South Carolina Living October 2022

Page 1

SC RECIPE The world is your oyster HUMOR ME Saved by the bear Casual crabbing Savor the experience of a morning on the water with Tia Clark OCTOBER 2022

Remember when you were a child and got your first bicycle? I do. It gave me a sense of independence . . . I felt like I could go anywhere, and it was so much easier and more enjoyable than walking. Well, at my age, that bike wouldn’t do me much good. Fortunately, there’s a new invention that gives me the freedom and independence to go wherever I want . . . safely and easily. It’s called the Zoomer, and it’s changed my life.

My Zoomer is a delight to ride! It has increased my mobility in my apartment, my opportunities to enjoy the out-of-doors, and enabled me to visit the homes of my children for longer periods of time. The various speeds of it match my need for safety, it is easy to turn, and I am most pleased with the freedom of movement it gives me.

Sincerely, A. Macon, Williamsburg, VA

After just one trip around your home in the Zoomer, you’ll marvel at how easy it is to navigate. It is designed to maneuver in tight spaces like doorways, between furniture, and around corners. It can go over thresholds and works great on any kind of floor or carpet. It’s not bulky or cumbersome, so it can roll right up to a table or desk– there’s no need to transfer to a chair. Its sturdy yet lightweight aluminum frame makes it durable and comfortable. Its dual motors power it at up to 3.7 miles per hour and its automatic electromagnetic brakes

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VOLUME 76 • NUMBER 10 (ISSN 0047-486X, USPS 316-240)

Read in more than 600,000 homes and businesses and published monthly except in December by

The Electric Cooperatives of South Carolina, Inc.

808 Knox Abbott Drive Cayce, SC 29033

Tel: (803) 926 3175

Fax: (803) 796 6064



Keith Phillips

Tel: (803) 739 3040



Josh Crotzer


Raphael Ofendo Reyes


Sharri Harris Wolfgang


Trevor Bauknight


Andrew Chapman


Chase Toler


Jennifer Jas, Jim Poindexter


Mike Couick, Hastings Hensel, Jan A. Igoe, L.A. Jackson, Katherine Loving, Belinda Smith-Sullivan



Mary Watts

Tel: (803) 739 5074



American MainStreet Publications

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SOUTH CAROLINA LIVING is brought to you by your member-owned, taxpaying, not-for-profit electric cooperative to inform you about your cooperative, wise energy use and the faces and places that identify the Palmetto State. Electric cooperatives are South Carolina’s — and America’s — largest utility network.

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14 Salt school

Spend the day with Charleston’s first lady of coastal crabbing, and you’ll understand why the clients of Airbnb Experiences give Tia Clark rave reviews.


Updates from your cooperative


Electric cooperatives lead the way on reducing carbon dioxide emissions from power plants.


Connecting with kites

The annual arrival of Mississippi Kites in Allendale County offers a thrilling aerial show and a first-rate way to reconnect with nature.


The world is your oyster

Oyster season is officially here. Make the most of it with four delicious recipes from Chef Belinda Smith-Sullivan.


Spiritual specialist

Sing along with Gullah-Geechee ethnographer and educator Dr. Eric Crawford as he explores the musical heritage of Saint Helena Island.





The ring of Spanish bluebells

Drought-tolerant and deer-resistant, Spanish bluebells are an excellent choice for October planting. And they pay off with blooms year after year.


Saved by the bear

Buckle up for Jan A. Igoe’s tale of a college road trip through Montana that turned into one bumpy ride.

Eyes on the prize. Learn how catching blue crabs in the Ashley River changed everything for Charleston’s Tia Clark. Photo by Mic Smith.

FROM TOP: MIC SMITH; JIMMY CAO; GINA MOORE The world is your oyster Saved by the bear Casual crabbing Savor the experience of a morning on the water with Tia Clark
8 10
Member of the AMP network reaching more than 9 million homes and businesses 2 | oct

SC | agenda

Capturing carbon


electricity is the top priority for elec tric cooperatives. Even as co-ops and other electric utilities develop renew able energy sources like solar and wind, fossil fuels like coal and natural gas will remain a necessary part of our overall generation mix to ensure power reliability.

To help meet the nation’s carbon reduction goals, electric cooperatives are researching better ways to capture

It is estimated the U.S. has the potential to store 3,000 metric gigatons of CO2, the equivalent of centuries worth of emissions.

carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from power plants that burn fossil fuels. Postcombustion capture is the most com mon method in use today. After electric ity is generated, CO2 is extracted from the gas mixture in the plant’s flue. In pre-combustion capture, fuel sources are heated with pure oxygen (or steam and oxygen) to release CO2 before burning.

