Hurricane Dorian, which inundated Ocracoke village on Sept. 6, devastating many homes and businesses, and after which the island was closed to visitors for three months, was the biggest story of Ocracoke’s year–possibly the decade.  But the island can boast of other highlights throughout the year. Below are some notable events as seen in this pictorial review.

Hurricane Dorian on Sept. 6 brought a 7.4-foot storm surge, the highest in Ocracoke history. This photo at Sunset and Friendly Ridge around 8 a.m. that day shows the water almost up to the stop sign. Photo: C. Leinbach
Featured carver Dan Robinson sells his prized redhead decoys at the 2019 Waterfowl Festival. Photo: P. Vankevich

The second annual Ocracoke Waterfowl festival at Ocracoke School in April was a big success, presented by the Ocracoke Island Decoy Carvers Guild, which was formed in January 2018 by island carvers and collectors determined to keep this art form alive. Dan Robinson was this year’s featured carver.
Those looking for encouragement that the island carving tradition will continue, can look to Ocracoke School. In its recent annual Arts Week program, for the first time, decoy carving was an option. The class, taught by carver Jason Daniels, who moonlights as captain of the Ocracoke Sheriff’s Department, drew 42 students, all carving a Canvasback Duck.

The passenger ferry finally arrived when the N.C. Ferry Division had to lease a boat since the one being built failed inspection. Ridership on the Ocracoke Express from late May to Labor Day exceeded expectations and the Ferry Division plans to lease a boat again this year for the same time period. Photo: C. Leinbach
The Ocracoke Dolphins for the second consecutive year won their Atlantic 5 Conference, but they fell in the second game of the state championship. Here, Senior Colby Austin launches one of many three-pointers. Photo by Casey Robertson
Tenth-grader Hannah Belch attained state high school girl’s archery champion in February after winning the North Carolina Wildlife Resources National Archery in the Schools Program Eastern Finals National tournament after scoring 275 points out of a possible 300. Photo by Jason Daniels
Newly elected Congressional representative for District 3, Greg Murphy, who replaced longtime Congressman Walter Jones who died in February, visits Ocracoke on Sept. 15, four days after he’s sworn in to see the damage from Hurricane Dorian. Photo: P. Vankevich
Miss Julia Hutcherson, owner of the Variety Store, is the grand marshal of the July 4 parade riding in a 1965 Shelby driven by Mike Hodge. Photo: P. Vankevich
A community Thanksgiving feast organized by Ocracoke Disaster Relief and other community members in the Berkley Barn fed about 400 islanders and ferry workers, thanks to food and help by Liberty Christian Fellowship of Kill Devil Hills, Operation Blessing, Disaster Relief USA, Dixie 105.7 FM, John’s Drive-In, Mike Toler Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram Fiat, Hardy Moving & Storage, JH Sanders Aviation Services and Elizabeth City Regional Airport. Sugar Creek Seafood Restaurant and the Black Pelican Seafood Company donated 14 turkeys. Ocean Atlantic Rentals plates, flatware and goblets. Ocracoke School students contributed drawings for decorations. Photo: C. Leinbach