This is it! It’s the Memorial Day weekend and that is officially the start of the summer vacation season here on the Outer Banks.
We are looking forward to a fantastic summer at Cape Hatteras Motel. We hope that you have started your vacation countdown! Whether you are coming in this weekend or we’ll see you in late August, we want to pass along some important reminders about travel.
No matter how you get to Hatteras Island (from the north or via the ferry from the south) you will end your travels on Highway 12. Please note that in mid-May the speed limits change in many of the villages on Hatteras Island from 45 to 35. Also there are always 25 mile per hour zones in both Buxton and Hatteras Villages. Between Buxton and Frisco the limits change back and forth several times.
This holiday weekend it has been said there will be more people on the highways than have been in many years, so expect some delays and allow for that in your planning. We will be here when you arrive, so take your time and pack your patience! If you are driving through Currituck, you will see the massive construction project for the new waterpark, H2OBX. It hasn’t opened yet, but the sight can be quite a distraction, especially if you have children in the car. There will likely be some “gapers” delays in that area as people slow down and take a look.
There will also likely be the same kinds of delays on the Oregon Inlet Bridge as folks look at the construction of the new bridge. It is jaw-dropping. And if you are traveling during the week days, there will be one-lane restrictions as you cross. These generally move along quickly, but the more traffic, the longer the delays. There is also ongoing construction on the new bridge on Pea Island.
Many people are surprised to learn we have a huge deer population on the island. They are especially active at night and you will see them in all parts of the island — both at the National Seashore and in the villages as well. If you see one cross the road ahead of you, always look for the second as that is generally the case.
If we have thunderstorms at any time during the summer, they bring copious amounts of rain for a short period of time and often roads will flood. PLEASE don’t speed through the water. The water usually subsides pretty quickly and the roads dry out.
And finally, there will be many drivers on the road who aren’t familiar with Hatteras Island, and vacationers who are excited and not necessarily thinking about vehicle or pedestrian safety. Watch out for sudden stops, turns made without signals, and children running out onto the highway. We also have a fair number of bicyclists who travel on Highway 12, and as we don’t have a designated bike trail in the southern villages, it is important to slow down, give way, and share the road.
Make getting here a part of the fun! We’ll take care of everything else once you arrive and we want you here safe and sound. Here’s to many wonderful vacation memories to be made in the Summer of ’17!
At a pre-construction meeting on Wednesday, May 24, Weeks Marine announced that the pumping of sand for the Buxton project is now estimated to begin in mid-June.
Representatives from the company reported that the subline for the project is en route and scheduled to arrive early next week. Once in Dare County, the subline will be assembled (approximately 8,000 feet of 30 inch steel pipe) and laid in place underwater. The booster pump, necessary to pump sand to the north end of the project area, will also soon be en route. The C.R. McCaskill, the cutter head dredge assigned to the project, will arrive once the subline has been placed.
The starting point for the project, where offshore pipes connect with the onshore pipes, is approximately 1,000 feet north of the northern boundary for the village of Buxton. Construction will initially proceed to the north until reaching the temporary resource protection area that has been established by the National Park Service to protect nesting birds. At that point, crews will move back to the project’s initial starting point and move south until the resource protection area is no longer in place and work will then resume to the north. After work is completed to the northern project boundary, work will resume to the south until the project is completed.
Once construction begins, the project is expected to be completed in approximately 90 days under normal conditions.
For more information, please visit MoreBeachToLove.com.
Because we interact with the public on a daily basis at Cape Hatteras Motel, we tend to see all facets of life played out here as our guests bring all their joys, hope, and sometimes sorrows with them to the beach.
For many people, Cape Hatteras is an integral part of their lives and they want to share their most special moments at the beach. Most times the occasions are the happy ones. We love to find out that someone popped the question on a beautiful moonlit night on our porch or along the beach at sunrise. We are delighted to witness weddings – some planned and some spontaneous – with the waves, the birds, and the sea providing an incredible backdrop to a marriage ceremony. We mark many anniversaries – from the first to the 50th and beyond – and often times we’re the same motel that hosted the honeymoon. There are birthdays and graduation celebrations and annual family reunions. We have conversations with our repeat guests and we watch their children become young men and women who in turn begin bringing their families as their parents become grandparents.
Today in the space of 30 minutes we were reminded of the wonderful circle of life. We welcomed a young couple with their 6 month old son. They remarked that they love the beach and they want him to learn to love it as well. He may not recall this first visit, but no doubt there will be more visits in years to come.
