Friday, June 28, 2013

Hilton Head, SC

Whether you’re planning a family vacation on the beach, a golf getaway, or a little bit of both, Hilton Head Island is a perfect summer vacation destination. With more than 20 championship-style golf courses, stunning beaches, family events, and hundreds of top-quality restaurants, Hilton Head is one of the most popular vacation spots in the Southeast.

Budget friendly activities are available day and night on the Island. Families can venture to the top of the Harbour Town Lighthouse in Sea Pines for only a dollar each person. This activity offers a clear view of the Island’s south end as well as the eye pleasing Harbour Town Marina. Also available in Sea Pines is shopping, waterfront dining and horse back riding. Families could spend at entire day in Sea Pines alone.

Other family friendly spots include Shelter Cover Harbour, Adventure Cove and the Coastal Discovery Museum. Shelter Cove Harbour offers a variety of experiences such as shopping, kayaking, sailing and cruise excursions, fireworks and concerts. All Shelter Cove Community Park events are free and open to the public.

Since the birth of its first golf course in 1961, Hilton Head Island has grown into what Golf Digest readers have named No. 10 on its list of the world’s best golf resorts. World-class quality golf courses, both public and private, offer various golf experience including oceanfront golf courses and traditional parkland courses.

Incorporated as a town in 1983, Hilton Head Island is now home to several environmentally planned resort and residential communities, supporting more than 30,000 full-time residents. These communities have been named “plantations,” but cotton fields have been replaced by lush green golf courses, tennis courts, shimmering lakes and beautifully designed resorts and villas.

Hilton Head is also home to some of the finest hotels in the Southeast. Many offer special packages that cater to each visitor’s wish-list. For more information on Hilton Head, visit

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Asheville Breweries

Visit the 10+ Asheville area breweries to see how Beer City, U.S.A. earned the title!

Asheville has an amazing selection of brewpubs and microbreweries for a city of it’s size. Visit area breweries on your own or hop on a Brews Cruise ( for a 3 to 3.5 hour tour where you will be given detailed information about the beer brewing process and learn about the nuances of different beer styles.

With 20 breweries in WNC and more on the way, the area will be “hopping” for years to come!

SUMMERTIME GUIDE 2013 - Your Guide to FUN Summer Activities in the Carolinas!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

SC Aquarium in Charleston, SC

With so many activities to choose from, a day at the South Carolina Aquarium in Charleston will keep everyone busy!

There are more than 60 exhibits located throughout the Aquarium that focus on five major regions of the Appalachian Watershed. The Great Ocean Tank is the largest exhibit and extends from the first to the third floor of the Aquarium, holds over 385,000 gallons of water, and contains over 450 animals.
Special 2013 events include a Trawl and Dolphin Watch on June 14. Take a one-of-a-kind boat tour around the Charleston Harbor and learn why studying dolphins is important and how their research relates to humans! Daily events all summer include Leapin’ Lemurs: A Feeding Program; The Dr. Gill Show; All About Alligators; Nature Discovery; Touch Tank Feeding; and Animal Encounters.
After your visit, head to Aquarium Wharf, an entertainment district with Fountain Walk retail stores, Fort Sumter Visitor Education Center at Liberty Square, and sunset harbor and eco-cruises. For more information, call (843) 720-1990 or visit

SUMMERTIME GUIDE 2013 - Your Guide to FUN Summer Activities in the Carolinas!  

Monday, June 17, 2013

Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest

We tend to think of the Redwood forests in California when we think of huge old growth trees, but the East Coast has its own standing giants. This memorial forest was dedicated to Joyce Kilmer, a man who passed away during World War I. He was most famous for his poem, “Trees,” a poem that remains known today.

The 3,800 acre tract of old growth trees was incorporated into the 14,000 acre Slickrock Wilderness in 1935. These trees survived the logging of the early 19th century and today stand over 100 feet tall and some more than 20 feet in diameter! This gem of NC is one of the few remaining places in the US that’s still considered virgin forest. 60 miles of hiking trails offer family-friendly fun. To cool off during the hot summer months, feel free to take a dip in Lake Santeetlah afterwards!

From Robbinsville, take Hwy. 129 N for 1.5 miles to the intersection with 143 W (Massey Branch Road). Turn left onto Hwy. 143 W for 5 miles. At the stop sign, turn right onto Kilmer Road. Drive 7.3 miles to the top of Santeetlah Gap and the intersection with Cherohala Skyway. Follow for 2.5 miles to the Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest entrance. For more info, call 828.479.6431.

Written by Tom Groves

SUMMERTIME GUIDE 2013 - Your Guide to FUN Summer Activities in the Carolinas! 

Friday, June 14, 2013

Greenville Zoo

One of the top tourist attractions every year in South Carolina is the Greenville Zoo.

A 14-acre facility, the zoo is home to some of the most unique wildlife in the region and offers educational programs for visitors of all ages. Among the wildlife at the zoo are giraffes, monkeys, giant tortoises and elephants. There is also a Reptile Building, with lizards, frogs, turtles, and snakes. After you tour the grounds, visit The Safari Shop for zoo-themed gifts to take home.

Some special events in 2013 include National Endangered Species Day on May 17. Come discover how many animals at the zoo are endangered species. Also on tap is Brew in the Zoo on June 1. Adults may sample an assortment of beers and enjoy live music, all while exploring the zoo after hours. Also, every Tuesday, you’ll find an instructor from the Greenville Zoo’s Education Department at select exhibits talking about that animal and answering any questions.

