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North Carolina is rich with a fascinating history and Bald Head Island is no exception. You might have heard about the miles of pristine beaches but there’s more to the island than just beautiful scenery. Digging into its history can make you fall even more in love with this charming place. Check out some interesting facts about the island as well as some exciting events coming up soon!
Bald Head Island, which is part of Smith Island, is a unique coastal island located in the mouth of Cape Fear River. It got its name from the dunes on South Beach becoming worn down to resemble a bald head. Before lighthouses, mariners navigated into the river looking for the “bald head”.
On May 25th, enjoy beer and wine on the Old Baldy grounds while having an intimate Curator tour of the Smith Island Museum of History. Each month, we'll explore a new topic of Bald Head Island history and guests can enjoy the 5pm Historic Happy Hour.
North Carolina Treasures Weekend is an annual celebration to savor the best of the state's cuisine, spirits, art, and history highlighting iconic NC artist Bob Timberlake. RSVP before the event which takes place June 3rd at 7pm through June 5th 3pm. Cocktails will be available from Cape Fear Distillery and craft beer from Flying Machine Brewery. Original pieces focusing on Timberlake's coastal works will be displayed and he will be onsite for a meet and greet.
Join us for this beloved Bald Head tradition by decorating your own cart or enjoy the parade as a spectator from one of the picturesque wynds! Jul 04, 10:00 AM
Honor Old Baldy's maritime history during a weekend featuring fun for all ages, including food, spirits, a 5k, 10k race and more! The weekend will feature a roster of activities, including cocktail parties, living history reenactments, a family-friendly festival, and more. It will culminate with a 5k/10k race at dusk that finishes under the light of Old Baldy. RSVP for the race at the ticket above. Details about the other activities coming soon!
Old Baldy is North Carolina’s oldest standing lighthouse. It was first illuminated in 1817! Old Baldy marked the Cape Fear River entrance for maritime sailors. This historic landmark stands 110 feet high. The best view of the island is from the top of the lighthouse but you’ll have to climb the 108 steps to get there. The awesome views are worth it!
Smith Museum is located near the base of the lighthouse and resembles a lighthouse keeper’s cottage. Here you will learn what life was like for the mid-1800s keepers as well as local facts and legends of Bald Head Island. The small museum also holds a gift shop with admission fees and proceeds set aside for maintenance and long-term preservation work of Old Baldy.
When planning your Bald Head Island vacation, be sure to add a tour or climb of Old Baldy to your itinerary. The lighthouse is just a 5-minute walk from the ferry landing if you’re just visiting for the day. Once you see the panoramic views from the top, you won’t be disappointed!
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