hurricane damage relief workshops

Property Damage Relief Workshop Recap

hurricane damage relief workshops

Property Damage Relief Workshop Recap – Hurricane Florence

We would like to take a moment to thank all of the volunteers and vendors who took the time to speak at our Hurricane Florence Property Damage Relief Workshop on Saturday, February 23rd. We appreciate all of your support and are sincerely grateful for the opportunity to organize such an impactful event for our community. To all of the attendees who took time out of their schedules to learn with us – we wish you all the best of luck and encourage you to reach out to us or any of the speakers for more advice as you continue to recover. For those that couldn’t make it, see the list of those local resources below and reach out if you are ever in need of their services.

Guest Speakers and Resource Providers

  • Lynn Anderson & Linda Rice – Stearns Lending
  • Jonathan Hughes – East Coast Restoration
  • Ron Hicks – Public Adjuster
  • Mike Hancock, Insurance agent, Farm Bureau in Beaufort
  • Maven Construction
  • Infinity Roofing and Siding
  • Terry Jones – Cedar Point Flooring & Bayside Chem Dri
  • Hope 4NC
We are considering facilitating more events like this in the future. If you are interested in speaking or attending, please contact us. We will keep you posted on the day/time of any further events.

Bluewater Sales Awards Dinner

Bluewater Real Estate Sales Awards Dinner

We had a lot to celebrate and be thankful for during our annual Bluewater Real Estate Sales Awards Dinner. Every year, we gather our Sales Team together and it’s always a great opportunity to look back on the progress of not only each of our individual agents but our company as a whole. With almost all of our Bluewater Real Estate Agents and staff members in attendance, we shared many laughs and memories over a delicious dinner and delectable drinks. Thank you to the wonderful staff at Kathryn’s Bistro & Martini Bar for the great food and amazing service!

Bluewater Real Estate Sales Awards Dinner

Congratulations to Our Top Producer Award Winners!

Jim Bailey was our top producing agent throughout all of our offices in 2019. Way to go Jim!

Bluewater Real Estate Sales Awards Dinner

The Copeland & Bernauer Team took home the Top Producing Sales Team Award. Keep up the great work!

Bluewater Real Estate Sales Awards Dinner

This year was certainly special, as we were able to celebrate Kitch Ayre as a Top-Producing agent for the 20th consecutive year during our sales awards dinner! We are so proud of all of Kitch’s accomplishments and so excited to see what the future holds for her. Congratulations, Kitch, and thanks again for all the memories!

Bluewater Real Estate Sales Awards Dinner

Bluewater Real Estate Sales Awards Dinner

Take a look at some more photos of the great time that was had by all!

hurricane beach nourishment project

Beach Nourishment Project

hurricane beach nourishment project

Hurricane Florence Beach Nourishment Project 

Great Lakes Dredge and Dock Company was awarded the dredging contract for Winter/Spring 2019 along Bogue Banks. The contract focuses mainly on the central parts of the island (Indian Beach & Eastern Emerald Isle). Accordingly, the beach will be closed to beach driving beyond the Ocean Drive “Dog Leg” ramp for the project’s duration. All information is courtesy of the Carteret County Shore Protection Office

Emerald Isle Beach Re-nourishment Project

April Beach Nourishment Updates

4/10/19 – BOTH HOPPER DREDGES IN OPERATION.  As scheduled, the Ellis Island arrived on Monday (4/8/19), delivered her first load of sand at about 6 pm that evening, and has been working steadily ever since.  She (Ellis Island) is pumping sand via a submerged pipeline landing at 18th Street and is progressing westward towards Emerald Isle’s Eastern Regional Access. The Liberty Island, meanwhile, continues to pump sand via a pipeline landing at 8th Street and is also progressing west from this point – currently at 12th Street (SEE 4/10/19 PROGRESS MAP).  The “dredging – sail to beach – pump-out – sail back to the borrow area” cycle is different for each dredge – every now and then both will coincide with a beach pump-out (see figure below).   We could run into rough seas this weekend, but weather and mechanical shutdowns are always built into the schedule.
4/8/19 – PIPE FLIPPED TO THE WEST, ELLIS ISLAND ON THE WAY.   Great Lakes Dredge & Dock finished working eastward from the submerged pipeline landing at 8th Street on Saturday (4/6/19), and is now working westward from 8th Street (at 10th Street this morning – SEE 4/8/19 PROGRESS MAP).  The beachfill connecting Reach 1 in Emerald Isle to Reach 2 in Indian Beach have now been merged, the pipes have been removed from the beach, etc.
The dredge, Ellis Island is on her way from Charleston as this update is being prepared (she’s on the north side of Cape Fear @ ~9 am) and should begin dredging/pumping later today.   The Ellis Island will be pumping sand to the beach near 18th street in Emerald Isle and will proceed west towards the Towns Eastern Regional Access.  The Liberty Island will continue pumping from the submerged pipeline at 8th Street and work west.
The dredges Liberty Island has a maximum capacity of 6,540 cubic yards and the Ellis Island 14,800 cubic yards under optimal conditions.  The Ellis Island has been in operation since December 2017 and is the largest hopper dredge in the U.S.   This will be one of her first beach nourishment template jobs (i.e., not just disposal, but meeting a prescribed nourishment template – see cross section).  We’re glad to see her here!

