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A Little About Washington's History and the Pamlico River
Washington, NC is the county seat of Beaufort County in eastern North Carolina. Beaufort County was settled by colonists from Virginia in the 1690s on the north shore of the Pamlico River. The Pamlico River, which originates in Washington, was formed by the joining of the Tar River and Tranters Creek just west of town.
The town of Bath was the first choice of settlers in the area, which led to Bath becoming the first incorporated town in the state. A settlement in Washington developed a little later and was known originally as Forks of the Tar, referring to the Tar River. The town would later become the first town in the nation to be named after our first president.
Over time, Washington's commercial waterfront surpassed Bath and the the town became a major port of trade by the late 1700s. Feel free to visit our ABOUT WASHINGTON, NC page for a brief history of the area.
Washington's Waterfront Today
Stewart Parkway on Washington's waterfront has been the scene of a dedicated improvement effort since the late 1960s. Today it is the venue for a myriad of festivals and activities throughout the year. These activities, new and old, are eagerly awaited and enjoyed by many each year.
The North Carolina Estuarium in Washington is an excellent example of what our waterfront area has to offer. With several hundred exhibits, it helps to educate its visitors about "where the rivers meet the sea." The River Roving pontoon boat tours have proved to be a very popular activity and are offered often.
The Washington Summer Festival has been a wonderful activity since the early 1980s. Stewart Parkway is blocked off and all types of vendors from kiddie park rides to an Apache attack helicopter. There is food from all backgrounds, arts and crafts for sale with the Pamlico River as the backdrop. One of my favorites is the antique "hit or miss" John Deere power unit which is hooked to a homemade ice cream maker. Good stuff on a hot summer day!
The same is true in the fall with Smoke on the Water, which for years has been a barbecue cooking competition. There are also other attractions for the visitors while the "pigs are getting ready!" One of my favorites here is the auto show, which includes everything from antiques to muscle cars. As Emeril says, "Pork Fat Rules!"
Another of my favorites downtown is Music in the Streets, where musicians are invited to set up on the downtown sidewalks on the third Friday of the month in the warmer months. Drastically different music genres will be performed just down the street from each other. This is one of those things that "just works" and has for over a decade now. It's neat to see people dancing in the blocked-off streets. Bring your Penny Loafers, there might be a beach music band!
If you would like to broaden your horizons, searh here for waterfront homes all along the Pamlico AND Pungo Rivers.
Waterfront Homes For Sale in Washington, NC