Cape Fear Pride Pleasure Island: Kure Beach Fishing Pier
Stretching 711 feet into the ocean, the Kure Beach Fishing Pier connects the shoreline to the depths below. Bill Nolen fishes at the pier and said, “Whether you catch anything or not, its just being out here, and enjoying God’s creation.”
Since 1923, the pier has been the center of the town and a cornerstone of good times. Just ask Sherwood Witman who has fished on the pier since 1965. “Oh yeah, a lot of memories, lot of plans, met a lot of friends down here and I’ve seen a lot of changes over the years.”
The pier itself has changed. It has weathered storms, been completely knocked down by hurricanes Bertha and Fran in the nineties, only to be built back up again.
Mike Robertson bought the pier in 1984 from his dad, who bought it from his father-in-law, L.C. Kure. Robertson said, “To see people enjoying themselves and coming back year after year, that’s what makes it for me. My customers – they’ve supported us, well me, all my life.”
Robertson said it is more than an old pier. Historically it is one of the last fishing piers on the Atlantic Coast, and its home to friendships, fish and fiancées. “It is where they met their wife, it is where they caught the biggest fish they’ve ever caught,” said Robertson.
The pier gets thousands of visitors each summer weekend – not all of them human. And even when the sun’s hiding behind the clouds, it is a fun place to be – and an even better place to work. “I just don’t really want to do anything else. If I had a real job I wouldn’t know what to do,” Robertson said.
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