Story Ideas for Media


    Johnston County becoming a Wedding Destination


    The Barn at Broadslab offers 5,000 space for weddings at Broadslab Distillery.Brides have discovered several historic homes, horse farms, and wineries in Johnston County are perfect for their wedding special day. Located just 30 minutes east of Raleigh, the state capital and Raleigh/Durham International Airport, wedding guests will find our destinations easily accessible.

    Preston Woodall House in Benson, NC is an award winning historic bed and breakfast with a 3,000 sq. foot ballroom and several cottages for guests.  The Farm Entertainment Complex, The Barn at Broadslab and Portofino Horse Barn are three rustic options for brides, along with Hinnant and Gregory Vineyards for lovely outdoor ceremonies.


    Girls Weekend a Great Value in Smithfield, NC


    Kate Spade Outlet now open in Smithfield, NC, at Carolina Premium Outlets.Friends and family have discovered you don't have to spend a fortune at resorts to get-a-way for some shopping therapy, chocolates, spas, and some quality time together for a fun weekend.  The Girls Weekend in Smithfield offers 15% off hotel room rates, and gift bags filled with deals, coupons, discount admission from the Ava Gardner Museum, chocolates and more savings at the largest outlet center in Eastern North Carolina, Carolina Premium Outlets.  


    The BWST has been updated again!


    Fainting Goat Brewing Co. now open in Downtown Benson, NC.The Johnston County Beer, Wine, and Shine Trail continues to expand its offerings with the new Fainting Goat Brewing Co, and InStill Distillery opening in 2019. There are now seven stops along the trail and the Sip and Stay Package helps visitors plan a fun weekend visit to the county. The trail first began with FREE gift offers for visiting the stops on the trail, and that's back! Visitors receive a free gift from the Visitors Bureau with four stops, and if all seven are visited they can choose a swag item from their favorite stop. 


    From Our Farms to Your Fork


    Salad with farm fresh vegetables from Under the Oak Cafe restaurant in Smithfield, NC.Agri-tourism may be a new term for travelers, but Johnston County has celebrated our farming heritage for over 60 years beginning with the Annual Benson Mule Days Festival. This history asserts itself anew in the growing number of chef-owned restaurants in the county serving up fresh and local ingredients in delightful dishes.  The newly opened Under the Oak Cafe restaurant in Downtown Smithfield, is our first farmer-owned table restaurant offering upscale dining.


    Celebrating Memory, Music, Love, & Life


    Ava Gardner photo of local Hollywood star from Smithfield, NC.Travelers of all ages continue to flock to the Ava Gardner Museum in Smithfield, where the community pays tribute to one of Hollywood’s brightest stars. From humble beginnings in Johnston County to starring in 59 films, Ava is known around the world as one of the most beautiful women ever to work in Hollywood. In 2019 the museum unveiled a new exhibit called Ava: My Real Story  with a new interactive kiosk showcasing more of the stories of who Ava was as a person, not the movie star.

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