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Our State: Celebrating North Carolina August 2021

Through compelling narrative stories and jaw-dropping photography, Our State magazine celebrates everything that makes our state great! Each month, we reflect the beauty of North Carolina, tell the stories of its amazing people and its remarkable history, and suggest wonderful places to visit. We are unabashedly in love with the Tar Heel State, and every page is designed to be an inspiring tribute to where we live.

United States
Mann Media
$2.64(Incl. tax)
$26.54(Incl. tax)
12 Issues

in this issue

2 min
summer’s last stand

By August, we’d surrendered, succumbed to the steam and swelter of a late Southern summer, and no amount of frozen Zero candy bars doled out at the Memorial Park swimming pool in Asheboro could cool us down. We hotfooted around that concrete deck, bouncing on tiptoes to keep from scorching our heels, before diving into water that had gone lukewarm, until we finally just gave up, headed home, and retreated to the backyard, a place where we could still find respite from the baking heat. There, we could lounge beneath the outstretched limbs of a black walnut tree, like the one I sprawled under at my grandmother’s house, spreading out one of her quilts to shield my bare legs against the prickle of the brittle grass. If you were in…

2 min
fountains of fizz

1 Caleb Bradham invented Pepsi-Cola and began selling it at his pharmacy in 1898. Today, visitors can order a float at the Birthplace of Pepsi, located in which Craven County city? ○ A. Jacksonville○ B. New Bern○ C. Greenville 2 Located just across the street from Davidson College, The Soda Shop’s building originally served as which type of government facility, a frequent stop for students during the early 1900s? ○ A. Post office○ B. Social Security office○ C. Army recruiting office 3 Newton Grove Drug Company, a pharmacy and soda fountain, was established in 1952 and is located in the heart of Newton Grove near which landmark? ○ A. Tunnel○ B. Highway overpass○ C. Traffic circle 4 Mike’s On Main opened as a pharmacy around 1900 and was the first business in town to have a…

2 min

A COLLECTION Fit for a CAPTAIN YOUR SUNNY AND SALTY coastal issue would not have been complete without the Captain Charlie’s Station feature (“Design in the Dunes,” June, page 66). As a Cape Fear native, one of my prized possessions is an autographed copy of Ethel Herring’s wonderful book Cap’n Charlie and Lights of the Lower Cape Fear, published in 1967 before Bald Head was developed. Over the years, I’ve tucked various related mementos into the little volume, including postcards of Old Baldy and Frying Pan Lightship and old newspaper clippings about Capt. Charlie Swan. Lewis MusserROCKY MOUNT THE UNCHARTED COAST I loved reading Elizabeth Hudson’s account of being at the beach before the “vacancy” signs and motels sprouted up (“Seaside Shangri-Las,” June, page 8). I have a very vivid memory of my first…

1 min
golden hour

ANDREWS Each North Carolina sunset is a little different. In small mountain towns like Andrews, summer evenings before nightfall are unforgettable. The grass turns from green to gold, mountain ranges are cast into darkness and light, and the old barns scattered across our rolling western landscape are given a brief spotlight, serving as a reminder of the rich agricultural tradition that exists and prevails in Appalachia. DUKE GARDENS What is now a sprawling 55-acre natural wonderland in the heart of Durham’s Duke University was once a simple iris garden that Sarah P. Duke commissioned in 1934. That original garden has grown into what is now the South Lawn, where visitors can walk through the terraces, taking in a dazzling array of flora on their way to the fish pond just below. FORT FISHER In the…

2 min
to-do list

experience LOCAL TOBACCO HISTORY Harvest & Hornworm Festival DURHAM AUG 28 During this festival at Duke Homestead State Historic Site, visitors will learn all about the industry that fueled North Carolina’s agricultural economy for centuries. Observe costumed demonstrators harvesting tobacco, or grab a pair of gloves and join in on the work. Cheer for your favorite team in the tobacco-tying competition, and watch kids race hornworms. The “Tobacco Queen,” local craft vendors, and live music will also be at this event. (919) 627-6990, dukehomestead.org. make A SNOW CONE Remember tasting a snow cone for the first time? How the cool crystals of cherry- or grape-flavored ice crunched between your teeth? Inspired by the memories of eating snow cones as a boy, Gary Mac Herring founded Mary Mack’s, Inc., in 1996, creating shaved ice syrups in his mom’s…

4 min

In 1989, Wes Stepp hitchhiked to the Outer Banks from Huntington, West Virginia, to be a fry cook. He had vacationed with his family in the area for years, and later spent summers working in various restaurants. He thought he’d cook until a “real job” came along. Turns out, cooking was the real job. “When I was a kid, some of my fondest memories were of my mom and my grandmother cooking,” he says. “There are a lot of emotions tied up in good food. I just loved it.” Since then, Stepp has built a career as a chef in Duck, sharing his passion for food with hungry beachgoers. In 2002, he opened his first restaurant, Red Sky Cafe, where he serves traditional Southern food with a twist, like blackberry scallops.…