With July Fourth upon us, the beach is beckoning this year - good news for North Carolina's tourism industry.
AAA Carolinas predicts a 12 percent increase over last year in Fourth of July holiday travel. And along the coast, businesses say they're seeing more tourists than in the past two years.
Returning customers are cause for celebration at spots like Johnnie Mercer's Pier at Wrightsville Beach. "It's wall-to-wall just about all day long," said counter clerk Bob Wilson.
It's too early to tell whether the trend will carry through the summer - school hasn't been out that long. But Caroline Meeks, who runs Victory Beach Vacations in Carolina Beach, said her rentals recently jumped again after a strong early spring, then a lull in May.
Read the complete story at charlotteobserver.com