As we drove along Hwy 17, through Mount Pleasant - a town near Charleston - we saw many stands selling straw baskets. We pulled our van to the side of the road where there was a lovely stand (pics #1, #2 & #3). I chatted with the lady there and found out that these beautiful baskets were hand-made SWEETGRASS BASKETS.
Sweetgrass Baskets or Coiled Basketry is one of the oldest African crafts in America and appeared in South Carolina during the late 17th century. They were used in the plantations for the plantings and harvesting of rice and cotton.
The craft is usually learned from childhood and require a great deal of creativity, as there are no set patterns. Each piece is unique and each artist develops their own style.
Sweetgrass Basket sales surged with the paving of Hwy. 17 in 1931. Mount Pleasant area basket makers began a tradition when they placed stands along the highway to display baskets for sale.
Today, Sweetgrass Baskets may also be found at the City Market in Charleston (pic #5) and at the Charleston Visitor Center (pic #4)Related to:
- Road Trip
Of course I had heard of the Bible Belt many times. I knew that the cities and states within the Bible Belt are considered more aggressively religious than other parts of the country. I also knew, but hadn't thought about, South Carolina as being a part of the Bible Belt.
During my visit to South Carolina I had actually forgotten all about this aspect. Guess I was to focused on my son and his wife. So, it was a big shock for me, when I went to the grocery store to buy the things I needed to make a nice dinner for us that night, to find out that I couldn't buy a bottle of wine because it was Sunday!!
Also the hours are limited and no alcohol can be bought on the day of an election. These are known as Blue Laws.
Remember to plan ahead.
It seems that things began to change about 2008. Myrtle Beach has Sunday beer and wine sales for off-premise consumption, and beer, wine, and liquor sales for on-premise consumption. The hours of sales are still limited and no sales on election days.
However, this is lifting is not necessarily so in every city/county of South Carolina. Each city and county can adjust the Blue Laws as they see fit.Related to:
- Wine Tasting
- Beer Tasting
Frogmore Stew (AKA Low Country or Beaufort Boil)
Unlike many 'traditional' receipes, this stew or boil is not older than 60 years and more likely only about forty years old. The kind of link sausage used in Frogmore Stew came to this area no earlier than the 1940s (before then only patty-type sausage was used in the Low Country). Beaufort historian Gerhard Spieler believes that the recipe was the invention of local shrimpers who used whatever food items they had on hand to make a stew. On the other hand, Richard Gay of Gay Seafood Company claimed to have invented Frogmore Stew. On National Guard duty in Beaufort in the 60s, he was preparing a cookout of leftovers for his fellow guardsmen and he brought the receipe home to the community of Frogmore with him.
1/4 cup Old Bay Seasoning
5 quarts water
4 pounds small red potatoes
2lbs. Keilbasa or smoked sausage
6 Ears shucked corn broken and halved
4 lbs. shrimp in shells
In a large stock pot, add the seasonings to the water and bring to a boil.
Add potatoes and return to boil and cook 10 minutes uncovered.
Add sausage and corn and return to boil. Cook 10 minutes or until the potatoes are tender.
Add the shrimp and cook 3 or 4 minutes or until the shrimp turn pink.
Drain immediately and discard the cooking liquid. Serve hot with cocktail sauce. 12 servings. 555 calories per serving.
Some recepes add crab and some don't have potatoes.Related to:
- Arts and Culture
- Food and Dining
- Budget Travel
The Low Country Boil/Seafood stew
This dish is found throughout the Market St. area in all the different taverns and restaurants. They make this with oystetrs, crab, lobster, shrimp, clams, corn, sausage, and potatoes. It struck me as a kind of local version of zuppa di pesce, only not as rich and with a lot more broth. JHowever it compares, this is realy a good thing to eat. It comes bristling with crome utensils to crack shells, fish clams, and cut through the softer undersides. You also need a moutnain of napkins, but don't let that deter you, this is one tasty dish.
Charleston's Original Palmetto Microbrews
These beers, easily purchased in a local Wiggly Piggly, turned out to be great. having been drinking microbrews for some time now, I've come to think of them as some kind of collective brand of their own, but if that is the case, the Palmetto is the premium line. I don't normally like ambers, but this one had just the right amoutn of sharp finish without being in your face about it. The lager, in an age where they bloat you, proved as smoothe and easy to drink in the heat as could be expected, and without making you feel tired or full. Definitely try these beers if you get he chance.
The state motto is "While I Breathe I Hope". (Dum Spiro Spero)
the state flag is a palmetto and quarter-moon on a blue field; the palmetto is the state symbol, the blue is the color of the revolutionary army uniforms and the quarter-moon was the army insignia.
the state seal is complicated: a palmetto; the state motto; a broken tree representing the battle of 1776; the saying "Animis Opibusque Parati" (prepared in mind and resources); 12 spears representing the other 12 original colonies with a ribbon saying "Quis Separabit?" (who can separate?); a picture of the figure Hope (Spes) with a laurel branch and rising sun for renewed life.
The state nickname is "The Palmetto State".
The state tree is the palmetto.
The carolina wren is the state bird.
The jessamine is the state flower.
you might hear people say "yall" for you all, and "fixin to" for going to, and "theATEr" instead of THEater. or maybe you'll hear people say "cut the lights off" instead of turn the lights off, and "put it up" instead of put it away. :-)
Walks on the beach
Go take a quiet walk on the beach, or a bike ride which ever you prefer, the sand is firm enough to ride. Check with the local visitor center to find out if there are any restrictions and be careful on near the dunes.Related to:
- Hiking and Walking
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
To South Carolinians,especially in Charelston, they pride themselves on their culture and their state and city. They are warm and hospitable people. But with certain people, there is still a certain amount of animosity towards Yankees(Northerners). So be respectful of them and their feelings and their wonderful city and state.
South Carolina Hotels
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