Recently a reader asked about the off-season, wondering what restaurants and shops are open, and how long into the fall/winter. This is an inquiry that is difficult to answer. Some shops begin closing for the season in October, although several (including Village Craftsmen) stay open through Thanksgiving (when many folks have a long weekend, and we have a 2-3 day rush of business for holiday shopping), and even into December. The island is very slow after Thanksgiving, but has a bit of a bump during the Christmas holiday. Almost all of the specialty shops are closed January, February, and at least part of March, with businesses reopening in April or around the Easter holiday.
It is hard to say much about restaurants, except that most close during the off-season. Most years at least one restaurant stays open during the winter, but not always. It can be cold and blustery. Islanders hunker down to stay warm, have friends over for get-togethers, catch up on reading, and take winter trips.
Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of the wreck of the Victoria S, and Ocracoke's first automobile accident. You can read it here.