Once captured, compressed CO2 can be injected into geological formations or recycled for other uses. One appeal of carbon capture is the abundance of underground natural storage locations, such as deep aquifers, porous rock and unproductive coal mines. The U.S. Geological Service estimates the U.S. has the potential to store 3,000 metric gigatons of CO2, the equivalent of centuries worth of emissions.

Basin Electric Cooperative’s Dry Fork Station in Wyoming is leading the way in researching carbon capture and recycling from power plants. The plant hosted the recent XPRIZE competition to find efficient ways of recycling carbon dioxide created by burning coal.

Finding economical ways to recycle carbon dioxide from power plants was the goal of a $20 million XPRIZE com petition that ended in 2021. Research teams captured CO2 from Basin Electric Power Cooperative’s coal-fired Dry Fork Station in Wyoming and worked to develop new ways to utilize the gas. The winning project was a carbon-negative concrete created by a team of UCLA researchers. Other methods of recy cling include using the gas in enhanced oil recovery, and growing fish food from lab-grown bacteria that feed on carbon dioxide.

As promising as carbon capture and recycling are, all current methods require expensive retrofitting of power plants. To encourage more research and development, Congress made carbon capture a funding priority in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, authorizing $3.5 billion for six demon stration projects at coal and natural gas plants across the nation.

While more research is needed, carbon capture and recycling could prove to be promising technology for a brighter energy future.


KATHERINE LOVING writes on consumer and cooperative affairs for the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, the national trade association representing more than 900 local electric cooperatives.

Seafood trifecta

If Chef Belinda’s oyster recipes on Page 10 have you craving even more seafood, visit for a delicious bonus dish—Mama’s Oyster Cornbread Dressing—and these recipe collections.

Cooking up Carolina crab—Peak season for blue crab is October to January, so why not add these delicious recipes to the menu for your next oyster roast?

The best of South Carolina shrimp—Sink your teeth into four of Chef Belinda Smith-Sullivan’s recipes that work equally well with fresh or frozen shrimp. Plus: watch our bonus video on how to devein your favorite crustacean.

John’s boys

John Parris began his career teaching agriculture at Chester High School in Lowrys, and at every turn along the way, he’s been an inspiration to countless leaders in South Carolina’s thriving agricultural economy. In this web exclusive, found only at, his former students pay tribute to their mentor.

~ HAND-CRAFTED SINCE 1941 ~ HOOPS, WHEELS, WEDGES, DRESSING CRUMBLES ORANGE YOU GLAD Order the ORANGE GIFT PACK $45 Includes dressing, mini wedge and 4-ounce crumbles ENERGY IN THE 21ST CENTURY JANUARY - MARCH 2023 EARN 3 GRADUATE CREDIT HOURS IN JUST 8 WEEKS! A $100 deposit is required — refunded upon course completion. Learn more at Learn about new and changing energy technologies Earn 3 graduate credits from the University of South Carolina Attend 2 Saturdays in person and the rest virtually Collaborate with fellow educators Free Graduate Course for South Carolina Teachers! SCLIVING.COOP | OCTOBER 2022 | SOUTH CAROLINA LIVING 7


Connecting with kites

A FAMILY MEMBER HAS A FARM on the Broad River in York County. At the house near a river bottom, I love to sit on the porch and listen to the call of Bobwhite Quails. You can take a heck of a nap on that porch, so it’s no wonder that Bobwhites are my favorite birds.

However, I’ve recently become interested in a very different bird the Mississippi Kite. Instead of a hauntingly attractive call, kites provide a beau tiful dance to watch. These raptors swoop over South Carolina’s fields and swamps, feasting on insects and small vertebrates. Like their namesake, the birds exhibit a buoyant and acrobatic flight, accentuated by sudden downward dips. That’s when they charge toward a dragonfly or pluck a lizard from the ground before returning high above the pasture in their search for more protein.

Enhancing this experience is the physical beauty of the creature. Their sleek frame is col ored with a mixture of pearl gray, black and white feathers. By looking through binoculars, you can see their red eyes contrasting with black feath ering near their beak. Jay Keck, the habitat edu cation manager for the South Carolina Wildlife Federation, says Mississippi Kites remind him of another entertaining spectacle.

“The black around the red eyes looks like they have eyeshadow,” says Keck. “They make me think about the rock band KISS with all the crazy makeup they wear.”

