Outer Banks Valentine’s Day Getaway

A bouquet of roses on the beach in the Outer Banks for Valentine's Day

‘Tis the season for love! Valentine’s Day this year is all about romance on the Outer Banks. Your favorite seaside destination is perfect for a romantic couples’ getaway. Whatever you plan to do on Valentine’s Day, we know all the things to do to make it extra special.

Rent a beach house

An aerial view of the Outer Banks

To start off your Valentine’s Day, there’s nothing better than a scenic view from your front porch. With one of Joe Lamb Jr.’s beach houses, everyone is welcome, whether it is with a partner or the whole family.  The beautiful Outer Banks of North Carolina are the perfect place to spend Valentine’s Day with your sweetheart. Whether you’re staying for a long weekend or an entire week, you’ll have a great time.

Watch Sunrise on the Beach

A sunrise in the Outer Banks

The sunrise on the Outer Banks is unmatched. Stroll the island’s eastern side to watch a spectacular display of light shine across the Atlantic. Give your date a lifetime memory by sharing this experience! Enjoy the sunrise from the romantic comfort of one of our oceanfront homes while you catch a glimpse of the sunrise.

Watch Sunset at Jockeys Ridge

A sunset view at Jockey's Ridge

Jockeys Ridge is the largest sand dune on the east coast. Allowing for panoramic views of both the sound and the ocean. This time of year, there are fewer crowds on Jockey’s Ridge, which makes it an ideal spot to watch sunsets over the Roanoke Sound. During sunset, the sand dunes are unmatched.

Romantic Dinner

There are a number of different culinary experiences that you can enjoy on the Outer Banks. A wide range of dining options are available on the island, so you can choose the one that suits you best. In preparation for Valentine’s Day, many restaurants offer special dinner menus for their customers. We recommend making reservations (if possible) for your favorite local restaurant in advance.

Take a Stroll in the Gardens

The Elizabethan Gardens are located in Fort Raleigh National Park.  This garden has become one of America’s most beautiful and unique gardens since the first attempts to colonize America by England under Queen Elizabeth I. The Roanoke Sound’s tranquil setting makes this scenic year-round garden a perfect spot for a Valentine’s Day stroll. Find out more about the fascinating beauty of camellias as one of the featured flowers in February.

Star Gazing

Stargazing at night in the Outer Banks

Observe the Milky Way and shooting stars! Among the most popular things to do on the Outer Banks is stargazing. The Outer Banks have dark skies and limited light pollution, and are a romantic place to stargaze with your loved one. Valentine’s Day beneath the stars.

Discovering A Little Free Library On The Outer Banks

Reading a book while sitting on the beach is by far one of the most relaxing things to do on an Outer Banks vacation. Exchanging a book at one of the many Little Free Library’s scattered about OBX is in the top Things To Do when visiting The Outer Banks. 


These cute model houses or Lifesaving Stations have been popping up all over The Outer Banks and allows everyone to enjoy a fresh new book or exchange a finished book for a new read at any time during your stay. Kill Devil Hills offers six library’s while Southern Shores hosts four. With 15 registered Little Free Library’s on OBX you can find one in every town.

Use This Customized Map To Find A Nearby Little Free Library On OBX


One of the benefits of using a Little Free Library is that you never know what books are going to be inside. It can be a wide variety of romance, drama, fiction, non-fiction, and children’s books. Many of those who have started using the free libraries have found themselves reading books they may have never picked up. There typically are plenty of children’s books in the box too. Some Little Free Library’s were created by neighborhood groups or non-profit organizations who promote children’s literacy.  Take the library at Dowdy Park which is sponsored by The Outer Banks Women’s Club. This library was created and is maintained by the Outer Banks Women’s Club to support the club’s goal of promoting literacy and love for reading in their unique beach community.            


