With summer rapidly coming to a close, an impromptu beach visit is a fun weekend plan. Knowing people that live near the beach and will also let you stay with them is great for cost savings. In this case, it was my in-laws. So, we rounded up a few friends and we were off to have some fun in the sun.
Wrightsville Beach – Attempt #1
Wrightsville Beach is definitely one of the most well known and popular beach locations in North Carolina. A gorgeous summer Saturday also reminds you of how busy it can be and difficult to find parking. All parking is metered at $2/hour during the day but that doesn’t seem to cut down on visitors on a very busy and beautiful beach day.
Beach Volleyball at Wrightsville Beach Park
Several of us enjoy playing beach volleyball so we had scoured Google maps ahead of time trying to find available nets so those were the places we checked for parking first. We did find a net near the Blockade Runner Beach Resort and a net near the Holiday Inn Resort but they are technically private.
Alas, driving around looking for parking after about an hour with no luck in two separate cars, we headed inland to Wrightsville Beach Park to play volleyball at the three sand courts located there.
Wrightsville Beach – Attempt #2
Hoping enough time had passed after an hour or so of volleyball in the hot sun, it was back to circling Wrightsville Beach for parking. This time we were in luck! We found a couple of hidden parking spaces on the northern half of the beach area on a residential street closer to the Intracoastal Waterway side of the main road.
We finally got our beach time and enjoyed it by playing in the water and taking naps on the beach. The waves were large and current stronger than usual due to a tropical storm farther out in the Atlantic Ocean. While this can be a fun time to play in the water, caution must be used and a swimsuit with strong ties is a good idea. Actually, it is a great idea. Just sayin’…
A swimsuit malfunction was not my only difficulty at the beach as I also managed to get my awesome corkscrew hairpins holding my hair up trapped in a tangled mess. Thankfully, I had an awesome sister-in-law and another female friend to help me out, else it may have become even more disastrous having the guys try to help me out!
Clouds and a few raindrops began to move in and brought an end to our beach day, perhaps a little sooner than we would have liked. But, before we were chased out by the weather, K took the time to make one of his famous sandballs. Most people know of snowballs, but growing up at the beach, K learned to make sandballs.
Pirate’s Table Seafood Restaurant
Dinner was a local fried seafood hole in the wall called Pirate’s Table that we had frequented for several years when visiting my in-laws. If you’re looking for a decent, greasy, fairly priced seafood joint, this is a good choice. But, I wouldn’t go out of my way to go here as there are many places in the Wilmington area to try.
Capt’n Bills Backyard Grill
An afternoon of volleyball was not quite enough so we found our way to Capt’n Bill’s in Wilmington to play some more. This locally run bar and grill has 10 sand courts where they regularly hold league games and tournaments. Saturday nights are free to come by and play so we took advantage. Surprisingly, for a summer weekend evening, the courts were almost all empty except for what looked to be a party also enjoying playing some volleyball on a couple courts.
Winding Down the Weekend
The next day was just spent hanging out and talking before most everyone headed home. K and I stayed an extra day and went back to the beach with much more success in finding parking and the weather was just perfect. Week days are very different from weekends at the beach.
Unfortunately, while at the beach, we found out one of our friends that had come to the beach with us over the weekend was laid off from their job. That was not the news any of us would have hoped for after a weekend of fun. But, I couldn’t help but thinking if I were looking for a job that the beach would be a great place to work from. A beach is definitely one of my happy places in life.