In July, some friends and I joined Keck on a small expedition just south of the Allendale. We met him and filmmaker Zach Steinhauser, who recently released a documentary about the Purple Martins that descend upon Lake Murray each summer. The fields surrounding Allendale serve as fertile hunting ground for Mississippi Kites and Swallow-tailed Kites, a larger cousin with a bright, white underbelly and black wings.

South Carolina and points all around the south ern United States have become the spring and summer home for kites. Not only is there plenty for them to eat, but our abundant woodlands are where they like to nest. Having spent the winter in South America, the kites arrive in South Carolina in April to breed and feed.

By September, with full stomachs, they depart. Many travel through Florida and island-hop across the Caribbean, while others take a more terres trial route through Mexico until they find required amenities below the equator.

Bird enthusiasts typically venture to Allendale County in the summer months. If fortunate, they see flocks that reach triple digits in number. We arrived at a spot along Revolutionary Trail and were immediately treated to the dancing of about a dozen kites, both Mississippi and Swallow-tailed. As they glided across a blue sky and pounced upon their prey, a cluster of Cattle Egrets flew just above the same field. Standing there on the shoulder of a rural road in co-op country, I was reminded of a scene from the classic film Out of Africa

Keck’s enthusiasm for winged creatures is con tagious. His passion began the first time he saw a Baltimore Oriole another bird with coloring that might be suitable for a KISS cover band. He was awestruck and dove into a wormhole of research. By the time he came out, he was teaching classes for the South Carolina Wildlife Federation.

I believe that nature connects all of us. Keck has a similar philosophy.

“I think birds connect us to our planet better than any other wildlife,” he says. “I watch people watch birds and catch their expressions. It gives me chills. In that moment, there are no stresses, nothing else matters.”

Reducing stress isn’t the only benefit of build ing a relationship with wildlife. Having those kinds of moments with nature helps us to truly see what is around us.

Whether it’s with birds or other wildlife, I wish for you many moments with nature. May they heal us, connect us and provide the occasional good nap.

GET MORE See our exclusive photo gallery and a video from Zach Steinhauser at
SC |


Friday, December 2, 2022 at 6:00 p.m.

Live Story of Jesus’ Life and Early Ministry

Saturday, December 3, 2022 from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Craft Booths, Live Music, & Children’s Activities, Parade at 11:00 a.m.

See Facebook page

Town Municipal Complex 8423 Old State
Holly Hill, SC 29059
for details and updates.
• WRITE & ILLUSTRATE A STORY FOR A CHANCE TO WIN! 4th & 5th Grade Students Teachers, showcase your students’ knowledge of electricity in South Carolina by applying skills in creative writing, social studies, science and art. Contest open to individual students and teams of up to four. Cash prizes awarded to winning student(s) and teacher. Children's Book Challenge Learn more and register online at by November 4, 2022 SPONSORED BY SOUTH CAROLINA’S ELECTRIC COOPERATIVES SCLIVING.COOP | OCTOBER 2022 | SOUTH CAROLINA LIVING 9

Oyster season is officially here, and I can’t wait for my first oyster roast of the year. Whether farmed as singles or harvested in clumps from natural beds along the coast, South Carolina is blessed with an abundance of tasty molluscs just waiting to be shucked and enjoyed with a dash of hot sauce. But, if you are looking for new ways to enjoy S.C. oysters, try these easy recipes.

The world is your oyster



2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature

1 shallot, minced

3 cloves garlic, minced

¼ cup parsley, finely chopped

1 tablespoon white wine

Kosher salt

Fresh ground black pepper

Coarse kosher salt, for lining

2 dozen fresh oysters in the shell, washed



½ cup buttermilk

1 2 tablespoons hot sauce

2 dozen fresh-shucked oysters, rinsed well

1 cup all-purpose flour

½ cup fine ground cornmeal

Kosher salt

Fresh ground black pepper

1 teaspoon Cajun seasoning (or Old Bay)

Canola oil, for frying

Lemon slices, for garnish

Cocktail, remoulade or tartar sauce, for dipping (store-bought or homemade)

In a medium bowl, combine buttermilk, hot sauce and oysters and let soak. In another medium bowl, whisk together flour, cornmeal, salt, pepper and Cajun seasoning.

Cover the bottom of a skillet with 1 2 inches of oil and heat over medium heat. Meanwhile, remove oysters from buttermilk and shake off excess. Toss oysters in flour mixture to thoroughly coat. When oil is hot, working in batches, drop one oyster at a time into hot oil.

Fry until golden brown, about 2 3 minutes per side. Transfer to a paper-towel-lined platter.

Repeat until all oysters are cooked. Serve with lemon slices for garnish and dipping sauce.

