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Residents of Old Wilmington Residents of Old Wilmington
The Back Door Kitchen Tour - October 12
9 Fabulous Downtown Homes
Use the easy-to-follow Map on the ticket
Tickets can be purchased now online with a credit card via Eventbrite
See right column below for more information about tickets.
ROW uses the funds for monetary grants for improvements and beautification of downtown.
  • Market Street Trees
  • Southern Hospitality Sculpture
  • Post Office Palm Trees
  • 1898 Memorial Hope Circle
  • USS North Carolina Battleship
  • Children's Museum
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.
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.
~ ROW News ~
Generous Gift to ROW
Posted on Jul 20th, 2019
ROW has received a generous gift of nearly $300 from the estate of 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. The ROW Board of Directors and members appreciate these gifts that will be used in contributions to the ROW community.
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. NCDOT has postponed any decision on the Cape Fear Crossing Project until Dec. The project, which has not been funded, will determine the location of a new 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. Leland residents have 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. 
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, 28402. Plan to attend the Membership Party on the Battleship.
ROW Candidate Forum
Monday, October 7th, 5:30 - Meet and Greet 6:00 - Forum at Hannah Block Community Center
The Annual ROW Candidates Forum will be held Monday, October 7 at 6:00 at the Hannah Block Community Center. Candidates will be available at 5:30 for a Meet-and-Greet. Come and hear about the candidates' plans for the future of our community.

~ Back Door Kitchen Tour Tickets and Sponsors ~
 The 13th Annual ROW Back Door Kitchen Tour will be held October 12, 2019 from 10 until 4.  The tour houses are listed on the BDKT page. Tickets are $30.
  • Purchase Tickets now via Eventbrite. Bring your Eventbrite online receipt via your phone or bring a paper receipt to any of the tour houses on the day of the tour to receive your ticket.
  • After Sept. 3, tickets can be purchased at Cape Fear Spice Merchants and the Ivy Cottage.  
  • September 18-October 12 - Tickets can be purchased for $28 with a Harris Teeter VIC card at these designated Harris Teeter Stores: Leland, Hanover Center, Mayfair, Long Leaf, College Road, Eastwood, Carolina Beach Road, Porter's Neck.
  • Day of the Tour - Tickets can be purchased for cash or check at the Bellamy Mansion, 503 Market Street or at any home featured on the tour. Credit card purchases can be made on the day of the tour only at eventbrite.com or Cape Fear Spice Merchant.
Group Tickets for $25 per person can be purchased for groups of 20 and more. One designated Point Person for the group can communicate via the ROW BDKT email: bdkt@rowilmington.org. A check for the total number of tickets must be mailed by the Point Person to ROW by Sept. 30 and received by Oct. 4. The check is mailed to:  Residents of Old Wilmington, PO Box 1862, Wilmington, NC 28402. The appropriate number of tickets for each group will be available for pickup at the Bellamy House on the day of the tour. These generous Sponsors support the 2019 Tour: 
MEDIA Sponsor
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          
Port City Properties                910-251-0615         
Rooster and the Crow              910-988-0787         
Southeastern Tile Connection 910-799-5565
III. Bronze Sponsors
Darla and Ken Hamby - Friends
Southeastern Marble & Granite 910-763-7700
Stone Garden                             910-452-1619
Heinberg Insurance Agency       910-767-9304
Classic Cabinet Designs              910-395-6439
SDI Construction                         910-763-8333         
Bug-N-A-Rug Exterminators       910-254-9443
Taste the Olive & Vine                 910-256-6457
Southern Home                            910-251-1038
The Children's Museum of Wilmington 910-254-3534
Leland Ace Hardware                     910-383-668
Crust Kitchen and Cocktails          910-399-1263
(Also, The Cheese Project LLC)

~ 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 the Good Neighbor Plaque at the Historic Wilmington Foundation Preservation Awards on May 22.  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.