Noni Bacca Winery wears more medals than a star athlete, a decorated soldier, or a door-to-door medal salesman who wears his inventory around his neck. "The first thing you?re likely to notice after the warm greeting is a wall covered with wine bottles all sporting Olympic-like haul of medals," wrote a Star-News reporter of his visit to the Wilmington winery and tasting room. All told, there are 94 medals, each of which attests to the quality of the reds and whites within the bottles.
Noni Bacca Winery's stellar track record isn't a surprise, considering that owners Toni and Ken Incorvaia literally have winemaking in their blood. Both come from European families with long winemaking traditions: Ken's in Sicily and Toni's in Bulgaria. The couple draws on their traditional winemaking background and modern techniques to produce nearly 70 varietals on the premises. For a decadent treat, try a dessert wine such as the Chilly Bear Icewine, an intensely sweet riesling with notes of apricot and lychee.
True to its roots as a premiere Brazilian Jiu Jitsu center, Alliance Fitness Center offers abundant mat space for students to practice grappling and ground-fighting techniques. But the studio goes beyond the mat, offering an array of fitness machines and bags so trainees can achieve optimal fitness. Utilizing all of Alliance's amenities, instructors lead muay thai, boxing, judo, group strength and conditioning, and Brazilian jujitsu classes—the latter two also offer a women’s-only counterpart class for a more supportive environment. Jiu jitsu also offers children an opportunity to learn self defense and anti-bullying skills.
At Carolina Flyboard, visitors hop on a futuristic flyboard?a foot-mounted jetpack that flies through the air using blasting streams of water to create lift. After training under a professional flyboard instructor, guests learn how to maneuver the hoverboard-like device, soaring over open water and defying gravity with flips and tricks.
Captain Brendan Burke is an expert at navigating the waters of the Eastern Seaboard. In addition to competitively racing sailboats in the past, he has spent his life fishing the waters from Massachusetts all the way down to the Florida Keys. With Wilmington Offshore Fishing, Brendan shares his passion for the ocean and maritime sport by welcoming small groups aboard his 28-foot Alemarle center-console vessel?the Sea Wolf?and taking them on 4- to 12-hour fishing charters. These charters usually stay relatively close to Wrightsville Beach, although Captain Burke can lead passengers as far as 100 miles away from the North Carolina shoreline.
Captain Burke teaches amateur anglers the intricacies of fishing by showing them how to rig baits, sharpen hooks, and mimic the call of the wild tuna. However, he also encourages passengers to simply relax, fishing rod in-hand as they enjoy the peace and quiet. The waters teem with marlin, snapper, grouper, seabass, mackerel, and more, providing plenty of opportunities for casual enthusiasts as well as serious fisherman seeking a new trophy.
The photogenic port city of Wilmington, North Carolina, may look familiar to visitors—it’s been the setting of various TV shows and films, among them Dawson’s Creek and Cape Fear. The pristine, natural surroundings are the ideal setting for Mahanaim Adventures, a family-run business helmed by Don and Diane Harty. They make it their job to showcase the natural splendor with which the area flourishes, such as salt marshes, loggerhead sea turtles, great blue herons, and 2,000-year-old bald cypress trees whose cousins' branches are actually covered by toupees. Together, the duo harnesses their extensive outdoor adventure experiences—and even CPR and first-aid certifications—to lead a wide range of nature jaunts, helping participants explore the picturesque rivers, shark tooth–laden islands, and verdant woods during kayaking and backpacking trips.
Cleaved into a dense forest of long-needle pines, Beau Rivage Golf & Resort’s course takes golfers careening across 18 holes of immaculate fairways as they gently undulate into picturesque elevation changes. Towering tree lines, tight doglegs, and intervening water hazards haunt golfers throughout the round, forcing clubbers into multiple blind shots and at least one shot from a tree canopy.
Suites stretching to 900 square feet, replete with a separate common area, kitchenette, and in-room wet bar, overlook the verdant greens. Private patios and balconies proffer views of the lush course, and the hotel's 19th Hole bar and lounge serves libations and heaping helpings of trivia and karaoke. The resort ensures days start off right, dishing out hot breakfast at the Verandah Bar & Grill at 7 a.m. and encouraging warm-ups on the 10,000-square-foot putting green and elevated driving range.