Oriental: Celebrating 125 Years!

There's No Place Like Home!

Oriental is home to many...well, about 900 people and 3000 sailboats! The town may be small, but it sure is mighty. And this year, we are celebrating 125 years of this beautiful place Nautical Wheelers calls home!


Nestled on the shores of the Neuse River, Oriental, North Carolina is a charming small town with a rich history and thriving community, with a population of just under 900. This town is a hidden gem, perfect for visitors looking for a peaceful getaway. The community and atmosphere are like no other, you will always be fascinated by all the ongoing events throughout the year.

What is there to do in Oriental?

Well, I'm glad you asked. Oriental isn't known as the 'Sailing Capital of North Carolina' for nothing!

You read that right, sailors from all around the world travel to Oriental each year! 

If sailing isn't your thing, you could always spend the day biking around town, playing pickleball, checking out the local restaurants and shops, fishing, catching a show at the local theatre, or simply relaxing by the water! 

So, how did Oriental come to be?

 Oriental’s history dates to the early days of European colonization, with Native Americans fishing and farming in the area long before European settlers arrived.

The town was named after a steamship called the Oriental, which ran aground off the coast in 1862. The town’s postmaster’s wife found the nameplate of the ship washed up on the beach and thought it would make a great name for the town. Oriental was officially incorporated March 4th, 1899 and has been a hub of fishing, agriculture, and marine-related industries ever since. 

Nautical Wheelers is so thankful to be a part of this lovely community. While the beautiful scenery is nice, the people are even nicer! We can't wait to celebrate this milestone for the town with everyone, and truly remember why we choose to call this place home. 


Join the Celebration, March 1st-3rd!

Join the folks of Oriental for a weekend of fun! 

Friday, March 1st:

  • Visit the History Museum between 12:00-4:00. Speak to lifetime residents and catch a glimpse of Oriental's past.
  • Visit Town Hall between 9:30-4:30 for story telling time with historians, with a new speaker every 30 minutes!
  • Music by Oriental Midnight and wine available by the glass on the porch at Nautical Wheelers 2-4 pm, Friday.
  • Historians will speak at New Village Brewery between 4:30-6:00.
  • Finish the evening off with a performance of 'Breakfast at Brantley's' at The Old Theater, starting at 7:30. Tickets will be available at Nautical Wheelers.

Saturday, March 2nd: 

  • Catch the Year of the Dragon Parade beginning at 11:00am! The parade route is from Ragan Rd. - down Broad St. - down Hodges St. - and ends at Lou Mac Park.
  • Come see local vendors in the park between 10:00-5:00! There will be local food vendors, local artists, and baked goods for sale!
  • There will even be activities for the kiddos! In Lou Mac Park, starting at 10:00, your kids can enjoy face painting, rock painting, and a painted rock scavenger hunt.
  • Following the parade at 11:55, Mayor Belangia will read the proclamation on the main stage across from the park. Music starts at 12:00 with local musicians, with the street dance beginning at 5:00 and lasting until 8:30.
  • Also, at 12:00, the Oriental Dinghy Club will have a sailboat race off of Lou Mac Park. The winner will be announced at 5:00. 
  • Not to mention, all local businesses will have activities and events for residents to enjoy all day long.

Sunday, March 3rd:

  • The History Museum will be open from 12:00-4:00.
  • Wind down this fun filled weekend with another showing of 'Breakfast at Brantley's'. Starting at 3:00. Tickets will be available at Nautical Wheelers. 

We can't wait to see everyone!

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