Home in the Heart of Cary

My father’s side of the family originally settled in North Carolina from England back in the early 1700’s, you can’t get much more native than that for immigrants.  My father’s job took us away from North Carolina but we came back when I was 9, to Wilmington.  I came back to the Triangle when I […]

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My husband and I moved to Cary from Santa Rosa, Ca in 2015. We met and graduated in Georgia and missed the southern roots of the Southeast.

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our piece of Americana

Our kids have fallen in love with our piece of Americana tucked near the heart of the Triangle. Our family enjoys the great parks, art programming, and sculptures found around town. We love visits to Ashworth’s, serendipity, Fresh, Annelore’s, Town Hall, and so many others. My daughter loves the number of trains we see roll past downtown daily. We’ve hopped the Amtrak several times for trips.

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The original “Lazy Daze” in Cary

The original “Lazy Daze” in Cary were spent searching for arrowheads, playing in the woods, fishing or rowing at the pond with cousins, riding horses with friends, going to the garden each afternoon (with a hoe in hand to be ready for the copperheads!) to pick the vegetables for dinner that evening,  selling extra vegetables at the end of the driveway to anyone who drove by, watching the sunset while eating ice cream under the carport, then falling asleep to the sounds of cicadas and crickets through the open windows.

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Enjoying the Downtown Park

A summer night full of music, food, and laughter was had by myself and four kids at the downtown park. A beautiful Carolina blue sky was our backdrop and the new downtown park and library made the evening festive. The kids had a great time listening to the music and even took a picture with […]

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Generations in Cary

Where does this story end? The next generation rises to start their life story. At age 25, Anne and her husband buy their first house in Downtown Cary, right down the street from the home we lived in when she was born.

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Memories from the 1950s

I remember walking to then Adams Pharmacy (Ashworth’s) and getting a Coke for 5 cents and later a chocolate nut sundae for 25 cents. I remember this is also where we stood in long lines to get booster shots in the summer. It was at this same drugstore where Mr. Heater taught me to NEVER go downtown with rollers in my hair.

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Becoming Caryites

Apartments were very scarce in the summer of 1959. We looked at one small apartment in the Sally Breeze house located across from the school. It seemed small and was on a busy street. By chance we went into Ashworth’s Drugstore and talked to Ralph Ashworth. He told us he had heard that the Hailey brothers were building apartments on Cedar Street.

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Cary’s Amazing Staff

I want people in the future to know how amazing the staff of Cary government is, from the manager to the firefighters to the planners. The talent level and dedication to the community in this group is unparalleled.

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Sharing Cary’s History

In 2014 I found myself interviewing (virtually, before that was even a thing!) for a job not only in downtown Cary, but a job that would have me sharing Cary’s history with the world.

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Bird Yoga

One of my favorite places in Cary is the wetland on the White Oak Creek Greenway. Early one spring morning, I went there to look for migratory birds.

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Royal Ties

My family, the Upchurches and the Stones, were granted the land where Preston is from the King of England

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From New Delhi to Cary

We were so mesmerized by the city that my entire family including my brother and parents decided to move to Cary. Since then it has been our home…very excited to be part of the cultural melting pot, a city that we call home, Cary!

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Appreciation for Cary’s Historic Treasures

When my wife Elaine and I announced we were moving to Cary in 1999, her grandfather was very excited due to the fact that Carey was a family name and he thought there might be a tie. I don’t know that I ever fully corrected him, but we took it as a good sign.

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Northwoods Elementary Talent Show

Growing up in Cary, NC was amazing. My fondest memory consists of my elementary school, Northwoods Elementary, where all of my teachers were amazing. The atmosphere was so fulfilling! I loved this school!

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Cary in the 1970s

We moved to Cary from upstate New York, thank you IBM, in 1974. We lived off of Walnut Street, a two-lane road, with no traffic lights.

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On a Road to Nowhere

Growing up in Cary was a lot of fun. In high school, when my best friend and I would hang out on a weekend night and didn’t want to go home quite yet, we drove around and around and around the traffic circle on Seabrook Avenue, under the water tower, playing “Life is a Highway!”

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Enchanted by the Page-Walker Hotel

I was destined to be a North Raleigh resident until one of my co-workers asked me and my husband if we’d like to house-sit for him while he took a 2-year temporary overseas assignment.

