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It's Sunday February 5, 2023 Dock Quote: “Hard times, hard...

News From The Village Updated Almost Daily

Upcoming Events

SV Thunderstriker:

Young brothers begin an adventure. The Shipping News

48 Hour Film Project:

Old Theater Hosts Small Town Filmakers. The Story

A January Jump in the Neuse:

Over $5,000 raised for Special Olympics. The Story

Mr. January 2023 - Peanut Butter:

A shift in perspective. Pet Of The Month

From Oriente to Oriental:

Unexpected Cuban roots. The Story

2023: Year of the Rabbit:

. Drawing The Town

Use Your Vang:

Better sail control, in light or heavy air. Captain's Blog

Provision Company Gets a New Manager:

Ben Chapin takes over. The Story

Chubby's Southern BBQ:

Mississippi style eats. The Story

Crab Pot Cleanup:

Collecting the lost and forgotten. The Story

January Town Board Meeting:

Who can oppose a permit and where to charge an EV. The Story

In Honor & Memory 2022:

From the Tree of Names and Lights. The Story

30th Instead of Football Regatta:

Warm weather brings out the boats. The Story

New Year's Eve 2022 into 2023:

Dragons in the fog and a star-caught Croaker. The Story

Letters: In Memory of Three Women:

Grace, Dottie, & Teresa. Letters To The Editor

Friends Of The Dragon 2023:

It takes a village to house a dragon. The Story

S/V Capitaine Bontems:

Young Québecers on a voyage south. The Shipping News

Light up Oriental 2022:

Will Santa pay my electric bill?. The Story

A Parade, Paddleboards, a Dragon and a Grinch:

Spirit of Christmas 2022. The Story

December Town Board Meeting:

Sometimes, not much happens. The Story

2022 Spirit of Christmas Schedule:

What's happening, where and when. The Story

Board in the County:

Pamlico County-opoly. The Story

2022 Turkey Pedal:

150 plus cyclists on a holiday ride. The Story

Traveling Crusade:

You've got one... maybe you should use it. Captain's Blog

Giving Locally 2022:

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

A Turkey Helmet:

. Drawing The Town

Schooner Huron Jewel:

A handbuilt dream. The Shipping News

Spirit of Christmas 2022 is on the Way:

Lights, a parade, gingerbread houses and more. The Story

Town Board Meeting November:

Cycle share may be coming, Hodges Street flooding reviewed. The Story

Paul R. Hawkins, 1950 - 2022:

Father, Husband, Sailor. The Story

Candy Corn Questions:

Celebrating Halloween. Drawing The Town

Armed Robbery at Oriental Dollar General:

For a few hundred dollars.... The Story

Chili Cookoff 2022:

397 tasters cast their ballots. The Story

Richard 'Dick' Creighton, 1939 - 2022:

Husband, Father, Friend. The Story

New Bern's Cedar Grove Cemetery:

Historic cemetery open for GhostWalk. The Story

The Neuse: River Of The Year:

National recognition for local waters. The Story

Bodacious. TrailerTrash. Victorious.:

2022 Oriental Cup Regatta. The Story

2022 Oriental Classic Car Show:

Local and abroad, foreign and domestic. The Story

Ol' Front Porch Music Festival 2022:

The Sound of the Carolinas, Louisiana ... and Norway. The Story

Main Stage: Norwegian Bluegrass:

Hayde Bluegrass Orchestra performs for Dottie. The Story

Letter: Thank You to the Community:

Thank you from the Ol' Front Porch Music Festival. Letters To The Editor

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




Today we have what is called a ‘full snow moon’. Add to that, Laura Turgeon sent along this note: “been hare raising cold of late.” To make it all make sense, Laura drew a hare. Raised over the snow moon. Happy Sunday dear reader. (Click image for complete view. Laura Turgeon drawing.)

Sunday February 5, 2023

6:40a We’ll talk snow moon later this morning. But first, balloon talk:

Friday February 3, 2023

11:44a Hypothetically, the sun will appear later this afternoon.

While that sun thing in the sky has a reputation for warming things up, maybe not so much this time.

The clearer weather on the way will bring cold clear skies tonight, with a forecast low near 20. Saturday all sunshine, with a high just in the upper 30s, maybe touching 40.

Oriental NC Forecast
Oriental Weather Station
Weather Radar
Neuse River Marine Forecast

Make a note on your calendar/dance card: The 2023 Oriental Boat Show is April 14-16. Boats and boat stuff, all congregated on Hodges Street by (and on) Oriental’s harbor.

Here’s a look at the 2022 show.

The boat show web site is orientalboatshow.com.

