Wednesday, May 28, 2014

The Real Threat of Overexposure to Ultraviolet Rays

Memorial Day Weekend, sunny days, and warm summertime temps have ushered in beach season at last! Because our office is located at the foot of the Causeway Bridge, we have a ringside seat to the comings and goings of folks headed to the beach. A very interesting phenomenon we have noticed is that, on cloudy days, the number of cars headed towards Lumina Avenue and Waynick Boulevard is usually lower.

Now, it could be that overcast skies mean that rain is imminent. However, we suspect that the vast majority of beachgoers do not feel a trip to the strand is worthwhile unless it holds the promise of a few hours in the sun.

In spite of the volumes of research that exist, large numbers of Americans are still determined to bake and brown with very little protection from ultraviolet rays.

The dangers associated with overexposure to the sun are well documented and, in North Carolina, it poses a real concern. Because skin cancer is a significant danger, we feel this information bears repeating. Here are a few startling facts from the National Cancer Institute:
  • Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer in the United States. Each year, more than 68,000 Americans are diagnosed with melanoma, and another 48,000 are diagnosed with an early form of the disease that involves only the top layer of skin.
  • In North Carolina, Caucasians have the third highest death rate from Melanoma (skin cancer) in the U.S. 
  • The rate of new Melanoma diagnoses in North Carolina is rising faster than all other types of cancer, except for thyroid.
  • Sunburns are a risk factor for developing skin cancer.
Have you or a member of your family had a sunburn in the last few years? Many people sheepishly begin the summer by allowing themselves to burn and foolishly think, "I'll be tan when this goes away." Allowing your skin to burn is never a good idea!

Take these steps to ensure your days on the beach will be sun-safe:
  • Stock up on sunscreen. Keep an ample supply in the beach bag, car, boat and at home.
  • Use sunscreen that is a minimum of 30 SPF; make sure it is water and sweat proof.
  • Apply sunscreen and lip protection 30 minutes before heading to the beach, golf course, tennis court, or anywhere you'll be outside.Yes, that also means before doing yard work!
  • To ensure all areas are covered, apply sunscreen before getting dressed and have someone help you apply it to those hard to reach spots. 
  • Remember to spread plenty on your feet, hands, neck and ears. These are some of the most frequent sites for skin cancer to develop! Not to mention, your neck, chest and hands reveal the first signs of aging. 
  • An adult should use about one ounce of sunscreen (a shot glass full) for each application. 
  • Reapply the sunscreen every 2 hours. If you've been perspiring or swimming then towel off all the moisture before you reapply.
  • Invest in a few articles of clothing to keep overexposure to ultraviolet rays to a minimum.
Long sleeved rash guards are great for protection along with hats and sunglasses. Rash guards are especially effective for small children and active adults. Fortunately our Wrightsville Beach surf shops always keep plenty in stock.

Summer officially begins on June 21st.
Get ready now!

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Seapath Towers Condos and Yacht Club in Wrightsville Beach NC

You've dreamt about it long enough! Why not let this summer be the first of many as a bona fide Wrightsville Beach resident? As luck would have it, we are the designated broker for several of the island's well-established, turnkey condominium communities. Although there are only a few such condo developments on the island, they each have their unique brand of charm. This month, let's consider what life could be like at Seapath Towers Condominiums and Yacht Club.

Built in the early 70s, Seapath's 11-story, bright white exterior is a well-recognized Wrightsville Beach landmark. Just off Causeway Drive, it is minutes from the park, The Loop, the beach strand, and scores of shopping and dining establishments. Seapath Towers overlooks Motts Channel and is halfway between Banks Channel and the ICW.

Designed for serious boaters and sailors, the community's centerpiece is the Seapath Yacht Club, a 190-slip marina. With 600 feet of face dock, the full service facility is a favorite stopover for boaters and long haul cruisers. Please keep in mind that most of the condo properties do not come with a boat slip. However, there are usually a number of them available for sale or rent (both long and short-term.)

Depending on which floor you're on, the views range from amazing to downright stunning. It is possible to see the ocean, the waterway, Figure 8 Island, and Masonboro Island from several of the upper stories. Each condo has its own small balcony. They vary in size depending on the unit's number of bedrooms. However, there is ample space for plants plus a few pieces of dining and outdoor furniture.

Each Seapath Towers unit has its own layout and design. There are both one, two and three-bedroom floor plans to choose from. Many of these properties have been completely renovated and offer those must-haves for today's homebuyers, such as stainless appliances, recessed lighting, and solid surface countertops in the kitchen and bath.

Of course residents love being a quick bike ride or walk from the ocean, but with the community's lovely pool and surround that overlooks Motts Channel, it's the best of both worlds! The pool area also features grilling stations, picnic tables, and covered, secure storage for bikes, surfboards, and SUPs. As an added bonus, there are three recently resurfaced tennis courts just adjacent to the pool area.

