News, tips, and information pertaining to the advantages and options for planning retirement in North Carolina.

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Rocky Mount Continues to Climb up list of Most Affordable Places in NC

Most Affordable Places in NC

After finally cracking the prestigious annual listing of movoto.com’s Most Affordable Places in NC on last year’s rankings and much like the great price you paid to get you fabulous new house at the premiere NC golf community, Belmont Lake Preserve, the cost efficient living in the town of Rocky Mount continues to garner attention as this year, they moved up the list nearly ten spots from their 2016 ranking.

Gathering information on any municipality with a population of at least 10,000 residents in the “Tar Heel State” to compile the Most Affordable Places in NC list each year. The criteria used was based upon six different categories in determining which were the Most Affordable Places in NC, with improved scores in each area this year helping to see Rocky Mount climb up several spots from last year’s tally.

Several of the categories which aided in the climb up the list of Most Affordable Places in NC for Rocky Mount were first and foremost the affordability of its “miscellaneous costs.” This area was based upon the cost of the area entertainment, clothing, repairs, and restaurant options, and for the first time in the history of the Movoto poll, Rocky Mount moved into the top ten in this category, statewide. Likewise, the affordability of a beautiful new home, like the one you and your family are enjoying along with the area’s most spectacular on site amenities at Belmont Lake Preserve, played a major role in Rocky Mount’s improved score for 2017, as it was 13th statewide in this category.

Other categories in which were analyzed in making the final decisions on which were the Most Affordable Places in NC by Movoto included, utility costs, unemployment rank, food costs, and overall adjusted income per household, in all of which areas, Rocky Mount scored better than they did just one year ago.

To see the final results including a listing of the municipalities included in this year’s top 50 Most Affordable Places in NC, visit movoto.com.

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Art Classes in Rocky Mount : “Sculpting” a Family Friendly Community at the Imperial Center

Art Classes in Rocky Mount

Moving from the winter moths and into the Spring, the temperature is not the only thing seeing an increase here locally, as in this first of a three part series, we will look at all the influx of activities being offered in Downtown Rocky Mount, heading into the month of February and beyond. Whether you are a toddler or a senior citizen, if your preference is science, art, or theatre, just a few minutes up the road from your new home at the premier North Carolina golf community, Belmont Lake Preserve, the Imperial Centre for the Arts open up their schedule with numerous options for Art Classes in Rocky Mount for all ages.

This first part in our three part series will look specifically at the Art Classes in Rocky Mount this month at the Imperial Centre, which is located at Gay Street in the heart of downtown. For starters, those ages 12 and up that wish to catch the “acting bug,” this Spring can partake in “Intro to Acting: Auditions and Scene Study.” Described at the official site of the Imperial Centre as “the perfect class for the beginning actor or for experienced actors who want to sharpen their skills. This class will focus on how to prepare cold scenes at auditions as well as how to dissect scenes into beats and make strong choices in the audition, rehearsal, and performance process.” This class begins this upcoming Thursday, February 9 and runs each Thursday night from 6:00-7:30 pm until March 16.

Whether acting and performance art is your thing, or whether your preference is to express your creativity on canvas, the Imperial Centre has you covered with Art Classes in Rocky Mount for all. “Intro to Painting,” also starts this Thursday, February 9 and ends on March 16, running from 6:00-9:00 pm weekly. In this class, anyone age 13 and older can learn to “Study the language of painting.” Technique, materials, and elements of art are all topics focused on in this course, as you learn to build a better understanding of different mediums.

For those looking for some fun activities that the whole family can partake in, look no further than the Art Classes in Rocky Mount and the “Paint Together: Family Workshop.” This will take place this Saturday, February 11 from 1:00-4:00 pm at the Imperial Centre, and up to 3 family members ages five and up can “explore the basics of painting as a family” at this workshop. Working with acrylic paints, family members will work together on a project and leave with a beautiful piece of art to hang at home as a memory of what is certain to be a fantastic day of fun together.