Just a few moments after that, I witnessed a small gathering of guests, my assumption is family and friends, who were engaged in the very moving and meaningful gesture of spreading ashes in the surf. Clearly this was someone’s end of life wish – to become a part of the sand, sea and surf here at Cape Hatteras near our motel. There isn’t much that is more touching than to know we played such a huge part in someone’s life that they would want us to play a role in this final act.
We realize that a motel is just a backdrop to many important memories. But for us, being here for you is why we do what we do and we’re grateful that even in the background we are a part of your lives.
We look forward to creating and sharing many more special days with you!
It’s not often that something special and completely new makes its way to the Outer Banks, so we couldn’t be more excited to tell you that your summer is about to get wetter, cooler, wilder and splashier! Inspired by North Carolina beach architecture and splashes of the rich history of the Outer Banks, H2OBX – a world-class waterpark with over 30 adrenaline inducing rides, slides and attractions – is scheduled to open in nearby Powell’s Point this summer.
What’s so cool about H2OBX? Let’s start with the 30,000 square foot, Cat-5 Bay wavepool. Then, there’s the FlowRider, the 1,000’ long, lounge-worthy Teach’s Tides Adventure River, amazing thrill rides like Wild Horse Run, the Plank and Paradise Plunge, and two massive six-person family raft rides in Rogue Wave and Queen Anne’s Revenge. And of course, there’s plenty to keep the kids occupied, from Calico Jack’s Cove to the first-of-its-kind Twin Tides Wavepool. Need to relax? H2OBX will feature 50 standard and deluxe Cabanas throughout the park, providing you the opportunity to lounge in style and live the high life.
Great food, drinks and shopping? H2OBX will have that, too. To top it all off, H2OBX will be limiting the number of tickets each day to ensure a guest experience like no other.
As an affiliated partner of H2OBX, confirmed guests of ours have access to both a larger number of tickets each day than the general public, and a discount off the retail price! For more information on how to book your next OBX family adventure with us and to take advantage of our partnership with H2OBX, contact us today!
Weeks Marine, the contractor for the Buxton beach nourishment project, has announced the first day of pumping has been postponed from the originally projected date of May 21 to sometime within the last week of May.
The starting point for the project, where the offshore pipes connect with the onshore pipes, will be located at the oceanfront approximately 1000 feet north of the northern boundary of the village of Buxton. Weeks Marine has announced project construction will initially proceed to the north of the starting point.
The whole project is expected to be completed within 90 days under normal conditions – approximately 55 days for the project area north of the starting point and approximately 35 days for the southern portion.
For more information about beach nourishment projects taking place in Dare County in 2017, please visit MoreBeachtoLove.com
The Cape Hatteras Motel officially opened the “Clifford Morrow” Gallery last night. Located in the new office area, the gallery features the work of this Pennsylvania native turned OBX retiree who was the father of Jan Morrow Dawson, who along with her husband Dave, run the Cape Hatteras Motel.
Morrow, a distinguished artist throughout his career with the Carnegie Museum in Pittsburgh, began a love affair with the Outer Banks, and in particular the Buxton area, with his family in the mid 1960’s. He knew immediately he wanted to retire there and made that happen in the late 1980’s. Once he and his wife Dolores moved to the island, he set up a studio and began to turn his talents toward capturing the beauty of Cape Hatteras. Through prints, pottery, sculpture, and more he created a special feel for the natural world that surrounded him here. He even used the unique shape of a wave to design the new altar at Our Lady of the Seas Church in Buxton. His work was sold at several galleries in the area, until illness put a stop to his ability to work.
Upon his death in 2011 he left many items in his studio. After Mrs. Morrow passed in October of last year, Jan and Dave began the bittersweet task of working through a lifetime of art work, which culminated in the creation of the gallery. In addition to Mr. Morrow’s work, there is a room of other beach art, and local products including salt from Hatteras Saltworks also made in Buxton, and “Skeeter Beater” – a product made locally to assist guests and locals alike with those pesky summer insects!
Whether you are a guest at the motel or just driving by, you are invited to visit the gallery, which is open anytime the motel office is open. Perhaps you will find that special something that reminds you of your happy place, to take home with you. Or maybe you would just like to see the work of an artist who found his happy place right here, and had the ability to forever share it with others.