The zoo is open seven days a week from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission rates are $7.75 for adults and $4.50 for children 3-15. Children under 3 are admitted free. The Greenville Zoo is located at 150 Cleveland Park Drive in Greenville. Call 864-467-4300 or visit for more info.

SUMMERTIME GUIDE 2013 - Your Guide to FUN Summer Activities in the Carolinas! 

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Hardy Berry Farm in Anderson, SC

If you like fresh strawberries, peaches, or raspberries, Hardy Berry Farm in Anderson is the place to be in spring and summer.

Whether you like to pick your own strawberries, or if you prefer to grab a bucket already picked, Hardy Berry Farm has you covered. Strawberries are $12 per gallon pre-picked and $1.80 per pound if you pick them. Hardy Berry Farm is a small family-owned and operated farm. Hardy Berry Farm grows several varieties of strawberries so everyone can find that unique berry that really turns their taste buds on. The farm also grows four varieties of delicious red raspberries, blueberries, and peaches.

Strawberry season runs through May; blackberries from early June to early August; blueberries from late June through July, and raspberries from June through August; and peaches from early June to mid-July.

You may purchase jams, local honey, freshly ground wheat, fresh baked bread, raw milk, free range eggs, homemade ice cream, cold drinks and many other items from the farm’s country store. Located at 232 Strawberry Road in Anderson, call 864-224-5441 or visit Call for operating hours.

SUMMERTIME GUIDE 2013 - Your Guide to FUN Summer Activities in the Carolinas!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Asheville Urban Trail

Take a self-guided walking tour along downtown Asheville’s Urban Trail, and you’ll learn all kinds of interesting tidbits about this eclectic mountain town.

The Urban Trail is Asheville’s “museum without walls” and consists of 30 different bronze sculptures around downtown, shedding light on the city’s unique history. The “Energy Loop”; the Deco Gecko in Pritchard Park; the murals in the City Hall chambers; the bronze life-size sculpture of Martin Luther King, Jr. at MLK Park; the diverse sculptures and plaques along the Urban Trail are all part of Asheville’s public art collection.

The 1.7 mile walk begins and ends at Pack Place; maps are available at the Asheville Visitor Center and Pack Place. The tour will take approximately 2 hours, unless you decide to shop or eat along the way!

Asheville’s Urban Trail is a great, free thing to do during the summer when the weather is warm, and the people watching is at its prime! For more details, visit or call 828.259.5815.

SUMMERTIME GUIDE 2013 - Your Guide to FUN Summer Activities in the Carolinas!

Friday, June 7, 2013

Hot Air Balloon Rides!

 Looking for a different way to take in the lush WNC views? Try one of the area’s hot air balloon companies!

Photo courtesy of

Watch the sunrise over the mountains in a one hour early morning balloon ride with Asheville Hot Air Balloons ( Float over downtown, the Biltmore Estate, the plaid fields of farms, undulating hills and hollows and enjoy a champagne toast afterwards with R.O. Franks Hot Air Balloon Company ( Take in beautiful and serene views of the Pisgah National Forest with Adrenaline 365 ( or become a Certified Hot Air Balloon Pilot with Asheville Hot Air Balloons (!

SUMMERTIME GUIDE 2013 - Your Guide to FUN Summer Activities in the Carolinas! 

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Moonlight Movies

The Greer, SC Moonlight Movies series continues on June 6 with Happy Feet 2 and will show new movies every Thursday night through August in the City Park Amphitheater, with selected films at the Cannon Centre Cinema, for guests ages 17 and over.

All films begin at dusk and seating is on a first-come, first-served basis. Concessions are available for purchase from on-site vendors. For more information, visit The complete schedule is as follows:

June 6: Happy Feet 2
June 13: Dolphin Tale
June 20: The Lorax
June 27: The Smurfs
July 11: Madagascar 3
July 18: Rise of the Guardians
July 25: Brave
August 15: Leatherheads (Cannon Centre)
August 22: Casablanca (Cannon Centre)

SUMMERTIME GUIDE 2013 - Your Guide to FUN Summer Activities in the Carolinas!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Hatcher Garden & Woodland Preserve

If you’re looking for one of the most beautiful and peaceful places in the Upstate, look no further than the Hatcher Garden & Woodland Preserve in Spartanburg, a community supported urban garden. The garden has grown to become a beautiful woodland preserve that provides a home for wildlife and a display for nature’s beauty. The Garden is open every day of the year during daylight hours and there is no charge for admission. Displays include the Butterfly Garden, Thomas W. Bartram Trail, Conifer Collection (with 200 species), and the Garden of Hope and Healing.

The Garden has incredible history dating back to 1969, when Josephine and Harold Hatcher decided to retire to Spartanburg. From their small backyard they saw the wooded area behind their house was covered with tall pines, mature hardwoods, even a stream. The land itself was badly eroded, and had become a dumping ground for local trash, but even so, the Hatchers saw its potential. The Hatchers started filling in the eroded gullies, amending the soil, building paths and ponds, and planting over 10,000 trees, shrubs, and flowers.

The community continues to keep the Garden booming, and the location has become a tourist attraction. Hatcher Garden and Woodland Preserve is located at 820 John B. White Sr. Blvd. For more info, visit

SUMMERTIME GUIDE 2013 - Your Guide to FUN Summer Activities in the Carolinas!