Crusty bread, for serving Lemon slices, for garnish

In a medium bowl, combine butter, shallot, garlic, parsley, wine, salt and pepper. Mix until well combined. Place a large piece of plastic wrap on a work surface and spread the butter mixture down the center— leaving room on each end. Fold the plastic over the mixture and form an even-sized log. Twist plastic on both ends and place in refrigerator for two hours until firm. (Or place in freezer for 30 40 minutes.)

Spread coarse salt onto the bottom of a rimmed, broilerproof baking sheet. Shuck oysters, reserving the oyster in the bottom shell. Discard top shell. Lightly press the oysters into the salt base—keeping level. Top each oyster with a slice of the butter. Broil until the butter is melted and bubbling around the edges, about 6 8 minutes.

Serve immediately with crusty bread and lemon slices.



4 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 shallots, minced

1 bag (9 ounces) fresh spinach

¼ cup heavy cream

1 cup grated Romano cheese

Fresh ground black pepper

1 tablespoon lemon juice

Coarse kosher salt, for lining baking sheet

1 teaspoon sherry (or white wine), optional

2 dozen fresh oysters in the shell, washed

Preheat oven to 450 F. In a large skillet, over medium heat, heat butter. Saute shallots until soft. Add spinach and stir until wilted. Add cream and stir. Remove from heat and stir in cheese, black pepper, lemon juice and sherry.

Spread salt onto the bottom of a rimmed baking sheet. Shuck oysters, reserving the oyster and juice in the bottom shell. Discard top shell. Lightly press the oysters into the salt base—keeping level. Spoon 2 3 teaspoons of spinach mixture on top of each oyster. Bake 6 8 minutes until plump.

Serve immediately.

What’s cooking at

Can’t get enough fresh S.C. seafood? Neither can we. Don’t miss Chef Belinda’s recipe for Mama’s Oyster Cornbread Dressing, pictured above, and these other delicious recipes you will find exclusively at

Cooking up Carolina crab—Peak season for blue crab is October to January, so why not add these delicious recipes to the menu for your next oyster roast?

The best of South Carolina shrimp Make it an S.C. seafood trifecta with Chef Belinda Smith-Sullivan’s favorite shrimp recipes.

SC | recipe
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Dr. Eric Crawford

RESIDES IN: Columbia.

CLAIM TO FAME: Gullah-Geechee music ethnographer and educator; associate professor of Musicology at Claflin University.

BY THE BOOK: Author of Gullah Spirituals: The Sound of Freedom and Protest in the South Carolina Sea Islands

TECH SAVVY: In 2021, Crawford collaborated on the Free and Equal app—a public history audio tour of Reconstruction-era Beaufort County that includes recorded versions of Gullah music sung by his students.

PASSION PROJECT: Reconnecting Gullah songs with their initial West African and Central African languages. “That would really be showing these songs’ unique heritage and that they aren’t as easy as people say.”

Spiritual specialist

Long before Eric Crawford received his Ph.D., and even long before he became an expert in Gullah-Geechee spirituals and work songs, music was in his soul.

“I was probably four or five years old,” he says, “and my mother, Bessie Foster Crawford, recalls I would come home from church, and I would go to the couch and begin hitting the couch as if I was playing the piano. That’s how I became a musician.”

Crawford earned a bachelor’s degree in music education and a master’s degree in piano performance at Norfolk State University. While working on his doctorate at The Catholic University of America, he read a research paper on Gullah-Geechee music and was inspired to learn more. “My quest, as I began my own research, was to try to figure out if this music from the antebellum period, when it was first transcribed, was still being done 150 years later.”

That quest brought him to South Carolina and Saint Helena Island, where he discovered singers in their late 70s and 80s still singing songs handed down through multiple generations. Crawford hired on with Coastal Carolina University in 2014 and worked with Dr. Matthew White, current director of jazz studies at the University of South Carolina, to record and document the enduring legacy of Gullah-Geechee music in the modern era.

Through his writings and teachings, he hopes to keep the music ringing in the voices of new generations.

“These older singers in their 80s, eventually they won’t be able to sing these songs anymore,” he says. “And so, it’s about having the youth know these songs but then to reimagine them in their own way.”

SC | stories

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Tied to a cleat at Charleston’s Safe Harbor Bristol Marina, beside the pleasure boats and fishing vessels moored in their dockside slips, the taut line trembles. Tia Clark reaches down and care fully reels the line in, hand over hand, until the faint outline of a writhing creature nibbling on a chicken leg appears in the water just below the surface. I stand beside her, dip net at the ready to bring in the prized catch: Atlantic blue crab, Callinectes sapidus, Latin for “beautiful, savory swimmer.”