Yet another genre of art will be focused on at another of the Art Classes in Rocky Mount offered at the Centre, as on consecutive Saturday’s, February 11 and 18, the sculptor under your roof can come out and “use their hands” as part of “Intro to Clay: Functional Wares.” A variety of items will be created at this truly, “hands-on” two session workshop and it is open to anyone age 14 and up.

The Art Classes in Rocky Mount offered up during the upcoming month are just a few of the fantastic things that everyone in the house hold can enjoy. For further information, ioncluding special lower rates on these courses for Rocky Mount residents, visit the Imperial Centre website here.

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A “Day for the Dogs” at Rocky Mount Community Event

Rocky-Mount-Community-Event

Taking a cue from the success of a similar Rocky Mount Community Event, “Paws in the Park,” the city’s Parks and Recreation Department invite pet owners and their dogs to be a part of the first ever “Splash Bark,” being held just up the street from your new home at Belmont Lake Preserve NC golf community at Sunset Spray Park on Sunday, September 18.

This unique Rocky Mount Community Event will feature many fun activities for you to enjoy with your dog throughout the three-hour festivities. These would include many of your favorite Sunset Park activities that you’ve come to love over the years, including taking a ride through the park on the train, circling around the carousel, and of course cooling off while splashing around with “man’s best friend” in the spray park.

This very special day for a pet and his owner begins at 2:00 pm. and wraps up at 5:00. Upon arrival to this Rocky Mount Community Event at Sunset Park it is asked that you and your pet enter through the concessions building. Also, for obvious safety precautions, a proof of your dogs’ rabies vaccination is required for entry. Your dog will be required to be on a leash in all areas of Sunset Park except for the spray park area, where they are free to splash and frolic at this Rocky Mount Community Event, “leash-free.”

In discussing the first ever “Splash Bark” event recently with the Rocky Mount Telegram, Event Organizer Alex Langley said, “We have a vibrant and excited dog lovers’ population in our community.” Langley continued, “Events like this enable us to provide increased activities for our four legged friends and their owners.”

For further information on “Splash Bark,” or any other upcoming Rocky Mount Community Event, visit the “Splash Bark” Facebook Event page or contact Alex Langley at alex.langley@rockymountnc.gov.

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Rocky Mount Economic Development Continues on Upswing with Huge Announcement of CSX Terminal

Rocky Mount Economic Development

With an influx of new jobs and businesses coming to town, Rocky Mount Economic Development continued on a huge upswing last week with the announcement that Rocky Mount has been selected as the location for an all new $272 million CSX rail-to-truck terminal project that will bring about 900 jobs to the area and another 1,500 state wide.

Announced on July 19 in a press conference held next door to the Belmont Lake Preserve North Carolina golf community, at the Dunn Center by Governor Pat McCrory, was the news of the project’s financial awards that were unanimously approved by the state’s Economic Investment Committee. These include $110 million from the N.C. Transportation Department in performance incentives, $4.3 million in Job Development Investment Grants, and $7.8 million in intermodal tax credits. Ensuring the huge spike in Rocky Mount Economic Development is the fact that for CSX to receive the above incentives, they must invest $160 million into the Rocky Mount facility by 2024, meet all local hiring goals and keep 876 jobs that are already in the state.

CSX CEO, Michael Ward spoke on the selection of Rocky Mount for the 500 acre terminal, which will transfer freight containers that hold a variety of consumer goods between trains and trucks by electric cranes before being  sent to their drop off destination. Ward noted that the ideal location, the growing industrial market in Rocky Mount, and its existing CSX rail operations all weighed into the project that will be a huge boost to Rocky Mount Economic Development.

Leonard Wiggins, the Chairman of the Edgecombe County Board of Commissioners spoke on several topics that residents may have been wondering about following the CSX announcement, as he had recently toured a similar facility in Ohio. “We stood right under this massive crane and you couldn’t hear it operate,” he offered up clearing the air for any residents who may have worries about any noise disturbances. Wiggins went on to remind residents that the terminal will also bring Rocky Mount back to its roots. “This is a railroad community,” he said. “ Railroad lines in Rocky Mount date back as far as 1840.”

