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Residents of Old Wilmington Residents of Old Wilmington
Community Involvement
We Care about our Community 
  • ROW Contributes monetary grants for improvements and beautification
    • Market Street Trees
    • Southern Hospitality Sculpture
    • Post Office Palm Trees
    • 1898 Memorial Hope Circle
    • USS North Carolina Battleship
  • ROW Members Volunteer their time and effort for worthy projects
    • Host Events for Police and Firemen
    • Participate in Azalea Sweep
    • Participate in Work on Wilmington
Residents of Old Wilmington is a non-profit, all-volunteer organization that advocates the preservation, improvement and beautification of Wilmington's historic downtown neighborhoods, informs members of issues that affect the quality of life and promotes social connections.
The ROW Neighborhood covers the area from Queen St. to Red Cross St. and from 8th St. to the Cape Fear River. ROW supports the City’s vision to restore and retain the historical integrity of all buildings throughout the entire Wilmington historical area and the downtown business district.
Learn more about ROW by reading the news articles below. We welcome all residents who live in the ROW Neighborhood and share ROW's vision to become a member. To join ROW, click on Become a Member or Friend under the Welcome heading on the left above.
~ ROW News ~
May Picnic
Posted on May 14th, 2018 Comments (0)
The May Picnic was held at the historic Burgwin-Wright House on Saturday, May 12. Nearly 80 members enjoyed the delicious food, pleasant weather and the good company of fellow members.
Work on Wilmington
Posted on May 2nd, 2018 Comments (0)
ROW volunteers participated in Work on Wilmington on April 28 at DREAMS, a non-profit organization that promotes the arts for young people at risk, located at 901 Fanning Street. Volunteers cleared flower beds and painted picnic benches.
Azalea Sweep
Posted on Apr 8th, 2018 Comments (0)
ROW members spread throughout downtown streets on Saturday, April 7, to pick up trash and clean up the area in preparation for the upcoming Azalea Festival. Thanks to all of the volunteers!
Law Enforcement Appreciation Dinner
Posted on Feb 22nd, 2018 Comments (0)
ROW hosted its annual Law Enforcement Appreciation Dinner on February 21. ROW members thank personnel from the New Hanover County Sheriff and the Wilmington Police Department for keeping our neighborhoods safe.
Downtown Wilmington Issues
Posted on Jul 13th, 2017 Comments (0)
Residents in the Historic District will be impacted by decisions made by the City, County and State in the coming weeks, months and years that affect the quality of life downtown. These issues are monitored closely by ROW as explained below.
I.  Short Term Rentals are houses or condos tht are rented for short periods of time, often a few days or a weekend. They are often marketed and booked through Internet websites such as VRBO or AirBnB. Two types of Short Term Rentals have been defined by the City:
  • Whole House STRs are rented without the owner on the premises.
  • Home Stays are rented rooms in homes where the owner is on the premises.
The conflict over STRs centers on whether Whole House Short Term Rentals should be allowed in Residential Districts.  Currently, Wilmington's Zoning Code does not permit any businesses to operate in neighborhoods zoned single family residential. The City estimates that approximately 540 STRs (both Whole House and Home Stays) are operating within Wilmington. Investors who own Whole House STRs in residential neighborhoods want the code to be changed to allow their businesses in Residential Districts. 
ROW favors Home Stays in Residential Districts and all types of STRs in the Central Business District which is zoned commercial. ROW opposes Whole House STRs in residential neighborhoods. For more details about STRs in Wilmington, click the Read More button below.
The City Council will be voting on STR proposals June 19If you want to voice your concerns about protecting the Residential Districts, email the City Council at:  Council@wilmington.gov
II. The Grace Street Project concerns the development of the downtown block containing the public library. New Hanover County owns the block and County Commissioners are considering proposals for a public-private redevelopment of the block that now includes the library, the recently-built Story Book Park, a parking garage, the Register of Deeds building and an empty parcel bordering Grace Street. Moving the Cape Fear Museum to the site is also a possibility. Two public hearings revealed a strong opposition to the re-development, which could include adding apartments, condos and a hotel. The County Commissioners will vote on proposals submitted by developers sometime in 2018.
III. The Cape Fear Crossing Project concerns a new bridge between Brunswick and New Hanover Counties. Twelve proposal were initially introduced, but the two routes that would impact the Downtown Historic District have been eliminatedROW favors the southernmost routes nearer the port area. The final decision rests with the State Transportation Department, and public hearings will be held before the proposed 2019 decision and proposed 2020 building date.
IV. The City has reviewed its brick street policy, held pubic meetings, and determined steps for improving the existing brick streets since many have been covered with asphalt. The City Council has allocated funds for "Brick Street Rehabilitation" in the 2017-18 Budget Capital Improvement Program. We hope to see improvements in the coming year.

