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Upcoming Events

Harborfest for HeartWorks 2022:

Gala raises funds for children's center. The Story

Fifteen and a Half Hours in the Neuse:

Brief swim turns into all-nighter. The Story

Greens Creeks Challenge 2022:

Oriental's small boat tradition. The Story

September Town Board Meeting:

Water line leaks, workshop topics, writing tickets. The Story

Get Lost in the Corn:

The making of a maze. The Story

Love and Contrasting Styles:

Dodi & John Groesser - September Artists of the Month. The Story

Just Another Day In Oriental:

Pirates, music, a wedding, life. The Story

Smoke in the Sky, Fire at Buccaneer Bay:

Volunteer fire departments save home. The Story

Teresa Badger, 1952 - 2022:

Volunteer, Educator, Mother. The Story

Missing Machinery, Net House a Go:

Town Board Meeting August 2022. The Story

Oil, Texture, and Landscapes:

Judy Crane - August Artist of the Month. The Story

It's the Water, Not the Wind:

NOAA presents Hurricane Prep Seminar at Town Hall. The Story

Letters: What's the Plan, Town Board?:

Lack of drainage on village roads. Letters To The Editor

Ashley, Apache, and SV Friends:

A new life on the water. The Shipping News

Logan's Run:

A simple lesson. Captain's Blog

CroakerFest is Back - Festival 2022:

Miss Minnow, Marines, and Firetrucks. The Story

Camp Don Lee Installs Living Shoreline:

With Help from the North Carolina Coastal Federation. The Story

July 2022 Town Meeting:

Employee Inflation Bonus, Tent Camping OK. The Story

The Wheeler Lesson:

A humbled Captain. Captain's Blog

Public Responds to Anonymous Flyer at Town Board Meeting:

Town Board Meeting June 2022. The Story

Experiments in Texture and Style:

The Art of Marguerite Chadwick-Juner. The Story

2022 Hope Regala:

Over 200 gather to celebrate Hope Clinic. The Story

The Fulla Bulla™ Effect:

Boats make ripples. Captain's Blog

Primary Elections 2022:

Where and When to Vote. The Story

2022 Town Wide Yard Sale:

Antiques, guitars, and Santa Claus. The Story

May 2022 Town Board Meeting:

Efficiency and Unrestricted Funds. The Story

Gary Johnston, 1946 - 2022:

Husband, Sailor, ODC Commodore. The Story

Letters: At-Large BOE Candidate Jamie Gibbs:

Hear from the candidate himself. Letters To The Editor

Loop Lovers meet the Bitter End:

An argument for losing an eye. Captain's Blog

Dan Steiger, 1940 - 2022:

Pilot, Jack-of-all-trades, family man. The Story

SailPack Regatta 2022:

Collegiate Sailing Returns to Oriental. The Story

Collegiate Regatta & A Pig Pickin':

2022 SailPack Regatta April 23-24. Guest Columnist

Speeding Solutions for Hodges Street:

April 2022 Town Board Report. The Story

2022 Oriental In-Water Boat Show:

2,400 attendees welcome the boat show back. The Story

2022 Holy Week and Easter Celebrations in Oriental:

What it is and where you can worship. Guest Columnist

Waterbirds and Oysters:

Village Gallery's March Artist of the Month. The Story

Need a Tow?:

With insurance and without. Captain's Blog

2022 PAWS Pet Parade:

Pets take over Lou Mac Park. The Story

A Pro-Fence Public & Harbor Water Paint Pollution:

March 2022 Town Board Meeting. The Story

Mardi Gras, Shrove Tuesday, Ash Wednesday:

What it all means. Guest Columnist

SailPack Returns to Oriental in April:

Sailing again after two years' hiatus. The Story

Stuff Experienced:

Small stuff can matter in a big way. Captain's Blog

Sam Rouse and SV Nortena:

Eagle Scout to Viking deckhand to solo sailor. The Shipping News

Paint Chip Pollution:

Red paint swirls in the harbor. The Story

Equipment Purchases and 300k Gallons of Water:

February 2022 Town Board Meeting. The Story

Vibrant Landscapes and Iridescent Earths:

Village Gallery's February Artist of the Month. The Story

Don Henderson, 1945-2022:

Father, Sailor, Attorney, Photographer. The Story

Ol' Front Porch Festival Promises Two Full Days Of Music:

More genres, more music for 2022. The Story

At the free dock on Hodges Street, a visiting vessel from Nova Scotia.