4/5/19 – The Ellis Island (the “big dredge”) is all set to arrive and start dredging/pumping on April 8th.  All the vessel inspections are scheduled, the second trawler is ready to start and relocate endangered/threatened species away from the borrow source and dredge, etc.   Once the Ellis Island arrives on the 8th, it will be pumping sand to the beach near 18th street in Emerald Isle and will proceed west towards the Towns Eastern Regional Access, then flipped towards the east from 18th Street.  The Liberty Island in the meantime has been pumping sand to the beach from 8th Street and is progressing east back towards the completed section of Indian Beach – they were at 2nd Street this afternoon (SEE 4/5/19 PROGRESS MAP).    Great Lakes Dredge & Dock should be done going east over the weekend and will begin pumping towards the west of 8th Street.   Ideally, the Liberty Island pumping to the west will meet the Ellis Island pumping to the east somewhere between the 8th and 18th street pipeline landings on the beach.  Please note that with the second dredge on-site, there will be lots more activity on the beach – more surveying, more pipe, more heavy equipment, etc.Also earlier today, the project sponsors, engineers, and the contractor met with the dune plant subcontractor (Coastal Transplants).   We discussed our planting grid, watering methods, fertilizers to be used during installation, etc.  Coastal Transplants will likely start planting the dune crest and dune slope towards the latter stages of next week – starting in Reach 3, then Reach 2, and Reach 1 (basically “east to west” – in the same order as the nourishment project has been completed).  The dune grasses (mostly sea oats and some bitter panicum) are sensitive to their new environment when first planted – they are going from a controlled greenhouse environment to the salt air and wind that dominate the beach.  There will be tens of thousands of plants installed as part of this project and they need to be disrupted as little as possible so they can successfully grow and survive.   Thus, please stay off the vegetated part of the dunes – stay in the bare sand pathways that will be created at each walkway.   Please pass along this friendly reminder to your friends or visitors you may see as well.   Thank you.

4/3/19 – Quick, mid-week update.  The Liberty Island continues to utilize “Pipeline Landing #4” at 8th Street and is working eastward from this point towards the Emerald Isle/Indian Beach Town Boundary, and pumping is currently near the 3rd Street Park (SEE 4/3/19 PROGRESS MAP).  The schedule for second dredge, the Ellis Island is still on track for arrival on April 8th and will service the “3rd Pipeline Landing” located near 18th Street and will first work westward from this point towards the Eastern Regional Access.  And lastly, dune planting activities could commence towards the latter part of next week, first starting in “Reach 3” (“east Indian Beach).   See Greenhouse and Root photos – these are the actual plants ready for delivery and installation.

4/1/19 – We’re on to Reach 1 (East Emerald Isle) and beach nourishment activities are currently moving east from the submerged pipeline landing near 8th Street back towards the completed Indian Beach section (SEE 4/1/19 PROGRESS MAP).   That submerged line (“subline”) was not fully ready on Friday afternoon and roughly two hopper loads were placed off the subline already in place near 18th Street (see 4th and 3rd Pipeline Landing in progress map).  Photos from today’s activities and dune plants from the greenhouse are below.

