USA Today Awards Bond Brothers in Cary the Best New Brewery in the Country

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If you like beer, you have come to the right area! There are many breweries in the Raleigh-Durham area, including right here in Cary, North Carolina. In fact, the best new brewery in the entire country is located in Downtown Cary, according to USA Today.

Bond Brothers, who define themselves on their website as a “NC craft brewery and taproom…dedicated to producing high-quality ales and sours,” features some very cool drafts. Blackberry Raspberry Sorcery, Triumph of Death or Expendable Income are just a few of the enticing offerings. The Brewery also has a regular line up of some of the area’s best food trucks, so you we sure to enjoy a great pairing!

You can visit the Bond Brothers Brewery at 202 East Cedar Street, in Downtown Cary. Have fun!

Let’s Go To The Duke Lemur Center!

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When I first relocated to Cary, North Carolina, I was familiar with lemurs from watching the movie “Madagascar” with my daughter.  Of course, the animated lemurs were adorable and funny, and I loved them.  That was the extent of my knowledge.  However, I discovered much more about lemurs- and how much I love them- by taking a visit to the Duke Lemur Center.

The Duke Lemur Center is located in Durham, North Carolina on 80 wooded acres.  It originally started as a collaboration of two biologists who were studying mammals and lemurs.  The Center has created the largest living collection of endangered primates in the world.  Currently, the Center features 250 individual lemurs of 21 species.  The Center studies extensive areas, such as lemur genetics, behaviors and physiology to name a few.

Words really cannot do the Duke Lemur Center justice, but I will try my best to explain how incredible this place is.  First, I must tell you-you must make an appointment to visit the Center, as they limit the number of tours and guests daily.  It is easy to make the appointment, just call or email the Center.

Upon arrival, you will travel down a gravel path which opens up to a parking area.  You will notice the high fences along the wooded area on your left. These are to help contain the free-roaming lemurs who get to be released into the woods daily.  If you look, you may even see a few as you drive in.  Once you park, you will probably see them right near the fencing. They are quite interested in their visitors and walk around the perimeter of the fenced area to check you out.

Prior to entering the lemur area, you are required to watch a short film about lemurs and the extinction risks.  You will also pay admission here, give donations and visit the gift shop.  Thereafter, you will proceed to a tour of the facility.

You will discover that there are SO many different kind of lemurs.  I was quite surprised by that.  The lemurs are all shapes and sizes and they all have different personalities.  There were a few that really liked to interact with us.  Also, at the end of the tour, there were baby lemurs kept in a special building where the light is low; you have to look very carefully to see the babies but they are adorable.

As mentioned above, there are lemurs that are let out into the fenced in wooded area during the day.  In the early evening, the Center personnel bang on large drums.  This drumming attracts the lemurs, who come running back home.  It is really something to see!

The Duke Lemur Center is a great family activity.  I have yet to meet anyone, of any age, who doesn’t just love the time they spend there.  I hope you will make an appointment and go visit the lemurs.  You will not be disappointed!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Top 5 Things to do in Cary

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You never have to look hard to find something to do in Cary, North Carolina.  Here is a list of my top 5!

1- Cary Arts Center-  If you are visiting, look into the art exhibition and theatre performance schedule.  If Cary is your home, you may want to look into taking classes here! There are fantastic children, teen and adult programs which include dance classes, art classes, theatre, music and much, much more.

2- Bond Park- awesome place to spend a day with everything from boat rentals, hiking trails, fishing playgrounds and more.  Bring bread with you to feed the ducks at the lake!

3- Koka Booth Amphitheatre- check out the schedule and catch a concert here.  In the summer time, there are family outdoor movie nights, too!

4- Hemlock Bluffs Nature Preserve & Stevens Nature Center- a wonderful wooded trail with lookout points, streams and more.  Visit the Stevens Nature Center to learn about the things that live in the Preserve, and check out the great kids programs they have!

5- Golf the Day Away-  Cary has 5 golf courses, so you have your pick.  While 4 of the golf clubs are private, Lochmere Golf Club is a semi-private option. Lochmere is an 18 hole, par 71 course.  The club also offers a pro shop, driving range and restaurant.  You can also check with the pro shop to set up some lessons.

 

 

Let’s Go to Cary’s Skate Park!

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Do you have any kids who enjoy skateboarding? If so, the Town of Cary’s SK8 Park is the place to be! The SK8 Park is open daily to the public for all ages and skill level.  This park features more than 12,000 square feet of outdoor transition and street course.  There are tons of ledges, railings, ramps, fly boxes and more to get your skateboarder soaring to new heights!  SK8 Park is not just limited to skateboards; rollerbladers, bicyclists, quad skaters and scooters are also welcome.

Let’s Go to Bond Park!