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Cary’s First Cultural Art Supervisor

We came in 1978 so that my husband could join a law practice with then Cary town councilman, Charles Montgomery. We knew Cary was a booming town with many opportunities and would be a good place to raise a future family.

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Living the Sweet Life

In 1989 we were looking to buy our first home to start raising a family. We drove to Cary from Chapel Hill to scout out what it had to offer a young couple.

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Feels Like Home

My family moved to Cary, North Carolina from Louisiana about seven years ago. My son was just a baby at the time.

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51 Years and Counting

I moved to Cary in 1970 from Minnesota to start a job with Superior Stone Co., a division of Martin Marietta Corp. as a corporate pilot. The population was 7,500 in 1970 and Cary was just starting to grow.

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A Moment of Peace

The first time I came to Cary, I was living in Baton Rouge. When my son needed a special medical treatment in 2003, I flew up here to stay with my cousins in Apex for two weeks.

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Bonding at Bond Park

The year was 1990. I moved to Cary and started 7th grade at East Cary Middle School.  My family moved from Newport, NC.  When we moved here Crossroads wasn’t built yet, but there were plans to.

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A Community of the Arts

My first experience with Cary was in 1995. I had taken a job working for GTE Mobilenet (now Verizon). The office was first in Morrisville, but a year in we were moved to a brand-new building off of Western Parkway. I lived in Raleigh at the time but was fascinated by the quaintness of the Town. Being single I opted to fill my time with a part-time job, first working at the Papa John’s across from NC State. It was grueling. Between the two jobs, I worked 70-80 hours a week. So, I quit the Papa and applied for a front desk customer service position at Jordan Hall Arts Center in early 1999 and got an interview. A couple of months later, I got a call to start there in April.

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Enjoying the Trail

Our family moved to Cary in the summer of 2017. We love the outdoors, and Cary offers us beautiful parks and greenways to explore. We hike and ride our bikes through gorgeous forests. After renting a house for two years near the SAS campus, we decided to buy a house in south Cary near Apex. We have access to a beautiful lake, walking trails, and more greenways and parks. Cary is a beautiful place to live, work and play!

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Surprise Visitor

Like so many, ours was a company transfer in 1972 from Pittsburg, Pa.  We were given 2 trips to scope out the area & schools and find a home.  After many miles on the rental car and many hours checking out all the towns in Wake County, Cary stood out – friendly folks, lots of trees, attractive neighborhoods, great colleges, and the potential for growth – population then was just over 9,000!

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Kildaire Farms in the 1980s

My wife, kids and I built a new house in Kildaire Farms in 1983. We lived there until we moved to Charlotte in 1986. We moved back to North Carolina in 1982 from New York when my firm opened a new office in Raleigh. We lived in a townhouse off of Six Forks Road in Raleigh while the house was being built. The house was on the greenway on a street named Allison Way.

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Decades of Transformation

Everett and Mildred Sanderford and their three girls – Pat, Everette Claire, and Barbara moved to Cary, NC in 1936. We moved here from eastern North Carolina because my father had acquired a job in Raleigh. We rented one of the two houses on Page Street. There were woods all around our house, and it was a wonderful place to live and play. We lived there for 5 years and during that time bought 3 lots and built a house on Dry Avenue. For 12 years my sisters and I walked a block and a half up Dry Ave (a dirt road) to school.

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Paint the Town

We moved to Cary three years ago and love it! One of the first trips we took around town was to the downtown area. Here is a water color painting I did looking towards the Farmers Market.

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The Polka-Loving Mule

Carolyn, two kids and I moved to Tanglewood Dr. in 1968 when I began as a professor at NC State. Since 1991 we have lived in Prestonwood. In 1971 I founded the Little German Band and one of our first public appearances was in the 1971 Cary Centennial Parade. One of our members arranged for a flatbed truck with straw bales for about 25 of us to ride on.