March Beach Nourishment Updates

3/29/19 – REACH 2 COMPLETED, VEGETATION NOTE, ELLIS ISLAND ARRIVING ON THE 8th – Today is somewhat of a transition day.   For one Great Lakes Dredge & Dock have completed pumping to Reach 2 (SEE 3/29/19 PROGRESS MAP), which, therefore, concurrently signifies the start of Reach 1 – East Emerald Isle (roughly 65% of the project volume-wise).  To this end, the submerged pipeline (subline) that serviced the dredge Liberty Island in Reach 2 is being moved today to East Emerald Isle near 7th Street.  The Liberty Island is using this time to refuel and will likely start using the “new” subline at 7th Street later this afternoon/early evening or the subline already installed near 16th Street (see 4th and 3rd pipeline landing, respectively in the REACH 1 MAP).
Also, there has been a change in schedule for the second dredge, the Ellis Island, to arrive, which is now planned for April 8th – not the 2nd as reported earlier this week.  This does not hamper the overall completion schedule for the project – April 8th was the approximate date the Ellis Island was originally slated to arrive when the schedule was first presented by Great Lakes Dredge & Dock months ago.
And lastly, some initial discussions concerning the dune planting phase of the project have taken place, and planting of the dune crest and slope (see cross-section) in Reach 3 could begin in a couple/few weeks.  We are using Sea Oats and Bitter Panicum, which are native plants to this area.3/27/19 – FLIPPED THE PIPE IN REACH 2 – The eastern reach off the 2nd pipe landing was completed yesterday, and we are working westward now to complete Indian Beach and therefore Reach 2 (SEE 3/27/19 PROGRESS MAP).  Next week will likely mark a shift in the project in a couple of ways.  (1) We will be starting or will have started Reach 1 (eastern Emerald Isle).  (2) The dredge Ellis Island is scheduled to begin dredging/pumping on April 2nd and will service the “3rd pipeline landing” located near 16th Street in Emerald Isle and will progress west towards the Eastern Regional Access first, then flip towards the east.  And (3) in all likelihood, the pipeline currently being used in Reach 2 will be moved near 7th Street in Emerald Isle, representing the “4th pipeline landing”.  The Liberty Island will be utilizing this pipeline landing and will first work back east towards the Town line shared with Indian Beach, then flip to the east to meet up with the Ellis Island pipeline/nourishment (See PROGRESS MAP).
3/25/19 – Beach nourishment activities were paused during the latter part of last week because of weather/sea conditions.   However, nourishment resumed early Saturday morning (3/23/19) and has progressed nicely since.  The dredge Liberty Island is using the pump-out station/submerged line in Reach 2, and nourishment activities are advancing eastward from this point – past the Ocean Club, and now past SummerWinds (SEE 3/25/19 PROGRESS MAP).

3/20/19 – The beach nourishment project continues to progress eastward towards SummerWinds from the active submerged pipe landing (see March 20, 2019 PROGRESS MAP).   The dredge Liberty Island is now going to be accompanied by the second dredge (Ellis Island) a little earlier than first scheduled and should arrive the 1st week of April.   Both dredges will work in tandem to complete Reach 1 (East Emerald Isle – SEE MAP).

3/18/19 – REACH 3 COMPLETE – Reach 3 (“east” Indian Beach and Salter Path) was completed yesterday (3/17/19), and subsequently, the first load of sand was delivered to Reach 2 – SEE 3/18/19 PROGRESS MAP.  Beach nourishment activities are now progressing eastward from the 2nd submerged pipeline landing, and will be “flipped” westward once the eastward run is completed.  Also, the submerged line for Reach 1 in Emerald Isle has been installed near 16th Street (see MAP).

3/15/19 – Strong productivity continues and Reach 3 (Indian Beach/Salter Path) could be completed this weekend (see 3/15/19 Progress Map).  If so, dredging/pump-out operations will move to Reach 2 in Indian Beach where nourishment will progress eastward off the 2nd pipeline landing.

3/13/19 – Productivity/progress remains strong.  Great Lakes Dredge & Dock (GLDD) has completed ~3,000 linear feet of the project in less than 5 days and the eastward leg from the first subline landing in Reach 3 (Indian Beach/Salter Path)  is complete – see photos below.  GLDD begun progressing west from the subline landing this morning (SEE 3/13/19 PROGRESS MAP).

3/10/19 – Great Lakes Dredge & Dock has made some nice progress in less than 48 hours of starting the project (pictures below), and have completed ~1,000 linear feet of beach thus far (see 3/10/19 UPDATE).  The sand quality is excellent visually speaking.   We have received a lot of questions regarding how the dune feature will be constructed and tied into the existing, scarped dune that characterized Bogue Banks after hurricane Florence.  Hopefully, this schematic next to an actual constructed portion will provide a good mental image = dune construction image.
3/8/19 (PROJECT START) – Right on schedule.   The dredge Liberty Island arrived earlier this morning from Charleston, S.C., underwent a series of mandatory inspections, and subsequently excavated, sailed, and delivered the first hopper load of sand to Reach 3 at roughly 4:15 pm  (pictures below).  Note that beach nourishment will first be progressing eastward off the 1st subline landing (depicted here).  Also, the second subline has been installed today at Reach 2 (see “Station 514+00” here).

