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The 2020 Outer Banks Wedding Expo – March 7 & 8

The 2020 Outer Banks Wedding Expo – March 7 & 8

What is the Outer Banks Wedding Weekend & Expo?

alt="A bridge and groom kiss under an alter on the beach as ocean waves roll onto the shoreline behind them."
Photo: Outer Banks Wedding Expo Facebook

Hosted each year by the Outer Banks Wedding Association, the Outer Banks Wedding Weekend & Expo is a two-day event aimed toward couples who are planning to hold their wedding ceremony and reception on the pristine beaches of North Carolina’s picture-perfect barrier islands. Attendees will have one-on-one access to more than 120 local vendors who can help them plan and pull off every single aspect of their dream wedding, from the type of flowers bound in the bride’s bouquet to the flavors found in the slices of cake served at the reception. Those who venture to the beach to attend the annual Outer Banks Wedding Weekend & Expo will also be treated to tours of some of the most popular wedding venues on the OBX—and they will also receive a variety of generous discounts that can be redeemed at restaurants, hotels and attractions up and down the North Carolina coastline! 

Types of Vendors Exhibiting at the Outer Banks Wedding Weekend & Expo

alt="Outer Banks restaurant staff members from Red Sky Cafe stand at their exhibitor booth at the Outer Banks Wedding Expo."
Photo: North Beach Sun

When you attend the 2020 Outer Banks Wedding Weekend & Expo, you can expect to find a wide array of on-site booths staffed by exhibitors whose local businesses are designed to assist you with virtually every element of your Outer Banks wedding. Sample a variety of potential menu items that you can serve to your guests from dozens of top-notch restaurants and catering companies who will be exhibiting at this year’s event. Discuss photography and videography package options with local Outer Banks photographers who have decades of experience capturing every memorable moment of couples saying “I do” along North Carolina’s barrier island beaches.

alt="A photographer showcases samples of his work at a booth at the Outer Banks Wedding Expo."
Photo: ColemanShots.com

Looking for a seasoned professional who can make both you and your bridal party look absolutely stunning on your special day? The Outer Banks Wedding Weekend & Expo will feature an assortment of hairstylists and makeup artists who can help you decide on the perfect look for your once-in-a-lifetime walk down the aisle as well as the post-ceremony reception activities! And if you need assistance finding a place to stay during the week of your wedding—or for your honeymoon—you’ll find no shortage of exhibitors representing Outer Banks vacation rental companies from Corolla to Kitty Hawk to Hatteras Island that are here to help you select the perfect condo, cottage or extravagant estate for the big day!    

Where to Stay During the Outer Banks Wedding Weekend

Photo: Pinterest

When it comes to places to stay along the barrier islands during the 2020 Outer Banks Wedding Weekend & Expo—or for your upcoming Outer Banks wedding ceremony and reception—you will find an assortment of options to choose from. Whether you’re searching for an affordable, cozy condo for a couple or you’re in need of a beach house big enough to fit your entire family, the Outer Banks vacation rental companies listed below are sure to have the perfect accommodations to suit your specific needs and your budget.

Outer Banks Wedding Weekend & Expo Hours & Locations

The Outer Banks Wedding Expo will be held on Saturday, March 7, 2020, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at First Flight High School, 100 Veterans Drive, Kill Devil Hills, NC, 27948.

The Outer Banks Wedding Tour portion of the Outer Banks Wedding Weekend & Expo will be held on Sunday, March 8, 2020, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at various venues and locations along the beach. 

For more information about the 2020 Outer Banks Wedding Weekend & Expo—including a complete list of local businesses and professionals who will be exhibiting at the expo as well as venues that will be participating in the tour—click here.

To learn more about some of the most popular spots along the beach where you can hold your Outer Banks wedding—from a century-old estate and a family-owned vineyard to a historic fishing pier and a world-class marina—check out our latest blog, “The Best Outer Banks Wedding Venues.”