One of the best features Seapath offers its residents is security. Access to the condominium tower is only through the main entrance, which is key-entry accessible only. Convenience is another plus, considering that insurance, trash pickup, and exterior maintenance are all taken care of through the HOA. (Yes, that's right - when you live here, you won't need that lawnmower and leaf blower!)

In a continuing effort to make Seapath Towers the best it can be, a new quarter of a million dollar renovation of the lobby area and ground floor meeting space has just been completed. The big reveal is set for May 3rd,2014!

If being at the center of it all, but far from the noise and crowds sounds like what you're after, please consider seeing a few units that are currently on the market. One thing is for sure, they won't be there for long!

Call the agents at Hardee Hunt and Williams to learn more about condos at Seapath Towers in Wrightsville Beach: 910.256.6998.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Weekend Events in Wrightsville Beach NC

Looks like we are in store for a gorgeous weekend which will make it wonderful for a few outdoor activities such as:

Mayfaire's Music on the Town - Free! Friday night concert series, where the Cosmic Groove Lizards will take the stage this evening. Their blend of original rock gets underway at 6 pm on the Mayfaire Lawn, which is just behind Ulta and h.h. gregg. There will be plenty of free parking available. Concertgoers should bring lawn chairs or a blanket. Why not pack a picnic or grab dinner to go from one of the center's 22 eateries? Chick-Fil-A will also be onsite with boxed dinners to go.

Make sure to bring the kids, because Jumpin Party Rentals will be on hand to entertain them with 3 Moon Bounce Castles, plus cotton candy and snow cones for purchase.

Airlie Gardens Summer Concert Series - Always held on the first and third Fridays during the summer, tonight's band is Jack Jack 180. This versatile group plays an amazing range of new pop and rock plus classic oldies as well. Their playlist is nothing short of amazing and includes favorites from artists such as Aretha Franklin, The Kings of Leon, Michael Buble`, James Brown, The Lumineers, Coldplay, Van Halen, and Usher!

Tickets range in price from $2 for the kids(4 to 12) to $9 for adults-admission is free for Airlie Members. A free trolley operates all evening from the Old Cinema 6 at 5335 Oleander Drive across from Jungle Rapids. Please remember to bring lawn chairs or a blanket. Vendors will be on site with light refreshments, beer and wine. You may also bring a picnic if you like!
For more information, just call the Airlie office at 910-798-7700.

22nd Annual Greek Festival - starts today and features some of the most incredible food around, music, dancing, cooking demonstrations, and a Greek market. The fun takes place at the St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church, located at 608 S. College Road and continues through Sunday at 7pm. For the hours of operation, plus schedules for Greek Dancing and cooking demos, please visit their website. Baklava, moussaka, spanakopita…mmmmmmm!

Kayak and SUP Yoga Workshop - Tonight at 7 pm- the Wrightsville Beach Parks and Rec Department will host a Kayak and Standup Paddle (SUP) Yoga Workshop at the Fran Russ Recreation Center, which is located behind Town Hall. Instructors will explore the health benefits of SUP, paddling along with pedaling kayaks, as well as fishing from a kayak or SUP.
Workshop hours: 7-8:30pm. CALL 910-256-7925 TO REGISTER.

Live Music at Fermental - Another free outdoor Friday night concert takes place this evening at 8 pm in the Middle Sound area at the wine and beer shop, Fermental. Enjoy the sultry rich stylings from the cello/guitar duo, Upstarts and Rogues. The business is located at 7250-B Market Street, adjacent to Big Lots and Smithfield's Bar-B-Que. Call 910-821-0362 for details.

Enjoy this beautiful spring weekend!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Staging to Sell or Redecorating? - DIY Coastal Carolina Style

When it comes to home d├ęcor in Wrightsville Beach, coastal style or beach chic is a popular choice. If you're thinking of selling your property or just want to change things up a bit, here are a few tips for how to add a little "Coastal Carolina Style" to your home.

  • Living along the eastern seaboard, we are blessed with an abundance of shops that offer loads of beachy items like cutesy signs, manufactured sea glass, and nautical artwork. Before you purchase another seahorse pillow, new mermaid or driftwood picture frame, consider the tried and true mantra of decorating pros everywhere: “Less is more.” Then ask the question, ”Does it serve a practical purpose or will it be just another thing to dust?”
  • Instead of creating coastal style with an overload of stuff, achieve it with colors and textures.
  • Neutral shades or whitewashed walls look open and clean.
  • Sheer white or pastel colored sheers or filmy drapes will sway in the breeze and allow in more light (and salt air) than heavy curtains or blinds.
  • Eclectic mixes of furniture add interest and make a departure from the usual matched retail showroom suggestions. Wicker and rattan paired with traditional woods and upholstered pieces make for a global feel.
  • Lighten up some occasional pieces with milk or chalk paint. Choose colors that are subtle and cool, like the shades found in the blues and greens of sea glass.
  • Use a few glass accents to bring in color and introduce another texture.
  • Get rid of room size heavy rugs and carpets that trap dust and sand. Consider floor coverings that are smaller, removable, and washable. Also, naked tile and hardwood floors will make rooms appear larger.

