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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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Thanks for giving us a great year—now give our advertisers one

Monday 31 October 2011 at 4:34 pm

Our online newspaper – the first and only one covering Hatteras and Ocracoke – made its debut on Sept. 5, 2007.

Each year since then, I have written a column on that date to thank our readers and advertisers for their support and to keep all of you apprised of the rapid growth in readership.

I didn’t write that column on Sept. 5 this year.

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It's Pea Island Bridge and Pea Island Inlet

Wednesday 26 October 2011 at 07:43 am

Our readers – at least a few of them – have weighed in on what to call the inlet and the new temporary bridge on the Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge.

The number of voters was not overwhelming, but they did prefer Pea Island Bridge by a narrow margin.

Forty-five commented on this blog page, another 20 or so commented on Facebook, and another dozen sent me e-mails.

Although the Island Free Press panel had narrowed the name to two choices – Pea Island Bridge or New New Inlet Bridge – some readers continued to make other suggestions.  And the name Split Pea Bridge had a small surge of support.

However, most who commented thought that Pea Island Inlet and Pea Island Bridge really described the inlet, the bridge, the location, and everything else in terms that most people could understand and relate to.

I am personally disappointed.  I really, really like New New Inlet and New New Inlet Bridge. 

It’s historical, it’s catchy, and it’s kind of funny – and my spell checker hates it.

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UPDATE: We've picked two names for the bridge, now you choose

Thursday 20 October 2011 at 5:13 pm

Readers have been voting on a name for our temporary bridge on Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge for a week now. We’ve had comments on the blog and Facebook page and in e-mails – in addition to folks telling me what they think when I am traveling around.

Our Island Free Press panel, mostly folks who have been involved with coverage of Hurricane Irene, have reviewed the names and weighed in, and we have chosen two finalists.

They are:

New, New Inlet Bridge – and New, New Inlet
Pea Island Bridge – and Pea Island Inlet

We’ve had many suggestions.

Some were obvious such as Irene Bridge.

Some were clever and whimsical, such as Erector Set Bridge, Tinker Toy Bridge, Bridgette, Bridgelet, and a favorite of a few on our panel, Split Pea Bridge.

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Let's name the temporary bridge - and other loose ends

Friday 14 October 2011 at 3:29 pm

Island Free Press reporter Anne Bowers headed up the beach yesterday, a trip that she just could not wait to make after Highway 12 reopened.

She reported that the trip was eerie and a little unsettling.  She had spent countless days since Hurricane Irene on Aug. 27 in Rodanthe and at the site of the repair work on Highway 12.

It was a hub of pickup trucks, tractor trailers, equipment, supplies, and, most of all, folks working 24/7 to rebuild the highway at the S-curves and install a temporary bridge over an inlet that was formed on Pea Island. Anne got to know a lot of the workers when she was gathering information, along with her husband, Don, who photographed the work.

Yesterday, it was quiet.  Gone were the trucks, the equipment, the workers. She said it seemed strange.  On her way back, she swung by the ferry docks in Rodanthe, which was a hub of activity when the emergency ferry was running.  It too was deserted and quiet.

The trip took Anne a good part of the day, not that she had that much to buy.  But everywhere she went, she met neighbors and friends from Hatteras who were also shaking off cabin fever.  Everyone, she said, wanted to stop and talk.

Hatteras and Ocracoke islands’ residents and visitors are relieved, elated, and excited about having Highway 12 back.

The Island Free Press has been flooded with e-mails and Facebook comments on the great job that was done by the North Carolina Department of Transportation and its contractors, the NCDOT Ferry Division, and the Cape Hatteras Electric Cooperative for helping us get our lives back to some sort of normal after the storm.

They deserve every one of the accolades.

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