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Hi, and welcome to my "Editor's Blog"! In this space I'll be attempting to keep our readers informed on fast-breaking news and issues affecting our islands. Visit often. There's a lot going on!

Enjoy the Island Free Press and, even more importantly, enjoy our wonderful barrier island!!!

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FKAA (We are not alone,…): Ginny, Again, the House is not representative of the popular vote. There were 500,000 more votes for …
bbc (Buxton restoratio…): Ocracoke has a lot to lose if something happens to the road in Buxton. So would/should they be taxed…
diver531 (Buxton restoratio…): Has anyone considered calling or inviting Bob Oakes down to go over what was done in Nags Head . Mayb…
owen (Buxton restoratio…): We sure as hell pay a lot of Taxes, to stay down there for 2 weeks, and no one seems to mind that????…
Ray Midgett (Buxton restoratio…): My position on the merits of beach nourishment are well established, and not pertinent to the comment…
Ginny (We are not alone,…): I was going to end this since Irene’s board is not a political forum but as long as she posted your c…

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Winter at the beach is…well … COLD….WITH SLIDE SHOW

Thursday 13 January 2011 at 5:49 pm

Winter at the beach has always been my favorite time of the year on Hatteras and Ocracoke.

Visitors are few and far between.  Traffic on the highway is almost non-existent.  The few stores and restaurants still open are never crowded.  You know almost everyone you encounter while doing errands in the villages.  And everyone has time to stop and chat.

The beach is as beautiful in the winter as it is in the summer – just in a different way.  It’s pretty deserted most days, except for a few walkers, beachcombers, and fishermen. Plenty of shells and other treasures wash up in winter storms, and dolphin frolic close to shore. You can even see a whale offshore at times or a seal resting on the beach.

The sky is often that deep, clear “Carolina” blue, and the sunsets in winter are the best of the year.

And the nice thing is that the winter temperatures are quite nice on the islands – if the wind isn’t blowing too hard.

But not this year. And not last year either.

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Thank you, readers, for more than 1 million visits last year

Thursday 06 January 2011 at 6:30 pm

Last year was a good year for The Island Free Press, and we want to start this new year by thanking all of our avid and devoted readers.  

Many of you have been with us since our first publication in September, 2007 – more than three years ago now.  And many of you have joined us only recently.

We are grateful to all of you for making Island Free Press a popular and viable forum for community journalism on Hatteras and Ocracoke islands -- and a premier vehicle for advertisers who want to reach the folks who live on the islands, own homes here but live elsewhere, or are visitors here.

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A closer look at final decisions on beach access and replacing the bridge

Thursday 30 December 2010 at 5:57 pm

I continue to be amazed and astounded that two projects that will have enormous impacts on the future of Hatteras and Ocracoke and have been mired down in discussion, negotiation, bureaucratic wrangling, and even a lawsuit took a big step forward on the same day last week.

On Monday, Dec. 20, the National Park Service issued a Record of Decision on its final draft of an environmental study that will be the basis for off-road vehicle regulation, which is expected to be in place sometime in the fall of 2011.

The park has been required to have an ORV regulation since the 1970s.  One was prepared in 1978 and sent to Washington, D.C., but, for reasons that remain unknown, it never was approved, published, or implemented – though the park has been operating more or less under those rules ever since.

Also on Monday, Dec. 20, the Federal Highway Administration signed a Record of Decision on the Bonner Bridge replacement project.  

Planning for that project began in about 1990 and has been bogged down by an outlandish number of environmental studies that mostly concerned the impact of the bridge and road improvements to Highway 12 through the Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge.

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