Wilmington

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Wilmington, with a population of 106,476 (according to the 2010 Census) is the eighth most populous city in NC. Located on the Cape Fear River, which flows into the Atlantic Ocean, Wilmington is a sizable seaport, including private marine terminals and the North Carolina State Ports Authority’s Port of Wilmington.

Settled by Europeans in the 1700’s, Wilmington has a historic downtown with a mile-long Riverwalk developed as a tourist attraction. Being only minutes away from nearby beaches, Wilmington residents live between the river and the ocean, with four nearby beach communities being within a 30 minute drive from downtown: Fort Fisher, Wrightsville Beach, Carolina Beach, and Kure Beach

In 2003 the city was designated by the US Congress, as a “Coast Guard City”, being home port for the USCGC Diligence, a United States Coast Guard medium endurance cutter. The World War II battleship USS North Carolina is held as a war memorial located across from the downtown port area and is open to public tours. The University of North Carolina Wilmington (UNCW) provides a wide variety of programs for undergraduates, graduate students, and adult learners, in addition to cultural and sports events open to the community.

Wilmington is the home of EUE Screen Gems Studios, the largest domestic television and movie production facility outside of California. “Dream Stage 10,” the facility’s newest sound stage, is the third-largest in the US housing the largest special-effects water tank in North America. Since the studio’s opening in 1984, Wilmington has become a major center of American film and television production.