“Nice scoop!” she cries when the net I bring out of the water wriggles with the snapping crustacean.

Then I do exactly as Clark instructed me earlier that morn ing. I dump the crab onto the dock and press its carapace down with my thumb. I make an L-shape with the thumb and forefinger of my other hand, and I pinch the crab behind its swimmer legs so that I won’t get pinched. I hold the crab aloft for pictures like a man showing off a rare jewel. Then we measure it against Clark’s leg tattoo a regulation-sized blue crab (5 inches from point to point) and verify the width with a DNR ruler.

It’s a keeper, and I dump the crab into a crate filled with all the other keepers we’ve caught that morning enough crabs to have a proper crab boil later that afternoon but now is no time to think of the future. Now is the time to hustle back to another line, pull in a mesh basket, and con tinue the two-hour merry-go-round of crab catching that is

Tia Clark teaches the ways of the Charleston marsh CLASS IS IN SESSION Our scribe Hastings Hensel masters the dip net and practices how to avoid having his fingers pinched by an angry crab.

the Casual Crabbing with Tia experience the five-star, toprated Airbnb Experience.

WITH HER TRUE CHARLESTON ACCENT, the ease with which she can sling a cast net, her command of marine knowledge and, of course, the crab tattoo, you’d be forgiven for thinking Tia Clark grew up as a crabber. But you’d be wrong.

“I never caught a crab until I was 37 years old,” Clark says. “All of the stuff I’ve learned about this water, I’ve learned in just the past five years.”

She’d grown up eating crabs, sure. And she’d served sea food for more than two decades in the service industry, where, at a restaurant called The Mill, she earned a reputa tion as one of Charleston’s best bartenders. (Her assistant Art Perry a jovial and energetic first mate calls her “food and bev royalty.”) She had plenty of people in her large extended family who crabbed and fished. But as for Clark herself? The waterways and marshes of Charleston were simply the back drop of daily existence.

“It’s like I had blinders on,” she says. “Don’t ask me why. It’s just the way I was living my life.”

One day, after months of health problems that put her out of work and “at the end of my line,” a cousin took her crabbing.

“My cousin takes me to this water, and we start catching some crabs, shrimp, fish,” Clark says. “I’m Geechee. We eat that stuff four times a week! So, I called my mama on the phone and said, ‘Why didn’t you ever take me crabbing?’ I was so uu

p INDELIBLE CRAB Tia Clark’s leg tattoo of a regulation-sized blue crab doubles as a guideline for judging whether a catch is the legal 5-inch width. An S.C. Department of Natural Resources ruler is used to verify the size. q INEDIBLE CRAB A female crab carrying an egg mass, called a sponger, is among those caught. Spongers are protected by law in South Carolina and must be returned to the water immediately.
You’d be forgiven for thinking Tia Clark grew up as a crabber, but you’d be wrong.
NEVER TOO LATE Tia Clark discovered her passion for crabbing and appreciation of Charleston’s waterways after years of working in the food service industry.

Clark tried out Airbnb Experiences—just for the heck of it—and as she tells the story, the next thing she knew, she had more than 30 five-star reviews.

mad at her. I was ready to fight her. I’m serious! Old Geechee lady, she was like, ‘You get it when you get it.’ My mom, she believes everybody gets their season, and she said, ‘It wasn’t your season.’ ”

After that experience, Clark went crabbing every single day. She’d close the bar at 2 a.m., set the alarm, and go watch the sunrise on the water with a cast net in her hand. When she started posting pictures of her catch on social media, one of her friends jokingly made a mock business for her called Casual Crabbing.

She laughed it off, but then the messages started piling up in her inbox. People wanted her to take them crabbing. Airbnb had just started a new tourist-booking platform called Airbnb Experiences, in which locals can host activities. Clark tried it out in July of 2018 just for the heck of it and as she tells the story, the next thing she knew, she had more than 30 five-star reviews. Then Airbnb flew her out to San Francisco for a conference of exceptional hosts.

“I had never stayed at an Airbnb nor taken an Airbnb Experience in my life,” she says. “It was crazy. I was like a fish out of water.”

Everybody wanted to know how she was getting those great reviews. “I said, ‘I’m sorry. I’ve never mentioned reviews to people. I just manage a bar and take people crabbing sometimes.’ ”

But when she got back home, Clark knew she had a choice to make. She couldn’t keep trying to balance the late nights at the bar with the early mornings on the water.