Thursday February 2, 2023

4:21p The Oriental Piglet has a new look inside. In grocery speak, it’s called a ‘reset’. Billy Flockhart takes you on a caffeinated tour:

9:26a Docking is a fairly simple task… when there’s no breeze. Or current. Or other boats around. Or people watching you.

Add in these other variables and the stakes climb higher.

Artist Laura Turgeon imagines a typical docking.

A little more knowledge, possibly a little more skill, are needed. The Winter Sailing Seminars can help.

Saturday morning, join a free online seminar on docking sponsored by the NCO (Nautical Co-Operative of Oriental). Captain John Rahm gives the presentation. It happens at 9a, Saturday morning – from the comfort of your own home. Register by emailing ncoseminars@gmail.com.

Captain John Rahm also writes the Captain’s Blog on TownDock.net. He’s talked about docking before. Brush up on your knowledge and get your Saturday morning questions ready:
Docking: Getting Underway
Docking: Returning to Your Slip

6:05a Ay caramba. Oy vey. No otra vez.

Enough, already.

More rain overnight. More forecast today.

If you know a good rain stopping dance, please move yourself. Forthwith.

Friday is only a 50% chance. Saturday really promises to be dry.

Meanwhile:

Wednesday February 1, 2023

Dr. Richard Woodard Hudson, Sr. – also known as ‘Papa Doc’ – passed away Sunday, January 29. New Bern born, and raised in Vandemere, Dr. Hudson was a prominent figure in Pamlico County. He (and his wife) built the Pamlico Medical Center in Bayboro in the 60s, was a charter member of the Pamlico County Rescue Squad, and was a volunteer Medical Director for Hope Clinic.

Papa Doc received numerous awards for his work and charity, including being inducted into The Order of the Long Leaf Pine by Governor Beverly Purdue in 2012. The honor is awarded to “persons who have made significant contributions to the state and their communities through their exemplary service and exceptional accomplishments.”

Services are held Thursday, February 2 at the Delmar Center at Pamlico Community College. Reception of friends and relatives begins at 2:30p. Funeral at 4p.

Read the full obituary here.

Tuesday January 31, 2023

12:25p They spent just one night in Oriental. Two brothers, ages 18 & 19, heading out with the goal of a circumnavigation on a 44 ft ketch.

Meet the crew of SV Thunderstriker in The Shipping News.

7:16a Dense Fog Advisory in effect until 10am this morning onshore, until noon for the Neuse and Pamlico Sound.

Despite the fog, the Cherry Branch / Minnesott Beach ferry is running on normal schedule this morning.

No sign of sun for a few days… it may appear Friday afternoon. Saturday promises sunshine – and cold:

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

Monday January 30, 2023

1:49p This past weekend locally produced films were shown at the Old Theater. It was all part of The 48 Hour Film Project – the teams had just 48 hours to make a short film.

Sunday at 3p was the Not Quite The Academy Awards – the votes were tabulated and awards announced.

If you didn’t get to see the films, now you can. Here are the award winners and the seven short films.

11:18a If you drove down Neuse Drive and by John Bond Beach Saturday, you might have seen a bundled up crowd – and a few underdressed individuals on the beach.

You witnessed the the Polar Plunge – a charity event for Special Olympics Pamlico County.

Fifteen people took to the water to help raise $5k for their athletic programs.

You can lend a hand – without getting cold and wet. The program is looking for a basketball coach. Contact program coordinator Jessie Aldridge at pamlico@sonc.net to help out.

Tomorrow is a chance to donate another way – a Blood Drive. At Pamlico Community College from 9a – 2p.

To find an available appointment time, go to redcrossblood.org and enter pamlicocc to see available time slots.

Giving during the month of January, enters you to win tickets to Super Bowl LVII in Phoenix.

Sunday January 29, 2023

A couple of events in town today:

The Oriental Woman’s Club hosts a Student Arts Festival today, noon til 3p. Admission is free. The Club is at 1007 Gilgo Rd.

At the Old Theater two events, all part of the 48 hour film festival. At 1p view 6 short films made by local filmmakers, and vote for your favorite. At 3p is the awards ceremony – the ‘Not Quite The Academy Awards’. Admission is free, donations accepted.

Saturday January 28, 2023

9:38a Chinese New Years is celebrated today in Oriental… the key event being a Dragon Run on Hodges St (near the harbor) at 2:30p. Bring yer pots & pans and make some noise.

The Piglet and some restaurants are also featuring Asian themed food options to go along with the day.

At M&Ms Cafe, General Tso’s Chicken w shrimp fried rice & egg roll, served from 11a to day til closing. The Toucan has Pork Loin with your choice of Crusted Hoisin Glaze or Sichuan, or Kung Pao Chicken.

