2021 has brought many opportunities and challenges to Holden Beach. COVID seems to continue to be impacting almost everything here.
The Town Hall building continues to be locked and inaccessible to the public due to the virus related guidelines. Communications with the public are via phone, email and US mail. Currently, there is no plan giving relief to this policy.
Speaking of COVID, I endured and suffered with it all of January. After being in the hospital and isolated I returned to work on a limited basis.
Former North Carolina State Senator R.C. Soles recently passed away. Senator Soles was the last member of the group that worked with my father, first Holden Beach Mayor John F. Holden, to organize and work to create the Town of Holden Beach on Valentine's Day of 1969. Senator Soles represented this district and was instrumental in getting the paperwork through the legal process in the state government.
Our Ocean Boulevard has been in terrible condition for the past several years. Resurfacing has been scheduled for the past two years, but when highway funding was not available the work was postponed. This was due to the reduced money derived from the gas tax. Less gas sales has resulted due to less travel.
The North Carolina Department of Transportation has this February patched some of the worst areas on Ocean Boulevard, but it still needs resurfacing. Reminder, this is a state road and not a town road!
As you leave Holden Beach and turn right at the stoplight, you will pass the Food Lion on your left. Approximately one half mile ahead you will come to a stop sign at the intersection of Sabbath Home Road and Old Ferry Connection. Be aware! This is now a "four way stop" intersection.
The ABC Store on NC 130 located about a mile and a half towards Shallotte from the Holden Beach causeway stoplight will soon be moving into a new building currently under construction. This new location is about a half mile closer to the stoplight.
The ABC Store in Shallotte is soon to be demolished. The new Shallotte ABC Store is next door.
The Town of Shallotte is getting a Chick-fil-A, a Cook Out and a modern carwash. All of these are north of Walmart on Main Street. The new shopping center at the intersection of NC 130 and Main Street in Shallotte is open.
The US Army Corps of Engineers dredge, "Merritt", has been working many days recently in the Lockwood Folly Inlet. Time will tell whether the inlet will prove to be safe for the boaters this spring.
Yes, the Holden Beach Fishing Pier and Campground is for sale. This is causing much discussion regarding public parking and access. I am receiving calls and emails about the town buying it. There is currently no serious ongoing activity involving the Town. Recent offers from private investors are getting stronger.
The Town of Holden Beach Parking Committee has been active in studying and making recommendations. The Holden Beach Town Regular Meeting will be February 16th and parking is on the agenda.
Our beach strand is in good condition. Sand fencing is being placed along the ocean side of the frontal dune. This will help capture more sand as we continue to grow the dunes.
The Holden Beach Chapel continues to provide services each Sunday. Spacing and other protective measures are being taken to protect those who attend. Chaplain Dr. Reggie Rushing and his wife, Sandy are doing a wonderful job with the music program. The singers and bell choir always add to the service.
Construction and sales are extremely active. There are less than a dozen homes for sale on the island. Rental reservations indicate a busy summer. Swimming pools are in high demand and are on backorder. Appliances are proving to be hard to find and many are on backorder as well. Building materials cost remains high, but are showing a little bit of fluctuation.
I have lived on Holden Beach all of my seventy-two years. As I recall the years when my brother and I were the only two children living on the island, I can't recall a more dreary first six weeks of a new year. The water table in the area is almost at the surface. Maybe this means a beautiful, sunny spring and summer.
to view a pilot program of the North Carolina Insurance Underwriter Association (NCIUA). You may find this of interest. Our building codes continue to change and our structures are being built more storm resistant.
I am receiving more and more questions about our concerts and festivals for 2021. The staff and I will try to make sure you are informed as soon as possible.