While on vacation, spending the day by the water on sunning on the pool deck is what many families want. But when it’s time to take a break from the waves or sit down before lunch time why not have an excellent book to read?  You can even bring a few books down, spread them out and let the kids decide on their own. No matter what you’re reading on your getaway, just sit back and relax.  These libraries can often be found at beach access points along the beach road so be on the lookout when crossing the dunes for your next favorite book.


For families that may be homeschooling when visiting there are library options that may be of special interest. The Nature Protectors community service division offers two libraries. They are a local group of homeschooling families and friends that built and painted two area libraries to promote reading adventures. Be sure to find these colorful houses when in the area. 

With so many reasons why you need to experience a Little Free Library when vacationing on The Outer Banks, these are just a few we wanted to share. If you haven’t booked your next vacation to The OBX now is the time. We can’t wait to see you and your family to hear about your experience with finding and enjoying the Little Free Library’s of The Outer Banks.

Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates is one of the most trusted vacation rental managers in the local area by growing into a market leader in the Vacation Rental and Sales Industry. Joe Lamb Jr. and his family have played a vital and intricate role in the Outer Banks Community for decades. Mrs. Ann Lamb was a founding member of The Outer Banks Women’s Club when it was chartered in 1971.

Over the past 50+ years, Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates have worked diligently to help promote the Outer Banks for the amazing beach and family vacation destination that it is, helping to increase tourism in the area and grow our beautiful community.

Please be sure to sanitize books or your hands after using the public libraries. For additional Covid-19 Policies & Procedures surrounding our vacation rentals please CLICK HERE

Daniel Pullen Named 2018 People’s Choice Artist

A Daniel Pullen image showing surfers at sunrise.
A Daniel Pullen image showing surfers at sunrise.

Pullen’s Creativity Takes Top Award for the Year

Daniel Pullen was just named the Outer Banks 2018 People’s Choice artist and it feels good to know that sometimes the good guys really do win.

Daniel, who’s a Hatteras native, is an extraordinarily talented photographer. In a place that with considerable justification, views its wedding photographers as some of the best anywhere, Daniel, working with his wife, Kate, really stands out.

But for the real genius of his photography, check out Daniel Pullen Photography.

The scope of images he captures is astonishing. Yet beyond that it is the style and artistry of his work that makes him so compelling.

Before he was a wedding photographer, Daniel was fascinated by capturing the essence of surfing and it was in his surfing images that the Outer Banks community first became aware of his talent.

His surf photography alone could not support him, which is why he turned to wedding photography. When he did, though, he refused to compromise on creativity or artistry.

However, even as he as built his reputation as a wedding photographer, his ability to isolate a moment in time to tell the story of a surfer on an ideal break, or at that perfect moment as the sunrises and the waves are crisp and even has grown.

As he has gained confidence in what he wants to do with photography, his creativity has expanded and become profound at times. The photographs he published following a full moon over Cape Hatteras Lighthouse are iconic and may be the best that have been done.

He has not limited himself to just capturing images of moments in time, whether on the water or during a full moon. Pullen’s images of the power of hurricane’s that have wreaked havoc on Hatteras Island perfectly recreate the power and destruction of the storms.

Here’s the topper to the story—Daniel is a heck of a nice guy. A little bit shy, soft-spoken, but certainly confident when the has a camera in his hand.

Surfalorus Weekend on the Outer Banks

It’s Surfalorus weekend on the Outer Banks. The 6th annual showing of all films surf related kicked off tonight at Jennette’s Pier in Nags Head.

Typically when we talk about a film festival we hit the highlights…point to some film that looks outstanding, and make recommendations.


This year, however, we may already have had our highlight from a 16-year-old filmmaker who hails from Manteo.

Logan Marshall’s 20 minute film Limitless was a surprisingly well-made movie with some very nice photography and a good sound track. What really seemed to set it apart, though was how well Logan handled his theme.

Interviewing three surfers at different times in their careers, he had a 20, 39 and 62-year-old talk about what surfing means to them.

