Island Gazette

Island of Lights 2011 Christmas Card Sold out & Ornament Available at Checkered Church

The 2011 Island of Lights Christmas card and ornament are now available for purchase at businesses in Carolina Beach The design for this year’s card and ornament is the fifth in the series of ‘Island Creatures’.  The designer is Mary Ellen Golden. Watercolorist Mary Ellen Golden, a native of Rose Hill, NC, now lives in Wilmington. She began painting in oils and worked in acrylics before discovering the excitement of the watercolor medium. She finds that “the beauty in the natural world around us is my favorite subject. We experience all sorts of beauty in flowers– color, shape, fragrance, the associations and memories which come crowding in. This seeing and feeling experience is the most important part of being an artist.” In 1977, Mary Ellen moved from Charleston, SC, to Wilmington and opened a studio gallery in The Cotton Exchange. She teaches classes in watercolor technique and has co-authored an instructional video entitled Watercolor Can Be Easy. She is a member of the Wilmington Art Association, the Watercolor Society of North Carolina, and is an Associate of the American Watercolor Society. Her work appears in many corporate and private collections throughout the world. More of her work may be viewed on her web site: As she has done since 2001, Mary Jo Madden is continuing to hand paint her wonderful ornaments for the Island of Lights.    She is a talented tole painter and has been selling her work locally for many years. The cards are $10 per pack of twelve and the ornaments are $12 each. They can be found at local businesses in Carolina Beach including the Checkered Church.This sale is a major fundraiser for the Island of Lights.  We deeply appreciate our many loyal customers. We hope to keep our island ‘glowing’ during the Holiday Season for years to come.
Look for the announcement of the Card and Ornament reception which will be held in September.  Mary Ellen and Mary Jo will be available to autograph cards and ornaments at that time. The Island of Lights group is a non-profit organization was created to promote tourism on Pleasure Island during the off-season.  Over the past twenty plus years they have made Pleasure Island one of the top spots to visit during the Christmas Holiday and through New Year’s Eve.  The list of available activities occurring during this time is one that all the family can enjoy. The Island of Lights members volunteer their time and help to organize the Light up the Lake Celebration, the Christmas Parade, the Holiday Flotilla, the Tour of Homes and the New Year’s Celebration.  During the non Holiday season, the Island of Lights Fashion Show has become a popular event.  The group is always in need of more volunteers.  To join, just come to any meeting.  The meetings are held the first Tuesday of every month at the Carolina Beach Community Center at Raleigh and 3rd Streets at 7 PM.  For more information, visit
Available Locations include: Checkered Church Gift Shop at 806 Saint Joseph,, Frame Mart & Gallery/Yankee Trader at 1009 N Lake Park Blvd, Jeanne's Jewels Etc at 807-A  N Lake Park Blvd, Touche at 201 N Lake Park Blvd, True Value Island Tackle & Hardware at 801 N Lake Park Blvd, Shops at Squigleys at 208 S Lake Park Blvd; Sumthin Beachie - 809 N. Lake Park Blvd., Caroilina Beach.


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