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  • Walmart and Oriental's Long Range Plan

    Submitted by Editor on August 27, 2014 - 09:40

    Walmart Express, Oriental, North Carolina

    Oriental, North Carolina's, official "Long Range Plan" has proven its worthlessness.

    That, at least, is one of the message I'm getting from the spat of recent anti-Walmart-letters appearing on Towndock and in The Pamlico News.

    The Long Range Plan, officially adopted by the town in 2009, states that Oriental will, "promote development and redevelopment that reflect the traditional 'front-porch' welcoming character of the village."

    I don't know whether you consider the scene above to be representative of the, " 'front-porch' welcoming character of the village" or not, but -- as you probably already know -- the overwhelming majority of the letter-writers mentioned above don't.

  • Outer Banks paper going pro

    Submitted by Editor on August 25, 2014 - 15:53

    A "pro's pro" in journalism -- a former Boston Globe ombudsman -- has bought the pedestrian Nags Head, N.C., weekly newspaper -- perhaps some of the best news in regional journalism in years.

  • Honky Spring

    Submitted by Editor on August 24, 2014 - 10:31

    Revolution is in our air again, the polite variety peddled by comfy Oriental Whitey and neighbors.

    Critics, of course, see nothing more in this budding uprising than a bit of sobbing in our soy milk. But, hell's bells, damn the critics!

    One can find evidence here and there.

    However thin, there are emerging clues suggesting we are on the cusp of what, for lack of both imagination and insight, I'll call Oriental's Honky Spring.

    But don't take my word for it, check the doleful letters to the editor in our digital soapboxes and so forth lamenting the Walmart juggernaut and its impact on one local business -- Town 'N Country Grocery.

  • Oriental, N.C., race riots

    Submitted by Editor on August 17, 2014 - 06:38

    Back when we were complaining about excessive and wrongheaded policing in little Oriental, N.C., the racial kindling along West Florissant Street in Ferguson, Mo., hadn't yet burst into flames.

    Michael Brown, the sacrificial lamb slaughtered there, was still alive.

  • Red Sky at Night

    Submitted by Editor on July 6, 2014 - 21:48

    Red sky, Pierce Creek

    Pierce Creek late July 6 looking west as the sun goes down under a red sky. However, the old adage; Red sky at night, sailor's delight, probably won't hold for Monday. Power boaters may be OK, but the day is expected to bring little or no winds and ever warming temperatures.

  • Aboard in Arthur

    Submitted by Editor on July 3, 2014 - 22:47

    06:30 a.m. -- Arthur is history as far as Pamlico County is concerned, and true to expectations, it produced about what one gets from a typical Florida thunderstorm -- and I base that, profoundly, he said with a wry smile, on having been caught in one in the middle of Biscayne Bay. [Smiley face here :-) ] Outside, the sky has cleared from overcast to bright blue. The water is down in Pierce Creek, where at A-dock last night's winds were measured at 55 miles per hour. On C-Dock, where we are berthed, I suspect a bit less than that.

    And a note on the 11:45 post: I was wrong, the winds remained stiff until about 2:30 or 3 a.m., though nothing to write home about. Meanwhile my cabin barometer is back up to almost 30 -- though the one in my head stilll hasn't much responded to 1.5 of VA's Sumatriptan tabs -- taken since yesterday evening!

  • Oriental issues gratuitous curfew ahead of storm

    Submitted by Editor on July 3, 2014 - 17:05

    Opinion buttonThe Town of Oriental issued a curfew banning citizens from town streets overnight, a clear violation of civil liberties that sheepish town residents are all but certain to accept without a little bo peep.

    The one-sentence curfew -- initialed by Mayor Bill Sage and signed by Town Manager Diane H. Miller -- commands residents not to enter town streets "or any other public or town owned property" between 11 p.m. Thursday and 5 a.m. Friday, July 4.

    According to the curfew itself, the reasoning for depriving residents of their rights was to make it easier for authorities, "to more effectively protect the lives, safety, health, welfare and property of people within the Town." Hurricane Arthur is expected to bring blustery winds and some light flooding to Oriental overnight.

  • Arthur now season's first hurricane

    Submitted by Editor on July 2, 2014 - 14:58

    Tropical Storm Arthur reached hurricane strength overnight, according to the National Hurricane Center, and continues on its predicted track toward the Pamlico County area at a speed of 11 knots, or 13 miles per hour.

    Hurricane ArthurThe storm is expcted to reach a Category 2 level with winds of from 96 to 110 miles per hour by the time it passes east of Pamlico County overnight. Storm surge for parts of Pamlico are projected to be about 3 feet, more than enough to flood low-lying areas and cause problems at some marinas.

    Persistent winds of 35 to 40 miles an hour, dangerous in themselves, with gusts of 65 are expected for the county as the storm moves along the North Carolina coast.

    The center of the storm is expected to approach very near the eastern edges of the Outer Banks, if not over them, putting Pamlico County well within a danger zone for deadly winds and intense, heavy rainfall.

    Hurricane-force winds can extend up to 25 miles from the center of the storm, while tropical-storm winds of from 39 to 73 miles per hour may stretch as far as 115 miles from the center.

  • Pamlico economy suffers

    Submitted by Editor on July 2, 2014 - 10:39


    Two new restaurants are set to open in Oriental within days, but the re-return of the Trawl Door and the fourth reincarnation of the old Scoot's grill on Broad Street are outliers of sorts when it comes to new business in Pamlico County.

    The shutterings of the Village Food Emporium and Croakertown, a gift shop that was a staple in Oriental for about two decades, probably better reflects the town's overall business climate.

    New business start-ups is a sector that continues to stagger from the so-called Great Recession that hit the United States beginning in 2007-08, when an overheated real estate market in the county ground to a halt in the early months of the recession, ending construction on new homes in several developments and leaving some of those in financial ruin.

    In the first six months of the year, there were only 20 corporate start-ups or renewals for Pamlico County, according to records at the Secretary of State. That's a 40 percent drop from the 33 start-ups for the same six-month period in 2013.

  • Sage case snails forward

    Submitted by Editor on July 1, 2014 - 16:36

    An investigation by the North Carolina State Bar into possible mishandling of trust funds by lawyer and Oriental Mayor Bill Sage is entering its third month, with no specific timeline on its resolution.

    Sage, whose practice is chiefly real estate matters, remains under an injunction issued May 1 barring him from handling client funds until the matter is resolved.


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