?We left our precious Montauk hamlet for a long week to visit our kids in North Carolina over Memorial Weekend and to film a couple of my American Dreams TV Shows down south on location. I had never done that before; we always film at my beloved Gurney’s with my own crew who I know so well and who know me. It’s a relationship, you know. I called Ernie and Greg the guys who run Hamptons TV WVVH (cable channel 78) and asked them for permission to hire a crew from the Outer Banks. Wait, I am getting there. After we missed the boat buying a house in Montauk, when normal people could still afford to do so, we had found a little Victorian fixer upper in a quaint village on the Inner Banks called Swan Quarter for believe it $40,000 yes that is correct! It’s a beautiful little town, somehow reminding me on Montauk twenty years ago. But I didn’t know that when I bought that run down, dilapidated building over the phone, (almost) against holy husbands blessings and site unseen. You are getting it, arn’t you? That Swan Quarter has been discovered is no longer a rumor. The charming historic waterfront village sees people wandering around and checking out the real estate situation, especially on weekends, just like Montauk. Swan Quarter, right on the bay, is one of the most beautiful, charming, historic, and unpretentious little towns on the Inner Banks; actually a fishing village; just like Montauk. People are friendly and they seem to have more time, sit on their front porches in the evenings and talk to neighbors and people walking by. The NC Swan Quarter – Ocracoke Island ferry commutes to that Outer Banks island year-round and one can take the ferry for a dollar and spend the day. The Hyde County Courthouse in Swan Quarter is being rebuilt, as the historic courthouse was badly damaged as a result of Hurricane Isabel a few years ago, a dike that protects the village from possible storms and floods is under construction and there is another project on the way at Swan Quarter Landing; five condominium buildings with nine units each, a pool, and a boat landing for each unit. That is a first for the area and a first project for Don Faulkner. We stayed at the lovely Tunnel Farm House B & B in Swan Quarter for a few nights and not just only for the filming of my TV shows. We rode our bikes all over town, attended the annual fish fry at the fire house on Memorial Weekend Saturday and one on Memorial Day at the Tunnel Farm with Sandra and Dick Tunnel and their neighbors and friends. We met the lovely Miss Nonie Bright whose lives still in the house she was born in, Donna Spencer who has a home and yard that could be on HGTV (her husband, Pat, runs the gas station), Sam and Tonie Marshall, Terrill Gibbs, J.T. Stotesberry, Jim O’Neal and their staff. I love fried fish, hush puppies and corn! The next weekend we took the ferry to Ocracoke Island for three dollars per person with a bike to attend the art and storyteller festival. You clean up very nicely is what Pat Spencer, at the gas station, said when he met me again all dressed up for the TV interview with Don Faulkner. A couple of days earlier I had helped to rip out floors from our fixer-upper and we were all dirty from the work when I met him. Don Faulkner is the managing partner in the Swan Quarter Landing development and he and his wife had the idea of making their dream come true and at the same time helping the village of Swan Quarter and that is true. Isabel had created some economic setbacks and hardship. Steve Bryan, a local mover and shaker and former president of the Hyde County Chamber of Commerce said that he is very pleased that Faulkner has chosen Swan Quarter Landing and so are many other people in town we talked to. Faulkner and his partners are working with Cole Jenest & Stone, a comprehensive land planning, landscape architecture, civil engineering and urban design firm based in Charlotte, NC. When I found the http://www.SwanQuarterLanding.com www.SwanQuarterLanding.com website through Google.com I contacted Faulkner and asked him about the details of the project and when Faulkner said that he would be practically blocking the views of our house with his project; I had answered well if this project is for the best of the town and it looks like that it is than that is just fine by me. (Where the heck did that come from?) Make a long story short, I got inspired by Dave Wood, Faulkner’s Advertising firm (Boomer Advertising Inc, based in New Bern, NC) to interview Don and do a second show in Columbia, NC where our son lives. There I wanted to interview Kim Wheeler the director or the Red Wolf Coalition about her efforts and helping the almost extinct species of wolves. But back to the handsome countryman-developer: Faulkner, married and father of four and who recently also became grandfather of twins, is a passionate fisher and hunter and came to Swan Quarter for years to do just that on weekends. He always stayed at the SQ landing motel, which was pretty much destroyed after that flood a few years ago. Developers had approached the former owners of Swan Quarter landing before but the former owners felt inclined to work with any of them; until Faulkner came around with his first project. Really! The old Swan Quarter Post Office, across the street from the Quarter Grill, is now a pretty little information office and it is nicely furnished and ready to open its doors as soon as possible. Hamptons TV hired Ken Mann’s Coastal Production Company from the Outer Banks and they turned the Swan Quarter Landing office within a half hour or so into a TV studio with lights and cameras and a pretty set. I even had brought my show decoration sign AMERICA from my studio at Gurney’s Inn it almost looks like when you are filming at home holy husband said. It was an easy flowing but intimate interview, explaining the life of a man who grew up as farmer and jack of all trades (his own words) who had to make a living for a large family. He worked for years in the construction and development departments of Burger King and is now in the process of putting his talents and his heart into Swan Quarter. At Pat’s no name gas station, the only one in town, is a large sign that tells all who are passing by what the news are in town that day, if there are any. Welcome American Dream TV was written with red paint on the simple white sign, and I just loved it. Later that day after the show at the Red Wolf office with Kim we were invited to a real southern meal at the historic private home of Isabelle Holmes. She is the broker for Swan Quarter Landing, isn’t that funny that her last name is homes? Miss Isabel and her adult daughter, Sarah, had cooked an amazing gourmet dinner for the Faulkner’s and the former owners of Swan Quarter Landing, the Jarvis’s, where there too who has come to watch the filming of the show. The ladies had set the table with beautiful china and polished silver and starched ironed lace and flowers and food so delicious that one could hardly behave. We loved it. These North Carolina American Dream shows will be aired sometime on Hamptons TV WVVH Channel 78 this summer.
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