Tuesday September 27, 2022

5:42p The latest update has the inland trek of Ian moved a bit west. But the wide rains of Ian, not so much. We are now in a 6-10” rain zone.

Hurricane Ian Tracking Chart
Hurricane Ian Forecaster’s Discussion & Computer Models
Hurricane Ian Public Advisory
Hurricane Center

Storm Ian will not bring flooding to our area – that comes from strong north / northeast winds when a tropical system passes to our east. This visit will bring southerly winds, which cause local water levels to recede.

The core of the storm should be far away enough that we don’t see winds higher than the 30s. But it looks like lots of wet is in store.

5:20p Saturday was the annual Harborfest for HeartWorks fundraiser. The final tally on the funds raised for the non-profit children’t center aren’t in yet, but you can check out the scene from Saturday night here.

The online auction, with nearly 100 items, is going on n ow through October 2. Here is the auction catalog.

10:02a Tampa is about to get a major hurricane. Hurricane Ian is forecast to head inland and head north. While the most we are expected to see are tropical storm level conditions, the amount of potential rain has this weekend’s Ol’ Front porch Music Festival in question.

It rained on last year’s festival, and it turned out great. But that was relatively light rain. The NOAA forecast for our area shows we may receive 6 inches. We are very close to a forecast zone that predicts up to 10 inches.

How fast Ian moves north remains an open question. There are models that predict a much slower move north than the current official NHC forecast. How fast it moves, and how much rain, will determine if the festival goes forward. If the current forecast holds, it will be difficult to have an outdoor event.

From the Ol’ Front Porch Music crew:

Festival fans, we are closely watching Hurricane Ian and discussing our options in the event this powerful storm forces us to change our plans. Because the path of the storm once it hits Florida — and its speed — are still somewhat uncertain, we are proceeding with plans for the festival at this time. Please stay tuned to Towndock.net for storm updates. We will also post any festival change on our website, olfrontporch.org. Pray for the residents of the west coast of Florida.

If Ian slows down, all could be OK in eastern NC on Friday. We are standing by and watching.

Monday September 26, 2022

5:07p The forecast track for Hurricane Ian’s winds is showing that we will see some impact. This graphic shows the most likely time of arrival and wind strength:

Keep in mind Ian will not be a hurricane by Friday morning, but a much diminished tropical storm. Highest winds forecast are 50 mph, and we would not likely see that level, as we would be on the edge of the storm system. Also, these would be south winds. Water levels in and near Oriental would not rise, they would fall.

The forecast track for the center of the storm has moved a bit east, but still is targeting western NC:

Also, keep this in mind re the future track. Hurricane Ian has not yet even reached Cuba.

Hurricane Ian Tracking Chart
Hurricane Ian Forecaster’s Discussion & Computer Models
Hurricane Ian Public Advisory
Hurricane Center

9:39a Nearly 200 attended Harborfest for HeartWorks Saturday night. The dining, dancing, and live auction are done, but there’s still more to bid on.

HeartWorks’ online auction is going on now. It ends Sunday, October 2 at 5p.

There are about 100 items up for auction: a Snapper riding lawn mower, a 5 hp Mercury outboard motor, 3 fifteen layer cakes in chocolate or strawberry, a week of sailing summer camp at Bow to Stern, gift certificates for tree work, coffee, and dinners. There’s also artworks, jewelry, furniture, a dinner and golf package, and more to bid on.

View the Harborfest for HeartWorks auction catalog here.

6:56a Storm Ian is now Hurricane Ian. 75 mph winds.

Hurricane Ian is forecast to have 120 mph winds 24 hours from now, in two days, 140 mph winds.

The official NHC forecast is showing an inland track after a Florida west coast / Big Bend landfall. While a hurricane track can change, we don’t appear to be a primary Ian target.

Sunday September 25, 2022

5:23p The official NHC forecast track for Tropical Storm Ian continues to target near the Florida Big Bend / Panhandle. Things can change, but at the moment eastern NC is not a likely Ian destination.

