Come See What's New in NC
Two favorite TV series and four notable films mark their anniversaries in 2018, giving movie lovers more reasons to check out the locations.
“Brainstorm” (1983): Douglas Trumbull’s film is best known for being Natalie Wood’s last. While it was in production, the actress drowned on a weekend excursion with husband Robert Wagner and co-star Christopher Walken. The science fiction film, which won a Saturn Award for Louise Fletcher, included shots of two landmarks (the Wright Brothers National Memorial and the Ocracoke Lighthouse) as well as scenes filmed at Pinehurst and Research Triangle Park.
“Bull Durham” (1988): Producer Thomas Mount chose his hometown as the setting for the classic baseball romance, which was written and directed by Ron Shelton. Kevin Costner, Susan Sarandon and Tim Robbins starred in the film, which turned the real Durham Bulls into the most famous team in Minor League baseball. Raleigh, Asheville, Burlington, Wilson and Greensboro also saw film action.
“The Fugitive” (1993): Tommy Lee Jones won an Oscar for his portrayal of the marshal tracking down Dr. Richard Kimble (Harrison Ford). Film travelers can see Cheoah Dam, where Kimble takes a giant leap, and wrecked train, which filmmakers left in place on the Great Smoky Mountain Railroad’s Tuckasegee River Excursion from Bryson City to Dillsboro.
“Dawson’s Creek” (1998-2003): North Carolina native Kevin Williamson created this teen drama starring James Van Der Beek, Katie Holmes, Joshua Jackson and Michelle Williams. Production was based in the Wilmington area with additional shoots in Southport, Durham and Chapel Hill.
“One Tree Hill” (2003-2012): Chad Michael Murray, James Lafferty and Hilarie Burton were among the stars of the series, which also was based in Wilmington. Diehard fans won’t wait for the 15th anniversary of the series’ debut: They’ll return to see Chad Michael Murray at EyeCon’s “One Tree Hill” convention in October.
"Nights in Rodanthe"(2008): Richard Gere and Diane Lane take top billing, but the movie's real star might be the Inn at Rodanthe. And in a grand gesture worthy of North Carolina novelist Nicholas Sparks, the house was saved from the sea (plan well and you can rent it for your stay). Follow this ready-made trail from the Outer Banks to Wilmington, then continue to Southport, the setting and main location for "Safe Haven," celebrating its fifth anniversary in 2018.
Beginning in May 2018, the N.C. Ferry System will add a passenger-only route from Hatteras Island to Ocracoke’s Silver Lake Harbor, giving visitors an opportunity to explore the island’s central village without having to worry about traffic or parking. The service will be an alternative to the vehicle-and-passenger ferry from Hatteras to the north end of Ocracoke, 12 miles from the village and its shops, restaurants and historic attractions. Ocracoke, the southernmost stretch of the Cape Hatteras National Seashore, is known for its beach, which has topped Dr. Beach’s annual list, and its role as Blackbeard’s last hangout. www.ncdot.gov/ferry/passengerferry.html
The first large-scale exhibition of fashions from “Titanic,” the 1997 film that took home 11 Oscars, will launch at Biltmore in “Glamour on Board: Fashion from Titanic the Movie,” on view Feb. 9-May 13, 2018. The exhibition will feature 45 costumes displayed inside the 250-room home of George and Edith Vanderbilt, who canceled plans to board the Titanic a week before the voyage. Just days after "Titanic" departs, "Chihuly at Biltmore" arrives. The artist's monumental glass sculptures will be on view in Biltmore House, the Italian Garden, the Walled Garden and elsewhere on the estate from May 17 to Oct. 7. The works can be viewed after dark each Thursday-Sunday with Chihuly Nights at Biltmore. www.biltmore.com
With the March 2018 completion of a LYNX Blue Line extension, Charlotte’s NoDa area joins the list of destination neighborhoods that visitors can reach without a car. The 9 new miles will connect laid-back NoDa and lively South End by way of bustling Uptown with stops near breweries, restaurants, galleries, museums and other points of interest. www.lynxcharlotte.com
After three years of extensive restoration and historical preservation work, the Carl Sandburg Home in Flat Rock will be refurnished in 2018 just in time to mark its 50th anniversary as a National Park. After the famous poet, writer and activist died in 1967, his wife, Lilian, donated their home and its expansive collection of books, letters and personal effects to the National Park Service. The 264-acre park includes a working goat barn and hiking trails. www.nps.gov/carl
The street dance tradition in Hendersonville began as a way for residents to welcome soldiers home from World War I. A hundred years later, people still take to Main Street on Monday nights in July and August for live bluegrass and square dancing. Those who have never do-si-do'd come early to learn basic steps from caller Walt Puckett. More lively action comes from area clogging teams show off their fancy doubles and rockin' chairs. www.visithendersonvillenc.org
Charlotte has been selected to host the 2019 NBA All-Star Weekend, which takes place Feb. 15-17 at Spectrum Arena, home of the Charlotte Hornets. It will mark the second NBA All-Star celebration in Charlotte, which hosted the event in 1991. Playing at the Charlotte Coliseum that year, Hornets Chairman Michael Jordan (then with the Chicago Bulls) was the leading scorer with 26 points. The 2019 All-Star Game will air Feb. 17 on TNT. www.nba.com
Bentonville Battlefield State Historic Site is organizing a 2018 symposium on the Carolinas Campaign, which culminated in the last full-scale action in which a Confederate army was able to mount a tactical offensive. Called "Two Weeks of Fury," the symposium will highlight the advance of Sherman's army from South Carolina to Bentonville. Eric J. Wittenberg, a Civil War cavalry historian and author of "The Battle of Monroe's Crossroads and the Civil War's Final Campaign," will lead a tour of the Monroe's Crossroads battlefield, where access is limited because it's near a Fort Bragg drop zone. Averasboro, Kinston and Bentonville battlefield visits are also included in the symposium, which takes place Sept. 28-30. www.fobb.net
Morehead Planetarium & Science Center, best known as the place where 11 of NASA's 12 moon-walkers were trained in celestial navigation, has announced a $5.2 million expansion of its home on the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill campus. The #TakeUpSpace building project will reimagine the center as a modern-day, technology-advanced science hub with an interactive “maker space,” an updated science demonstration stage, and expanded galleries showcasing the advances researchers are making in science, health and technology. Completion is expected in late 2018 or early 2019. www.moreheadplanetarium.org
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