Shooting The Breeze


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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Status Report: Checking in on the Islands’ Big Transportation Projects

Thursday 08 November 2018 at 5:59 pm

Almost exactly two and a half years ago, county and state officials gathered at the base of the Bonner Bridge to ceremoniously dip their shovels in the dirt and mark the launch of the new Bonner Bridge project. And my, how much has changed in just a couple of years’ time.

Since the April 16, 2016 Groundbreaking Ceremony, we’ve already completed one component of the three-pronged project – the new Captain Richard Etheridge Bridge on Pea Island. We’ve also started the Jug Handle Bridge north of Rodanthe, and are just a couple of months away from being able to cruise along the new Bonner Bridge, which is in the final stages of construction.

We’re also close to launching the new passenger ferry from Hatteras Island to Ocracoke, the first of its kind for the North Carolina Ferry System, and have already beta-tested the new Ocracoke village tram service in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence.

So with so many projects going on at once, (and at drastically varied levels of completion), let’s check in on the islands’ big transportation projects to see what has been accomplished so far, and what’s still left to do.

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2018 Election Preview, Part 2

Friday 26 October 2018 at 10:41 pm


In this follow-up to our Election Preview, let’s take a closer look at the Dare County Board of Commissioners races, as well as one of the more controversial aspects of the ballot for 2018, the six proposed amendments to the North Carolina constitution.

There are two contested elections for the seven-member Board of Commissioners (BOC) which includes District 1 and the At-Large seat. Like our last blog entry covering several of the stand-out state races, all of the candidate information below is derived from the candidates’ personal websites, interviews, and / or personal statements made in varying mediums throughout their campaigns.

BOC District 1: Jim Tobin versus Rosemarie Doshier

District 1 comprises of Roanoke Island and the Dare County mainland communities of East Lake, Stumpy Point, and Manns Harbor, although every Dare County resident can cast a vote for the future board member in this region, as well as all districts.

Republican Jim Tobin is the incumbent Commissioner for District 1, having been appointed to the seat in 2017 after Margarette Umphlett resigned. Originally born in California, Tobin is the owner and operator of Pirates Cove Yacht Club and Marina, and is also the Chairman of the Dare County's Oregon Inlet Task Force. He has also served as president of the Manteo Rotary Club and Assistant Governor of the Rotary District 7720, Director of the NC Agriculture Foundation and NC Marine Industrial Park Authority, and has been on the Advisory Council for the Monitor Marine Sanctuary and NC Cooperative Extension Advisory.

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2018 Election Preview, Part 1

Friday 19 October 2018 at 11:15 pm


You hear it every election cycle: “This is going to be one of the most important elections of our lifetime.”

But the reason why this phrase is uttered so often is because - for the present moment in time, at least - it generally happens to be true. How we vote today will obviously determine the shape of our state in the future, and 2018 is an especially powerful and important year, because we’re in one of the most divisive political climates in recent memory. In fact, several candidates we’ve chatted with over the past few months have voiced concerns that voters might not look past the “R” or the “D” on the ballot form, and will simply vote along party lines because of this extreme division.

However, our current group of candidates is certainly worth a closer look past party affiliation alone – a scenario that is common in smaller local elections when the party doesn’t always matter as much as the candidate’s priorities, knowledge of the area, and ambitions.

So below, you’ll find a little info on the current candidates for several of the most competitive races so you can start digging deeper. This election cycle has a long list of interesting races, in fact, so we’ll continue profiling the different candidates in the weeks and days leading up to November 6.

But before we get started, here are the basics when it comes to voting in Dare County this election season.

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