This latest project in Rocky Mount Economic Development, the terminal, will be known as “The Carolina Connector” will also bring more public benefits and economic output for both the Rocky Mount community and the surrounding area. The Carolina’s Gateway Partnership noted that more than $310 million in public benefits and upwards of $125 million in statewide economic output. Gateway Partnership CEO, Norris Tolleson spoke to the huge effect this will have on the Rocky Mount Economic Development and the surrounding municipalities, stating, “This is the beginning of a new era of quality jobs in the Twin Counties.

The terminal is set to open for business in 2020 and CSX will host two open house events for the public to find out more and ask any questions they may have about the project. These will be held on Wednesday, July 27 at 6-8 pm at the Edgecombe County Administrative Building in Downtown Tarboro and on Thursday, July 28 in the Brown Auditorium at Nash Community College in Rocky Mount from 6-8 pm.

(Photo Credit: Nate Beal)

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Belmont Lake Preserve NC named among the Best Lake Communities in the US by Ideal Living Magazine

NAMED ONE OF THE BEST LAKE COMMUNITIES IN THE US

Best Lake Communities in the USThe premier North Carolina golf and retirement community, Belmont Lake Preserve has been selected by Ideal Living magazine as one of 2016 Best Lake Communities in the US among retirement living areas.

The recognition as one of the Best Lake Communities in the US for 2016, comes following a year that saw Belmont Lake Preserve as the recipient of several accolades. Most recently, the Rocky Mount NC golf community was named to the prestigious “Short List” by Where to Retire magazine as one of the 50 Best Master Planned communities in the United States. Likewise, the spectacular 18-hole, David Johnson Golf Design, Belmont Lake Golf Club weighed heavily into the community being honored by Ideal Living last year as one of 2015’s Best Golf Course Communities in the nation.

In their listing of the Best Lake Communities in the US, which will be featured in the upcoming annual “Best of the Best” Summer edition of Ideal Living, the selection process was based on the following ideas. “For many active adults, the appeal of lake living is in the availability of boating, fishing, swimming and other water sports. Other retirees may wish to live lakeside in order to enjoy the serenity offered by living near a peaceful, natural setting.” Given Belmont Lake Preserve’s 1400-acres of scenic, forested land which is set around the beautiful 80-acre Belmont Lake and the wide array of both on-site and near by outdoor living options, its inclusion among the Best Lake Communities in the US would come as no surprise to those familiar with its stunning natural beauty.

where-to-retire-50

Also Named among the 50 Best Master Planned communities in the United States

In addition to its beautiful natural setting, the resort like amenities at Belmont Lake Preserve also make it an obvious choice for this and the other recent accolades received by the North Carolina Living community. The luxurious, BLP Community Clubhouse features both an indoor and outdoor swimming pool, a state-of-the-art-fitness facility, a billiards and game room and much more. The Golf Clubhouse with a full golf pro shop, indoor and outdoor dining facilities, the highly acclaimed “Main Course at Belmont” restaurant and on staff PGA professional, Tim Wilke is equally as impressive, as is the aforementioned golf course, which has been named among the Top 100 to Play in NC and as one of the Best Course Designs in Eastern NC.

For more information on the upcoming “Best of the Best” edition of Ideal Living magazine to feature the Best Lake Communities in the US, visit ideal-living.com. To plan a visit or get more information on available homes, home sites, or floor plans at Belmont Lake Preserve, visit here.

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Rocky Mount Health Care Facility Recognized as “Cutting Edge”

Rocky Mount Health Care

A major decision that one has to undertake before deciding on where to relocate to in their retirement years is the quality and convenience of the available health care facilities and services. Making the Belmont Lake Preserve North Carolina retirement community is an easy one as there are several state-of-the art hospitals near by, including the Nash UNC Rocky Mount Health Care facility which was just honored for the second consecutive year by Blue Cross Blue Shield as a “Cutting-Edge Hospital.”

Blue Cross Blue Shield’s recognition of the Rocky Mount Health Care facility was detailed in a recent issue of Business North Carolina magazine. Particularly impressive were the accolades dealt out from the representatives of Blue Cross Blue Shield in regards to the Nash UNC Rocky Mount Health Care facility’s Nash Surgical Weight Loss Center and Joint Replacement Center. Citing their reasoning behind bestowing the honor on the Rocky Mount Health Care facility, the expertise of the hospital’s medical staff and the impressive track record of positive results were noted.

Additionally, Nash UNC Rocky Mount Health Care was evaluated on overall patient satisfaction and the willingness of said patients to recommend Nash UNC to others. Larry Chewning, President of Nash UNC Health Care, spoke enthusiastically with the Rocky Mount Telegram newspaper on the recognition, noting that it “reflects thousands of hours of clinical experience, expertise, and patient satisfaction.”

Chewning continued on, heaping praises and beaming with pride in talking about his employees. “Our team members work hard to provide high quality care for our patients, and we couldn’t be prouder of their achievements,” he concluded.

Nash UNC Health Care is located in Rocky Mount, under ten minutes from Belmont Lake Preserve at 2460 Curtis Ellis Drive, for more information on all their departments, services, and facilities visit their website at nhcs.org.

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Win a free Lifestyle Redefined Discovery Package by visiting the Belmont Lake Preserve booth at the Ideal Living Retirement Expo

Lifestyle Redefined Discovery Package

Come visit the team from the premier North Carolina golf and retirement community, Belmont Lake Preserve, this weekend at the Greater DC Ideal Living Home and Retirement Expo in McLean, Virginia, being held both Saturday and Sunday at the Tysons Corners Ritz Carlton Hotel, as we will be giving away a free “weekend getaway” each day, allowing for you to come and enjoy our Lifestyle Redefined Discovery Package. (To find us, just look for the image above at our booth!)

The Ideal Living Show is free to attend, and will run from 10:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m on Saturday and 11:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. on Sunday. In addition to giving away two of our Lifestyle Redefined Discovery Packages, we will also be offering a special deal on the “weekend getaway” to Belmont Lake Preserve, as any of our visitors who sign up are eligible to select a date of their choosing with in the next six months and receive 20 percent off the normal $199 price of the package and come experience North Carolina Living for for $159 per couple.

The Lifestyle Redefined Discovery package includes:

  • 2 days and one night accommodations
  • Your choice of either a round of golf for two on our championship 18-hole golf course or a personal one-on-one instructional session with our on-site PGA professional, Tim Wilke
  • Full VIP access to all our great amenities including the Community Clubhouse with an indoor and outdoor pool, a game room featuring billiards, and a state of the art fitness room.
  • A fine dining experience for two
  • A private real estate tour of Belmont Lake Preserve
  • A guided tour of Rocky Mount attractions

In addition to the giveaway and discounted Lifestyle Redefined Discovery Package, there will be a multitude of information at the booth on the premier North Carolina golf and retirement community, Belmont Lake Preserve. Stop by and see us at 1700 Tysons Boulevard at the Ritz Carlton and let us help you begin your discovery of “Lifestyle Redefined” at BLP. If you can’t make the show, you can still see all the great stuff being offered and sign up for our “Discovery Package,” at belmontlakepreserve.com.

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Expansion at Belmont Lake Preserve: Another Reason to Retire in NC

Retire in NC

With over $10 million already invested into the spectacular 1,400 acre North Carolina golf community, Belmont Lake Preserve, the Maryland-based, Halle Companies, continues in its beautification and expansion of the Rocky Mount property. The most recent part of the expansion plan is the Villas at Belmont Lake, an 83-home development aimed to suit the needs of Northeast transplants as well as commuters to Rocky Mount and current residents nearing retirement or getting ready to Retire in NC.