3/6/19 (tentative start date is Friday, 3/8/19) – The dredge Liberty Island is presently docked in Charleston, S.C. and will be transiting to Morehead City Harbor over the course of the next day(s) with dredging/pumping activities scheduled to initiate Friday afternoon/early evening (3/8/19) subsequent to mandatory vessel inspections – again in Reach 3, Indian Beach (see updates below).

Other dredging work in the area – It is also noteworthy to mention the hopper dredges Dodge Island and Padre Island started dredging maintenance work for the Morehead City Harbor Federal Navigation Project on February 26th and will likely conclude at the end of March.  Shoal material will be dredged predominantly from Range A and placed in the new nearshore berm east offshore disposal site (see image).  This scope of work is part of a regional hopper approach for the Brunswick, Savannah, Wilmington, and Morehead City Harbors  (~700,000 cubic yards for Morehead City – bid abstract).

Also, a second federal contract for Morehead City Harbor maintenance, which represents a carryover project from the previous fiscal year was also awarded to Great Lakes Dredge & Dock utilizing a pipeline dredge (bid abstract).  The dredging ranges include both the Cutoff and Range A utilizing either the nearshore berm east or west disposal sites (see image), and will likely start sometime in April (~1,600,000 cubic yards).

And lastly, the Corps of Engineers’ small hopper dredge, the Murden should be arriving to the area in the middle of March and will service both Morgan Creek (~6 days of dredging and ~7,500 cubic yards) in Range 1  (map)  and Bulkhead Channel (~4 days of dredging and ~ 3,596 cubic yards) in Range 1 (map).   Offshore disposal at the nearshore berm west.

February Beach Nourishment Updates

2/26/19 – The first submerged pipeline (“sub-line”) landing was transited to and installed earlier today at Reach 3 in Indian Beach at Station 695+50 (pictures below) as land based pipe continues to be delivered to the Indian Beach 4WD Ramp.

2/25/19 – Land-based piping has begun arriving at the Indian Beach 4WD Ramp is actively being staged along the beachfront (pictures below).
2/20/19 – Both the Indian Beach 4WD Ramp and Dog Leg 4WD Drive Access will be used to transfer land-based dredge pipe arriving via flatbed trucks to the beach.  Front-end loaders and other ancillary equipment should arrive at the Indian Beach 4WD Ramp early next week.  Some sub-line (water-based piping), derricks, barges, etc. have arrived and are holding tight in Bogue Sound, situated just north of Ft. Macon.   Otherwise, there are no schedule changes to report as the dredge Liberty Island is planned to initiate dredging/nourishment the first week of March in Indian Beach (Reach 3) and will be accompanied by the Ellis Island several weeks later – the temporary sub-line pipe landing locations from offshore as depicted for Indian Beach/Salter Path and East Emerald Isle remain the same.

2/14/19 – No schedule changes to report on the beach nourishment project.  The dredge Liberty Island is planned to initiate dredging/nourishment the first week of March in Indian Beach (Reach 3) and will be accompanied by the Ellis Island several weeks later – the temporary pipe landings from offshore as depicted for Indian Beach/Salter Path and East Emerald Isle remain the same.  Mobilization of dredge pipe, ancillary vessels, and equipment to the area should be more pronounced in the weeks ahead.

January Beach Nourishment Updates

1/30/19 – There will be three temporary pipeline landings that will serve the dredges Liberty Island and Ellis Island.  In general, the sand will be pumped ashore from the hopper dredge and progress east or west, then reversed as generally depicted in the newly updated maps for Reach 2 and 3 (see – Indian Beach/Salter Path) and Reach 1 (see – East Emerald Isle).  The Liberty Island will arrive on site likely the first week of March, followed by the Ellis Island.

1/22/19 – The beach nourishment project kicks off. Great Lakes Dredge & Dock should begin mobilizing land- and water-based pipe, heavy equipment, personnel, etc. towards the latter parts of February. Although the schedule is tentative, dredging/pumping could begin the first week of March.

Intracoastal waterway exploring

Explore the Intracoastal

Explore the Intracoastal Waterway

Intracoastal Waterways

On the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway, you will find barrier islands, inlets, and channels running along our coast just waiting to be explored. These marshy waterways are frequently traveled by boat and kayaked by locals and visitors alike. Spend a day exploring some of NC’s stretch of the waterway and you will find not only amazing views and barrier islands and channels but also fantastic wildlife!

