June 7-15, 2013 Big Rock — one hardly needs to say more. The Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament celebrates its 55th anniversary in 2013 and is one of the oldest and largest sport-fishing tournaments of its kind in the country. The nine-day event includes a one-day lady angler tournament boasting 60-plus...more about Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament
If true tales of pirates and stories of early settlers intrigue you, then come walk the streets of Beaufort, NC, many of which are over one hundred years old. Beaufort-by-the-Sea, as many call this fish town, has historical charm and present-day vitality. Whether you fly into the small airport in Beaufort or drive in on the Highway 70 bridge, you’ll find one of America’s coolest small towns. The tree-lined streets (centuries-old live oaks you couldn’t wrap your arms all the way around even if you wanted to), restored one and two-story Beaufort-style coastal cottage, the porches of which are reminiscent of the Caribbean, and picturesque boats in the harbor are just a few reasons why locals and tourists love Beaufort.
Delve into Beaufort’s history with your first stop at the Welcome Center of the Beaufort Historic Site which includes nine historic buildings, two acres, and more captivating history and entertainment that you can absorb in one day. Be sure to bring your little ones to walk in the small hedge maze on the grounds. When you are there on the weekend, don’t be surprised if you catch a glimpse of a bride and groom taking their vows in this idyllic setting.
If you’re shopping for art or just appreciate viewing exceptional handiwork in all mediums, drop by the lovely Mattie King Davis Art Gallery housed in the two-story white clapboard historic Rustull House beside the Welcome Center. Inside you’ll find juried art from featured local artists and, if you listen carefully, you’ll hear the rhythm of weavers on their looms upstairs. For a full tour of Beaufort’s history, hop on the Historic Site’s double-decker bus, see, and hear about the area’s various historic homes. Be sure to take the guided tour of the Old Burying Grounds where both Confederate and Union Soldiers were buried, as well as, entire families who died of yellow fever, and a young girl in a rum barrel who died at sea but was brought home to Beaufort for burial.
For more details about the famous pirate, Blackbeard, stroll to the North Carolina Maritime Museum to see artifacts from his ship, Queen Anne’s Revenge, which ran aground near Beaufort in 1718. Besides the outstanding various museum displays, you won’t want to miss the events downtown in May which surround the Annual Wooden Boat Show.
In this quaint town steeped in history, there's plenty of wine-sipping and toe-tapping to fill up the present. Every year in April the Beaufort Wine and Food Weekend brings together wine makers, distributors, winery owners, and pairs them with local and celebrity chefs. Visit Beaufort in May for the Beaufort-by-the-Sea Music Festival which fills Front Street and Taylor Creek with lively music. For those who just can't sit still there’s the Beaufort Road Race, and for those who want to join the Beaufort Sister Cities Mural Competition takes place the same weekend.
Beaufort (pronounced BO-fort), North Carolina, is the county seat of Carteret County and is not to be confused with Beaufort (pronounced BU-fort) in South Carolina.