Bookings for Casual Crabbing with Tia can be made online at

Standard outings are $85 per person. Private group experiences can be arranged. All attendees must purchase a South Carolina saltwater fishing license to participate.

THESE DAYS, IN ITS FOURTH YEAR OF BUSINESS, Casual Crabbing is run like a well-oiled machine. Clark and Perry have perfected something of a comedic routine as they teach guests the techniques of crab catching and cast netting.

On the day I joined them, Perry explained the art of pull ing in a crab basket thus: “Don’t think of it as O’Charley’s, where everybody is sitting down. Think of it as Taco Bell at midnight. Everybody’s coming in and getting what they want, then going. So, pull!”

We two other families and I pull. And pull. And toss. And pull some more. Part of the fun, you discover, is never knowing what you’re going to get in the net. Jelly globs, fid dler crabs, oysters, pufferfish, male crabs (called jimmies), female crabs (sooks), pregnant female crabs (spongers), molt ing crabs (soft-shells) and breeding crabs (couplers).

At the end of the session, you can take home your catch or have Clark clean it so a local restaurant can cook it for you. But you also leave Casual Crabbing with a newfound knowl edge and respect for the salt life, and that, Clark says, is the real point. “We help build relationships with the water.”

GET MORE Cooking up South Carolina crab—October to January is peak season for tasty blue crabs. Visit for great recipes to make the most of your catch. NOTHING TO CRAB ABOUT Eric, left, and Lance Jones, father and son visiting from Atlanta, are all smiles during a Casual Crabbing with Tia session. p LOTS TO CRAB ABOUT The morning catch awaits its fate. q CASUAL CRABBERS Art Perry, Clark’s assistant, keeps everyone laughing as he documents another successful crabbing experience.



13–16, 20–23, 27–30 Prisma Health Boo in the Zoo, Greenville Zoo, Greenville. (864) 467‑4300 or

15 Disciples Fall Bazaar, Disciples United Methodist Church, Greenville. (864) 297‑0832 or

15 Wag & Jam Benefit Concert, Uptown Market, Greenwood.

15 United Christian Ministry Feet for Heat, Old Market Square, Easley. (864) 671‑1134 or

18–22 Union County Agricultural Fair, 120 Kirby Street, Union. (864) 424‑8272 or

21–23 The Walhalla Oktoberfest, Sertoma Field, Walhalla.


2–5 Pickens Literacy Book Sale, Market at the Mill, Pickens. (864) 617‑4237 or

4–6 Everything Outdoor Fest, Historic Hopkins Farm, Simpsonville.

5 Greenville Craft Beer Festival, Fluor Field, Greenville. (864) 201‑0265 or



12–23 South Carolina State Fair, South Carolina State Fairgrounds, Columbia. (803) 799‑3387 or

14–23 Western Carolina State Fair, Aiken Fair Grounds, Aiken. (803) 648‑8955 or

15 Rock Hill Oktoberfest, East Main Street, Rock Hill.

15 Sunny Plain Antique Farm Festival, 150 Old Belleville Road, St. Matthews. (803) 917‑0366.

18–23 Sumter American Legion Fair, Sumter American Legion Fair Grounds, Sumter.

20–23, 27–30 Monty Python’s Spamalot, Sumter Little Theatre, Sumter. (803) 775‑2150 or

21 Aiken Master Gardener Association Lunch Box Series: “Planting Bulbs,” Millbrook Baptist Church, Aiken.

21 “Becoming Catawba: Catawba Indian Women and NationBuilding,” USC Lancaster Native American Studies Center, Lancaster. (803) 313‑7172.

21–30 Disney’s Beauty and the Beast Jr, Rock Hill Theatre, Rock Hill. (803) 326‑7428 or

22 Fish Fry and Concert, Friendship United Methodist Church, Rock Hill. (803) 230‑3223.

22 Lake Wylie Lutheran Church Quilters Exhibition and Craft Fair, Lake Wylie Lutheran Church, Lake Wylie. (803) 548‑5489 or

28–29 Blythewood Fall Festival Rodeo, Blythewood Community Park Arena, Blythewood.


4–12 Clue, Florence Little Theatre, Florence.

4–20 The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Fort Mill Community Playhouse, (803) 548‑8102 or

13 Civil War Camping, Battle of Rivers Bridge State Historic Site, Ehrhardt. (803) 683‑0239.



6–22 Pawley’s Island Festival of Music & Art, multiple venues, Pawley’s Island.

Our mobile-friendly site lists even more festivals, shows and events. You’ll also find instructions on submitting your event. Please confirm information with the hosting event before attending.