Retire in NC

The outdoor swimming pool at the BLP Community Clubhouse

A recent article penned by Rocky Mount Telegram staff writer, Corey Davis, detailed the optimism shared by both the Halle Companies and the support and appreciation shown by the surrounding Rocky Mount community in speaking of Halle’s investment in the property to date and the further expansion of Belmont Lake Preserve giving people even more reason to Retire in NC.

Halle Companies assistant vice president, Eric Rifkin, spoke with the reporter on a variety of topics, beginning with the Villas at Belmont Lake and how the company is trying to help give a boost to the housing market across the entire area. “It’s going to be patio homes or ranch-style homes going into that subdivision (the Villas). We’re not going to be building 83 homes at one time…we’re going to build as buyers come.” Rifkin went on to say, “After the lots are completed, we’re hoping sales will start to pick up in the area. We understand that Rocky Mount doesn’t have a lot of sales every year…and our biggest goal will continue to be driving traffic and driving sales in the area.”

Retire in NC

A spectacular over head shot of Belmont Lake Golf Club

Rocky Mount Mayor, David Combs, also spoke in the Telegram piece, detailing the positive impact that the Halle Companies purchase has had and that he foresees it continuing to have on the local community. “They’ve made major investments here and they’re going to keep investing in Rocky Mount,” Mayor Combs said. “They’re adding to the tax base by building homes and building lots.” He concluded, “From a city perspective, as Belmont continues to develop, its like new industry coming here.”

Later in the article, Rifkin shared in the Mayor’s optimistic take on great things that lie ahead for the community and spoke of the continued beautification of Belmont Lake driving both locals and commuters in addition to those relocating from out of state to want to come to Rocky Mount to Retire in NC.

“We have a beautiful piece of property and we hear a lot of things going on potentially downtown that is extremely reinvigorating for the area,” Rifkin stated. “We hope since there are people living in the Triangle and commuting to companies like Pfizer, Cummins, and Honeywell that they will start to look at Belmont Lake Preserve and see that they can drive five minutes and be back home in this beautiful community.” He concluded, “We’re definitely trying to capture those people.”

Retire in NC

Delicious crab cakes one of the signature dishes at the Main Course at Belmont restaurant

Since being purchased by the Halle Companies, Belmont Lake Preserve, has under gone an incredible face lift, catching the eye of baby boomers across the nation who are looking to Retire in NC as they were recently named by “Where to Retire” Magazine among its prestigious annual list of the Top 50 Master Planned Communities in the United States.

Among the vast improvements seen at Belmont Lake since the Halle purchase is the gorgeous, new, 12,000 square foot Community Clubhouse, complete with both indoor and outdoor swimming pools, a state-of-the-art gym and training facility, and dining and hosting facilities. Equally as impressive, is the Golf Clubhouse, complete with a full pro shop facility, an on site PGA professional available for instruction, and one of the top rated restaurants in the area, The Main Course at Belmont, serving a full breakfast, lunch, and dinner menu seven days a week.

Retire in NC

The pro shop at the BLP Golf Clubhouse

Adjacent to golf clubhouse is yet another investment that may entice many to Retire in NC at Belmont Lake, the Belmont Lake Golf Club. A David Johnson Golf Design 18-hole championship course, Belmont Lake has been named to the “Top 100 to Play” in the state of North Carolina and proves to be a fun, yet challenging course for golfers of all skill sets.

For more on Belmont Lake Preserve including available homes, floor plans, and full details on all the incredible on site amenities, visit www.belmontlakepreserve.com .

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North Carolina named Top U.S. Growth State

Top U.S. Growth State

Many north easterners and transplants from all across the country are moving to beautiful neighborhoods like Belmont Lake Preserve NC golf community and others across the “Tar Heel State,” as evidenced is the annual report done by U-Haul naming North Carolina as the “Top U.S. Growth State.”

Although the state only ranks ninth over all in actual population, which according to a July 2015 U.S. Census estimate for North Carolina is a little more than 10 million people, there has been a consistent growth, with a 4.3 percent increase between 2010-14. This is over one percent higher than the national average during this same time frame.

