National Parks of Eastern North Carolina starting to return to normal operations after Hurricane Maria

SEPTEMBER 28, 2017

The National Parks of Eastern North Carolina will begin returning to normal operations this morning. Four out of the five parks received direct impacts from Hurricane Maria this week.

Cape Hatteras National Seashore Recreational Area

  • Facilities north of Oregon Inlet will reopen this morning at 9:00 am. This includes Oregon Inlet Campground and the Bodie Island Visitor Center/Off-Road Vehicle Permit Office. Bodie Island Lighthouse climbs will be available, weather permitting.
  • Facilities south of Oregon Inlet will begin to reopen to local residents this morning. The facilities will be available to non-residents once Dare and Hyde Counties lift their non-resident evacuation orders for Hatteras and Ocracoke Islands.
  • Beach access ramps will begin to reopen this morning. Updated ramp openings will be posted to the park’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/capehatterasns.

Cape Lookout National Seashore

  • Harkers Island Visitor Center will open this morning at 9:00 am.
  • Park islands and facilities will reopen tomorrow morning at 8:00 am.

Fort Raleigh National Historic Site

  • Park visitor services and facilities will reopen this morning at 9:00 am.
  • Park trails will reopen after safety assessments are conducted.

Moores Creek National Battlefield

  • The park did not receive direct impacts, so normal park operations continues.

Wright Brothers National Memorial

  • Park visitor services and facilities will reopen this morning at 9:00 am.
  • The park is preparing for a special light art event this Sunday from 5:00-10:00 pm. The public is invited to attend at no cost. [Press Release]

Ocracoke Campground Closing at Noon Ahead of Potential Hurricane Maria Impacts

According to a Cape Hatteras National Seashore press release, the Ocracoke Campground is temporarily closing at noon today. The closure is necessary to ensure the safety of visitors and staff ahead of any potential impacts from Hurricane Maria. For updated Maria forecasts, go to www.nhc.noaa.gov.

Wright Brothers National Memorial Visitor Center Rehabilitation Update

This morning I was lucky enough to get a tour of the rehabilitation project underway at the Wright Brothers National Memorial Visitor Center in Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina.

The Visitor Center rehabilitation project is expected to be completed by the end of 2017. Along with the project to rehabilitate the building, an exhibit upgrade project for inside the building has been initiated and will start shortly after the rehab concludes.

The Wright Brothers National Memorial Visitor Center, designated as a National Historic Landmark in 2001, should be fully operational and open to the public next summer.

In case you didn’t know, the park remains open seven days a week with lots to see outside. There is a temporary visitor available for those looking for a break from the weather and an opportunity to shop for gifts.

My first Christmas season in Manteo

This is the first Christmas season I’ve experienced in Manteo and last night’s boat parade and Christmas tree lighting event kicked off the season in a perfectly festive way. The free soup, hot chocolate, and cupcakes didn’t hurt the experience either.

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One of the boats in the Christmas boat parade
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Queen Elizabeth II all lit up in Manteo Harbor
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Manteo Christmas tree
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Even Santa caught a fish!