One expected sight on our coast is whales! In December and early January, whales that can be seen off our coast are most likely heading from the Caribbean where the mothers give birth. In the spring, you have a chance to catch migrating whales as they head back to the Gulf of Maine. One of our most popular marine animals you will see are pods of dolphins cruising the coastline. They have been known to swim alongside boasts and say hello if you are especially lucky! Along the barrier islands, like Shackleford Banks and Carrot Island, you may also see wild ponies. These horses have roamed the beaches for hundreds of years and are a beautiful sight to behold.

In the marshy areas, you’ll find lots of marine birds like pelicans, gulls, herons, egrets, and perhaps even an oyster bed. Whether you cruise the waterway by boat, chartered cruise, or kayak, you’re sure to find the views and experience unforgettable.

Intracoastal Waterway

  • Three Thousand Miles

    The Intracoastal Waterway is one of the largest coastal transportation routes, spanning over three thousand miles.

  • Fourteen States

    The 3,000 mile waterway spans 14 states from Massachusetts to Texas! The Atlantic Waterway runs just over 1,000 miles from Norfolk, VA to Key West, FL.

  • Seven Lighthouses

    North Carolina has 7 lighthouses along the coast visible from the Intracoastal Waterway.

  • Whale Watching

    Migrating whales cane be seen off our coastline in December, January, March and April as they travel between the Gulf of Maine and the Caribbean.

  • Flying South

    Snowbirds love to cruise the Intracoastal when traveling south for the winter to avoid the rougher waters of the open ocean.

2018 Year in Review

2018 Year in Review from the Crystal Coast

2018 was a year to remember for Bluewater Vacation Rentals. We started off the year with some wind powder on the snow. Followed by a wonderful summer filled with lots of fun and memories! September rolled around and Hurricane Florence hit our beautiful coast, leaving lots of destruction. As a community we have come together to rebuild the Crystal Coast and prepare for what 2019 has in store for all of us. We hope you will take a few minutes to take a look back at some of 2018 memories in our year in review AND we hope to see you all on the Crystal Coast in 2019!

popular crystal coast towns

Crystal Coast Towns You Should Know

popular crystal coast towns

Welcome to the Crystal Coast!

The Crystal Coast is located in Carteret County, North Carolina – covering over 100 miles of shoreline! Our coast is known for its rich history, pristine beaches, nationally recognized fishing tournaments, incredibly fresh seafood and restaurants, and local southern charm. The Crystal Coast is made up of larger mainland towns, Bogue Banks beach towns, and the “Down East” community that still holds deep roots in our fishing culture.

Crystal Coast Towns You Should Know

Bogue Banks is comprised of five townships – Emerald Isle at the western end of the island, followed by Indian Beach, Salter Path, Pine Knoll Shores, and Atlantic Beach at the eastern end of the island. Located just east of Bogue Banks are Cape Lookout National Seashore and Shackleford Banks, where you can catch a glimpse of the wild island ponies, explore and collect shells and even climb the Cape Lookout Lighthouse!

Take a glimpse into our most visited Crystal Coast towns and the small townships of Bogue Banks!


One of the Crystal Coast towns you should know is Swansboro! The home of Hammocks Beach State Park, the “Friendly City by the Sea” offers a historic downtown district overlooking the water. The quaint village atmosphere and the historic downtown area offer shopping in an area alive with restaurants, boutiques, gift shops, and waterside parks. Host to the Arts by the Sea Festival, the Mullet Festival, and multiple fishing tournaments – Swansboro offers some of the best hospitality on the North Carolina coast.

Emerald Isle

One of our very favorite Crystal Coast towns is Emerald Isle. The outdoorsy adventurous guests that visit Emerald Isle are in heaven with activities like surfing, kayaking, kiteboarding, and paddleboarding. Families can enjoy miles of walking, jogging and bike paths, and several nature trails that allow you to enjoy the naturally pristine environment with a variety of birds, waterfowl, and families of whitetail deer.  The Point in Emerald Isle is not to be missed when visiting the western shores of Bogue Banks; the sunsets are breathtaking!

Pine Knoll Shores

The wide beaches and sound side access make it easy to swim, go shelling, clamming, or kayaking along this beautiful stretch of the island.  The North Carolina Aquarium is located in Pine Knoll Shores and offers a variety of marine species including fish, crabs, seahorses, lionfish, and sharks. The sea turtle nursery features an albino turtle named Nimbus! Nature trails offer a walk above a tidal marsh where marine creatures live and shorebirds wade looking for food. All in all, it’s a tranquil way to spend the afternoon.

