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10 South Carolina Festivals
From the Upcountry to the coast – and everywhere in-between – South Carolina communities are celebrating with a variety of annual festivals. So whether you’re looking for great food, music, arts, culture, or simply something new to discover, check out these top South Carolina Annual Festivals:
1. Save the Light Oyster Roast
Charleston kicks off the New Year with the Save the Light Oyster Roast, held on Bowens Island in January.
The festival was created to save the Morris Island Lighthouse (hence the name), and does so with a full day of music, food, beer and wine, and more.
2. Bike Week
For days each May, the scenic coastal community of Myrtle Beach hosts one of the regions largest motorcycle rallies. Join the hundreds of thousands of festival goers as they partake in a variety of festivities, including races, live music, street vendors, festival food, and more.
3. Sweetgrass Cultural Arts Festival
Only in SC will you find an event like this one. The Sweetgrass Cultural Arts Festival in Mount Pleasant celebrates the longtime SC-only art of Sweetgrass basket making with an assortment of activities.
The day’s festivities include all things Sweetgrass, and also a diverse lineup of entertainment, storytelling, food, dancers, and so much more, all at Waterfront Memorial Park.
4. Lowcountry Oyster Festival
Mount Pleasant features a one-of-a-kind seafood festival of its own, the Lowcountry Oyster Festival, taking place in January each and every year at the Boone Hall Plantation.
Over 30 years old, the Lowcountry Oyster Festival draws in thousands of visitors for its live music, beer and wine selection, kids’ area, tons of great seafood, and the world-famous oyster shucking and oyster eating contests.
5. South Carolina State Fair
Perhaps the biggest – definitely the oldest – festival in South Carolina, the South Carolina State Fair features all the classic state fair amenities you know and love, and more, all at the fairgrounds in Columbia.
Everything from big-name concerts and Midway rides, to festival food, shopping, art, culture, and so much more comes to central SC for over 10 days, and has been for over 100 years. What are you waiting for?
6. Beaufort Water Festival
Over 50 years old, the Beaufort Water Festival is a favorite among southeastern mariners, typically drawing huge crowds to the seaside city of Beaufort.
The festival features a slew of activities and aquatic-themed fun, including sailboat races, water ski shows and competitions, an arts and crafts market, and so much more, all at near the Henry C. Chambers Waterfront Park in downtown.
7. Fall for Greenville
Over in SC’s scenic Upcountry, Greenville hosts Fall for Greenville each October, bring food, fun, and culture together for several days.
Even better, the street festival is free of admission; don’t miss the culinary treats on display from over 40 local restaurants, craft beer samples, live entertainment, and more, all across downtown Greenville.
8. Hilton Head Island Seafood Festival
Way down south, the Hilton Head Island Seafood Festival brings a variety of family-friendly festivities to Hilton Head Island for several days in March.
Almost a decade old now, the HHISF transforms Shelter Cove Community Park into a hub for entertainment, great food from area chefs, kids’ fun, and plenty of hands-on activities, like silent auctions, crab races, and more.
Greenville gets festive again in the spring as Artisphere brings over 100 premiere visual artists from all around the country to celebrate culture and the arts of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
Enjoy the wealth of juried art exhibitions, hands-on fun, live entertainment, beer and wine gardens, and, all hosted for one creative weekend in mid May at various locations throughout Greenville.
10. Jubilee: Festival of Black History & Culture
For nearly 40 years, the Jubilee: Festival of Black History and Culture has brought together regional artists, musicians, performers, and more for a full day of cultural festivities. The celebration is hosted at the Mann-Simons Site in Columbia. Don’t miss the countless performances, great food, heritage site tours, and more.
Enjoy these popular events in South Carolina
South Carolina State Fair
Held in mid October, the South Carolina State Fair is an annual event in central South Carolina in the capital city of Columbia. Held appropriately at the South Carolina State Fairgrounds, the SCSF has been around since 1839 and today draws over 500,000 attendees.
The 10-day South Carolina State Fair features everything from grandstand concerts with major headliners to free events like the Swifty Swine, the Prince & Princess Pageant, and the Greatest Grandparent Ceremony. Then of course there’s a carnival, great food, rides, and much more at SCSF.