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Experience the World at Home

I moved to the Triangle area with my family 16 years ago because my parents planned to retire to North Carolina and the area was growing. I am an art teacher and was hired at the wonderful Highcroft Drive Elementary School. My own children attended the school and I continue to enjoy teaching my talented […]

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Home Sweet Home

My mother’s family is from Cary and we are distant relatives to many of Cary’s historic residents, including Cary’s founder Frank Page. My grandparent’s families (Sorrell’s and Johnson’s) lived next door to each other on Cedar Street. My grandfather, Ralph Emerson Sorrell Sr. built them a home (pictured) on Waldo Street in 1947. They raised their two children on Waldo Street, my mother Mickey Jo and her brother Ralph Jr., until they retired to their land on Reedy Creek Road in the early ‘70’s. My parents met at UNC and I grew up in Orange County, only visiting Cary occasionally since my grandparents both passed before I was born.

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True Southern Hospitality

When I lived in New Jersey, I was the chairman of the New Jersey District Youth Committee for the Lutheran Church, which meant I led the church’s youth ministry programs in the state. Every couple years, the North American Lutheran Church hosted a national youth gathering for everyone to converge in one place. We always made a trip out of it, taking a long, circuitous route to see the sights and have some fun along the way.

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Loving Every Minute

Even before I graduated college I knew that I wanted to move to Cary, so when I got a job offer in Raleigh I was excited to start looking. I’ve been here for almost 3 years and loved every minute of it!

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Living an Active Retirement

We came to Cary in 1983. My husband was retiring and we wanted to leave Greenwich, CT and the severe winters behind.  I was surprised when he said “North Carolina” as he was from Indiana and I was from the Boston, MA area.

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Dancing in the Street

I’ve had the privilege of being a Town of Cary employee for almost 10 years. While I’ve held various positions over the years, my most meaningful day in Cary was July 18, 2014. It was our Seven O’clock Rock concert series season’s final concert. It was our Beach Night with Peak City Sound.

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A Place Where Everyone Can Play

My husband and I moved to Cary in 1989, 32 years ago, bringing our Golden Retrievers, Maggie and Gipper, and our cat, Latonya Brownfur, with us from Miami, Florida. Cary was much smaller then and I wondered where I would shop and whether we would ever find a good pizza here. At 9:00 p.m. on any given evening, I could drive down Kildaire Farm Road and be the only vehicle on the street!

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One with Nature

I started working for Hemlock Bluffs as a contract naturalist in 1991. Then took a job as the naturalist for Hemlock Bluffs Nature Preserve in 1993 when the Stevens Nature Center opened to the public. I stayed on with Hemlock Bluffs as a temporary employee even after taking a job to work for the NC Wildlife Resources Commission as a biologist in 1996. Then in 2008 I came back as the program specialist at Hemlock Bluffs, before taking on the job of the supervisor of Hemlock Bluffs in 2014. So now its been 30 years at Hemlock Bluffs.

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The Northern Frontier of Cary

I grew up in Raleigh. After living in Chapel Hill for ten years, we moved to Cary in January 1981. In 1948, my father bought a 43-acre tract of land north of the end of Harrison Ave.

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Living the Good Life

We moved to Cary back in 1998. At the time we had been living in Montclair, New Jersey and both my husband and I spent about 3 hours a day commuting to and from our jobs in Manhattan (and that was a “Good” commute!) We had one daughter and wished to expand our family, but housing, property taxes and the price and time limitations of childcare were all putting a squeeze on our way of life.

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Growing with Cary’s Police Department

In 1989, after finishing a tour in the US Army, I was stocking shelves at night while getting my Criminal Justice degree during the day in Sanford, NC.One night, a coworker told me the Town of Cary was hiring police officers.

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Our Perfect Place

We moved to Cary in 1994 as a result of a job transfer to Research Triangle Park. We looked for homes throughout the area and found “our perfect place” in the Springbrooke neighborhood of Cary.

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Fabulous Greenways and a Place to Call Home

Greetings! My name is Sarah Martin, and I’ve called Cary home for almost 30 years. My husband Brian and I moved here right out of college in Virginia, where both of us grew up. We’ve raised our children here and have had family follow us to the area during our time here.

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Photo of a woman riding a BMX at a skate park in Cary, NC.

Sharing our stories

Our town's history is the shared history of the people, places, and events that brought Cary to where it is today. As we look back on 150 years, we encourage you to share memories of your Cary experience as part of our virtual scrapbook.

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