The result is a very diverse perspective yet a very consistent theme of love and repect for the sport.

Hopefully Limitless will be shown at other festivals—it’s that good. And it’s worth seeing.

Other Highlights

Limitless is not the only highlight of Surfalorus, though.

Friday night at the the Dare County Arts Council Gallery in downtown Manteo there’s a

Daniel Pullen mixed media tribute to Mickey McCarthey who passed away in December. A remarkably talented surf photographer, Mickey was one of the nicest people anyone had ever met.

Saturday the festival wraps up at the Outer Banks Brewing Station. Weather permitting—and it looks as though the weather will permit it, it’s an outdoor event.

Surfalorus Friday and Saturday Schedules

Friday, September 22 • Dare County Arts Council, Manteo

Doors open at 6:30pm ; Screening starts at 7pm

**Featuring a collaborative trailer for a 2018 documentary film honoring the late Mickey McCarthy, by Nic McClean**

Mixed Media Tribute Exhibit to Mickey McCarthy by Daniel Pullen, where part of the proceeds go to Betsy McCarthy

Book Signing of “Legends of the Sandbar by Chris Bickford

Longboard exhibit curated by Steve Wise

Food and local brew provided!

DJ Ninja will be spinning records!


Masonboro // Jake Hart // 2:29

Brotosynthesis // Russ Roe // 4:27

Maranasati // Chris Hannant // 4:07
Winter in Bloom // Russ Roe // 3:38
Protecting the Atlantic // Chris Hannant // 6:34
If I Can Surf… // Luke Williams // 22:04
Fish People // Keith Malloy // 48:41

Saturday, September 23 • Outer Banks Brewing Station, Kill Devil Hills

Doors open at 6:30pm; Screening starts at 7pm

Nate Sacks and The Life Hacks plays the main stage inside the Brewing Station!

Fire spinning by Panda Daniels!


Sealone // Luca Merli // 6:41
Under an Arctic Sky // Chris Burkhard // 39:00
The Church of the Open Sky // Nathan Oldfield // 54:35

An Outer Banks Night at the Opera

Left to Right: Christopher Morales, Andrew Paulson, Peter Lake. “Fugue for Tin Horns."
Left to Right: Christopher Morales, Andrew Paulson, Peter Lake. “Fugue for Tin Horns.”

The Virginia Opera Company came to the Outer Banks on Wednesday and after an evening of music with their Emerging Artists the verdict is a huge thank you for some great performances and wonderful music.

The evening featured duets and arias from classic Italian opera with a few American show tunes to end the night.

Presented at All Saints Episcopal Church in Southern Shores the setting was perfect—the acoustics in the chapel room were a good match for opera and with a relatively small audience there was a feeling of intimacy.

The performers were younger members of the Virginia Opera—mostly, it would appear, in their 20s. Younger, perhaps, but these were professional singers in every sense of the word.

What made the evening particularly pleasant was how well they acted the story of the songs. Even with little–make that no–understanding Italian, many of the stories behind the music was clear.

One of the best of the evening was the treatment Christine Suits and Olivia Yokers gave to “Sull’aria” an aria from the Marriage of Figaro. In the opera, a countess and her servant are conspiring to expose the infidelities of the count .

For Suits and Yokers the duet suggested two high school or college girls putting their heads together to dupe some boy into an action the boy had not expected. Everything about their presentation suggested professionals using their skills to make music come alive..

“Fugue for Tin Horns” from Guys and Dolls was one of the last songs performed. Three guys, Peter Lake, Christopher Morales and Andrew Paulson, trying to pick a winning horse, studying three papers…and they are clearly not on the same page.

It’s easy to tell that’s the case, because the three of them are singing three different songs simultaneously—yet it all merges and blends together for a great effect.

A wonderful night of music, presented by the Don and Catharine Bryan Art Series.

