, 2024

4:44p The quadrupeds of Oriental are getting their costumes ready. Saturday is the annual PAWS Pet Parade, starting at Lou Mac Park. Register your creature between 10a-11a, get parading shortly thereafter.

There’s music this weekend at New Village Brewery. Brant Island Strings tonight 5-7:30p, Saturday Ken Belangia, 5-7p.

Saturday morning Oriental Farmer’s Market is out on Hodges St near the harbor. Oriental United Methodist Church holds its Annual Easter Egg Hunt Saturday at 10a.

Sunday morning, an Oriental tradition: the community Easter Sunrise Service at Lou Mac Park, at 6:45a.

It’s all in What’s Happening.

4:25p There is proposed RV Park off White Farm Rd near Whittaker Creek. To make it happen a rezoning request has been submitted, drawing the attention of nearby residents.

10:08a April 1st is Monday – and the new month has some key events in Oriental.

Saturday April 6 is the memorial for TownDock co-founder Melinda Penkava-Smith. April 12-14 it’s the Oriental Boat Show, at the harbor and on Hodges St by the harbor.

On April 20-21 its the NC State Sailpack Regatta, bringing 18-20 collegiate sailing teams to Oriental. That means over 150 people.

Sailpack coach Dana Magliola:

Click here to help provide housing for visiting college sailors.

Questions? Contact Coach Dana Magliola at dana@sailpack.org or at 919-617-6247.

Click here for a look at the 2023 Sailpack Regatta.

Thursday March 28, 2024

6:20p Winds becoming northwest tonight, then west on Friday.

Today’s high water levels will fall, Hodges Street by the harbor gets to be a dry street again.

8:44a The thunderstorm has passed, now a simply wet day ahead. Rain is expected to be with us all day, then sunny & dry Friday and for the weekend.

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

6:55a The National Weather Service in Newport has issued a Special Marine Warning for the Neuse and Bay Rivers and the Pamlico Sound.

This is in force until until 7:45a this morning.

At 6:48a, strong thunderstorms were located along a line extending from near the vicinity Of Slocum Creek to near the vicinity of the Emerald Isle Bridge, moving northeast at 30 knots.

HAZARD…Wind gusts to 40 knots.
IMPACT…Small craft could be damaged in briefly higher winds and suddenly higher waves.

Locations impacted include: The vicinity of Slocum Creek, the vicinity Of Hancock Creek, the vicinity of Clubfoot Creek, Oriental, mid point of Cherry Branch-Minnesott Beach Ferry Terminal, the mouth of the Neuse River, the vicinity of Adams Creek, the vicinity of Trent River, the vicinity of South River, and Hobucken.

Wednesday March 27, 2024

9:15a Oriental’s original town dock is being repaired this week. An inspection in early February revealed that worms had been making a meal (and a home) of the dock pilings. That makes the dock unsafe for humans.

Monday and Tuesday, Cahoon Marine Construction repaired the town dock by Oriental Marina & Inn. Two pilings and several deck boards were replaced.

Wednesday morning, they’re at work on the Hodges Street dock. It needs eight pilings replaced, and at least 20 deck boards.

Also key, the docks will be ready in time for the Oriental In-Water Boat Show, April 12 – 14.