Friday January 27, 2023

11:34a What’s goin’ on in and around Oriental this weekend? Here’s the rundown:

Friday, Roadside Dogs Food Truck serves at The Brewery from noon – 8p. Meraki Mediterranean Kafe serves on Saturday, 2- 8p.

Also Saturday: Learn more on Navigating Local Waters with the Coast Guard Auxiliary from 1-4p at Fairfield Harbor.

Pamlico Special Olympics holds the ‘Polar Plunge’ at Minuscule Beach (aka John Bond Beach) on Neuse Drive. Sign-in is 10a, lunch and prizes at 11a, and participants enter the River at 1p. You can participate in person or, for those averse to the cold & wet, you can take the ‘Virtual Plunge’. Proceeds benefit Pamlico County Special Olympics.

Down by the harbor on Hodges Street, the Chinese Dragon runs at 2:30p to celebrate the Lunar New Year. Rumor is, there may be two Chinese Dragons out and about.

The Old Theater debuts their 48 Film Festival Friday & Saturday at 7p, showcasing the work of 6 local filmmakers.

It’s all in What’s Happening.

Thursday’s sunset was photo worthy. Here’s the proof:

Sunset over Morris Creek. (Liz Lathrop photo)
Sunset over Kershaw Creek. (Chuck Lawrence photo)
Sunset over Smith Creek. (Bob Parker photo)
Thursday January 26, 2023

10:53a The Oriental History Museum keeps the relics and stories of the town’s past. Have a question about who owned your house? They’ll likely know.

Need a picture of the duck pond when it wasn’t a pond, but the town dumping ground? (Yes, really.) They’ll have that, too. Along with the meeting minutes from the Oriental Woman’s Club outlining the clean up.

Since 2005, Sharon Breitling and her volunteers have overseen it all: keeping the records, organizing docents, and coordinating the Special Exhibits. This year, Sharon steps down as Museum Director. She’s staying with the museum, but in a smaller capacity.

Izzy Keppner has been tapped as the Museum’s new Director. Retired from the Coast Guard after 22 years, Izzy moved to Oriental in 2017. She spent five of the last six years with the Old Theater, guiding it through the pandemic and its reopening in 2022 as Theater President.

Izzy, who also volunteers with the Children’s Theater Workshop and Friends of the Library, has already stepped into her role. She will be at the Museum this Saturday to draw the winning name for the NC Lighthouses Exhibit raffle.

9:08a This morning Commissioner are holding their Town Board Workshop. So far, they’ve discussed police presence in Oriental and reduction in speeding, and whether or not to stagger terms for Commissioners.

Right now, Commissioners are debating on whether to take funds from the town’s reserve fund – held back to repair the town in case of hurricanes – to cover the cost of repairing some of the town roads.

Funds from the Powell Bill, a yearly disbursement from the state to help small municipalities maintain infrastructure, will not cover the full bid received by the town. The town will need to take approximately $24k from the general fund to cover the shortfall between the Powell Bill funds and the bid.

Commissioners have decided to table the discussion until their meeting on February 7. The meeting continues with Commissioners discussing how to better communicate with the town.

8:49a Somehow, you survived the night. The wind peak from the front moving through was 38mph, early last night. Overnight winds were just in the teens and low 20s. While it was a balmy 62 degrees at midnight, temps dropped to 50 overnight.

Cool nights & pretty nice days coming up:

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

Wednesday January 25, 2023

8:37p High wind speed (so far this evening), 38mph at 6:14p.

1:26p The barometer is diving, and winds are rising. From the Oriental Weather Station:

Why? It’s a cold front moving through, with high winds expected tonight:

Locally, expect winds tonight in the 30s, with rain and even a thunderstorm possible. Higher winds (in the 40s) for Beaufort/Morehead City & the Outer Banks.

The wind direction will be southwest, which will cause water levels in and near Oriental to fall.

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

11:14a Pancakes for dinner. A silent auction. Live music. It happens tomorrow night (Thursday) in the back room of Brantley’s Village Restaurant, 4:30 – 7p.

This fundraiser benefits the work done by PrimeTime in and around Oriental. PrimeTime works with the 50+ community offering health information workshops, transportation, educational classes, a health advocate, home visits, and more.

Tickets are $15 and can be purchased at Nautical Wheelers, Brantley’s, Oriental United Methodist Church, from a PrimeTime Board member or by calling 252-675-0909. Dine-in or get it to go.

9:36a Tuesday evening, a small dog was mauled by a larger dog at the Oriental Dog Park on Straight Road. The Dog Park was opened in 2018, on unused land at the Recreation Park. Owners must register their dog with Town Hall and purchase an annual license to use the park.

