A Magical Place: Wilmington

If you’re lucky in life, you experience a magical place where your heart feels full. It’s been two years since I’ve visited Wilmington, NC where One Tree Hill and Dawson’s Creek was filmed. Originally my trip was focused on seeing One Tree Hill sites, but along the way I saw a few Dawson’s Creek landmarks. I’m a huge fan of both shows, but seeing the “historic” sites of One Tree Hill was purely a dream come true.

The day we went sight seeing (my parents came too), it took the entire day to see everything on my list and then some. We started with the houses which was very exciting. As we stopped at these spots (more so the houses), we had to be careful because some people do actually lived in the houses.

The houses you see above are Lucas and Peytons’ houses. From what I could see/tell, no one was in these houses; maybe only people who were working inside. It’s mesmerizing to stand in front of these houses where important storylines took place, the moments between Lucas and Karen, and who could forget the Stalker Derek storyline?

The next house was my favorite, and the one I was most excited for:

Brooke Davis.

For 9 seasons, that house represented “the girl behind the red door,” it was a staple for Brooke Davis. By this point in our Wilmington tour, other cars of fans were trailing behind us like we were part of a mini army. As we pulled up, I gasped and all of a sudden I started to cry. Brooke Davis was a character I idolized, the strength and courage she portrayed was beautiful in so many ways. Also, believe me when I tell you, this house is just as beautiful as it is on screen!

There were actually people who lived in this house, so for all my pictures I tried to be as quiet and as respectful as possible; plus people who live in these houses should be used to fans by now.

Another stop that was important was “Tree Hill High.” Continuously, it was surreal to see these sites, the places OTH fans grew to love. By stopping by the school, I kept imagining all the characters that stood in the very place I was standing, it warmed my heart.

Remember the cat fights that Haley got into? Or when Brooke was collecting money for the “poor?” This campus was entirely beautiful, and it wasn’t surprising that this place was a core site for One Tree Hill. Not going to lie, though I am a genuine fan of the show, it was really hard to walk through these places and not look like a creep! After the school, it was stop after stop after stop, and another one of my favorite places was Tric and the infamous bridge that shows up in the credits!

What was completely overwhelming about these two sites was the messages written on the bridge and the walls at Tric. There were quotes, and thank you messages from fans that came from all over just to see a simple place. To write a message was extremely important for me, it felt as those I was making my mark on something historic, something that changed lives everywhere. I stood there on the bridge and in front of Tric desperately searching on my phone for a quote or anything that I could write!

…it had to be perfect of course!

I can’t help but now look back and think about all the music artists that played in Tric:

Jana Kramer

Joy Lenz

Kate Vogele

Gavin DeGraw

Tyler Hilton

Just to name a few!

These were only a few of the artists that were included in One Tree Hill that changed my outlook on music, and they’re always on my playlists. Now, I could talk about every visit I made on my trip, but that’d take all day and be a very long post! My last stop I want to discuss is the infamous Nathan and Haley bench.

We all know the words, “don’t say I never gave you anything,” and it was from there on out, a legendary love story. This was a last minute visit, I had searched online where this bench was, and actually was comparing the photo to be sure it was exact. What also gave me the validation that this was “the bench” was that fans had written messages on it as well. Talk about romantic! This site is not only beautiful, but when you sit there, you feel such love overwhelm you. I surely hope one day I can sit there with the love of my life.

I was extremely sad to leave Wilmington. This city has such simple beauty in its houses, docks and the riverside. I consider myself, even two years later, to be lucky to have had this trip. Did you ever visit a place, and you felt whole? Or you felt like you were home? That’s how I felt visiting Wilmington. Now, when I re-watch One Tree Hill episodes, I catch different places that I have been, and it is exciting to see that. I hope and pray that one day I find myself back there in a place of such beauty and joy. I hope you all enjoyed taking a trip down memory lane with me, and if you haven’t seen One Tree Hill you can get all 9 seasons on dvd or watch it on Hulu. If you all want more One Tree Hill posts, let me know!

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