The Best Outer Banks Wedding Venues

Jennette’s Pier in Nags Head

alt="Jennette's Pier in Nags Head serves as the aisle for an Outer Banks wedding with a white arch standing in front of the Atlantic Ocean."
Photo: ColemanShots.com

If you’re searching for a picture-perfect oceanfront location to serve as the backdrop for your Outer Banks wedding and reception, look no further than Jennette’s Pier. Located at milepost 16.5 in Nags Head, Jennette’s Pier is an Outer Banks landmark whose history dates back nearly a century. The original fishing pier—which was made of wood and stretched just 754 feet into the Atlantic Ocean—was constructed in 1939. In the decades that followed, Jennette’s Pier suffered considerable damage due to the rough surf and high winds that accompanied a series of hurricanes and nor’easters that struck the Outer Banks over the years. In 2003, Hurricane Isabel destroyed a large portion of the pier when more than 500 feet of the structure succumbed to the storm surge, and the pier was deemed unsafe and forced to shut down its operations.  

alt="Outer Banks wedding tables with white linens sit in a window filled room with ocean views at Jennette's Pier in Nags Head."
Photo: Neil GT Photography

In 2009, construction on an entirely new pier began, and in May 2011 the North Carolina Aquarium Society held a groundbreaking ceremony and officially opened the brand-new attraction to the public. Today, Jennette’s Pier stands atop sturdy concrete pilings and stretches 1,000 feet out into the sea, making it one of the longest piers on the entire East Coast of the United States. The top floor of the completely renovated pier house features panoramic ocean views, a cathedral ceiling, and plenty of space to accommodate up to 175 guests for your Outer Banks wedding, reception or rehearsal dinner. You’ll also find a covered outside deck where you and your guests can enjoy a salty sea breeze and the sounds of the surf rolling onto the shoreline should you choose Jennette’s Pier as the venue for your one-of-a-kind Outer Banks wedding.  

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

7223 S. Virginia Dare Trail, Nags Head, NC 27959

252.255.1501 Ext. 204

www.NCAquariums.com/Jennettes-Pier-Weddings

The Whalehead Club in Corolla

alt="The historic Whalehead Club in Corolla and the Currituck Lighthouse are reflected into the water during an Outer Banks wedding."
Photo: Julie Dreelin

Another Outer Banks wedding venue with a unique history on the barrier islands of North Carolina is the Whalehead Club , a 21,000-square-foot mansion in Corolla that overlooks the Currituck Sound on the western edge of the island. Boasting a bright-yellow exterior, five brick chimneys, 18 dormers and a copper roof comprising 10,000 individual tiles, the historic Whalehead Club is one of the most recognizable buildings on the entire Outer Banks, making it the perfect setting to host your wedding ceremony and reception. The estate was constructed by Edward Collings Knight Jr. in 1925 to serve as a hunting lodge for his own family as well as the many wealthy businessmen from Washington, New York, Baltimore and Philadelphia who frequently ventured to Currituck County to hunt the various types of waterfowl that were once found in abundance throughout the region. 

alt="The historic Whalehead Club is pictured in front of the Currituck Lighthouse and the Atlantic Ocean in Corolla, North Carolina."
Photo: Michael Colligon Photography

In the years that followed the Great Depression, however, the waterfowl population on the Outer Banks began to decline significantly, as did the demand for such an extravagant hunting lodge. The estate’s ownership changed numerous times before the structure finally fell into a state of disrepair in the early 1990s. In 1992, the Currituck County Board of Commissioners undertook a $1 million project that restored the abandoned and dilapidated mansion to its former glory. Today, the Whalehead Club is a famous Outer Banks landmark that attracts thousands of visitors each year—many of whom have said “I do” on the enormous front lawn of this spectacular waterfront property during their Outer Banks wedding.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

1100 Club Road, Corolla, NC 27927

252.453.9040

www.WhaleheadWedding.com

Sanctuary Vineyards in Jarvisburg

alt="The sun rises over a row of grape vines at Sanctuary Vineyards on the Outer Banks of North Carolina."
Photo: Fearrington Village

If saying your vows while being surrounded by winding rows of grape-filled vines in a spot whose rich history dates back more than seven generations sounds like your style, head to Sanctuary Vineyards in Currituck County for your upcoming celebration. Situated on the mainland of eastern North Carolina just a short drive from the barrier island beaches, Sanctuary Vineyards is one of the most popular locations for couples who plan to host an Outer Banks wedding. The vineyard’s story begins hundreds of years ago, when a man named Jacob Wright found himself shipwrecked on the shores of nearby Duck, North Carolina. Rather than attempting to set sail along the Graveyard of the Atlantic once again, Wright made the decision to settle permanently on the Outer Banks and soon established a small farm on the edge of the Currituck Sound in Jarvisburg.

