Carolina Beach – the seaside community on Pleasure Island, just south of Wilmington – is just about done sprucing up for the 2015 tourist season.
The popular family-friendly beach has retooled/replaced its boardwalk area, which has been profiled in newspapers, cable TV and magazine. (It has even made Budget Traveler’s list of “Most Awesome Boardwalks.”)
But time and climate create wear and tear on outdoor icons. The boardwalk re-do features enhanced beach access, special-needs accommodations and better access to the dune ecosystem.
The new 750-foot boardwalk is wider – 16 feet (it used to be 8 feet wide).
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There are now five ADA-accessible walkways.
This spring, Shelby Jean’s restaurant will open in the former location of the Black Horn Bar & Kitchen; Frank’s Pizza will relocate next the the legendary Britts Donuts.
Next year, a 96-room Hampton Inn & Suites is scheduled to open on the oceanfront, next to the boardwalk.
The new boardwalk’s official debut is 2 p.m. March 31. Besides an official ribbon-cutting that Tuesday, there will be beach music and raffle-drawings.
Area details: www.VisitCarolinaBeachNC.com.