There are more than thirty public parks in the Town of Cary, plus at least seventy miles of the Greenway system for hiking, biking and walking.  Honestly, with this many parks, you can never get bored finding a new one to experience.  While everyone has their favorites, Bond Park is definitely high on my list!

Bond Park is located on High House Road, right across from St. Matthews Roman Catholic Church. It is one of the largest municipal parks in Wake County, featuring 310 acres.  There are two entryways, and signs will direct you around the scenic driveway.  The Park contains the Bond Park Community Center as well as the Cary Senior Center.  These are located adjacent to one another at one of the entrances.

Inside the park, you will find a Boathouse that offers canoe, kayak and paddleboat rentals.  You can also rent a fishing pole for the day, or hour- and they sell bait as well.  There is also a sandy beachfront area, picnic tables, a lengthy dock area and all sorts of wildlife viewing.  This is a great spot at the heart of Bond Park. Nearby, you will find LOTS of paved trails, which are great for walking, biking, jogging or just simply taking a nice stroll.  You can also rent out one of the pavilions for a party or barbeque. Just make sure to book the date early, as these spots can go quickly!

Nearby, there is a playground area just for children.  When my daughter was younger, I used to bring her here to play and there were always other children around to play with.  There is a fair amount of equipment in this area for your children to climb, jump and walk on.

Throughout the Park, there a many different athletic fields.  Most days, these are wide open and are great for a less crowded stroll, especially if you have a dog! Have I mentioned that dogs are welcome here? On a weekend, you can easily see tons of dogs happily meandering with their owners.  I’m a dog person, so this makes me happy!

There are many open spaces around the lake itself too; these spaces are used for various programs and events sponsored by the Town of Cary.  For example, every year in March, the Town has a wonderful family-friendly Kite Flying event for the spring. Everyone loves it and there are all sorts of kite-making activities and more.  There is also a contest for the kites.

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Bond Park also contains an outdoor learning facility which is a ropes challenge course.  The course can be reserved for large groups, for team building exercises, birthday parties, churches, camps and more.  However, the Park also schedules opportunities throughout the year for individuals to check it out.

Finally, there is a Compost Education Center, as well as the Sertoma Amphitheatre within the Park.  The Compost Education Center is a free self-guided educational area where visitors can learn more about composting, gardening and more.  The Sertoma Amphitheatre offers seasonal performances.

This is just an overview of what awaits you at Bond Park.  It is a great place to go for a day- or even just an hour!  You will never get bored, always find something to do and get lost in right in the middle of Cary.  Have fun!

 

 

CARY, NORTH CAROLINA: WHY DO SO MANY NORTHERNERS RELOCATE HERE?

Throughout the years I have lived in Cary, North Carolina,  I have heard lots of generalized reasons why people relocate here.  Among the top reasons given for relocating to Cary, North Carolina include:

  • employment relocation
  • to take advantage of the excellent schools
  • to have a warmer, more moderate climate
  • to live in a family-friendly locale
  • easy access to the outdoors (mountains to beaches and everything in between)
  • to get a lower cost of living than their previous residential state

I have heard many other reasons as well!  But when you get right down to it, why do so many northerners flock to Cary when relocating? Why is Cary known as the “Containment Area for Replanted Yankees?”

Coming from Long Island, New York, I tried to research this question by asking those “replanted” here from New York.  What is it about Cary that makes it so appealing?  Not surprisingly, many northerners cited to a better quality of life.  Some spoke of the “rat race” mentality they left behind up north. Many sought better public schools, lower taxes and getting more for your tax dollars.  Still others talked about how the traffic congestion was out of control.  Others noted that there is much more you can get for your money here in terms of housing.

Personally, when I lived in New York, I owned an itsy bitsy house that cost me $415,000.  It was a 3 bedroom, 1 1/2 bathroom house.  It had some neat aspects to it- it had formerly been a late 1800’s town elementary school, it had some unique architectural features and a very interesting addition.  But I frequently think to myself- what $415,000 could buy you in a house in Cary, North Carolina, would be astonishing in comparison! I mean, to put it into New York lingo-fuggitaboudit! There is definitely a substantial difference in terms of how far your dollar will go when purchasing a home in Cary- and as a Realtor here, I can vouch for that.

Nevertheless, throughout every conversation I had with my fellow “replanted yankees,” there was one common thread  without exception- regardless of the “why” they relocated to Cary originally, they stayed here because of the strong sense of community among their neighbors and friends.  Undoubtedly, there is a unique hospitality here that us northerners can appreciate- and as time has passed, I have come to see that over and over again. This hospitality is contagious; once you reside here in Cary, you cannot help but emulate what makes this a great place to live.   Perhaps its what one would call “southern hospitality,” but I prefer to see it as a powerful testament to what makes Cary such a wonderful place to live.