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New In Town? Five Stories To Welcome You To The Tar Heel State!

An image of North Carolina 'Welcome Sign'
J. Stephen Conn
Flickr Creative Commons


North Carolina has much to offer newcomers. From the coast to mountains and everything in between, the state is a place for food, fun and plenty of adventure. Where is the best barbeque? What is that accent? Who are the stars of bluegrass?


Below find five stories that highlight the Tar Heel state’s distinguishing qualities. And even if you’ve lived in North Carolina your entire life, take a look at the list of some of your state’s gems.

And you can take WUNC on the road as you travel across the state. Stream WUNC live on our website or listen on:

Chapel Hill (Triangle): 91.5 FM

Manteo: 88.9 FM

Rocky Mount: 90.9 FM

Welcome: 91.1 FM

Fayetteville: 91.9 FM


What They Missed In Chapel Hill’s ‘36 Hours’


The New York Times visited Chapel Hill, NC for its “36 Hours” series and checked out local spots like Neal’s Deli in neighboring Carrboro and the Ackland Art Museum. Some of the local favorites WUNC's audience suggested as places The Times missed included Merritt’s Store & Grill, Mama Dip’s and Cat’s Cradle. Chapel Hill has the cuisine and entertainment to make new residents feel right at home.


Check out the story here.


Below is a video from the New York Times' about the trip to Chapel Hill:


What Makes A Food Quintessentially North Carolinian?


A lot of the places the New York Times “missed” turned out to be restaurants. North Carolinians value their food. But what does food from North Carolina look and, more importantly, taste like?


Check out this interview with “Barbecue Man” Bob Gardner as he offers some of the state’s culinary landmarks you can’t miss.


Talkin’ Tar Heel


North Carolina has three distinct regions: the Coastal Plain, the Piedmont and the Mountains. But the three areas are home to many different dialects. Researchers documented the diversity of dialect and what it means to be “talkin’ Tar Heel.” If you don’t want to stick out as a newcomer, learn how locals pronounce "Beaufort" or "Robeson."


Listen to the different dialects as the researches talk about their study here


Bluegrass is “Living in Raleigh Now” With World of Bluegrass Festival


Bluegrass music is a staple of North Carolina’s cultural tradition. Recently, the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) chose Raleigh as the new spot to bring its World of Bluegrass festival. IBMA executive director Paul Schiminger told WUNC that Raleigh stood out as a good place for the festival.


“It’s given the IBMA a whole new visibility really in the community of Bluegrass itself. Where we had one in the past, but this really took it to another level.”


Check out some highlights from last year’s World of Bluegrass here as you prepare for Fall 2015’s festival.


Belly Up To The Bar And Meet NC Brewers


From Wicked Weed Brewing in Asheville to Front Street Brewery in Wilmington, the Tar Heel state has more than 100 breweries supporting 10,000 jobs. Wherever you are in the state, a brewery is likely nearby, refueling roadtrippers state and providing residents with hops-filled fun.


The list is just a small sampling of what makes North Carolina great. What are your favorite parts of the Old North State?  What advice do you have for newcomers?


Charlie Shelton-Ormond is a podcast producer for WUNC.
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