News

Age of Aquarius: A Murder Mystery Dinner

August 29, 2014

Over the last five years the Museum’s annual murder mystery dinner has focused on different museum exhibits and messages.  Since the creation of the NC Maritime Museum in 1975 one of the Museum’s messages has been about environmental stewardship. 

This year’s murder mystery dinner will be taking place in 1964 as locals gather to plan a protest against companies that have been polluting Beaufort’s beloved Taylor’s Creek.  Town officials and locals have begun to discuss the idea of making Beaufort a tourist destination and in order to do that the town needs to pull together to clean up Taylor’s Creek.

Fortunately the CEO of the local business that is chief amongst the polluters, MPW Inc., has agreed to meet with the protestors at the Museum and discuss plans for reducing his company’s pollution.  Along with the CEO we are expecting his wife (a former Hollywood Actress), the chief financial officer of MPW Inc. and one of his children may even be taking a break from all of their recent scandals and making an appearance at the dinner. 

We are hopeful that these talks will go smoothly, despite all the “accidents” that tend to happen at the Museum this time of year.  Visitors are strongly encouraged to dress in their best tie dye and “hippie” ware.  Tickets for the Murder Mystery Dinner will go on sale August 1st for $35 each. 

Space is limited and the dinners have traditionally sold out at least a week prior to the dinner.  

NC Science Festival

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March 28-April 13, 2014
The North Carolina Science Festival is a multi-day celebration showcasing science and technology. The Festival highlights the educational, cultural and financial impact of science in our state. Through hands-on activities, science talks, lab tours, nature experiences, exhibits and performances, the Festival engages a wide range of public audiences while inspiring future generations. 
As part of the North Carolina Science Festival the North Carolina Maritime Museum in Beaufort will be hosting four programs including Ports and Pilots on March 31, The Astounding Oyster on April 3, Beaufort's Dolphins on April 10 and a field trip to explore the Rachel Carson Reserve on April 11.  Please see the Museum calendar for details on these and other Museum programs.
To learn more about the NC Science Festival and the many programs scheduled for this multi-day celebration visit www.ncsciencefestival.org . 

Wooden Boat Show

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The 40th annual Wooden Boat Show will take place on Saturday, May 3, in downtown Beaufort.  Enjoy activities and exhibits on display at the Museum and the Museum’s Watercraft Center.  Admission is free and open to the public.

A variety of small wooden boats will be on display on Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.  Enjoy traditional skills demonstrations and displays, educational activities, historic vessels, boat models, sailboat races at 11 a.m. and 3 p.m., and sailboat rides from 1-3 p.m.

Free boat rides will also be offered at the Watercraft Center docks (a $5 per person donation is suggested, which will go to the sailing program.)


The Wooden Boat Show weekend opening event on Friday, May 2, includes a reception and live music from 5:30 – 7 p.m.

Those who would like to receive an application to exhibit their boat should contact the Museum at (252) 728-7317 or email  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .  Contact the Museum for more information, a boat registration form, and tickets to the Friday opening reception or Saturday awards reception.

Boat registration form is available for download here: 

Wooden Boat Show Registration Form

Brown Bag Gams Return in 2014

brown_bagBrown Bag Gams return to the Museum this Fall!

What the heck is a gam? A gam is defined as a friendly conversation between whalers or to visit with another ship while at sea.

We've designed our Brown Bag Gams to be friendly, informal conversations about North Carolina's rich coastal environment and culture.

So pack a lunch and head to the Museum for an hour for an educational conversation about the place we live!

Brown Bag Gam Schedule (all start at noon)

Nov. 6 - Boat Builders of Down East Carteret County
Nov. 13 - The Seafood Business in Core Sound
Nov. 20 - Maritime Myths and Legends


Dec. 4 - Duck Hunting and Decoy Carving of Down East
Dec. 11 - Sharpies and Spritsails of Carteret County
Dec. 18 - Ship Life and Wildlife

The Gams will continue in 2014:

Five different speakers from the museum’s staff will lead the participants on a number of discussions relating to local maritime history.  The Museum has so many educational resources and the staff is no exception.  They have developed some great programs this year.

The popular luncheon series is set to kick-off on January 9 with an informal discussion about the U.S. Lifesaving Service in North Carolina.

