The Carolina Hotel is so meticulously decorated for Christmas, one might think a merry gang of elves sneak in at night to trim the trees and deck the halls.
In reality, the bulk of the work is done by just two women.
Starting the first Monday of November, Mallory Caddell and Taylor Dykeman begin turning the historic hotel into a winter wonderland.
It takes more than three full weeks of decorating and months of preparation to pull off the annual transformation.
Take a look at the process.
While most people are gearing up to celebrate our nation’s independence, Mallory and Taylor have Christmas on the brain. The women use the Fourth of July as their jumping off point to start planning for the holiday season.
By the end of the month, they typically have nailed down a theme for each of the hotel’s Christmas trees.
While a few of the trees stay the same, most are updated each year.
“We want to keep tradition and some of the favorite trees available to our guests, but we also want to have new trees that have never been done before,” said Mallory, the Resort’s recreation manager. “We’re both pretty creative people, so that helps.”
Here’s what you need to know about Clarkie Carroll:
He’s now 12, and if you watch the video above, you’ll learn Clarkie has battled a rare bone cancer called Ewing’s Sarcoma. Clarkie had half of his right femur removed (that’s where the tumor was), which was replaced by a titanium prosthesis. This resulted in his right leg being a few inches longer than his left.
Clarkie, clearly, loves golf (lacrosse, too), and he performed this trick shot at another Donald Ross course, at Glen Falls Country Club in New York. Clarkie’s grandparents, Tom and Joan Moynihan, live at Pinehurst No. 7.
He also did it after just completing 10 months of chemotherapy.
We’ll pause to let that sink in.
Clarkie’s doing well today, but he’ll be scanned quarterly for the next 5 years. He’s one tough – and talented – little kid.
His dad, Dave, put Clarkie’s toughness into words for us: