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Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina facts for kids

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Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina
Seaside town
Ocean Isle Beach Fishing Pier
Ocean Isle Beach Fishing Pier
Motto: "Unchanged"
Country United States
State North Carolina
County Brunswick
Township Shallotte Township
 • Total 4.5 sq mi (11.7 km2)
 • Land 3.4 sq mi (8.8 km2)
 • Water 1.2 sq mi (3.0 km2)
Elevation 12 ft (4 m)
Population (2010)
 • Total 550
 • Density 162/sq mi (62.7/km2)
Time zone Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP code 28469
Area code(s) 910
FIPS code 37-48700
GNIS feature ID 1004781

Ocean Isle Beach which is also called Ocean Isle is a small seaside town located in Brunswick County, North Carolina, United States. The population was 550 at the 2010 census. It is part of the Myrtle Beach metropolitan area.

Located at the southern end of North Carolina's Atlantic Ocean coastline, with access to the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway, Ocean Isle Beach is a tourist attraction with many beach houses, as well as various tourist attractions.


Ocean Isle Beach is located in southwest Brunswick County at 33°53′40″N 78°26′20″W / 33.89444°N 78.43889°W / 33.89444; -78.43889 (33.894558, -78.438895). The town occupies the entire barrier island of Ocean Isle Beach, extending 5 miles (8 km) from Tubbs Inlet on the west to Shallotte Inlet on the east. The town also extends north onto the mainland along North Carolina Highway 904.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 4.5 square miles (11.7 km2). 3.4 square miles (8.8 km2) of it is land and 1.2 square miles (3.0 km2) of it (25.21%) is water.

Ocean Isle Beach
Ocean Isle Pier
Ocean isle Beach
View of the Atlantic Ocean from Ocean Isle Beach

Known as the "Gem of the Brunswick Islands",. Ingram Planetarium offers an 85-seat domed theater with learning experiences on astronomy, energy, navigation, and space exploration. The Museum of Coastal Carolina offers dioramas on coastal life, a touch tank, and a science hall.


Ocean Isle Beach was incorporated as a town in 1959.

The town was the scene of a massive house fire on October 28, 2007, which claimed the lives of seven students staying in the house at the time.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1960 5
1970 78 1,460.0%
1980 143 83.3%
1990 523 265.7%
2000 426 −18.5%
2010 550 29.1%
Est. 2015 597 8.5%
U.S. Decennial Census
Ocean Isle Beach NC Bridge over Intracoastal Waterway Jun 10
Bridge over Intracoastal Waterway

As of the census of 2000, there were 426 people, 209 households, and 141 families residing in the town. The population density was 124.2 people per square mile (48.0/km²). There were 2,507 housing units at an average density of 731.0 per square mile (282.2/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 98.59% White, 0.94% Native American and 0.47% Asian. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.47% of the population.

There were 209 households out of which 11.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 62.7% were married couples living together, 2.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 32.5% were non-families. 25.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 5.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.04 and the average family size was 2.40.

In the town, the population was spread out with 10.3% under the age of 18, 5.4% from 18 to 24, 17.8% from 25 to 44, 45.3% from 45 to 64, and 21.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 53 years. For every 100 females there were 99.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 97.9 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $67,639, and the median income for a family was $65,625. Males had a median income of $37,188 versus $22,188 for females. The per capita income for the town was $42,605. About 3.5% of families and 4.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including none of those under age 18 and 5.9% of those age 65 or over.

Parks & Recreation

Brunswick County will soon break ground on a new 58-acre (23 ha) recreational park on the mainland. The Town of Ocean Isle Beach donated the property and the county has set aside $3 million for the project. When completed, the new park will offer a variety of amenities, such as an amphitheater, festival grounds, ball parks, lighted tennis courts, and biking trails. This recreational park will be located on Old Georgetown Road abutting the Ocean Ridge Plantation community and is part of a $500,000 federal grant for parks throughout the county. Other projects scheduled is the Shallotte Blvd Recreation Area, which is a joint project between Ocean Isle Beach Land Conservancy and the Town of Ocean Isle Beach. The park will be at Shallotte Blvd and the ferry landing at the East end of the island. The recreation area will have a gazebo, picnic tables, a fishing pier, and a walkway with steps to the sand.

Best Restored Beach Award

The American Shore and Beach Preservation Association named Ocean Isle Beach the winner of its 2008 Best Restored Beach Award. Ocean Isle Beach's quest for a federal beach restoration program began after Hurricane Hugo devastated the area in 1989. The town lobbied members of Congress for federal funding and opened a capital reserve savings account to provide the local share of funding necessary for restoration. Coastal engineers began the project in 2001 and provided high-quality sand for the beach and created a deeper channel for boaters. Judging for the award was based on three criteria: the economic and ecological benefits the beach brings to its community; the short and long term success of the restoration project; and the challenges each community overcame during the course of the project.

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