January 9 - U.S. Lifesaving Service in North Carolina
This talk will be led by Associate Museum Curator Benjamin Wunderly.  The small crews of this service, the predecessor to the United States Coast Guard, rescued hundreds of sailors in a time when most people traveled by water.

January 23 - Oil Pressure, Cetaceans and Our Search for Oil
Museum Natural Science Curator Keith Rittmaster will present an informal discussion on whales.  “From hunting whales to seismic exploration, our search for oil in marine environments continues to involve whales in some way or another,” said. Rittmaster. 

February 5 - Whaling in North Carolina
Associate Museum Curator Benjamin Wunderly will talk about the history of whaling activities that took place in North Carolina.  According to Wunderly, “It wasn’t a full time occupation, but when a whale was caught it could bring in some extra income for local fishermen.”  

February 12 - Crystal Coast Love Stories
School & Group Coordinator Christine Brin for an informal discussion about maritime love stories.  “Duels, deathbed confessions and love triangles are all part of Crystal Coast love stories that will be recounted in honor of Valentine’s Day,” said Brin.  She cautions attendees that the museum staff will be handing out “kisses” to everyone who attends.

February 14 - Heart of the Sea, the Story of a Whale's Heart
Museum Natural Science Curator Keith Rittmaster will talk about “Echo” (the Museum’s 33.5-foot long sperm whale skeleton) and his heart. When this adolescent male whale came ashore at Cape Lookout in 2004, his bones and heart were preserved for study and display.  During the process, his heart was sent to the University of Tennessee for plastination.  Participants will have the opportunity to touch and photograph the heart.

February 19 - Piracy on Our Times
Paul E. Fontenoy, Curator of Maritime Research & Technology, will discuss modern day piracy.   This talk examines the growth of modern piracy, its causes and consequences, the efforts of governments and merchant shipping owners to defeat it, and trends for the future. “Piracy has never been eradicated, but there has been a major resurgence over the past 20 years, especially in the Straits of Malacca, the Red Sea and Indian Ocean, and the Bight of Benin in West Africa,” he states.  

February 26 - The Crissie Wright
Maritime archaeologist and historian David Moore will lead an informal discussion on The Crissie Wright.  “With the exception of Blackbeard’s Queen Anne’s Revenge, Crissie Wright is probably the most well-known shipwreck in Carteret County, primarily due to the exceptional circumstances surrounding its loss in 1886,” according to Moore.  This loss prompted many locals to use the phrase during extremely cold weather… “as cold as the night Crissie Wright came ashore.”  This wreck hastened the decision of the Government to build “Life Saving Stations” along the North Carolina Coast. 

The Brown Bag Gams are free and open to the public.  The programs start at 12 Noon.  Advance registration is preferred by calling 252.728.7317. The North Carolina Maritime Museum is located at 315 Front Street, Beaufort. For more information, visit www.ncmaritimemuseums.com


The Basics of Kayak Fishing

ALLwheelIf you've ever wanted to learn the basics of kayak fishing, this is the outing for you!

Ben Wunderly will be your guide as he shows you the basics of saltwater trout fishing from a kayak. Participants should be experienced kayakers at an intermediate or advanced level.

This program is offered October 10 from 11am-3pm and November 8 from 9am-1pm.

Kayaks will be provided but you will need to make sure you have a fishing license and bring a light tackle rod. This program is for ages 12 and up (under 18 must be accompanied by an adult). Reservations are $55 and can be made by calling (252) 728-7317.

What's Happening

APR
19

04.19.2014 10 - 14
Crystal Coast Earth Day Celebration!

APR
21

04.21.2014 13 - 16
Kayaking for Kids (Children’s Program)

APR
23

04.23.2014 09 - 13
Shackleford Banks: Horses, Hiking and History

APR
25

04.25.2014 10 - 11
Merry Time for Tots: Boats & Boaters

See the calendar for a complete program list.

volunteer

Volunteers are needed for the great times at the Maritime Museums. Share your love of history, culture and North Carolina's well-loved coast.  Each Museum offers a wide variety of volunteer opportunities, from working with children to helping with events.

Beaufort              

Southport               

 Hatteras