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Edisto set to savor long summer days and mark the return of fall with full calendar of events

Summer, plus early fall events at Edisto highlight beauty and bounty of the island

Edisto Island, S.C. With the return of seasonal favorites, the Edisto Island and Edisto Beach communities will relish summer days and set the compass for the start of a busy fall season. From fishing tournaments, fresh seafood, local wares, and historic plantations, the full lineup of seasonal events encourages residents and visitors to soak up the natural splendor of this quiet coastal island destination in the South Carolina Lowcountry.

Shortly before the official start of summer, Edisto Watersports and Tackle will hold a Shark Tournament on June 11. A captain’s meeting is scheduled for June 10 at 6:30 p.m. at the Edisto Watersports and Tackle dock. For more information, call 843-869-0663 or visit www.edistowatersports.net.

That same day, the Jim Bost Memorial Fishing Tournament will be held at the Marina at Edisto Beach. This event recognizes contributions made by one of Edisto’s charter captains. More information is available by calling 843-631-5055 or by visiting www.themarinaeb.com.

The Edisto Island Open Land Trust Cocktail Party and Live and Silent Auction is scheduled for June 17 at 6:00 p.m. at the Edisto Beach Civic Center, located at 42 Station Court. For more information, visit www.edisto.org or call 843-869-9004.

As summer heats up, the Marina at Edisto Beach will hold the Invitational Billfish Tournament on July 20-23.  Boat participation includes those taking part in the Governor’s Cup Series in addition to local and regional boats.  Entertainment and other activities are also planned.

In the weeks following, the Marina will host two more fishing tournaments that are sure to lure anglers back on the water, including the Spot Tail/Golf Tournament, with the golf portion hosted by the Plantation Course on Edisto, and the Offshore Fishing Classic, which will allow anglers to take advantage of the abundance of fish available in early fall while competing for some great prizes.  Dates will be released soon. For more information on all fishing events, please call 843-631-5055 or visit www.themarinaeb.com.

Come Labor Day weekend, the Edisto Beach Music & Shag Fest will return. The Fest, now a three-day event, will be held on September 2, 3, and 4, and will take place at Bay Creek Park, located next to the Edisto Marina. Festivities will begin at noon on Friday with arts and crafts, food vendors, and DJ Jim Bowers spinning records until 7:00 p.m.  The Shem Creek Boogie Band will entertain from 2:00 to 6:00 p.m., and then The Entertainers will perform from 7:00 until 11:00 p.m.

Saturday’s Fest events will begin at 10:00 a.m., featuring arts and crafts, food vendors, and continuous entertainment.  DJ Jim Bowers will be providing music from 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., and the Shag Doctorz will play from 2:00 to 6:00 p.m.  At 7:00 p.m., the East Coast Party Band will take the stage and play until 11:00 p.m. The annual shag competition starts at 6:00 p.m.  Shag clubs from around the southeast (including Junior Shaggers and surprise performances) will be on Edisto to participate.  The fun continues on Sunday beginning at noon with arts and crafts, food vendors, and DJ Jim Bowers providing music until 3:00 p.m. The Band of Oz will entertain from 3:00 to 7:00 p.m.  For more information, please call 843-869-3867, or visit www.edistochamber.com.

Later that month, EdistoPride will work to preserve the natural beauty of the island by sponsoring the annual Beach & River Sweep on September 17. This event will begin at Edisto Beach State Park. Those interested in participating should contact EdistoPride by phone at 843-869-4422, or by email at edistopride@aol.com.

On Saturday, September 24, the sixth annual Edisto Shrimp Fest will spotlight the fishing industry and its contributions to Edisto. The festival will be held from 10:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. at Bay Creek Park and will feature local seafood prepared according to celebrated Edisto recipes. Arts and crafts vendors will offer their treasured wares, and the Shem Creek Boogie Band will be performing from 6:00 to 10:00 p.m.  For more information, please call 843-869-3867, or visit www.edistochamber.com.

The picturesque Bay Creek Park is also the setting for the weekly Arts and Crafts Market, which features many local artisans. The market is held every Wednesday, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. from March through October 26.

The cooler temperatures of October mark the start of a busy month and set the stage for the Edisto & Beyond Tour, sponsored by the Edisto Island Historic Preservation Society. The tours are set for Saturday, October 8, from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. This annual tour of plantations, churches, graveyards, and historic sites will feature Summit Plantation, Brookland Plantation, the Bailey House, the Grimball House Ruins, the Pink House, Trinity Episcopal Church, Old First Baptist Church, and the Zion Reformed Episcopal Church.  The tour will begin at the Edisto Island Museum, located at 8123 Chisolm Plantation Road. Tickets sell out quickly each year, with a limited number being offered. For more information or to check ticket availability, contact the Edisto Museum at 843-869-1954 or visit www.edistomuseum.org.

Also on Saturday, October 8, the Edisto Art Guild will hold its fall show and sale. The show will be held at the Edistonian, which is located on the Island at 406 Highway 174. For more information, contact the Edisto Chamber of Commerce at 843-869-3867, or visit www.edistochamber.com.

The following weekend, the Edisto Chamber of Commerce will sponsor its annual Edisto Fall Festival. This street fair, featuring art, local culinary treats, and activities for the kids, will take place on October 15 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Jungle Road.  Following the festival, local restaurants will be sponsoring evening events with more details to be announced closer to the date.  For more information, contact the Edisto Chamber of Commerce at 843-869-3867, or visit www.edistochamber.com.

In celebration of Halloween, the Town of Edisto Beach will host the traditional Trick or Treat at the Creek at Bay Creek Park on Friday, October 29, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.  This event is always fun for the kids and includes a costume contest, games and prizes, plus table-to-table trick-or-treating. For more information, contact Town Hall at 843-869-2505, or visit www.townofedistobeach.com.

While taking in the events, nature lovers may want to consider any of the numerous tours that focus on birds and other wildlife on Edisto, including dolphins and migratory birds that pass through the area, such as bald eagles and peregrine falcons, along with thousands of shorebirds, such as the dunlin, whimbrel, and godwit.  There’s remarkable viewing from Botany Bay Plantation, a wildlife management area set on over 4000 acres of forest, marsh, and beach. Botany Bay Eco Tours offers a variety of eco-tours here, by foot, kayak, or boat. Visitors may also explore this pristine natural area on their own. Hours of operation are from 6:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. during the summer months, excluding Tuesdays. For more information, call 843-869-2998 or visit www.botanybayplantation.com.

Other parts of the island are easily explored via a guided kayak excursion with Edisto Watersports & Tackle. For prices and tour times, visit www.edistowatersports.net or call 843-869-0663.  Additionally, Island Bikes and Outfitters offers guided kayak tours of Edisto’s most secluded estuaries. For more information, visit www.islandbikesandoutfitters.com.

Set in a rare, sparsely-developed corner of the world, Edisto, with its vast green spaces, ancient live oaks, wide open marsh views, and quiet, pristine beach, offers a coastal island experience uncommon today among Eastern seaboard communities. Visitors and residents arrive under a live oak canopy via Highway 174, designated by the U.S. Department of Transportation as a National Scenic Byway. Here, there’s a slower pace of life, coupled with a broad range of year-round recreational activities, all set in the Lowcountry of South Carolina. This is the coastal island destination that is said to offer its own “state of mind…any time, any season.” For more information, please call the Edisto Chamber of Commerce at 843-869-3867 or 1-888-333-2781 or visit www.edistochamber.com.




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