Mayor E. Kirk Rivers

It is indeed a pleasure for me to welcome you to Elizabeth City, a North Carolina river city on the Intracoastal Waterway with lots of small town charm.  We are located on the northern section on the Albemarle Sound, forty five minutes from the Outer Banks and Hampton Roads area of Virginia and on the southern side of the Great Dismal Swamp.  Our location provides us with the conveniences of a large urban area along with the recreational opportunities that come with beaches, rivers, sounds and unique eco-systems.

Elizabeth City is the financial and commercial hub of Northeastern North Carolina and home to one of the largest Coast Guard Air Bases in the US.  We enjoy the benefits of a regional hospital, a municipal airport, three institutions of higher education, a regional museum and an exploding performing and visual arts community.  We are simply a “happening” place and there is never enough time to attend all the events in our town.

Historically, Elizabeth City has not only a rich water tradition with fishing, crabbing, sailing, commerce and serving as the departure point in 1903 for the Wright  brothers to reach the Outer Banks, but we also have a rich agricultural tradition.  Elizabeth City is where the first soybean was processed in the US in the early 1900s and we still have many large farms in the area growing corn, cotton, cabbage and potatoes.  Our annual Potato Festival every May celebrates this rich tradition.

We are also fortunate to enjoy great diversity among our population.  Our history, institutions of higher education, hospital and the Coast Guard provide us with a population that has great racial, ethnic and geographic diversity.  We are also becoming a place that is attracting a lot of retirees.  I can think of several local citizens who sailed into our harbor on a boat, bought a house and have stayed.  If you are in the neighborhood, check us out.  I believe you will say what I hear most visitors say, “This place has the friendliest people of anywhere I have ever been.” 

I hope to see you soon in Elizabeth City – The Harbor of Hospitality!

Mayor E. Kirk Rivers