Indian Beach

Indian Beach is conveniently located in the middle of Bogue Banks.  Its location allows easy access to the sights and sounds of Morehead City and Emerald Isle, as well as restaurants &  shopping.  But above all, you’ll enjoy the quiet calming expanse of soft sands and lush maritime forest. Its location allows easy access to the sights and sounds of Morehead City and Emerald Isle, as well as restaurants &  shopping.  But above all, you’ll enjoy the quiet calming expanse of soft sands and lush maritime forest.

Salter Path

Salter Path is one of those Crystal Coast towns that doesn’t get enough credit. Known for its history as an old fishing village, Salter Path is different because it is home to a large dune system, excellent beaches, breathtaking soundfront views, and even a small maritime forest. Family beach cottages are easy to spot as you cruise through Salter Path. Be sure to stop and take some time to take in Bogue Sound as it sparkles a magnificent blue on a bright sunny day.

Atlantic Beach

Want to be transported back in time a bit? Then Atlantic Beach is one of those Crystal Coast towns to add to your list! Atlantic Beach has a retro “beach-town” feel of days past and has been North Carolina’s “go-to” beach since the 1930s. Located at the eastern end of Bogue Banks, Atlantic Beach features a laid back friendly feel with wide sandy beaches, a boardwalk, and a commercial district with plenty of dining and shopping options. Nature trails, public parks, and beach accesses will draw you in. Atlantic Beach is also home to Fort Macon State Park, a historic Civil War fort, which is the most visited state park in North Carolina.

Morehead City

Downtown Morehead City has an alluring waterfront appeal, lined with charter boats, legendary seafood restaurants, charming shops all overlooking Sugarloaf Island. The Big Rock Blue Marlin Fishing Tournament is held annually in June with crowds, Beaufort, NC gathering daily at the weigh station to see which boat will bring in the biggest blue! Also home of the North Carolina Seafood Festival, held every year the first weekend in October. Vendors line the waterfront with all types of seafood & arts and crafts, along with kid’s rides and activities! Families can also enjoy watching the Morehead City Marlins play baseball at Big Rock Stadium. With multiple shopping centers throughout Morehead City, there’s something for everyone!


Beaufort, the 3rd oldest town in North Carolina, is known for its Bahamian and West Indian style architecture and its close ties with a notorious pirate. It offers a beautiful sandy shore as well as stunning waterfront views and many specialty shops and delicious restaurants downtown. You can watch the feral horses from the banks of Beaufort or board a ferry to see them in their unspoiled habitat. Hop atop the red, English Double-Decker bus for a tour around this historic fishing village to see Blackbeard’s home and the mysterious Old Burial Ground. You’ll see exactly what makes this coastal community so special and why it was voted Best Small Town in the USA in 2012.

A dolphin sighting in Morehead City.

Dolphin Sighting

Dolphin Sighting in Morehead City

While inhaling our coconut and shrimp curry soup from Sanitary we moseyed our way out to their deck that overlooks the waterfront like we do every year. But this time we got a treat. TWO DOLPHINS playing in the sunset. That was my first dolphin sighting so close. What a special night!

My husband and I were lucky enough to rent out the little one to some friends and have a date night in Morehead City. Now this wasn’t just any night, it was the annual Bites and Blues and we scored tickets. Now let me explain this to you. Bites and Blues is an amazing foodie paradise that happens every year. Local eateries come together and station themselves about downtown Morehead City NC and prepare small bites for hundreds of ticket holder.

You ticket is literally a map of all the restaurants that will be in attendance equipped with check boxes to mark where you have been. You also have a best bite of the night vote ticket stub at the bottom.

Restaurants in participation this year include places like:

Fat Fellas (reigning champs)

Tight Lines — mahi bite with lump crab

Happy Cakes (mmmmmmm……Oreo explosion- an Oreo inside a cookies and cream cupcake with cookies and cream frosting)

Promise Land — Brisket

Sanitary — coconut and shrimp curry

Rudy Ducks — seviche

Red Fish Grill — glazed mahi

Beaufort Olive Oil — the most creative salad I’ve ever tasted

Dank Burrito — jalapeno hush puppies

The Boathouse — smoked brisket with collard greens and homemade barbecue sauce

La Perla –(a new authentic spanish cuisine joint tucked away on 20th st. they had mufungo, which my husband and I hadn’t had since our honeymoon. It is Yuca, plantains and meaty goodness. A must try.)