alt="Wine barrels serve as the backdrop to Outer Banks wedding tables at Sanctuary Vineyards in Currituck County, North Carolina."
Photo: Wedding Spot

In the decades that followed, members of the Wright family discovered that the sandy soils of the coastal plains provided the perfect conditions for growing Muscadine grapes, and Sanctuary Vineyards was officially founded. Today, Sanctuary Vineyards boasts a 10-acre plot of land dedicated to producing several varietals of grapes, including the Syrah, Tempranillo, Viognier, Norton and, of course, the ever-popular Muscadine. If you select this world-class vineyard as the location for your Outer Banks wedding, you’ll have your choice of an outdoor or indoor reception area that can accommodate up to 250 guests who will not only enjoy the stunning scenery of this quaint farm in Currituck County, but also the wide array of top-notch wines that are produced on-site by the Wright family each season.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

7005 Caratoke Highway, Jarvisburg, NC 27947

252.491.2387

www.SanctuaryVineyards.com

The Pavilion at Pirate’s Cove Marina

alt="A bride and groom sit on a deck staring at the water in a marina full of boats during their Outer Banks wedding at sunset."
Photo: Pirates Cove Marina

One of the most unique venues to host an Outer Banks wedding is the Pavilion at Pirate’s Cove Marina. Situated along the shoreline of a canal that juts off the Roanoke Sound, the Pavilion at Pirate’s Cove Marina in Manteo is located in one of the premier resort communities of the Outer Banks of North Carolina. The open-air venue offers 13,000 square feet of space that can accommodate over 300 guests for your wedding or reception. The world-class marina full of sport fishing yachts serves as a picturesque backdrop to your big event whether you hold your ceremony inside the pavilion itself or outside along the docks.

alt="Yachts in a marina sit at the end of an Outer Banks wedding aisle at PIrate's Cove in Manteo, North Carolina."
Photo: Nikki Seward

Guests will enjoy an 18-foot by 18-foot dance floor, a built-in stage, on-site restrooms, as well as a 30-footlong granite bar complete with appliances. Step outside the pavilion to the lawn along the edge of the marina, where you and your guests can hold the ceremony itself, host a cocktail hour before the reception, or simply spend the afternoon or evening playing a round of games in the great outdoors. Whether you’re a fishing enthusiast who wants easy access to one of the most coveted marinas on the East Coast or you’re searching for a unique spot with incredible views for your ceremony and reception, the Pavilion at Pirate’s Cove Marina is the perfect place to host your waterfront Outer Banks wedding.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

2000 Sailfish Drive, Manteo, NC 27954

252.473.1015

www.PiratesCoveWeddings.com

The 2020 Outer Banks Wedding Weekend & Expo

Are you planning to hold your upcoming wedding on beautiful beaches of the Outer Banks of North Carolina? If so, don’t miss your chance to attend the 2020 Outer Banks Wedding Weekend & Expo!

This annual two-day event, which will be held March 7-8, will feature 120 local vendors whose businesses will help you pull off the perfect beach wedding in your favorite slice of barrier island paradise.

To find out more about this highly anticipated event, check out our blog on the 2020 Outer Banks Wedding Weekend & Expo by clicking here. 

Sanctuary Vineyards: A Taste of Wine Country in Currituck County

Photo: OuterBanks.com

When it comes to walking through the winding rows of vines and venturing to wine tastings, few people think of places outside of France, Australia, Argentina, New Zealand and Northern California. While these popular wine-producing regions may be the most well-known among novices and connoisseurs alike, thousands of small and independent vineyards exist in other spots throughout the world—one of which is located right here on the Outer Banks of North Carolina: Sanctuary Vineyards.

The History of Sanctuary Vineyards

Photo: Sanctuary Vineyards

Situated on the Currituck County mainland in the small town of Jarvisburg, Sanctuary Vineyards is part of a quaint soundside farm with a unique history that spans back several centuries. The vineyards and surrounding farmland are owned and operated by the Wright family, which has called coastal North Carolina home for seven generations. The story begins hundreds of years ago, when Jacob Wright was shipwrecked on the shoreline of the nearby town of Duck, on the northern Outer Banks. Stranded on the shores of the barrier islands, Jacob Wright decided to settle permanently in the area and promptly established a farm in Currituck County that he could call home.