~ Upcoming Events ~
Membership Month
Wednesday, August 1st
September is ROW Membership Month. All members are asked to pay their dues by the end of September.  Dues are still a modest $20 per household and $10 for an individual. Show your support for ROW by paying early. You can renew your membership as early as August 1:
  • Use the ROW PayPal link on this Web site to pay by credit card or a PayPal account
  • Send a check to:  ROW P.O. Box 1862  Wilmington NC 28402 (be sure to include your personal information)
  • Drop a check off at the door mail slot of Phoebe Bragg's residence:  410 S. Front St.
  • Pay by cash or check at the Membership Party, September 12 on the USS North Carolina Battleship. Members are invited to socialize with each other and see the Battleship's new walkway. Refreshments will be furnished.

~ Back Door Kitchen Tour Fund Raiser ~
The 13th Annual ROW Back Door Kitchen Tour will be held Saturday, October 20, 10 AM until 4 PM. Save the date.
Tickets will be available at local retail outlets on Sept. 1. Tickets also can be purchased online from this website with a credit card or PayPal Account. The ROW PayPal link will be available from this page near the time of the tour. Watch for the announcement of tickets for the 2018 Tour.
The Back Door Kitchen Tour is the only fund raiser sponsored by Residents of Old Wilmington. Proceeds go back into our community for beautification, preservation, restoration, and other improvements through ROW projects and community-based grants. If you have any questions, contact us at bdkt@rowilmington.org
ROW thanks Finkelstein's Music Store, the Ivy Cottage, Harris Teeter Stores and the Bellamy Mansion for facilitating the sale of BDKT tickets last year. 
ROW thanks the generous Sponsors of the 2017 Tour listed below. The Friends of the Tour are listed on the Member's Back Door Kitchen page.
I. Gold Sponsors
Carolina Retirement Planners 910-815-3100         
Stone Garden                        910-452-1619     
Wilmington Ole Time Photo  910-297-1895         
Find us on Facebook
Keith and Sylvia Kochler - Friends
II. Silver Sponsors
The Ivy Cottage                    910-815-0907       
Plantation Building Corp.      910-763-8760          
Southeastern Marble @ Granite 910-763-7700
Element Outdoor Living         910-297-3999          
Kitchen Blueprints                 910-763-2536         
Hollingsworth Cabinetry        910-251-1490         
Addis Construction                910-509-0263          
Southeastern Tile Connection 910-799-5565
III. Bronze Sponsors
McKenzie Baker Interiors         910-352-3355       
Leo Electric                             910-777-1311       
Atlantic Appliance                    910-791-2222
Intracoastal Realty
Big Sky Design                         910-793-3992       
For more information about the Back Door Kitchen Tour or to sign up for automatic reminders about the upcoming tour, click here  BDKT Page 

~ ROW Awards ~
Good Neighbor Award
Congratulations to Sylvia Kochler (on the left above), the 2018 recipient of the ROW Good Neighbor Award. ROW Mayor Phoebe Bragg presented the award at the Historic Wilmington Foundation 2018 Preservation Awards Ceremony on May 24. Sylvia has been an active member of ROW, serving as Chair of the Back Door Kitchen Tour and two terms as President. She also helped create a ROW Vision Statement. Sylvia was the creator and continues to be the driving force behind the annual Holly Jolly Days, and she helped adopt a brick street policy for downtown streets. Her legal knowledge has been an asset to ROW. She is the epitome of what the Good Neighbor Award means.
Garden Award
Congratulations to Gregg Thomas and Tom Faust, the recipients of the 2017-18 Dolly Pearson Garden Award. They set a high standard of neighborhood beauty in their yard and plant-filled porch at the corner of Front and Church Streets. Pedestrians often stop to admire their seasonal changes.