Southern Bread Bakery (also a new establishment- very tasty macaroons)

And so many more places.

Guys we were waddling back to our car by the end of the night. And this is no big feat. Derrick is a NC State football alum that can put you to shame in a food eating competition. Needless to say we got our money’s worth.

To the right:

We are devouring our Fat Fellas Plates

a rib, hush puppy, amazing mash potatoes and southern sweet tea to complete the bite 🙂

= 2 happy campers

FAQ about hurricane florence recovery

Hurricane Florence Recovery FAQ

FAQ about hurricane florence recovery

Hurricane Florence Recovery FAQ: Guests and Homeowners

We know you have questions, so we’ve gathered some of the most frequently asked hurricane recovery questions from guests and homeowners. Our staff members and the Towns are working hard on our island’s recovery and ensuring we answer any questions you may have regarding Hurricane Florence recovery.

Guest FAQ on Hurricane Florence

Hurricane Florence Recovery FAQ from our Guests

1. When will your offices be open? – Our offices are now open at this time, 8:30 am to 5 pm daily

2. When will the curfew be lifted?There is no curfew at this time

3. How can I file a claim with Red Sky Travel lnsurance?If you purchased travel insurance for your stay – you may contact RedSky about your travel insurance claim or call them (866) 889-7409

4. Why will no one answer the phone? – Our phone lines are extremely busy during this time. Our staff is working very hard to answer all calls and return messages. Thanks for your patience!

5. When will we be updated about our vacation? – Bluewater will continue communicating with you via email and the website to keep you updated.

6. Why does the link to my rental property say “not rentable?” – If the status of your rental property says “not rentable,” – it could be due to damages, flooding, or power outages preventing access to the property.

7. Are there restaurants and groceries stores open? – The main grocery stores, Publix and Food Lion are open and fully stocked. There are limited restaurants open at this time and only serving limited menus. Please be aware some businesses are only accepting cash at this time due to power and internet outages.

8. Are gas stations open and gas readily available? – The majority of gas stations are open with gas readily available. Please be aware that some gas stations suffered damage on the island and are closed until further notice.

9. How are the beach accesses? – You can reach the beach; however, there has been erosion from the ocean during Hurricane Florence. Please note that some public and private walkways to the beach have suffered damage. Be cautious while using beach accesses.

10. If the property rented does not have beach access, does this make it non-rentable, and can I be moved or refunded? – If the dwelling is safe and uninhabitable, but the beach access is unavailable, this does not warrant the property as uninhabitable. No refund or move is provided. Guests will be asked to sign a waiver agreeing not to use that access and will use the nearby public access.

11. If I don’t have travel insurance and the property cannot be rented, do I get a refund? – If the property is deemed uninhabitable, Bluewater will need to process a full refund and block the property from rentals until repairs are completed, and the property is cleared as safe and habitable. We will be working with the individual property owners to coordinate these refunds.

12. What documentation will be needed to file with RedSky Insurance? – An email was sent out to guests with travel insurance with information on material needed for filing a claim based on your period of stay.

13. Are roads in North Carolina closed? – For road closures and updates, please visit the North Carolina Department of Transportation.


FAQ from Homeowners on Hurricane Florence

Hurricane Florence Recovery FAQ from our Homeowners

1. I have renters that are scheduled for a vacation this week. Has our unit been checked yet? – Please use the link provided in your email to check the status of your property.

2. What is the status of our property? – Please use the link provided in your email to check the status of our assessment. If you have any questions about your status, please call our maintenance department at (252) 354-6128.

3. What do I need to do if my home has damage? – 

  • Call your insurance company to make a claim.
  • Begin working with your insurance company to schedule an assessment and line up contractors to work on your property.
  • Call and schedule third-party vendors or contractors to complete repairs needed to your property.

4. Can you coordinate vendors for repairs to my property? – Currently, we do not have the manpower or resources to organize any work at the rental properties. The only work we are currently capable of coordinating on your behalf is lining up water extraction and temporary roof-tarping for homes that are deemed hazardous. If your property is on that list – you will be contacted by email from our Maintenance Department with the details of those arrangements. All bills from vendors will be sent directly to you.

Banner for dogs dig the crystal coast

Dogs Dig the Crystal Coast

Banner for dogs dig the crystal coast

Dogs Dig the Crystal Coast

Our beautiful Crystal Coast is a pet-friendly beach paradise. We’re sharing a few reasons dogs dig the Crystal Coast, and we have no doubt your dog will too! 

