Schools Out Deck Jam to Benefit Outer Banks Buddies

by | May 23, 2023 | happenings, Experience the Inn

An upcoming June 9 celebration at the Inn on Pamlico Sound in Buxton will double as a fundraising event for one of the Outer Banks’ newest nonprofit organizations, Outer Banks Buddies.

The Outer Banks Buddies is modeled after the national “Big Brothers, Big Sisters of America” program, and 2023 is its first year of operation. Through Outer Banks Buddies, children and elderly residents will be paired with a buddy for a season, (or approximately three months), and will spend at least an hour per week together, discovering new activities and events.

The hope is that kids and adults who don’t get to experience a lot of activities on the island will be able to go out and explore their world while building a new and lasting connection.

“We want everyone to go out and experience what our community has to offer, but we’re also trying to build bonds,” said founder Whitney Dempsey in an earlier interview. “A lot of kids don’t have role models, so this offers both a friend and a role model for our most [vulnerable] community members.”

On Friday, June 9, a special “Schools Out Deck Jam & Outer Banks Buddies Fundraiser” and accompanying raffle will raise donations for the program, which is expected to welcome its first batch of buddies in the fall.

The Deck Jam event begins at 2:00 p.m. and coincides with the last day of school at Cape Hatteras. A Kids Float Party will be held from 2-5 p.m., with lifeguards on duty, games, drinks, and snacks.

Live Music by SoulONE and food available for purchase will be available from 5-8 p.m., and OBX Sunset Slush will be serving up tasty treats for kids and adults alike.

Donation jars will be stationed at the event, but the big fundraising draw is the raffle, which features dozens of prizes that have been donated by local businesses. “We have 20 donations and counting… it is amazing the number of donations we have received so far,” said Outer Banks Buddies board member Alicia Packer.

A list of ongoing donations can be found on the Outer Banks Buddies Facebook Page, but sample raffle prizes include gift certificates to local businesses and restaurants, gift baskets, sunset cruises and surf lessons, and much more.

Raffle tickets are available for purchase at Kat’s Deli in Hatteras and The Inn on Pamlico Sound in Buxton, or can be purchased from any board member. Raffle tickets are $5 each or 5 tickets for $20.

Donations from area businesses can be dropped off at The Inn on Pamlico Sound’s Front Desk, or interested donors can email

Meanwhile, the Deck Jam is free and open to the public and is an opportunity for the community to celebrate the end of school, enjoy an afternoon on the water, and learn more about the new Outer Banks Buddies organization.

“Growing up here, you realize that this community always looks out for each other, and this is just a way for us to facilitate that,” said Dempsey. “Our slogan is ‘It takes a village,’ and we are that village. People want to help out but aren’t sure how, so we can help with that.”

How you can help, and for more information…

  • The Schools Out Deck Jam & Outer Banks Buddies Fundraiser will be held Friday, June 9, from 2-8 p.m. at the Inn on Pamlico Sound in Buxton. For more information, visit the event’s Facebook page.
  • Raffle tickets are available for purchase at Kat’s Deli in Hatteras and The Inn on Pamlico Sound in Buxton and can also be purchased from any board member. Raffle tickets are $5 each or 5 tickets for $20. Ticket holders do not have to be present at the Deck Jam to win.
  • For off-island community members, donations are also being accepted online via Venmo at

An Island Free Press Article by Joy Crist

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