Photo: Carolina Designs

The land and its original settler’s farming traditions were passed along from generation to generation, with each new owner within the Wright family making subtle changes and adding their own unique twist. At the time the region’s earliest settlers began to develop the sandy soils of the Outer Banks, vineyards didn’t comprise row after row of grape-filled vines. Instead, they typically consisted of a single muscadine vine that was planted on their property for the purpose of producing the sweet grapes that were so well-suited for use as an ingredient in pies, juices, jellies and jams.

Photo: Sanctuary Vineyards

Over the years, the popularity of muscadine grapes grew—both because of their unique flavor and their ability to withstand the occasionally harsh conditions of the coastal plains and thrive in an environment that few other varieties of vine could even survive. By the mid-1800s, more than two dozen small vineyards had sprung up across the eastern portion of the Tar Heel State, and—according to the Encyclopedia of North Carolina—these wineries enjoyed so much success, the state was ranked as the leading wine producer in the United States prior to the era of Prohibition.

Sanctuary Vineyard’s World-Class Wines

Photo: Outer Banks Magazine

Recognizing the opportunity to partake in the production of sweet muscadine wines on their property, the Wright family members of decades past put their extensive knowledge of farming techniques to work on the coastal Carolina soils that were perfectly suited to growing muscadine grapes. The final result is the modern-day Sanctuary Vineyards, which boasts centuries of farming experience, knowledge and dedication to carefully cultivating the earth in an effort to produce world-class wines on a large plot of land along the Currituck Sound.   

Photo: NC Wine Guys

Along with hundreds of acres of wildlife impoundments—which the family refers to as “The Sanctuary” portion of the property—and farmland where other crops are grown, this popular Outer Banks vineyard features 10 acres that are dedicated solely to growing grapes. Within the rows of grapevines, several varieties of grapes are grown, including Syrah, Tempranillo, Viognier, Norton and, of course, the ever-popular Muscadine.

Sanctuary Vineyards’ most popular wine is Wild Pony White (2015), a smooth-sipping dry wine consisting of 32 percent Chardonnay, 20 percent Pinot Gris, 18 percent Viognier, 16 percent Chardonel and 14 percent Sauvignon Blanc. In addition to being the vineyard’s best-selling variety of wine, Wild Pony White—which is named for the herd of wild horses that have roamed the beaches of the Corolla and Carova for centuries—also benefits a good cause on the Outer Banks, with a portion of its proceeds being donated to the Corolla Wild Horse Fund.

Photo: Outer Banks Restaurant Guide

Other varieties of wines created by Sanctuary Vineyards include Chardonnay (2015), which features bright notes of apple and pear; The Triangle (2015 White Blend), a blend of North Carolina Viognier, Roussanne and Albariño that boasts melon and citrus aromas; Pearl (2015 Albariño), which is handcrafted from a Spanish white grape and imparts tropical fruit flavors; and Wildflowers (2015 Cabernet Franc), a medium-bodied rosé that offers flavors of strawberry and melon.

Photo: VisitCurrituck.com

Also featured in the vineyard’s collection is Morton, a blend of five choice red wines—Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot—that, when combined, result in rich black cherry flavors and notes of sweet oak and spice; Lightkeeper, a rosé that features honey aromas and muscadine flavors of sweet cherries, strawberry and melon; and The Plank, a muscadine red that is “full of ripe and jammy flavor,” and whose cork is sealed with wax to present an authentic pirate-themed appearance.

Photo: Sanctuary Vineyards

Perhaps the most unique variety of wine in Sanctuary Vineyards’ collection is OBX Ice, a limited-production 2015 dessert wine whose blend begins with the tastes of tropical fruits and ends with a smooth candied finish. And wine lovers cannot skip sampling Sweet Serenity, a muscadine white that is characterized by a smooth sweetness and powerful aroma, and is made with the muscadine grapes that are native to eastern North Carolina—making this variety of Sanctuary Vineyards’ wine as local as it gets.

Photo: Sanctuary Vineyards

Known for offering a wide array of world-class wines, hosting a series of fun and unique events throughout the year, and serving as a popular spot for Outer Banks weddings, Sanctuary Vineyards is a true treasure on the barrier islands of North Carolina. Visit the tasting room for a sample of their exceptional creations, or stop by the winery at 1 p.m. on Wednesdays for a tour of this Outer Banks attraction whose history dates back hundreds of years to the day its original settler became shipwrecked on the shoals of the Graveyard of the Atlantic seven generations ago. 

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