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Chowan Round-up takes a look at the Sears building, Rotary and otters

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Local law enforcement dined on eggs, sausage and pancakes that were prepared Saturday morning by the Edenton Rotary Club. The fundraiser provides money for scholarships.

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By MILES LAYTON
Staff writer

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

A round-up of all things Chowan County...

First up, the Sears Building on South Broad Street was listed for sale about two weeks ago by Perry & Co. Sotheby's International Realty. Because of the national company's recent financial troubles, I was alarmed that Edenton's store may be in peril, however it is not.

“No, we are not moving and we aren't definitely not closing,” said Dana and Preston Alligood, who own/manage the popular store that is locally owned – independent – from the national chain.

That's good news because Sears is a popular downtown store. Our family bought a dryer and may buy a refrigerator or a bigger kayak from that store when our federal tax return comes through.

Going price for the 21,000-square-foot property – $399,000 – according to Perry & Co. Sotheby's International Realty with a listing that says, “Imagine a 7,000 sq. ft. showroom with full window exposure on the main street of Downtown Historic Edenton. Behind the building is abundant public parking plus a loading dock with excellent access. The back of the store and mezzanine are currently used for storage and office space. There are two additional 7,000 sq. ft. floors with freight elevator and back step access. The showroom has been renovated with freshly painted sheetrock walls, new floor tiles, alarm system and has been rewired.”

Edenton Rotary Club will host a breakfast from 6:30-11 a.m. April 27, at the John A. Holmes High School cafeteria. The meal includes pancakes, scrambled eggs, sausage and drink. Meals cost a $7 donation. Eat-in or take-out is available. For tickets, talk to any Rotary Club member.

The money raised goes toward a scholarship to a top student. Last year, the coveted Edenton Rotary Cup Scholarship was presented to Nev Duruman, a multi-sport athlete who attends UNC Chapel Hill. Who will win the scholarship this year? Stay tuned.

In other matters, the newly renovated McDonald’s looks great and will be celebrating its reopening between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. Saturday, April 6. Feels like the service is faster than before, but maybe that's me. My french fries were hot – very particular about my freedom fries.

Some of the walls are decorated pictures/photographs of Edenton. I'm not sure what the wall paper depicting an ancient stone wall was all about – reminded me of something Biblical or from the Southwest. Instead, I think I would have chosen a mural of Edenton Bay or the 1767 Courthouse to decorate that wall.

As with the McDonald’s outside Tarboro and other places, there is a kiosk indoors where you have the option of choosing to order your own food without talking to a cashier. Some folks may like that system, but I'm old school – I want to talk to a real person when ordering food.

Saturday, I saw Keith Ammons and his family at Wal-mart in Elizabeth City. Ammons is a key organizer of the annual Back to School Bash that provides backpacks and school supplies for students in the Edenton-Chowan Schools prior to the start of the school year. That's an excellent program.

As to Ammons, he works for Regulator Marine which has expanded so as to add 64 more jobs to our area. When adding those jobs to the ones Colony Tire and Jimbo’s Jumbos have created from their company's vigorous expansion, Chowan County continues it long tradition of having a strong business presence in eastern North Carolina by God's grace.

Saw Shepard-Pruden librarian Jennifer Finlay working out on the “good” exercise bike Saturday at the YMCA in Elizabeth City. Worth noting, if you are a member of the Y, you can use facilities from Kitty Hawk to Windsor.

Mayor Roland Vaughan and company safely returned to Edenton from their trip last week to Seattle for the Main Street Now Conference. A quick conversation with Vaughan – he's glad to be back. Who can blame him? Thank God we are not Seattle or any other large city for that matter.

So as to take advantage of the weather, the mayor and his wife Peggy Anne Vaughan were walking around downtown with her grandson Fletcher and his friend Hudson is from Raleigh. Peggy Anne talked about life in places near and far as it relates to life in our town. She said, “If you embrace Edenton, it will embrace you.” True words. Edenton is a sanctuary city of down home values, civility, civic pride and getting to know your neighbor.

I used to aspire to work and live in a large city. Nope. Never again. Though people, usually folks living in big cities, say the population is declining in rural areas, I suspect that as time marches on and the urbanites get sick of the heavy traffic, high taxes, crime and stepping around human waste (poop) and on busy streets, there will be a mass exodus for the country.

Lots of turtles are sunning themselves deep in the Shrek meme known as Queen Anne Creek. Also, my wife saw a couple of otters swimming in the bay one morning. And the squirrels are out too. Those small white flowers by Frances Inglis home are blooming.

According to reliable sources, the coyotes are back, so be careful outdoors after dark and be sure your pets are protected.

Last note, some folks have asked who is the editor — my wife or me? Short answer — Nicole is. She drew the short straw. As for me, I’m taking life one day at a time, reconnecting with my family and more. That said, please send any news tips to mlayton@ncweeklies.com.

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