Now, it's time to carefully choose a few decorative pieces that convey your individual style. There may be a basket of shells, nautical map or mermaid involved, but hopefully your version of Coastal Carolina Style will be uniquely yours!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Celebrating Mother's Day in Wrightsville Beach

With Sunday, May 11th fast approaching, it is high time you decide how to show mom you care! Thankfully, whether your mom is girly, sporty or a beach bum, Wrightsville Beach has plenty of activities to to celebrate her on this special day.

Mother's Day Brunch in Wrightsville Beach

Of course a long-standing Mother's Day tradition is to keep her out of the kitchen. Although it's a small island, the dining choices along Wrightsville Beach are nothing short of amazing. It is imperative to make inquiries and reservations immediately because tables fill up quickly; especially at any of the restaurants offering a waterway, sound or ocean view. From elegant brunches to delectable seafood, southern specialties, Mexican, Italian or just a "cheeseburger in paradise," it's a safe bet that most of mom's favorites are all right here!

For a complete list of Wrightsville Beach restaurants, use this handy link:
Operation feed mom

Boutiques and Spas

Mother's Day is a great opportunity to pamper the lady of the hour, a.k.a. mom. Boutique, salon and spa gift cards are always a safe choice. How about introducing mom to the joys of stand-up paddle boarding (SUP), surfing, kayaking or saltwater angling?

There are several businesses that cater to such activities and a quick visit to the Wrightsville Beach Chamber of Commerce website will point you in the right direction.

Get Outside!

For nature-loving moms, consider a picnic in the park followed by a visit to nearby Airlie Gardens or a walk on the beach. Sporty moms would probably love your company during a brisk walk around The Loop. Try the park's tennis or basketball court for some fast-paced action.

Honor our Local History

Does your mom love history? Take her to the charming Wrightsville Beach Museum and treat her to something special from the gift shop!

Last Minute Gift Ideas

Sunday will be here before you know it! The following are a few last minute gift ideas sure to make mom happy:
  • Scenic cruise
  • New beach chair, sunscreen and fun magazine (or cover it all with a Redix gift card!)
  • Pink beach cruiser (just in time for summer)
  • If you want to make this the most unforgettable Mother's Day yet, check out some of our active real estate listings… remember, nothing says "I Love You Mom" quite like real estate!
Happy Mother's Day!

Monday, May 5, 2014

How to Choose and Pack the Perfect Beach Bag

Before we know it, beach season will be here! Whether your dream day consists of sunning in a low-slung sand chair, swimming laps in the salt water, surfing, boating, or beachcombing, having what you need in easy reach is essential.

Here is our official guide to choosing and packing the "Perfect Beach Bag."

The Bag…
  • Choose a bag that is neutral enough to go with most everything. Solid colors, neutral beiges and creams are good options.
  • Having outside pockets makes it easy to reach for important stuff like keys, water bottles, sunscreen and change for parking meters.
  • A bag made of a waterproof material such as heavy-duty canvas, sailcloth, or vinyl, really helps keep things dry. A bag outfitted with a big easy to use zipper is vital for avoiding disaster when those summer showers pop up!
  • Some beach bags are made like large, fat book bags. These are nice to keep hands free for carrying your surfboard, beach chair, or sack of sand toys.
What to pack…
  • Sunscreen and lip protection(waterproof & SPF of at least 30)
  • Water bottle that's BPA-free and refillable
  • Sunglasses
  • Hat with a strap or clip in case the wind picks up
  • Healthy snacks-cut up fruit and veggies, nuts, whole grain crackers and pretzels
  • Reading material
  • Zip-loc baggies or plastic snack boxes are nice for storing treasures you may find…such as sea glass, shells, and tiny stones-also a handy way to organize other items and keep them dry and sand-free, such as electronics, sunscreen, and of course food
  • Small bottle of vinegar in case of a jellyfish sting
  • Beach cover-up, dry clothes or sundress-just in case you get enough sun or want to go into a local business or restaurant
  • Beach towel or not? They are often bulky and get covered in sand-may be better left at the cottage or in the car where it can be put to better use-instead, try a small hand towel to keep your hands clean and dry
Other nice to haves: waterproof camera, leave-in conditioner, and a few indulgences like a cooling citrus spray, fruit smoothie or gourmet cookie!

Enjoy the beach season!
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