The dog park is divided into two areas: one for larger dogs and one for smaller dogs. The fence between them has a gate where the town tractors move between to mow the grounds.

To access the park with your dogs, you first enter through a small gate into an enclosed area. There are additional gates, to the left and right, allowing access to either the large dog or small dog parks.

TownDock archive photo from 2018 showing the dog park entrance.

Commissioner Charlie Overcash was at the park at the time of the incident. He said one owner, on the side for larger dogs, opened the large gate (normally used for mowing) to let her dog into the small dog section to play with a puppy there.

As she did, a large, unneutered male dog (not belonging to her) rushed past her and attacked the puppy. Several bystanders rushed to get the larger dog off the puppy.

Oriental Police and Animal Control responded immediately to the scene. The puppy was rushed to the veterinary office where it died from its injuries.

Oriental Town Hall has issued a statement:

An incident occurred at Oriental’s Dog Park January 24, 2023, resulting in the death of a dog due to improper access between parks, which allowed larger dogs to enter the smaller dog area.

Oriental Police and Pamlico County Animal Control both responded immediately and took statements from witnesses and the owner of the attacking dog and the dog that succumbed to its injuries.  Investigation is ongoing.

We hate that this happened at our park for all concerned and implore users to simply follow the rules, posted at the park, which are there to keep your dog and everyone else’s dogs safe.

• Dog Park Registration and Liability Waiver

Tuesday January 24, 2023

3:22p Some folks come to Oriental with plans for long distance voyages, crossing great seas.

Sometimes they find just sailing ‘round these parts is all you need. January’s Pet Of The Month and his owner discovered just that… read on.

Monday January 23, 2023

9:48a A bit more on the Lunar New Year. It officially started Sunday Jan 22… it’s the beginning of a new year on the lunisolar calendar, whose months are moon cycles. It is the biggest celebration of the year in China and other Asian nations.

It gets celebrated in Oriental due to our town’s name, which has embraced Asian themed events starting in the 1960s.

But that’s not what Oriental’s name came from. Not even close.

Oriental, the town, is named for an 1862 shipwreck just off the northern Outer Banks, when the steamship Oriental was carrying supplies for Union troops. Fast forward to 1899, a town was being developed at what had been known as Smith’s Creek. The wife of the town’s founder recalled the shipwreck near her childhood home and Smith’s Creek was renamed Oriental.

While Oriental has since embraced an Asian theme — e.g. dragon runs, Duck Pond dragon, dragon eggs — the roots of the town name are actually Spanish.

Before being pressed in to work for the North in the Civil War, the Steamship Oriental had been built for the rum trade in Cuba. She took her name from one of the Cuban ports… the vessel was designed to trade with the Cuban province of Oriente.

The Sailing Steamer Oriental:

An old map of Cuba, showing the then province of Oriente:

Oriental’s Dragon themed events are very much a part of town. But perhaps a new festival could be conjured up that would more accurately reflect the town name’s heritage.

Up for a Rum Festival?

Sunday January 22, 2023

10:24a Happy New Year dear reader. This would be the lunar new year… which is celebrated by many cultures around the planet. It is most well known as the Chinese New Year.

Oriental will more officially celebrate this Saturday January 28, with a daytime running of the Chinese Dragon at 2:30p on Hodges by the harbor.

2023 is the year of the rabbit. As a rainy Sunday morning celebration, TownDock is intertwining cultures… combining the rabbit theme with a cultural habit you might remember from weekend mornings:

Friday January 20, 2023

Navigation lessons, wine tastings, and a radio-style music show. That and more in the weekend ahead.

The Cheesesteak Hustle Food Truck is at the Brewery tonight. Tomorrow it’s Roadside Dogs, with Hoff n’ Finch playing in the early afternoon.

Saturday, the Coast Guard Auxiliary offers a Basics of Navigation course from 8:30a – 4p. Nautical Wheelers hosts a ‘rolling wine tasting’ from the Wheelers wine collection from 2-4p.

The Small Business Center offers individual courses throughout the day on how to turn your side hustle into a business. Learn how to conduct market research, build a pitch, and the differences between legal structures.

Saturday night, The Bonafides tell the story of the music of North Carolina at The Old Theater. The nine-part New Bern band performs in a radio style format along with original commercials for the performance’s sponsors.

It’s all in What’s Happening.

The Pamlico County Sheriff’s Office needs assistance locating Allen Henry Long, 16 years of age W/M 6’ 1” approximately 160 lbs.  Long was last seen in Bayboro on January 19, 2023. 

If anyone has any information on his whereabouts please contact the Pamlico County Sheriff’s Office at 252-745-3101.

Allen Henry Long has been located.