Coastal NC

VOL12ISS2 2016

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12 THE ORIGINAL RELOCATION GUIDE — CAPE FEAR NC | VOLUME 12—ISSUE 2 CAPE FEAR LIVING Jacksonville in nearby Onslow County is less than an hour away from the surf and sand of Topsail Island beaches. Memorials paying tribute to those who served in the military are found throughout the city. The 33rd anniversary of the Beirut bombing was observed at the Beirut Memorial in October and in November the city gathered for the Freedom Fountain Observance ceremony. Nearby Swansboro is the home of North Carolina's oldest festival, the Swansboro Mullet Festival (the fish, not the hairstyle). A short drive to the south takes visitors to the part of the coast where beaches and islands are defined by the Cape Fear River. Cape Fear is the only river in North Carolina that runs directly into the Atlantic Ocean, entering near Cape Fear south of Wilmington. The state's largest river basin is also the main water source for New Hanover, Brunswick and Pender counties. Wilmington is the largest city in the Cape Fear region. Restaurants and shopping in the historic district make the river city a popular destination. The highest concentration of boutique shops can be found at the Cotton Exchange with 30 different stores. Exceptional restaurants line the downtown's Riverwalk and are found throughout Wilmington. PinPoint is one of the "South's Best New Restaurants" noted by Southern Living magazine. Chef Dean Neff has worked with industry giants and brings his talent to the region with a menu that reflects his ties with area fisherman and farmers. Creativity shines through the menu down to the drinks. Try his take on the muscadine grape in the Holy Muscadine Sour. Small businesses are thriving in Wilmington. YouMeUs Designs is the brainchild of Robin Macek. Like many great ideas, her jewelry business started organically. "It seems like yesterday that I had my first show in Wilmington after just moving here a few months prior," said Macek. "Now four years have passed and I've gone from a self-taught beader to 'metal smith' with a huge passion and successful company. They say things happen for a reason, and I believe that is so true." Amanda Jacobs, owner of Sea Love Sea Salt also fell into her business by accident. She wanted to use healthy, fresh salt and decided to make her own from her "front yard" which is the ocean water of Wrightsville Beach. The salt is hand harvested from the beach (noted as the cleanest water in the region according to the Division of Marine Fisheries) and the water is transferred to a salt farm in Burgaw where time and evaporation produce salt. The salt originally tested at local farmers' markets is a hit with restaurants and consumers. The healthy minded lifestyle transcends restaurants and is seen throughout the river city that likes to stay fit. The Gary Shell Cross-City Trail is in final construction and will complete the 15-mile off-road, pedestrian/cycle-friendly Sea Love Sea Salt

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