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12 Apr 2009
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Sunset view over water and small lighthouse

It was raining today when I woke up, so my beach plans were ruined! At first, we thought it would be a good idea to head to the aquarium in Manteo; it's not so big, but still a good indoor activity on a rainy day. And we love fish! Apparently, everyone else thinks so too! It was really crowded, so we decided to explore Roanoke Island a little...

First stop, Fort Raleigh. This is the site of the first settlement attempt in America. Since it was raining, we didn't properly explore the gardens and all of the outdoor features (which was fine, because the Elizabethan Gardens are the only part we had seen before), but we did walk around a little. We spent a considerable amount of time inside taking pictures at the museum. We love to take pictures! They have beautiful exhibits of clothing, furniture and boats from the 16th Century. I think my favorite part of the exhibit was the display of Tools Through the Ages. I never really thought about how oyster shells evolved into power tools...

Next we decided to head over to Roanoke Island Festival Park and see what they have indoors that I have missed on previous visits by staying outdoors. Answer: not a whole lot, but we always enjoy looking at art! The Art Gallery had 3 photographers on display this month. Some of the photos were amazing, but we were still looking for just a little bit more. (note: I have since been back for other exhibits and they do bring very interesting people in, it's definitely worth stopping by if you have a little time!)

The Roanoke Island Festival Park Visitor's Center also has a little past versus present exhibit of the OBX that was really informative. There are a lot of cute shops and interesting sites in Manteo, unfortunately because of the rain, it was hard to enjoy all of them. We did stop in to the Maritime Museum by the waterfront. To call it a "museum" is a little misleading as it is basically just the one room with a few boats in it. You can watch a boat being made and they hold interesting programs, but our impromptu stop did not require more than a few minutes to see everything that day.

On the way home, we stopped at this antique mall and had fun looking at things and taking more pictures. We found a little shop called Something Old, Something New that has a random mix of modern and vintage, new and thrift store finds. And they had a whole room of funky shoes, hats, is a really fun place I'm glad to have found! We ended the day with dinner at La Fogatos -- always an excellent dining choice and then headed home. All in all, not a very eventful day, but so much fun...there's really a lot of free, informative things to do here!

Submitted by Stephanie G.



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