14-15 Hardeeville Festival on Main, Hardeeville City Hall, Hardeeville. (843) 227‑4089 or

15 Loris Bog-Off Festival, downtown, Loris. (843) 756‑6030 or

15–16 Georgetown Wooden Boat Show, Front Street, Georgetown.

15–23 Historic Bluffton Arts & Seafood Festival, Historic District, Bluffton.

20–22 Conway Ghost Walk, downtown, Conway. (843) 248‑6260 or

21 World Affairs Council of Hilton Head presents “Living with North Korea’s Nuclear Threat,” First Presbyterian Church, Hilton Head Island. (843) 384‑6758 or

22 Italian Heritage Festival, Coastal Discovery Museum at Historic Honey Horn, Hilton Head. (843) 415‑5560 or

27–Nov. 6 Coastal Carolina Fair, Exchange Park, Ladson. (843) 572‑3161 or

28 Films at the Farm: Beetlejuice, Moore Farms Botanical Garden, Lake City. (843) 210‑7592 or

29 BOOtanical, Moore Farms Botanical Garden, Lake City. (843) 210‑7592 or


4–5 Garden Open: Fall Is Here, Moore Farms Botanical Garden, Lake City. (843) 210‑7592 or

5 Fall Crafts Festival/Food Truck/ Pet Photo Extravaganza, downtown, Manning. (803) 473‑7075.

10–13 41st Annual Dickens Christmas Show & Festivals, Myrtle Beach Convention Center, Myrtle Beach. (843) 448‑9483 or

12 Mythical & Medieval Fest, RH Acres, Socastee. (843) 360‑9052 or

• Children


SC | calendar OCT 12–NOV 15 DORCHESTER COUNTY HISTORICAL SOCIETY 5th Annual Living History & Education Days Learn about life in the 1800’s at the historic Koger House, located at 123 Sandy Branch Road at the corner of Wire Road & Quaker Road, St. George. Saturday, October 29, 2022 • 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Sunday, October 30, 2022 • 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. The photogenic Koger House, built in the 1780’s, will be open for touring with docents. • Native American performers • History Programs • Live Music, Vendors & Crafters • Ghost Walks (call for more information & price) For more information, contact Claire Mizell at or 843.931.1021 or 803.682.4948 ** Exhibitors Subject to Change Admission Fees: (tickets are required for each day) • Adults – $10 Per Ticket • Students Under 18 – $5 Per Ticket
– Free • Food & Drinks Available for Sale
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n Remove diseased or insect-infested plants from the veggie patch to help prevent nasties from overwintering in the garden and then coming out to start trouble again next spring.

n Picked green tomatoes can be encouraged to ripen indoors by wrapping each one loosely in tissue paper and tucking them away in an area out of direct sunlight. If you are impatient, add an apple or two to the tomato bin. Apples emit ethylene gas that helps ’maters mature faster.

The ring of Spanish bluebells

OCTOBER IS THE PRIME TIME to start looking for bulbs to plant this fall that will spiff up gardens next spring with their spiffy displays. Personally, I do get a bit lazy when it comes to picking such bulbs because I prefer ones that, once planted, bring their flower shows to the spring garden party year after year.

TIP OF THE MONTH If you are looking for a typical bluish Spanish bluebell, the cultivar Excelsior has been a standard for years and shouldn’t be too hard to find. What about white? This preference for the lighter shade of pale will be satisfied by White City. Thinking pink? Add such a blushing hue to your springtime garden with either Rosabella or Queen of Pinks.

For gardeners who prefer to let their fingers do the e-walking for Spanish bluebells, here are a few online mail order nurseries to try:

u Brent and Becky’s (

u Dutch Grown (

u American Meadows (


This means, for me, most tulips need not apply. I go for dependable repeat performers such as daffodils and crocuses that consistently bloom every spring. And while these two dazzlers are common sights in my gar den, there is another beauty I have that is not as well known but is still a steady annual performer: Spanish bluebells.

True to their name, Spanish blue bells (Hyacinthoides hispanica) hail from Spain (as well as Portugal), but don’t think you have to hunt through obscure Euro-garden catalogs to find them. No, these cuties have been enjoyed in gar dens on this side of The Big Pond since colonial times, so they are no strangers to local nursery bulb bins at this time of year.

While these pretties do dangle clus ters of bell-shaped flowers off 8- to 16-inch-tall stalks, their hues aren’t par ticularly true blue. A purplish-blue is what I would tag the blooms of typi cal Spanish bluebells. And although it might mess with your head, I have to mention there are even pink- and white-flowering Spanish bluebells.

