Blackbeard's Pirate Jamboree canceled for 2012

Press Release

Organizers of the First Annual Blackbeard's Pirate Jamboree on Ocracoke and Hatteras have canceled the event for 2012 because of damage done by Hurricane Sandy.

Although it was hoped the event could be rescheduled in November, the damage to Highway 12 north of Rodanthe and the closure of the Herbert Bonner Bridge have restricted access to the island.  In addition, most all of the restaurants and lodgings on the island will close by Nov. 4.

“The fall is gone,” said Daphne Bennink, owner of the Back Porch restaurant, who spearheads the event. “Logistically, it’s just not possible to do now.”

Organizers hoped the event could still go on, but news following the hurricane indicated that this huge storm had again compromised Highway 12, the lifeline to the islands south of Nags Head.

Last year was to be the inaugural year for this event on both islands, but Hurricane Irene in late August and the resulting damage to Highway 12 scuttled those plans as well.

“We had truly hoped to be able to hold the event this year,” Bennink continued. “The initial feeling we had before the storm hit was to try to hold this event, but the scope of this disaster has just been epic.”

During the storm, Ocracoke and Hatteras Islands were flooded, Highway 12 was compromised and the status of the Bonner Bridge was unknown until a few days ago. The ocean is still lapping the road at Rodanthe and another storm is headed up the coast.

“You can only hope these situations bring clarity to the need for a more permanent solution for access here than continual repair of Highway 12,” Bennink said.

Despite this setback, the organizers, Blackbeard’s Pirate Crew – the authentic re-enactment group who was scheduled to do the encampment in Ocracoke, Captain Horatio Sinbad, and the Devilmen of Cape Feare are all committed to doing this event annually, leading up to a grand event in 2018 commemorating the 300th year of Blackbeard’s demise. The dates for Blackbeard’s Pirate Jamboree in 2013 will be Oct. 25 and 26.

Updates will be posted on the website and the Facebook page: Ocracoke/Hatteras Pirate Jamboree.

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