Ian is expected to strengthen into a hurricane Monday, and become a major hurricane mid week.

Tropical Storm Ian Tracking Chart
Tropical Storm Ian Forecaster’s Discussion & Computer Models
Tropical Storm Ian Public Advisory
Hurricane Center

8:35a Stormytalk aside, sunny and about 80 today.

On the Neuse 10-15 knots from the southwest, freshening to 15-20 later this afternoon. A Small Craft Advisory this evening.

8:22a The forecast track of Tropical Storm Ian continues to favor a more westerly route, which would spare eastern NC of a visit.

Here is a video of the most recent ECMWF and GFS long term computer models, followed by the latest official NHC track.

While the above provides some local relief, this storm still has far to travel. It’s track is not certain.

Saturday September 24, 2022

5:06p Thinking about that storm? Thought so.

There is more good news (for our lattitude / longitude). The official NHC forecast for Tropical Storm Ian has trended more west. This animated image shows first the 2p track, and then the latest 5p forecast track:

This follows a westerly trend today in long term computer models. While this could change, the more westerly track is welcome news for a small town having a music festival less than a week from now (Sept 30 & Oct 1).

Tropical Storm Ian is expected to gain hurricane strength Sunday night or Monday. The links for Ian info:

Tropical Storm Ian Tracking Chart
Tropical Storm Ian Forecaster’s Discussion & Computer Models
Tropical Storm Ian Public Advisory
Hurricane Center

The headline act for the Ol’ Front Porch Music Festival hails from Louisiana – The Revelers. Here’s some Revelers Saturday night dancin’ music:

8:03a The overnight low, a cool 47. A bigly temperature swing today – sunny and a high in the upper 70s, maybe 80.

7:28a Go west, young man. Go west.

Overnight the storm finally got a name – Tropical Storm Ian. And, the long term forecast models have trended west. For our fair village, this is good news, as future Hurricane Ian would not visit.

Here is a model run (Euro model) based on this mornings data. This forecasts Ian making landfall on Florida’s west coast late Wednesday, going inland to near the Georgia coast, then early Friday turning northwest and inland. Take a look:

The above however, is not the official forecast, which still trends a bit east of this.

This storm’s forecast track will likely move back n forth in coming days. We ain’t out of the woods yet.

Tropical Storm Ian Tracking Chart
Tropical Storm Ian Forecaster’s Discussion & Computer Models
Tropical Storm Ian Public Advisory
Hurricane Center

Storm Ian may need more inspiration to head west. Ian, young man, listen to this:

Friday September 23, 2022

5:01p The weather world expected Tropical Depression Nine to be named Tropical Storm Hermine. But… no.

The system off Africa (Trop Depression Ten) got upgraded to a named storm first. So, it is Hermine.

Our “friend”, number nine, will get named Ian. Gulp. It’s the dreaded “I” name. Isabel (2003). Irene (2011).

But, Tropical Depression Nine still isn’t named. Yet. In the official NHC 5p update, the forecast track hasn’t moved at all. If not late tonight, the system will become Tropical Storm Ian Saturday. It is expected to become a major Hurricane, initially threatening Cuba and then Florida.

It’s long term path has the potential to be off our coast late next week, although that is far from certain.

Hurricane Center
Tropical Depression Nine Tracking Chart
Tropical Depression Nine Forecaster’s Discussion & Computer Models
Tropical Depression Nine Public Advisory

2:39p Food trucks, live music, fundraisers and more…. this weekend in and around Oriental.

Catch Brant Island Strings tonight at the New Village Brewery or The Daniels Brothers at The Red Rooster. Jasmine Tasty Thai is serving at the Brewery tonight, then Tanja’s Hella Fat Food Truck Saturday night.

Tour the Corn Maze on Highway 55 and pick up your pumpkins at the on site Pumpkin Patch while you’re there. Navigating the maze not enough? Schedule a picnic in one of the ‘corn rooms’ in the maze.

Harborfest for HeartWorks is Saturday night – with dinner, dancing, drinks, and a live and silent auction.

Oriental History Museum’s newest exhibit is on coastal lighthouses. At Village Gallery see the work of the September artists of the month, John & Dodi Groesser.