Dogs Dig the Crystal Coast and Emerald  Isle

Nearly every dog that crosses the bridge ends up loving the beach just as much as their humans do. They can run, play, and roll to their heart’s content in the sand. They can watch gulls and pelicans, and sandpipers skirt the shoreline for hours. They will probably con you into more table scraps than usual since it’s their vacation, too much like children asking for ice cream for breakfast and open-ended bedtimes. They can run, jump and splash into the water or laze in the umbrella’s shade while you soak up the rays.

We love your dogs so much that we even have a whole category in our annual photo contest dedicated to dogs. We get so many photos every year, and without fail, some of our most favorite shots are those that feature furry family members. They seem to embody fun, adventure, and the idea of the “entire family” coming on vacation together.

The Crystal Coast is Welcoming to Dogs

The Crystal Coast itself is more than happy to host your pups. Just make sure they stay on a leash (just in case those gulls look a little too tasty, or that terrier a few towels down gets extra friendly) and always clean up after any …ahem, evidence… they might leave on the sand.

dog on the beach chasing a seagull

Of course, always remember that what is HOT to you is even hotter to them, so take them back inside for breaks in the air conditioning as often as you can. (Hey, you get a cool break, too!)

keep your pets cool on the beach

Bring a bowl and stick some water bottles in the cooler to be sure you always have fresh cold water available. From experience, I only pour out what my little baby behemoth is going to drink because it inevitably gets sand in the bowl about 3 seconds after it’s poured out, and the diva can only drink clean water. She’s a little spoiled. Shocking, I know.

A Vast Array of Pet-Friendly Places to Dine on the Crystal Coast

Another reason dogs dig the Crystal Coast is the wide variety of places that are pet-friendly. For example, take your pup out on the town to the dog-friendly Backstreet Pub for a cold drink.

The Backstreet Pub has been called the friendliest, funkiest little bar from Maine to Venezuela. Housed in a century-old former bakery, it is famous among sailors who course the intercoastal waterways and who have covered the walls with nautical memorabilia. But the Backstreet is also a local hangout. For fishermen and writers, waitresses and tugboat captains, retired spies, deep sea divers, and just about anyone looking for a cold beer, fine wine and some decent conversation. And, perhaps, a game of cribbage.

You can also bring your dog to The Dockhouse in Beaufort for dinner on the patio.

The Dock House Restaurant was established in 1978. The Dock House, as the locals call it, has been serving the folks in Beaufort, North Carolina on the beautiful waterfront overlooking Taylor’s Creek for over 30 years. The Dock House is a well-known spot for listening to live music in Carteret County. Check out our music calendar for events on our boardwalk or in our newly renovated upstairs lounge. If you are looking for a cool place to eat you’ve found the spot. Dine inside or out on our patio overlooking the wild ponies on Carrot Island and the Rachel Carlson Reserve across Taylor’s Creek.

There are plenty more places to enjoy with your dog.  See all our Pet-Friendly related posts to plan your adventures.

Pet-friendly Homemade Beach Treats 

I like to give my dog a cool treat when we plan a day at the beach – either freezing a water/broth mixture or some homemade pup cream. Sometimes even though I know she’s hot, she’s too excited to drink. This way, I know she’s getting something cool to beat the heat. The heat here is real, and when its hot outside and the humidity is high, you can never have enough cool drinks and treats for everyone in your party, two or four-legged.

homemade dog treats for the beach

You’ll need: Dixie cups, bone-shaped treats, 32 oz. plain yogurt, 1 cup of peanut butter, and 2 ripe bananas (plus any special add-ins you’d like, such as blueberries, bacon, or shredded cheese)

Directions: Blend yogurt, peanut butter, and bananas in a food processor or mixer. Place dixie cups on a cookie sheet and fill half full with yogurt mixture. Stick a bone in the middle, leave enough hanging out to be a “handle,” and freeze until solid. Just pop the paper off, and you’ve got a pup-sicle!

You can also spoon this into a KONG toy and freeze it to take to the beach as a toy to keep your dog busy and cool. – Authored by Clarissa, Bluewater Marketing Coordinator

Dogs on the Crystal Coast

Bring your dog to the beach for a barking good time. Beach vacations are meant to be enjoyed by everyone in the family when you vacation Crystal Coast-style! Explore our dog-friendly, dog-stay-free vacation rentals and book your next Crystal Coast beach vacation today! 

While you’re here, snap a picture and share it on social media by tagging us with #BluewaterNC. We love seeing happy pups on the beach!