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Residents of Old Wilmington Residents of Old Wilmington
Community Involvement
Ride the Free Trolley Downtown! Catch it along Front St.
and stop to shop or eat on Castle. You can continue to  
Fifth and Greenfield and then loop around to Front again.
The Free Trolley has a new name:  Port City Trolley. Look for new trolley cars labeled with the new name in Oct.
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
    • Children's Museum
  • 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 ~
Generous Gift to ROW
Posted on Jul 20th, 2019
ROW has received a generous gift of nearly $300 from the estate of past member June Dellinger Huff. The check was provided by Executor Muriel Pearson. Another larger amount from June's estate was given to ROW at the January meeting.
ROW Spring Picnic
Posted on May 21st, 2019
Many members attended the Spring Picnic at the Burgwin-Wright House, organized by co-chairs, Trisha McGarry and Tony Kirkegaard. We thank Denis McGarry for his past years as the volunteer bartender, but Denis has turned over his duties to a professional. Phoebe Bragg presented the Dolly Pearson Garden Award to Allison Green, and Beverly Grasley announced that the Kirkegaard Family is the recipient of the Good Neighbor Award for 2019. (See the award stories in the adjacent column.) The members in the photo above are looking up to the top of the stairs when President Beverly Grasley and Past President Phoebe Bragg led a short business meeting.
Use the Downtown Parking Garages
Posted on Apr 5th, 2019
When you go downtown for any reason, be a good neighbor and do not park in the residential blocks of Front, Second or Third Street. The parking garages are free for the first 90 minutes so please use them. The residents of the 200 block of Second Street are experiencing an increase in street parking, especially since the summer downtown concert series moved to the corner of Market and Second. Please be considerate of our fellow residents.
Azalea Sweep Volunteers
Posted on Apr 4th, 2019
ROW Members participated in the annual Azalea Sweep to clean up downtown streets by picking up trash before the Azalea Festival. The participants were treated to lunch at Husk's afterwards.
New ROW Mayor
Posted on Mar 17th, 2019
Outgoing Mayor Phoebe Bragg (on the right)  introduced new Mayor Beverly Grasley at the Member Meeting on March 13.
Burgwin-Wright House Grant
Posted on Feb 17th, 2019
Staff members from the Burgwin-Wright House accept a check for $2,000 from ROW board members to construct a fence around the existing air conditioning unit.
Downtown Wilmington Issues
Posted on Jul 13th, 2017
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.  The City Council has approved the following regulations for both Home Stay and Whole House Short Term rentals in residential areas of Historic Districts that became effective March 1, 2019:
  • Owners must register each year and provide proof of property ownership. ($200 for Home Stays; $300 for Whole House)
  • The owner must buy $500,000 of commercial liability insurance.
  • The owner must keep records of all rentals and pay the Occupancy Tax.
  • Information about the property and the police non-emergency phone number must be posted in the house.
  • Whole House STRs must be 400 feet from another Whole House STR or a B&B. After the first year, a lottery will be used to determine which STRs will remain where conflicts exist.
  • A designated phone number will be distributed to report complaints to the code authorities and complaints will be recorded.
If you wish to report an STR that is not abiding by these regulations, call 910-254-0900 and leave a message that includes the address of the STR.
Grace Street Project involves the block that includes the library and is owned by New Hanover County. The County Commissioners are reviewing proposals for a public-private redevelopment of the block that could affect the library, the Story 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 a possibility. A survey of ROW members in March found overwhelming support for keeping Story Park and against building 125 Apartments. The results were nearly even for keeping the current library/building a new one and moving the museum. On April 1, the County Commissioners postponed a final decision on the project. 
III. The Cape Fear Crossing Project will determine the location of a n ew bridge between Brunswick and New Hanover Counties. The two routes that would impact the Downtown Historic District have been eliminated. Six routes south of the current Cape Fear Bridge, closer to the Port area, are under consideration. In a public hearing at the Leland Town Hall on Feb. 7, Leland residents expressed opposition to any plan that includes a new road through Brunswick Forest. They advocated a more southern route.  DOT estimates bridge construction will take five years. On April 29, Leland residents expressed opposition to a southern route in a public meeting at Hoggard High School.
IV. The City has reviewed its brick street policy and repairs and restoration are underway on S. 4th Street between Market and Dock Streets; on Queen Street between S. 2nd and S. 7th Streets; and on S. 7th Street between Queen and Mears.

~ Upcoming Events ~
Membership Meeting
Wednesday, September 11th at USS North Carolina Battleship
September is Membership Month and members can renew their dues at the annual Membership Meeting. Dues have been increased to $15 for an individual and $25 for a household. If you wish to pay your dues early, please send a check to:  Residents of Old Wilmington, PO Box 1862, Wilmington, 28404.

~ 2019 Back Door Kitchen Tour ~
 The 13th Annual ROW Back Door Kitchen Tour that was canceled due to Hurricane Florence in 2018 will be held October 12, 2019 from 10 until 4.  The houses are listed on the BDKT page that can accessed via the link on the upper left. 
Tickets are $30 each. You can purchase tickets beginning September 3 on this site via Eventbrite. Bring your Eventbrite online receipt via your phone or a paper receipt to any of the houses to receive your ticket. Tickets can also be purchased at Cape Fear Spice Merchants, the Ivy Cottage, and designated Harris Teeter Stores.
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. These generous Sponsors and Friends who supported the 2018 Tour have remained Sponsors for 2019: 
I. Gold Sponsors
Carolina Retirement Planners 910-815-3100         
Keith and Sylvia Kochler - Friends
II. Silver Sponsors
The Ivy Cottage                    910-815-0907       
Stone Garden                        910-452-1619     
Element Outdoor Living        910-302-6888          
SDI Construction                  910-763-8333         
Dynamic Kitchen                   910-763-9870         
Southeastern Tile Connection 910-799-5565
III. Bronze Sponsors
Southeastern Marble & Granite 910-763-7700
Plantation Building Corp.           910-599-2630
Heinberg Insurance Agency       910-767-9304
Classic Cabinet Designs              910-395-6439
Grass With Class                         910-623-4372
Bug N A Rug Exterminators        910-254-9443
Ferguson Appliances
To sign up for automatic reminders about this year's tour when available, click here  BDKT Page 

~ ROW Awards ~
Good Neighbor Award
The Kirkegaard Family is the recipient of the Good Neighbor Award for 2019. Tony and Gary and children, Austin and Brittney, received a letter describing their contributions at the Spring Picnic. On May 22 at the Historic Wilmington Foundation Preservation Awards, they received the Good Neighbor Plaque.  The entire family decorates the ROW Carriage for the Christmas Parade and they participate in community efforts such as the Azalea Sweep. Tony has served as co-chair of the Spring Picnic for several years.
Garden Award
ROW Past President Phoebe Bragg awarded the 2019-20 Dolly Pearson Garden Award to Allison Green for her spectacular garden at 218 N. Fourth Street, shown below.  Walk by and see the lovely plants and flowers.