Running. Winging. Shopping.

By Molly Harrison | Tuesday, November 8, 2011
Cheer on a runner this weekend in the Outer Banks Marathon.

Can you feel that? That nagging sense that no matter what you're doing right now there's something else you should be doing? Something that is going to snowball into something larger and more fearsome the more that you ignore it? Maybe you're only experiencing this if you're female. And older than 30. * It's Christmas shopping! * Men seem to be somehow immune to the fear of Christmas shopping until December 22. But if you're a working mother like me, with only six weeks left until Christmas, that panicky feeling is slowly taking over. It keeps me up at night, my mind already starting to obsessively compile lists of what to get and how to go about it...

I do have a somewhat clearer plan of attack this holiday season: buy local, or regional or, if that's not possible, at the very least Made in the USA. My other plan, and I hope I stick to it, is to shop early. My goal is to finish my Christmas shopping in November so I can enjoy the month of December having fun with my kids...

To set me out on that laughably lofty (if you know me) goal on the right foot, the local shopping opportunities are lining up quite nicely this week. Not only are the local stores open and offering up winter sales, but also there are several specialty shopping options coming up. * The Outer Banks Mommy and Me Mom's Market is Wednesday from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at TRIO in Kitty Hawk. * Shopportunity Knocks, in which several shops from Duck (Plum Crazy, Luxury, Barr-ee Station and more) bring their goods to Front Porch Café in Nags Head, is also Wednesday, from 2 to 7 p.m. * St. Andrews By the Sea Preschool is also having a Shopportunity on Wednesday from 11 to 1 p.m. to benefit the preschool. You'll find jewelry by Stella & Dot, bags by Thirty One and kitchen stuff by Pampered Chef. * I'll be at all three of those events...

On Saturday, the Outer Banks Jewelry Expo is at Roanoke Island Festival Park in the Art Gallery from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Some of the most well-respected local jewelers will be doing demos, showing and selling their work. Not to be missed! * The Manns Harbor Holiday Craft and Gift Show is Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Manns Harbor Community Center. You'll find handmade crafts galore plus a raffle to benefit the Volunteer Fire Dept. They're accepting donations for Angel Tree too. * The Indie Crafters Cornucopia sale is Saturday from 4 to 9 p.m. at the Cozy Kitchens Showroom at 921 Kitty Hawk Road in Kitty Hawk. This is a great gathering of eclectic Outer Banks artists and it's fun...

Now, there are a few things that can get my mind totally off the Christmas list. One is running and the other is doing something outside in nature. So I've got some big distractions from my shopping list this week: the Outer Banks Marathon and Wings Over Water Wildlife Festival. * These are two huge events on the Outer Banks, so expect to see a great influx of visitors here toward the end of the week...

The Outer Banks Marathon weekend attracts more than 5,000 runners, only a small portion of them local. The big 26.2-mile marathon and the 13.1-mile half-marathon are on Sunday. Head out to the streets to cheer for the runners. They really appreciate it and it makes them want to come back (which, in turn, helps our community on so many levels). * On Sunday expect delays along portions of the Bypass as part of the race course is on U.S. 158, especially in Nags Head. Expect definite delays on the Washington Baum Bridge to Roanoke Island on Sunday. One lane of the bridge is closed for runners, and that bottlenecks the traffic for a few hours. Don't complain about that, though. Remember that the Outer Banks Marathon events are charity events. They benefit the Dare County Education Foundation and the Outer Banks Relief Foundation; in other words, our schools and our people in need. * The Sunday races end in downtown Manteo, where there's a big fun festival with live music, food and more...

On Saturday, the Marathon weekend is centered at the First Flight High School Track. At 8 a.m., there's the Outer Banks 8K. At 9:30 a.m. it's the Bucaneer 5K. There's also a Fun Run and Diaper Dash and big festival going on at the track that morning. * If you need running shoes or clothes or anything sports-related, runner or not, be sure to stop by the Race Expo at the Dare County Youth Center in KDH on Friday and Saturday. There are some great deals to be had. * Race and Expo volunteers are still needed, by the way. * For info on anything related to the marathon weekend, go to www.obxmarathon.org...

The other big deal this weekend is the Wings Over Water event. This festival features scores of guided programs including birding, paddling, hiking, photography, history and nature in all the wild area of the Outer Banks, from refuges to national parklands to swamps to marshes to the sounds and beaches. For a complete list of programs and their locations, go to www.wingsoverwater.org. Registration is still available. Check out the list of programs; you'll be astounded at all there is to offer, and most of them are family friendly...

Here are a few more things going on this week that you should know about:

The Outer Banks Health & Wellness Expo is Thursday at the Dare County Youth Center in KDH. From 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. there will be health-related products and services, flu shots, health screenings, educational displays and much more. The Youth Center is on Mustian Street, beside the tennis courts behind Outer Banks Brewing Station. Call (252) 441-8144 for information...

Friday is Veterans Day. If you know someone who has served the country, be sure to thank them for their service. * Schools and most government offices are closed on Friday. * BTW, The Whalehead Club is letting veterans visit the club for free on Friday, and the Wright Brothers National Memorial is open for free for everyone on Friday...

Christmas present idea for the anglers/boaters in your life: Pirate's Cove's Fishing Tackle Flea Market is Saturday morning from 7 to 10 a.m. You'll find used fishing tackle, boat accessories, boats, ATVs, golf carts, marine equipment, hunting gear and more. Sounds like a good place to Christmas shop. Call (252) 473-1015 for info...

Here's something superfun and surprising to find on the northern Outer Banks! In Corolla on Saturday, it's the Mustang Music Festival to benefit the Corolla Wild Horse Fund and Food for Thought. Held at Mike Dianna's Grill Room, the festival will host 11 bands on two stages from noon until midnight. The line up is fantastic: Donna the Buffalo, The Pimps of Joytime, Tom Principato Band, Mercy Creek, The Critters, End of the World Blues Band, Paul Rowlen Project, Hound Dogs Family Band, Natalie Wolfe, Andy Begina, and The Brass Roots Swill Band. Food and beverages will be by Mike Dianna's Grill Room, Metropolis, Coastal Cantina and Cosmos Pizza. Tix are $45 and you get up to $10 off with a donation to Food for Thought. Go to www.mustangmusicfestival.com...

Next Tuesday, don't miss The Outer Banks Peace and Justice Interfaith Coalition's Documentary Film Series presentation of "The English Surgeon." This is a remarkable depiction of one doctor's commitment to relieving suffering and of the emotional turmoil he undergoes in bringing hope to desperate people. The film is free at Kelly's at 7 p.m. but they'd love a donation...

So this is only a small highlight of this week's events. You'll have to look around the site in our By Day and By Night sections to see the full list of events. We've got more events than ever listed these days, so check it out. And look at the weeks in advance because there's a lot of good stuff coming up for the holidays...

Well, I'm off to do a little shopping, run in the Half-Marathon and see some birds and animals at Wings Over Water. I love the Outer Banks in the fall!...

About the Author Molly Harrison
Molly Harrison is managing editor at OneBoat, publisher of OuterBanksThisWeek.com. She moved to Nags Head in 1994 and since then has made her living writing articles and creating publications about the people, places and culture of the Outer Banks. When not working she practices and teaches yoga and spends as much time as possible outside and in or on the water with her husband and two children.