Meet Moore People: Michael Stamets

Meet Moore People is a series dedicated to the people we meet each day but do not really know; people who make Moore County a great place to live and work.

Say “hello” to Michael Stamets!

Stamets is a North Carolina native born in Randleman who now lives in Vass off U.S. Highway 1. His mother’s father was from Cameron, Charlie Phillips, and he grew dewberries.

Stamets sells kayaks, boats, and campers and repairs them, too.

“I sell a lot of pontoons for people to use as boat docks. They are popular,” Stamets said about his business. “But I’ve lived before off twenty-five dollars a week.”

Stamets has lived in tents over the years. However, he has gutted a 1958 20 foot Avion camper and is refurbishing it to live in.

He lives off-grid and uses a generator only for power tools. He uses wood heat and says his tent gets hot, but in the summer he goes to Neville’s bar in Southern Pines to play pool until midnight when the tent cools off.

There are gutters attached to the tent to collect water, and he has two chicken tractors with fat, healthy birds for protein, and a garden for fresh vegetables.

His tent has all the makings of a home with a four-poster queen-sized bed, dressers, couch and wood stove. He peeked inside of his tent upon returning from a three-week trip to Montana and said, “It looks like someone’s been in here.” But he said he was not worried about anyone taking anything.

Stamets said he grew up hunting and fishing and had trouble in school because he didn’t like being corralled into things.

His life’s motto is to live like the early Native Indians because he said he has no use for white man’s ways.

“I’ve never voted in my life,” Stamets said.

He has four sons and one daughter.

If you know someone who you think makes Moore County a great place to live and would like to see them profiled in this series, please send your suggestions to [email protected].

Feature photo: Michael Stamets shows off his 1958 Avion under refurbishing Oct. 10, 2021 at his home in Vass.

~Article and photo by Sandhills Sentinel Journalist Stephanie M. Sellers.

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