Clemens Comes to Life in “Whiskey with Twain”

Ryan Clemens as Huckleberry Finn.
Ryan Clemens as Huckleberry Finn.

In a show filled with humor and great acting, Ryan Clemens, the three times grandfather’s brother’s son of Samuel Clemens—Mark Twain, brought the thoughts and stories of the great author to life.

Clemens performed what was a one man show featuring characters drawn from the short works and novels of his famous ancestor.

Clemens and Whiskey with Twain

The evening, titled Whiskey with Twain, did a wonderful job of tracing the authors life through his work, from his earliest recollections of a bucolic life in Hannibal, Mississippi, where he grew up, to Twain the Elder, handing out wisdom with a piercing wit as he sipped whiskey—probably scotch, reported to be his favorite spirit.

As Twain the Elder, Clemens starts off telling the audience, “It’s better to be silent and have everyone think you’re ignorant that to speak and prove them right.”

He describes our nation’s capital as the “…grand asylum for the insane they call Washington.”

As funny and fun as it was to meet Mark Twain as an accomplished man of letters, what may have been the most effective piece of theater was Ryan Clemens’ depiction of Huckleberry Finn wrestling with the moral dilemma of the runaway slave, Jim.

For the vast majority of Americans in 1885 when Huckleberry Finn was published, the idea of an African American who had dreams, aspirations and hopes for the future was incomprehensible. By having Huck Finn, ignorant and uneducated, yet with an extraordinary moral compass, floating down the Mississippi and exploring those very human characteristics of Jim, Twain created one of the great novels of world literature.

Clemens, in a ten minute skit, brings Huck to life and creates a compelling piece of theater.

It was a marvelous evening, typical of the performances that the Don and Catharine Bryan Cultural Series have been bringing to the Outer Banks. The show was performed at the Hilton Garden Inn in Kitty Hawk. Next up, An Evening of Opera & Broadway, November 30.

Our OBX version of the Northern Lights

Photo Taken by Jim Trotaman of J. Aaron Trotman Photography (link to page below)
Photo Taken by Jim Trotman of J. Aaron Trotman Photography




Alaska may have the Northern Lights and the popular book “Life of Pie” may have referenced a neon green, glowing carnivorous island. However, this weekends amazing light show on the OBX puts it in the running for one of Mother Nature’s best performances yet! A shout out to our friend Jim Trotman for capturing some of this weekends fascinating show while out strolling the beach himself.

A stunning parade of neon blue lights dancing across the ocean’s surface, flowing smoothly like an orchestra playing a grand aqua-blue symphony. The waves lighting up each time they rippled across the surface or crashed on the beach. This unique natural occurrence is referred to as bio-luminescence. A change in the oxygen level in the ocean took place this weekend causing a unique algae bloom. This bloom was extremely interesting as the algae were from the marine –dwelling species of dinoflagellate Noctiluca scintillans commonly known as Sea Sparkle. When this specific species of plankton is stressed by too much motion a chemical reaction occurs creating a bright neon light referred to as bio-luminescence. Some believe this is could be a defense mechanism to ward off predators others think it is mother natures way of showing us that magic still exist.


The glowing blue neon waves weren’t the only thing that made this weekend a fascinating spectacle.

The start of the New Moon occurred on Saturday .  Like a scene from Avatar, the moon rose over the sparkling neon water and enchanted the beach goers with its orange and reddish hue cascading light through-out the night sky. I have truly never witnessed anything more mesmerizing. It isn’t every day you have the chance to be transported to another world. A place where the sky’s glow red, the water glitters a neon blue and the moon takes over half the night sky.

The Outer Banks of NC has many spectacular things to offer but in my opinion one of its best qualities is something that can only be provided by Miss Mother Nature herself. If you missed it, don’t worry. The Sea Sparkles will one day return. You too will be able to witness the enchantment that mother nature has to offer.  Be sure to book your Outer Banks vacation early as Oceanfront properties are the first to book!