Sunday, join the Drumming Dragons in the Lou Mac Park for a lesson in African Drums.

Times, places, contacts and more are all in What’s Happening.

7:55a Early this morning Invest 98 was declared Tropical Depression Nine. This is forecast to become Tropical Depression Hermine Ian today… and strengthen to Hurricane Hermine Ian by early next week.

Before discussing computer models that go beyond the above official forecast track – this brief note from the National Hurricane Center:


Please assume that the forecast track may move back n forth in coming days.

The European forecast model has Hermine Ian visiting the NC coast as a powerful hurricane late Thursday night Sept 29/Friday morning Sept 30.

The GFS model (American) has Hermine Ian over Tampa FL a week from today, and off our coast as a much weakened tropical storm Monday Oct 3.

The official NOAA/NHC track is closer to the Euro model, arriving near Tampa Wednesday. It’s too early (this storm doesn’t officially have a name yet) to make specific plans, BUT, one might consider preparing for a potential hurricane visit a week from now.

Thursday September 22, 2022

What’s the longest you’ve spent in the waters of the Neuse?

For Ronnie Antry, the answer is longer than he ever wanted. Read about Ronnie’s unanticipated overnight swim and mid-morning rescue by Oriental resident Kathy Rose.

Music at the Village Brewery is cancelled tonight. There’s a chance of showers and thunderstorms later this evening. N winds at 15 – 20 mph with wind gusts up to 35 mph. Tonight’s low in the mid to upper 50s.

Oriental NC Forecast

On the Neuse, a Small Craft Advisory in effect from 10p tonight through Friday afternoon. North winds 20-25 knots, gusts to 30.

Neuse River Marine Forecast

Wednesday September 21, 2022

2:12p Hurricane Fiona is now a category 4 storm with 130mph winds. It is expected to pass near Bermuda early Friday, still with category 4 storm force.

Looking at the Atlantic forecast map it has been tempting to think this hurricane season just isn’t going to visit. But we can’t say that yet. There is a storm brewing, now Invest 98, that is potential trouble. This will likely become a Tropical Depression in the next day or two, then ultimately strengthen to Hurricane Hermine Ian.

There are no official forecast tracks yet on potential storm Hermine Ian. But, there are long term computer models now. Models this far out are educated guesswork… but they do provide a hint of what may come. The GFS (American) model has Hermine Ian heading to the Florida Panhandle. The ECMWF (European) model sends Hermine Ian over Miami, then back out to sea again landing at the NC coast. If this were to pass, it would be late next week.

This is not a forecast for future storm Hermine Ian, but a heads up that the season is still very much underway.

Atlantic Tropical Storm Outlook
Atlantic Tropical Weather Discussion

12:44p Flounder season for commercial fishermen just started last week. This year, the season’s length is based on a quota. Keith Bruno tells TownDock that that quota is about filled – tomorrow Sept 22 will be the last day of flounder season.

If you want flounder, best buy it today or tomorrow. There may be some stock through the weekend, but it won’t last long.

Flounder season for recreational fishing will continue through the end of September.

12:20p Hello, Piglet Shoppers. Billy Flockhart is back with the September Piglet update:

Suggestions for Oriental’s Piglet? Email store owner Billy Flockhart directly – he welcomes your input. Email bflockhart1010@gmail.com.

This week’s Piglet specials are at this link.

7:57a To avoid unintended night sailing, the Wednesday Night Sail will be a little earlier – at 5p. Boats meet at Oriental marker 1SC for a casual race around the marks.

No boat? Sailors are always in need of crew. More about the Wednesday Night sail here.

Pamlico County Disaster Recovery Coalition is looking for help to form a ‘Volunteer Brigade’ to help homeowners with home repairs after a hurricane.

We are asking for volunteers to work in two-hour increments when available. Specific tasks include debris clearing, distribution center workers, outside and inside repair, and administration work depending on your interest and ability.

The Disaster Recovery Coalition can be reached at 252-745-0883.

Tuesday September 20, 2022

9:50a HeartWorks holds their biggest annual fundraiser – Harborfest for HeartWorks – September 24 @ 5:30p.

Enjoy dinner, dancing, drinks, and a live auction at HeartWorks’ Safe Harbor Youth Center.

