One Night at Frying Pan Tower

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Published Sep 17, 2020, 4:00 AM

Frying Pan Tower was once the first light of the Cape Fear, serving as a light station 32 miles off the coast of Southeastern North Carolina to warn mariners of the dangers of Frying Pan Shoals.

Today, it has been retired by the U.S. Coast Guard and is well past its prime, but a group of owners and volunteers are working against rust and time to preserve and restore it for the future.

This special episode was recorded live on deck of Frying Pan Tower, featuring a interview with former owner and current non-profit director Richard Neal, who talks about buying the tower a decade ago, how they are working to preserve the structure and what life is like on the 135-foot tower.

To donate or register to volunteer at Frying Pan Tower, visit

Cape Fear Unearthed is written, edited and hosted by Hunter Ingram. Additional editing by Adam Fish.

The show is sponsored by Northchase Family Dentistry, Tidewater Heating & Air Conditioning, and Cape Fear Pharmacy.


  • "Cap'n Charlie and Lights of the Lower Cape Fear," by Ethel Herring
  • "North Carolina Lighthouses," by Cheryl Shelton-Roberts and Bruce Roberts
  • Historic information provided by
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  1. Cape Fear Unearthed

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Cape Fear Unearthed

StarNews Media Presents "Cape Fear Unearthed," a podcast digging into the history books of Southeast 
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