Whatever colors the blooms might be, Spanish bluebells are pretty, and pretty tough, starting with being drought-tolerant and deer-resistant.

They will perform well in the sun or even areas of moderate shade such as woodland gardens or underneath large, sprawling deciduous trees.

Spanish bluebells’ kryptonite is heavy soil such as clay because good drainage is a must or bulb rot becomes a definite possibility. Well-amended soil will help solve this problem, but so will planting the bulbs in raised beds, rock gardens or even containers.

By early summer, the flowers will be a memory and the leaves will become a withered, yellowed mess. This is when you can tidy them up by snipping off and discarding the spent foliage.

If kept happy, Spanish bluebells will naturalize and slowly expand their ter ritory by way of seeds and offshoot bulbs. Overcrowding can lead to dimin ishing returns on blooms, but dividing and transplanting the bulbs maybe even giving some to fellow gardeners every few years in the late summer will help maintain their springtime flower power.

L.A. JACKSON is the former editor of Carolina Gardener magazine. Contact him at

ROYAL SPLENDOR The Queen of Pinks variety shows Spanish bluebells also come in other hues. RING IN SPRING Like daffodils and crocuses, Spanish bluebells can be dependable repeat performers in the spring garden.
SC | gardener

Saved by the bear

MY FRIEND RECENTLY took a trip to Montana, which is a lot like a regular state, only bigger and icier. Also, most of the population has antlers.

I once passed through Montana on the way to college in California. Three of us were traveling in my elderly car, with me as the designated driver. My roommate Maddie was too nervous to drive, and the bartender in the back seat was too drunk. Yeah, about that …

Maddie waitressed with Scotty, a bartender who needed a ride out West and would share expenses. As typical, broke college kids, we agreed. Maddie assured me that “Scotty is nice,” and intel like that was solid as an FBI background check.

Or so I thought.

At 9 a.m., Nice Scotty yanked a bottle of Jack Daniel’s out of his gym bag and polished it off before we hit the state line. Midway through the second bottle, his real personality came bulldozing through.

Nice Scotty had no indoor voice. He screamed about everything from other drivers (which was usually my job) to why Pontiacs don’t have urinals. The man needed more than manners. He needed an exorcist.

The only time the car was peaceful was when he passed out. Maddie and I discussed the possibility of dumping him at a rest stop, but we couldn’t lift him. (I know this because we tried.) We poked him occasionally to make sure he wasn’t dead, just to be polite. Also, parking a corpse on campus would probably violate some rule, even in California.

When we got to Montana, Maddie and I wanted to take a detour through

Yellowstone, America’s first national park. It’s not every day you get the chance to see Yogi and Bullwinkle up close, but Nice Scotty woke up and objected. Loudly.

“Big whoop. Like you idiots don’t know what a [he said a very bad word here] bear looks like,” Nice Scotty yelled. “If you’ve seen one bear, you’ve seen ’em all. Keep driving!” He had a point. We already had a grizzly in the car.

I’d driven about 2,000 miles, getting by on Twinkies and 30-minute naps. Exhausted, I pulled off a random exit as night fell and parked behind a vacant building. My passengers were already unconscious, and a few moments later, so was I.

But not for long. You know that fuzzy feeling you get when you’re des perately trying to wake up and make sense of the world? That was me looking through the windshield, trying to convince myself that Paul Bunyan wasn’t on the other side.

The hazy image crys tallized into a massive man wearing a cowboy hat, flannel shirt and a leather vest. Outside Maddie’s window, there were two more and another sprawled out on my car hood. Same hats, same shirts, same vests. Cow-druplets.

I elbowed her. “Wake up. We might have a problem.” The druplets were trying to get in the car.

Maddie rubbed her eyes, counted the cowboys, and decided to scream. It was an ear-piercing scream that didn’t deter our guests, but it got Nice Scotty to bolt upright and scatter them. He could scream louder than Maddie and was much more colorful.

As we got back on the highway, Maddie fell asleep and Nice Scotty passed out. Having a grizzly in the back seat turned out to be a blessing in dis guise, for which I am forever grateful.

But if I ever drive through Montana again, there will be no bartenders in my car, nice or otherwise. All bags will be searched, and wild animals will remain outside with the exception of Yogi. And, of course, Bullwinkle.

JAN A. IGOE misses most of her crazy youth but is surprised she survived it. She hopes you’ll remain safe from bears, wherever they turn up. Join us at

Maddie and I wanted to take a detour through Yellowstone, America’s first national park. It’s not every day you get the chance to see Yogi and Bullwinkle up close.
SC | humor me

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