See our BLOG SITE for more photos and NC hiking trails

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Mast General Store Valle Crucis NC and Boone - A Great Adventure in Nostalgic Memories, Shopping, Candy, Tee-Shirts and 10 Cent Coffee

Mast General Stores - Everyone's favorite destination to journey back in time and enjoy the palette painted flavors of candies and sweets we all remember as kids. Whether it's the large jaw breakers our moms declared would break our teeth or the sentimental candy necklace we gifted to our adolescent sweetheart, it's all here at the Mast General Stores. The barrel candy displays are almost endless in sight and each one takes you on a personal journey of nostalgia, remembering our fondest childhood memories.

Plus, don't forget - all Mast General Stores carry an extensive line of Hiking and Back Packing supplies for the beginner, and seasoned trail lover. Warm and inviting Woolrich pullovers, sweaters, shirts and socks - A Great Hiking Boot selection with on-staff professionals to help you size up your needs as well as guaranteeing a sure fit for your mountain journeys.

Stop by and join them for an old fashion cup of coffee, as they welcome you to the Mast General family; also, sharing with you, some of the most beautiful places to visit near all of their locations.

Mast General Store Home Office
Highway 194
Valle Crucis, NC 28691

Original Mast General Store and Annex
Highway 194
Valle Crucis, NC 28691

Mast General Store Old Boone Mercantile
630 West King Street
Boone, NC 28607

Mast General Store - Waynesville
63 North Main Street
Waynesville, NC 28786

Mast General Store - Hendersonville
527 North Main Street
Hendersonville, NC 28792

Mast General Store - Asheville
15 Biltmore Avenue
Asheville, NC 28801

Mast General Store - Greenville, SC
111 North Main Street
Greenville, SC 29601

Mast General Store - Knoxville, TN
402 South Gay Street
Knoxville, TN 37902

Mast General Store - Online
630 West King Street
Boone, NC 28607
866-FOR MAST (toll-free - 866-367-6278)

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Fort Macon Atlantic Beach North Carolina - Island Grill Great Dining Experience

A getaway weekend with a history lesson. This week we're traveling to Atlantic Beach North Carolina, at the Eastern end of Bogue Banks, to visit Fort Macon - an old military fort where once General Robert E Lee was stationed as a junior officer. Built in 1826-1834 this fort is a pentagon-shaped fortress and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The scene of an significant Civil War Battle while occupied by Confederate troops, the fort was under a Union artillery siege from March 23 - April 26, 1862. Its fall into Union hands gave the Northern forces complete control of the entire North Carolina coast. It was re-garrisoned during the Spanish-American War and again during World War II.

Now Fort Macon is a 398 acre state park, one of the most poplar in the United States. Swimming, fishing, nature programs and trails, guided tours of the fort, a museum with numerous exhibits and audio-visual displays are some of the activities available. The old Fort Macon Life Boat Station, where history was made again as late as 1990 when the U. S. Coast Guard named a woman to its command, is adjacent to the state park.

The fort makes for a great day trip with lots of history to absorb - When leaving make sure you stop by one of the local eateries listed below. Guaranteed to also make history.

• The Big Oak Drive-In pit cooks Eastern NC Bar-B-Q each day and is located only
minutes from the fort going north on Hwy 58 towards Salter Path NC.
• My favorite evening dining spot, The Island Grill - offers an unbelievable 2 for 1
special on Tuesday nights ( Fillet with sundried tomatoes or fresh tuna, caught each day )
You'll see the sign on your left - roughly 1 mile from the fort as you head back towards
Atlantic Beach.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Swansboro NC, Cedar Island, Ocracoke and Areas In Transit To The Cedar Island Ferry

North Carolina is home to some of the most serene and beautiful places on this earth. From The mountains to the Coast. North Carolinians and visitors from many parts of the world can easily find and enjoy many soulfully enlightening adventures within our state's borders. Our state provides an abundance of secret hidden places that will fill your weekend with unbelievable memories and renewal of spirit. From the out-of-the way dining treats, local boutique shopping, to the many places to hike, explore, take photos and just enjoy - its all within reach for a weekend get away or longer. Join us here each week as we feature some of the most unique places in the state, many only locals are aware of - Our goal is to make all of you feel like locals by sharing in the bountiful treasures the state of North Carolina has to offer.

Swansboro North Carolina - Eastern North Carolina's entry point to some of the state's coastal secrets ( downtown boutique shopping in Swansboro, on the Beaufort Waterfront and Morehead City ) Plus, the fine eateries along the way, that will delightfully entertain your taste palette with unique offerings from some of the finest chefs in the country - Many tucked away in secret little places along the Eastern North Carolina Coast. Plus the beautiful and untouched scenic beauty you'll enjoy as you travel down Hwy 70 to reach the Cedar Point Ferry - your destination passage to Ocracoke Island NC . Below are a few of my favorite places for dining, shopping, camping, horse back riding on the sandy beaches or visiting for photos:

One of my favorite LOCAL dining places on the entire Eastern NC coast is the Island Grill, near Atlantic Beach NC - This culinary dining secret will have you returning with each visit to the coast - especially on Tuesday Nights for their 2 for 1 Fillet special with sundried tomatoes. The atmosphere is quaint and frequented mainly by locals. The small and lighty color paletted room brings you within arms reach of your neighbors table, which only inbelishes your visit by allowing you to over hear the talk of locals and more importantly view the many delights others may choose off the menu. The tuna is caught fresh each day. But don't bring your stuffiness - this place is casual attire only and demands your relaxed state of mind - where the conversation, fine wine, and great food all meet in the best dining expereince you'll ever have!

White Sands Horseback Riding{C8E8CEB9-AD7F-456D-89B8-7375F6222AE2}

photos by Dave and Mindy Bolduc during their incredible boating journeys.