Birds of a Feather

Sundae Horn
Birds of a Feather

Rare bird sighting on Ocracoke has island all a-twitter.

Ocracoke resident Kati Wharton awoke last week to a most unusual sight. The pink flamingos had landed, and were congregating in her front yard. 

She read the accompanying notice and learned she’d been “FLAMINGOED!” by the Ocracoke United Methodist youth group.

By the dark of night, a few of the island’s wholesome teens had sneaked onto private property and given it a “pink-me-up.”

As they tell it, their “victims” should “take it as a compliment that [they] were thought to have the humor (or taste) to appreciate this level of lawn ornamentation.”

The kids also offered their services for Flamingo clean-up, at a price. For $15 they’ll remove the birds. For $5 more, the “victim” gets the honor of choosing the next yard to be Flamingoed.

All the proceeds go to support the youth group’s mission trip to Washington. D.C. in August.

Fourteen kids and four adults will be taking the OUMC kids to work with an organization called Pilgrimage. The kids will volunteer at homeless shelters, foodbanks and soup kitchens, and explore the issues of hunger and homelessness. They need to raise $3300 from donations and fundraisers to pay for their trip.

Kati and John Wharton are not alone among the Flamingo-ees. As this goes to press, Jamie and Brian Carter, Newt and Melissa Sharber, and Kay Riddick have all awakened in the pink.  

Kati was excited for her yard to become one of the first Flamingo roosts.

“That's why I posted on Facebook about it, because it made me smile and I wanted to share the fun,” she said. “Later, Leslie Lanier told me that the kids picked me, which made me even happier! Mostly, I was glad to have a fun way to support the youth group and that the visibility of the Flamingos would hopefully lead others to support them, too.”

For more information about the youth group's mission trip, please contact Pastor Laura Stern at or 252-588-2242.

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