• No matter how many times I do it, I still get excited about voting

    I recently married a Canadian. He gets pretty excited about news—local, national and international.

    When he was still living in Canada, it wasn’t uncommon for him to have absorbed some interesting fact of the day from U.S. news before I even realized something was going on.

    American politics, especially, have always interested him. The differences between the American political system and processes and Canada always have him asking questions and making comparisons.

  • Sign of distress or disrespect? Oak Island man flies flag upside down to send a message

    Charlie Perry, owner of American Fish Co. in Oak Island, is fed up with where this country is headed.

    He’s frustrated with government bailouts and what he calls “squandering” of tax dollars. He’s so frustrated, about three weeks ago he began flying his flag upside down—what has traditionally been referred to as the national sign of distress.

  • Downtown Shallotte to make summer a little more entertaining with Summerfest series

    Ready for summer?

    Here in Brunswick County, we’re always ready to hit the beach and play a little mini-golf, but even more options are popping up every year to provide a little additional fun and surprises for locals and visitors.

    The Downtown Shallotte committee is once again putting together its Summerfest series

    of concerts and movies at Rourk Gardens to celebrate the community and get people to spend time right here in town rather than making the trek to Myrtle Beach or Wilmington.

  • Beacon website has been improved, updated

    If you’ve visited www.brunswickbeacon.com recently, you’ll notice there have been some changes.

    Over the last several months, the Beacon staff has been working with a corporate team to redesign our website.

    The good news is you’ll still find all the quality news coverage you’ve come to expect from the Beacon. The better news is, you’ll now find more of it, and new ways to interact with the Beacon and the community.

  • Awareness begins with those brave enough to speak out, regardless of how they sound

    “Migraine attack gives English woman a Chinese accent.”

    Sounds like one of those phony news stories you’d come across while browsing an “entertainment journalism” website, right? Or maybe you’d see it sprawled across the cover of a similar print product while scanning the racks at the check-out lanes at the supermarket right next to another headline that claims Elvis was last spotted going for a jog in a secluded neighborhood in southern New Mexico?

  • Mother of abducted kids strives to keep the faith

    Amy Smith, computer mouse in hand, scanned the Internet, searching the umpteenth time for any snippet, guideline or miracle to help bring her little boys home.

    It’s become a daily ritual for the Ash mother, whose sons—7-year-old Brody and 5-year-old Nathan—are being kept by her husband without her permission in his native Canada, a seemingly amicable North American country where the odds and judgments have been mounting against her.

  • Standing tall for fallen soldiers: Patriot Guard Riders provide escorts, protection

    Those of us who haven’t been in a war zone can’t imagine what it’s like. (I’m talking to you, reporters who describe every disaster scene as looking “like a war zone.”)

    Sorry, but watching “Saving Private Ryan,” “From Here to Eternity” or “The Deerhunter” does not make one an expert on the atrocities of war.

  • What legislator or candidate has what it takes to bring justice for Amy Frink?

    Every few months I receive the same letter in the mail. It always begins the same way: “In complying with North Carolina G.S. 15A-1371(3), the state Post-Release Supervision and Parole Commission is notifying you that it has approved the above-referenced case for parole...”

    The above-referenced case is usually someone who was convicted of murder; sometimes it’s a sexual offense. Sometimes they’re sentenced to 30 years; sometimes they’re sentenced to life in prison.

  • Earth Day excitement returns with nature documentaries

    Does anyone get excited about Earth Day anymore?
    I hate to say it, but I am actually a little thrilled about it for the first time in about 15 or 20 years. (The trying-to-be-a-modern-day-hippie years.)
    Between work, marriage and motherhood, I’ve tried to stay informed, but I haven’t really kept up with the latest Earth Day events. But this year is different.

  • Spring is here and so are the high pollen levels that come with it

     Spring has sprung in Brunswick County. 

    How do I know?

    Colors are bursting in our landscape. Reds, purples, pinks and whites are combining with varying shades of green.

    The brown ravages of winter are gone. 

    Birds are singing. The sky is bright blue. Temperatures are warm and everything—everything—is coated a nice shade of yellow-green. 

    It was a light dusting at first, but soon my once-white vehicle was coated so thoroughly, I thought for a moment I was getting into the wrong car.