The Outer Banks Voice – Court of Appeal rules access to Duck Beach is private


Court of Appeal rules that access to Duck Beach is private

By Michelle Wagner | Outer Banks Voice on April 7, 2021

A North Carolina appeals court reversed a February 2020 decision by a Camden County Superior Court judge, ruling April 6 that access to Sea Breeze Beach in the Duck Subdivision of Sand Dollar Shores is, in fact, private.

Bob Hovey, owner of Duck Village Outfitters, has for years led a crusade for public beach access in the northern Outer Banks town and filed suit in 2019 against the neighborhood homeowners association, claiming that the catwalk was of the public trust.

A staple of the Outer Banks surfing community, Hovey filed suit months after he was arrested and charged with second-degree trespassing in May 2019 while attempting to use access at the end of Sea Breeze Drive.

While noting that the subdivision, easement and owners’ association predated the city’s incorporation, the Court of Appeal’s decision stated, “The city did not seek to establish public access to the beach and generally argues that all beach access points within the city limits of Duck are located on private property.This Court must uphold those private property rights under the law.

The decision goes further and states that the plaintiff, in this case Bob and his wife Tanya, are not barred from the beach. “They can, as the lawyer suggested, negotiate access with [Sand Dollar Shores HOA] or failing that, drive to neighboring municipalities or any unincorporated areas of the county to the north and south that maintain public beach access.

Hovey said in the voice after the ruling that he plans to appeal the court’s decision and is meeting with his attorney on April 8 to determine next steps.

An April 7 statement from the City of Duck, emailed to the voice, read, “The city has been made aware of the recent decision regarding beach access located in the Sand Dollar Shores Subdivision. The City will comply with the Court’s decision and remain neutral regarding this dispute between the plaintiffs and the defendant. »


815 Commercial Park Road
Box 454
Wisconsin Dells, WI 53965,
Case No. 21CV148
106 Charlotte Street
Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina 27948


To each person named above as a defendant:
You are hereby notified that the plaintiff named above Creative Finance, Inc., by its attorney, Christopher M. Kern, has commenced a lawsuit or other legal action against you.
Within forty (40) days of February 21, 2022, you must respond with a written request for a copy of the Complaint. The request should be sent or delivered to the court, whose address is: Clerk of Circuit Court, Adams County Courthouse, 402 Main Street, PO Box 220, Friendship, Wisconsin 53934, and to the plaintiff’s attorney, Christopher M. Kern , 815 Business Park Road, PO Box 454, Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin, 53965. An attorney can help or represent you.
If you do not provide an appropriate response within forty (40) days, the Court may enter judgment against you for an award of money or other legal action sought in the Complaint, and you may lose your right to object to anything that is or may be incorrect in the Complaint. A judgment may be executed under the conditions provided by law. A judgment awarding a sum of money can become a lien on any real estate you currently own or in the future, and can also be enforced by garnishment or seizure of property.
As of February 21, 2022.
Plaintiff’s General Counsel
Signed by: Christopher M. Kern
Christopher M. Kern
Status bar number: 1093883
CreativeFinance, Inc.
815 Commercial Park Road
Box 454
Wisconsin Dells, WI 53965
Phone: (608) 254-6855
Fax: (608) 253-5005
[email protected]



All interested parties are advised that the Commander of the Fifth Coast Guard District has received a proposal from the North Carolina Department of Transportation, with plans for modifying a
existing drawbridge over a United States waterway.

WATERWAY AND LOCATION: Alligator River, Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway, Mile 84.2, in Columbia, North Carolina.

CHARACTER OF WORK: The proposed project is to replace the 2.83 mile long 2 lane swing span drawbridge with a two lane high rise fixed bridge on a new alignment of approximately
2,000 feet north of the existing bridge. The objective of the project is to replace a bridge that is structurally deficient and undergoing significant deterioration, due to its age, and to avoid having to carry out
thorough maintenance of obsolete mining machinery.

The existing drawbridge has a horizontal clearance of 100 feet on each side of the swing span and a vertical clearance of 14 feet above mean high water in the closed position and unlimited vertical clearance in the open position. The replacement bridge will be a fixed bridge with a horizontal clearance of 140 feet and a vertical clearance of 65 feet above mean high water.

A copy of Preliminary Public Notice D05PPN-02-2022, which describes the proposal in detail, can be obtained by calling (757) 398-6222 or by visiting ?pageName=pnBridges . Comments on this proposal should be sent to the address indicated in the notice no later than April 01, 2022.

Those who do not speak English or who have a limited ability to read, speak or understand English can receive interpretation services upon request by calling 1-800-481-6494.
Aquellas personas no hablan inglés, o tienen limitaciones para leer, hablar o intender inglés, podrían recibir servicios de interpretación si los solicitan llamando al 1-800-481-6494.


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