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Southport Museum to Hold Hurricane Series

SOUTHPORT — The North Carolina Maritime Museum here will begin Monday a free, monthly hurricane series to address all aspects of storm planning and recovery.

Originally planned as a one-time event, Education Curator Katy Menne and Museum Director Lori Sanderlin began planning for a hurricane-focused town hall and then quickly realized how much important information there was to share with the community.

“When we got to the end of our list, we realized it was going to take too long to cover all of it,” Menne said.

The Southport waterfront along Bay Street in the wake of Hurricane Hazel, which made landfall on Oct. 15, 1954. Photo” N.C. Maritime Museum collection

The museum’s six-month series parallels the stages of hurricane impact: preparing for a storm, living through one, recovery and reflection.

The first program in the series, Hurricane Huddle, is from 5 to 7 p.m. June 24 at the Southport Community Building, 223 E. Bay St.

“The first is the biggest: things to do before a storm has even formed,” Menne said.

Officials from agencies including the state Department of Public Safety, Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office, Red Cross and the Southport Police and Fire departments will be there to offer guidance for current and for future hurricane seasons. The new Southport Animal Protective Services will also be on hand with information on registering your pets and protecting them during storms.

“We are trying to make sure it’s city, county and state officials for the largest reach as possible,” Menne said. “We are trying to bring as many people in the field as possible.

“As we move through the season, we get more specific.”

Hurricane Help 5-7 p.m. July 29 in the Southport Community Center will bring in experts from the state Office of Archives and History in Raleigh to share advice on caring for important papers and heirlooms in the face of storms and on protecting them in general.

Are meteorologists and news anchors will offer a behind-the-scenes look at tracking storms and keeping the community informed during Hidden Hurricane from 5 to 7 p.m. Aug. 26 at the Southport Community Center.

Hands on Hurricanes will be from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sept. 14 at the museum and offers a sneak preview of some of the interactive aspects of the updated “Deadly Dozen” hurricane exhibit. That updated exhibit, which includes first-hand accounts of storms past, officially debuts as part of the Horrific Hazel portion of the hurricane series at the museum on Oct. 12, just days shy of the 65th anniversary of Hurricane Hazel’s landfall. The exhibit is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The series wraps up with Hurricane Headache 5-7 p.m. Nov. 25 in the Southport Community Building, featuring a panel presentation with professional restoration and recovery personnel offering tips and advice on moving forward after a storm.

“This has been done, not in this capacity, but the community typically does something like this,” Menne said. “But it’s not been done in a couple of years. We’re excited to be able to help the public out.”

For more information on the series or museum, call 910-477-5150 or visit the website.