U-Haul bases its ranking of North Carolina as the Top U.S. Growth State on its posting the biggest net gain of of one-way U-Haul truck rentals entering a state versus the number which have left the same state during the past calendar year. This data was compiled for this years listing of the Top U.S. Growth State from a total of over 1.7 million one-way U-Haul truck rentals that occurred between January and December of 2015.

Several U-Haul representatives did not seem surprised in the least with North Carolina being named ad the Top U.S. Growth State for 2015, as the President of the company’s Central North Carolina operation, Jason Grider noted. “I am not surprised to hear North Carolina is the number one top growing state,” he said. “North Carolina is a great state to live and work. I think people are drawn to the state because of the strong economy and job opportunities, the climate, and the diversity of the people and state as a whole.” He concluded, “From the Atlantic Coast to the lakes and Appalachian Mountains, we have much to offer and opportunities for everyone. The growth is not limited to certain areas. We have seen tremendous growth all over the state.”

Echoing his sentiments was the President of U-Haul’s Raleigh base, Paul Smedberg, who added, “The temperate climate and overall quality of life that North Carolina offers is contagious. All the metro areas, including Raleigh, Durham, Charlotte, Greensboro and Winston-Salem have experienced steady growth. It doesn’t appear to be slowing down any time soon.”

For the complete listing of the Top U.S. Growth States, visit myuhaulstory.com.

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3 Ways to Achieve your Active Lifestyle in Rocky Mount NC

Active Lifestyle in Rocky Mount NC

One of the biggest attractions in the decision making process to relocate and retire among today’s baby boomers is the access to an active lifestyle they desire. “Lifestyle Redefined” at Belmont Lake Preserve NC retirement community is more than your new, beautiful custom home and our 18 hole championship NC golf course. It is also more than just staying fir and leading a healthy life, as at Belmont Lake, “Lifestyle Redefined” is also making it easy for you to achieve the Active Lifestyle in Rocky Mount NC that you desire through a variety of on and off site amenities in addition to the great stuff going on socially around the area.

Tar River Walking and Paddle Trail

The scenic and historic Tar River Trail runs directly along its namesake river, stretching through the city of Rocky Mount from Sunset Park in the West, to Martin Luther King, Jr. Park in the East. Perfect for a refreshing hike, an invigorating bike ride, or just a leisurely stroll to enjoy the beautiful surroundings, the Tar River Trail gives you countless options for Active Lifestyle in Rocky Mount NC. In addition, with over 20 miles of waterways connecting the Tar River and Stony Creek and ten canoe and kayak access locations, the Tar River Trail also offers a chance to enjoy outdoor living on the water as well.

Rocky Mount Senior Center

Right in the heart of downtown, the Rocky Mount Senior Center is the perfect spot for whatever route you may choose in achieving an Active Lifestyle in Rocky Mount NC. With a state of the art fitnesss center, an indoor pool, gymnasium, and an outdoor 1/5 mile walking track, staying fit is fmade easy and un at the Senior Center. Also boasted a game room with billiards, a card room and computer lab featuring 8 computers all with internet access and outdoor space for horseshoes, bocce, and shuffleboard, whatever your choice in recreation, you are covered here. The Senior Center also offers a variety of programs for 55 and older visitors to find their Active Lifestyle in Rocky Mount NC, including day and overnight trips, educational classes, workshops, and clubs.

Outdoor Events

The feeling of community that is synonymous with “Lifestyle Redefined” goes above and beyond the options to stay fit and healthy and also includes the undeniable community feel that is undeniable Rocky Mount and the surrounding area. With a wide variety of outdoor events throughout the calendar year, there is a little something for everyone offered socially with in minutes of Belmont Lake Preserve. With Rocky Mounts’ “Downtown Live” or “Lawn Chair Theatre” concert series’ throughout the Spring and Summer months, the family friendly holiday events held year round or the highly anticipated annual Eastern Carolina BBQ Throwdown held each Fall, having a good time with familiar faces and new acquaintances is always just minutes from your front door. For the full city of Rocky Mount events calendar visit there website at rockymountnc.gov.