Surf Weekend on OBX

Outdoor viewing of Psychic Migrations at the Brewing Station, Friday, September 16.
Outdoor viewing of Psychic Migrations at the Brewing Station, Friday, September 16.

It is wonderful to sit outside and watch a surfing movie, and that is what we got to do tonight as the Dare County Arts Council’s Surfalorus Film Festival opened tonight at the Outer Banks Brewing Station in Kill Devil Hills.

It was a bit windy, but the screen was anchored and things went really well.

Really good movies. Photography as always the case in surf movies was excellent, but some of the shorts, especially, raised some fascinating questions about  how we view ourselves and what we consider important. The Malloy Brothers in particular stood out in that regard.

This is pretty much a surf themed weekend on the Outer Banks. Surfalorus runs through Saturday and Sunday sees the ESAs—the Eastern Surf Association championships kick off at Jennette’s Pier in Nags Head.

The ESA is the largest amateur surfing organization in the world, and their championships, that last the entire week, feature competition from 10 to 75 or 80.

Last year there were some pretty rough conditions, but the early signs point to much better surf this year.

The competition includes, surfers, SUP, skim board and body boarding so there is something for everyone.

AJ Croce Wows the Outer Banks

AJ Croce talking to the audience at his Saturday night performance.
AJ Croce talking to the audience at his Saturday night performance.

The Outer Bank Forum brought AJ Croce to the Outer Banks Saturday night, and his performance left no doubt the Croce legacy is alive and well in the late Jim Croce’s son.

An amazing musician, Croce played a concert he told the audience he doesn’t perform very often—his “Two Generations of American Music”, which include songs from his father’s repertoire.

Croce, whose voice sounds remarkably similar to his father, moved seamlessly between his own compositions and his father’s songs. And, although he performed the music of his father flawlessly, he really hit his stride playing his own music.

A gifted pianist and guitar player, it is on piano in particular that he shines.
One performance specifically put his skills on full display.

Come and Go begins as almost random notes on the piano, but it builds into a composition of extraordinary complexity in Croce’s hands. There are touches of classical music, honky-tonk, jazz and blues all woven together into a seven minute improv.

The band playing with him was excellent, but lead guitar Michael Bizar really stood out. Bizar has been playing with Croce for a number of years and seems to have a real understanding of what he is doing with his music.

Although Croce’s own music was the highlight of the evening, the encore he presented has to be mentioned.

Saying, “I’m going to share a very special recording with you, a recording that was made at our kitchen table,” he played a recording of Time in a Bottle, allowing it to play for a minute. Then he and Bizar began accompanying the music, Croce’s voice blending perfectly with his father’s.

It was a powerful tribute to a great musician.


Annual New World Festival of the Arts

Lisa Kovac with her pottery on display at New World Festival of the Arts.
Lisa Kovatch with her pottery on display at New World Festival of the Arts.

It was a kind of hot, the sun, especially on Wednesday was intense, but the 36th Annual New World Festival of the Arts on the waterfront in Manteo was as good as it has ever been.

With 78 artists on hand working in a wide variety of medians, this is an annual event worth checking out.

From the beginning, when Edward Greene of the Christmas Store came up with the idea, the Festival has been a celebration of art of all kinds with crafters coming from all over the East Coast.

Five years ago Edward asked the Dare County Arts Council to take over the event and they have done and great job of continuing the tradition.

There’s seems to be something for every taste at the Festival. There is some absolutely remarkable pottery—the Celtic Pottery in particular was stunning—local artist Lisa LeMair was on hand with her very differently styled jewelry and James Melvin, who is in some ways the dean of Outer Banks artists was also on hand.

There are always some first time exhibitors who warranted a second look. Bob Bohannon with his Seashore Carvings had some interesting pieces; also the sea glass work that local jeweler Pembroke Bryant created with did a great job of highlighting the beauty of the glass.