Did you know that in Corolla you can find a wooden school house and a wooden chapel both built in the late 1800s that are both still functioning today? In fact, in Historic Corolla Village, you will find the original buildings and homes from the first inhabitants, their outhousings, and the original light house guard home. Off of the main highway 12 in Corolla, you will see signs to turn left to the charming historic village. Be prepared to stroll along the dirt road, take in the wooden signs, scrub oaks and the charming history of this quaint town that takes you back to a simpler time.
While the buildings are in fact historic, the village is not. Lots of time, energy and resources have been dedicated to preserving the buildings while bringing the area into a more modern area.
The former one room schoolhouse now houses Waters Edge Village School- a K-8 charter school where 36 children engage in multi-age learning. It was established in 2012 to provide a locally based educational opportunity for children who live in Corolla who previously were bused 2.5 hours each way to the mainland Currituck County Schools. While the lessons are modern, the charm remains with children selected to ring the old-fashioned school bell at the beginning and close of each day.
Down the lane you will find Corolla Chapel which has expanded from its small beginnings but retains the original interior walls and many furnishing. The 100+ year old church still holds weekly services and is the home to many weddings each year. If you are visiting around the holidays, be sure to pop in and see the charming Christmas décor.
Surrounding the school and church are many outbuildings and homes that have been converted to markets, retail stores, restaurants, beer gardens and salons. You can start your day with a fresh pressed green juice from The Juice Jar, browse for a book in the locally owned Island Bookstore, check out the handmade items at Altwood, treat yourself to a massage at Lovie’s salon, and then stroll over to the Beer Garden for an evening cocktail and live music.
Whatever you do, do not miss the opportunity to visit this quaint little village on your next trip to Corolla. Whether for an hour or a full day, it is sure to bring you back in time to the good ole days.