I can hardly Bear it
Plymouth Travel Blog› entry 31 of 56 › view all entries
To unearth nuggets in his home land, your faithful North Carolina Traveler subscribes to an email from the state tourism board. One would think it safe to deem anything revealed in this missive as a “local” attraction, but North Carolina covers serious real estate. So when a blurb on the Black Bear Festival caught my eye, the first step was toggling over to Yahoo Maps.
The awesome thing about travel is all the wonder it entails. I had no idea where Plymouth was, but quickly learned it was next door to Edenton, where my ex and I had enjoyed a fun weekend several years back. A four hour drive north from Wilmington, Plymouth had a rich history which rivaled Edenton’s storied past, with the extra dimension of nature in the form of black bears.
As a sucker for roadside attractions, what really drew me in was the event’s billing as the First Annual Black Bear Festival. I envisioned a local Chamber of Commerce clutching any premise to draw in a few tourist dollars, but I admire this chutzpah. And the tidbits in the email held allure. Surprisingly, this patch of North Carolina is home to the world’s densest population of the critters. The biggest, too!
Thus, I reserved a room and signed up for a pair of events. One was the “Run with the Bears 5K”, my first race since the Reykjavik Marathon last August. I’ve been saddled with medical issues (vision is messed up) preventing active training, and though my competitive streak normally inhibits me from registering for anything where I’m not in peak condition, this was intended to spur me to get back on track (with all of three weeks to prepare, lol). The race was Saturday morning and I also signed on for a Black Bear Tour Saturday evening.
Started work early this morning so I could kick off at 4PM and the first positive sign was plugging the hotel address into my GPS. The route was completely different from what Yahoo Maps suggested, and a half hour shorter! The 5K kicked off at 7:30AM Saturday morning, but I needed to arrive between 6:30-7A to register, so after an uneventful ride and checking in, it was night night.