Jerry Walls, of Hemingway, S.C., will host the fall season’s first Great Swamp Sanctuary Walk and Talk on Saturday, October 8, at 9:00 a.m., in the City of Walterboro. He will bring several live animals along from his serpentarium and nature center, the South Carolina Coastal Animal Rescue & Educational Sanctuary (SC-C.A.R.E.S.), in Hemingway. He plans to expose participants to the wonders of nature and to demonstrate how the Great Swamp Sanctuary is a formidable example of how various interesting and rare animals can survive and thrive within city limits. The presentation, which begins at the Duck Pond near the DeTreville Street entrance, is geared toward all ages.
Walls, a professional naturalist, has been meeting with economic development officials in the city as he considers relocating the Serpentarium and Nature Center from Hemingway to Walterboro. For over a year now, he has been conducting a site search along the I-95 corridor for a permanent location for this educational center. His focus is now on Walterboro due its central location and existing attractions and landmarks that help draw traffic from the interstate, including the Great Swamp Sanctuary. If he does move the center to the area, it could further establish the city as a draw for regional and national travelers.
Walls, who most recently served as the chief naturalist for the City of Houston, Texas, earned his bachelor’s degree from Florida State University. He is a freelance nature writer and professional birding guide, and routinely conducts programs for the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, the Sewee Association, the Baruch Foundation/Hobcaw Barony, and the Georgetown County Parks and Recreation Department, as well as other governmental agencies in South Carolina. Additionally, Walls has written articles about nature for several newspapers, including the Georgetown Times, in addition to multiple Houston newspapers. He has also appeared on numerous Southeastern network television programs to talk about animals.
Established in 1826, the City of Walterboro is hailed as the “front porch of the Lowcountry,” with its historic charm, plentiful natural resources and warm Southern hospitality. Centrally located between Charleston, Savannah, Hilton Head, and Columbia, the city of Walterboro is poised in a prime location near several major highways, including Interstate 95. It is also home to the largest general aviation airport in the state and is only an hour away from the international ports in Charleston and Savannah. The area around the city, rich with forests and vast quantities of water, is also known as the gateway to the ACE Basin, one of the largest undeveloped estuaries on the East Coast. The city itself features two listings on the National Register of Historic Districts, a beautiful historic downtown, antique stores, the Great Swamp Sanctuary, and the S.C. Artisans Center, designated by the state’s legislature as the “Official South Carolina Folk Art and Craft Center.” While Walterboro serves as the economic heart of Colleton County, it maintains a small-town Americana atmosphere to be enjoyed by residents, visitors, and businesses. For more information, call 843-549-2545 or visit www.walterborosc.org.