Bid on custom built furniture, dinner and drinks for six, a five hour inshore fishing charter and more at the live auction. Items for the online auction will also be on display.

HeartWorks addresses the underserved mental and physical health needs of children and families in Pamlico County. Donate, purchase tickets, become a sponsor, or check out the items in the live and online auctions.

TownDock.net visited HeartWorks in 2020. Take a look at the renovated building and class rooms.

Monday September 19, 2022

4:01p Twenty sailors, fourteen boats, a salt deprived bulldog… and a rubber chicken.

It was all part of the 2022 Greens Creek Challenge… story & pics here.

9:32a In August, Paul Yankowski lost his home to a fire. TownDock reported on it here.

Paul writes in about the fire fighters that were there that day:

Hi. I lost my home on August 9th. I want to thank all the people that went more than the last mile. I truly can’t believe the items they returned. This would not have happened where I grew up. Please print and acknowledge this fire and let our neighbors know you have the best of the best. I can’t thank you enough.  Paul

9:17a Two baffles at the Whittaker Point Restoration under repair and a water line break demonstrates issues with town water lines. It’s all the in the September Town Board Meeting report.

8:48a Traffic reported now allowed to pass on Hwy 55.

8:03a If you’re headed towards Bayboro this morning, you may want to take the long way around for the next hour. Liz Wichrowski reports there is an accident blocking Highway 55 near the intersection of Highways 55 and 304. She says an SUV has rear ended a school bus.

7:45a Driving to work in Oriental is a little different. This morning, veterinarian Doc Sherri Hicks shows how its done:

Saturday September 17, 2022

8:58a It’s a different world this morning re the forecast track of Fiona. Twenty-four hours ago the models pointed in every direction. This morning, Fiona has focus:

While a storm this far out still can change course, it’s looking more like we don’t have to worry about Fiona.

Tropical Storm Fiona Tracking Chart
Tropical Storm Fiona Forecaster’s Discussion & Computer Models
Tropical Storm Fiona Public Advisory

Sunny and 80 today, mid 80s Sunday & Monday.

Friday September 16, 2022

5:21p The latest NHC forecast track has Tropical Storm Fiona tracking more northerly by Tuesday & Wednesday. Unofficial extended models (Thursday & Friday) take Fiona towards Bermuda, and far from the US east coast.

Fiona may well reach hurricane strength by Wednesday.

3:06p Here’s what’s going on this weekend. At New Village Brewery it’s Hoff’n‘Finch 6-9p tonight, TerryLynn Melody plays Saturday 6-8p. At the Garden at Barcos its Trivia/Music Bingo tonight, 6 – 8p. The Red Rooster (behind The Silos) has the Big Jim Kohler blues band playing tonight, starting @ 7p.

Oriental’s History museum debuts a new exhibit today: Lighthouses on our Coast. The museum is open Friday 11-3 and Saturday 1-4. Be brave, take in the Corn Maze on Hwy 55. Friday, Saturday, and Sundays the Maze is open from noon to dusk.

Saturday on the water it’s The Greens Creek Challenge, the race for sailboats 20’ and under. At Nautical Wheelers Saturday wine tastings go west coast, with California and Washington state wines. Wine tastings are at 2 & 3p. Saturday afternoon is a free showing of “A Sound River”, a short film celebrating Sound Rivers’ history of environmental activism. Its 4:30p at the Old Theater.

It’s a lot, and it’s all in What’s Happening.

10:17a Oh Fiona, where will you go?

Tropical Storm Fiona’s long term travel plans have widely divergent possibilities. The official NHC forecast track has trended more to the south and west in the last 24 hours. Upper level wind shear and a track over some mountainous Caribbean islands will sap Fiona’s strength. It’s a bit of wait and see until it clears the islands.

Fiona could strengthen, and if she does, likely head more north and towards Bermuda (kinda like Hurricane Earl did just a week ago). This is the most likely scenario. But, if the storm heads to Florida (or our way) it is expected it would be weaker, just at tropical storm strength. Any arrival is a week or so away.

It’s all uncertain right now.

9:22a You’re invited to a BBQ dinner next week:

RSVP via email, orientalrotaryclub@gmail.com.