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BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?

Janie 19 Nov 11 - 07:53 AM
kendall 19 Nov 11 - 08:32 AM
VirginiaTam 19 Nov 11 - 08:51 AM
Greg F. 19 Nov 11 - 09:38 AM
Homeless 19 Nov 11 - 11:42 AM
Janie 19 Nov 11 - 01:02 PM
michaelr 19 Nov 11 - 02:50 PM
Chanteyranger 19 Nov 11 - 03:29 PM
meself 19 Nov 11 - 04:01 PM
Greg F. 19 Nov 11 - 05:09 PM
Janie 19 Nov 11 - 06:36 PM
catspaw49 19 Nov 11 - 09:31 PM
Bobert 19 Nov 11 - 10:36 PM
Greg F. 21 Nov 11 - 08:23 AM
GUEST,LynnT 21 Nov 11 - 09:26 PM
Janie 21 Nov 11 - 11:02 PM
Janie 21 Nov 11 - 11:34 PM
Joe Offer 22 Nov 11 - 02:21 AM
Janie 22 Dec 11 - 09:14 PM
Crowhugger 22 Dec 11 - 11:07 PM
Bobert 22 Dec 11 - 11:10 PM
Micca 23 Dec 11 - 05:36 AM
GUEST,Dani 23 Dec 11 - 08:08 PM
wysiwyg 23 Dec 11 - 10:35 PM
LilyFestre 23 Dec 11 - 11:11 PM
GUEST,Dani 24 Dec 11 - 09:24 AM
wysiwyg 24 Dec 11 - 11:47 AM

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Subject: BS: What's to Do in Charlestion, SC?
From: Janie
Date: 19 Nov 11 - 07:53 AM

Looking for recommendations and things to be sure to do and see in Charleston, SC the week between Christmas and New Year's. We are arriving Christmas Eve and will stay until Wednesday or Thursday of the following week.

Have cruised the internet, but there is nothing like hearing from people who have been to a place. We will be staying in a condo at Folly Beach.


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charlestion, SC?
From: kendall
Date: 19 Nov 11 - 08:32 AM

It's a beautiful city.They have the only Fort Sumpter in the world. :-)


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charlestion, SC?
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 19 Nov 11 - 08:51 AM

Sadly you will have missed the Christmas light boat parade as it is in early December.

There are loads of lovely homes to visit and the light house. I would do a search on live music too. Some down home Americana or Charleston Shag. You can't leave SC without having eaten beer battered shrimp and hushpuppies (fried cornbread balls) and done the Shag.


The Charleston Shag Club should be able to tell you where to get some dancing in during the dates you are there.


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charlestion, SC?
From: Greg F.
Date: 19 Nov 11 - 09:38 AM

Charleston! Birthplace of Secession! Must have a states-rights & nullification museum. Or the John C. Calhoun memorial library, perhaps?


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?
From: Homeless
Date: 19 Nov 11 - 11:42 AM

What kind of things are you interested in? Music? History? Architecture?   Shopping? I used to live there and still have contacts in the area.


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?
From: Janie
Date: 19 Nov 11 - 01:02 PM

Well, most things. Mom is a shopper but not the rest of us. Except for my 17 y.o. son, we are interested in history, but are not particularly interested in touring the interior of historic homes and mansions unless they have a story to tell or include a worthy art collection. I love gardens and landscape architecture. Really good art galleries. Art museums. Music - but not interested in clubs or bar scenes, at least not on this trip - unless there were some good jazz or big band music, which Mom would really enjoy.    Science, feats of engineering, natural wonders and learning about environmentally significant natural areas. Maritime museums and aquariums if they are good in "telling" their story and also not crowded.

My son will be on the lookout for places he can practice parkour without getting run off. Also in areas where he can longboard (skateboard as transportation vs. tricks and feats.) Regional food (will definitely try the shrimp and hushpuppies, VT.)

Mom is not actually frail, but does take awhile to get her energy back when she gets worn out, and is somewhat limited in how much walking she can do. If the weather is cold or wet she also isn't too keen on being out-of-doors except to get from one place to another. She would enjoy a trolley tour, or perhaps a buggy tour if they run in winter and if the day is mild, but we won't be able to simply do a lot of strolling, and checking out just whatever grabs our interest, which is what Sis and I would do if it were just us.

From the internet, it looks like there isn't much happening during the week between Christmas and New Year's in terms of theatres, shows and public holiday performances. Would be nice to take in one good show of some sort, but we are mostly looking for how to spend the days, not the evenings.


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?
From: michaelr
Date: 19 Nov 11 - 02:50 PM

Shag club! That's exciting!


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?
From: Chanteyranger
Date: 19 Nov 11 - 03:29 PM

My wife and I were in Charleston just a few weeks ago, and it is one of the most beautiful cities, and the "low country" one of the most beautiful areas I've ever been to. I would strongly recommend a drive to Brookgreen Gardens, a massive sculpture garden, with talks on area art and culture in the visitor center. We took in a presentation on Gullah/Geechee culture; very informative. Walking through the gardens, coming upon sculptures everywhere you look, had the sensation to me of walking through a dreamscape. Charleston has some great restaurants. We loved McCrady's, in the historic district, near the battery. The chef-owner is gaining a rep among food critics as one of the best in the country, and the place is friendly, non-stuffy,the food fantastic, and the prices are less than one would expect for a restaurant of this type. Almost all the food is locally grown, and much of it grown and raised in his own property. If you're vegetarian you can find veg alternatives at many restaurants, cafes, roadside diners. If you're on a low budget, you can eat very well. Something else to stop at is one of the many Gullah sweetgrass basket stands along the highway. This basketmaking has been passed from generation to generation by Gullah people, originating in Africa. I'm not really a basket afficionado by any means, but I was totally enchanted by them, and brought one back. One last thing - if you start walking through the historic district, you can't go wrong. Most houses and buildings date from 1640 on up. Have a great trip, and please report back on how it went, eh?
-Chanteyranger


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?
From: meself
Date: 19 Nov 11 - 04:01 PM

Yes, just walk around - it's beautiful. Don't take a camera, or you'll never stop taking pictures.


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?
From: Greg F.
Date: 19 Nov 11 - 05:09 PM

Don't miss the site if the Slave Market- the largest one in the United States!


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?
From: Janie
Date: 19 Nov 11 - 06:36 PM

Thanks all so far. Keep 'em coming!


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?
From: catspaw49
Date: 19 Nov 11 - 09:31 PM

Janie, when I was traveling I always loved going to Charleston. Its been too long now to have any decent info, but definitely do the carriage ride. The local food is great and if you like seafood there are some great Lowcountry dishes including something called SHE CRAB Soup. Its beyond great.

Have a good time..................Hard to go too far wrong in Charleston.


Spaw


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?
From: Bobert
Date: 19 Nov 11 - 10:36 PM

Go the Hank's Seafood at least once... It's the real deal and not too slick... Go to the open market and pop for a carriage ride thru the Battery...

B~


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?
From: Greg F.
Date: 21 Nov 11 - 08:23 AM

Don't miss the Denmark Vesey historical museum & walking tour. Helps put in perspective what built and financed all that beautiful architecture.


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?
From: GUEST,LynnT
Date: 21 Nov 11 - 09:26 PM

Your son may like the Hunley exhibit, over near the CHAS Naval Base -- the Hunley was one of the first submarines, I believe Confederate, and they've got a small museum where they are doing archeological work on the river floor where she went down.

Also check out Middleton Plantation -- wonderful gardens, there may still be camellias in bloom.

My fave local food is shrimp & grits -- made with lots of cheese & brown sauce in the grits.

Lynn


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?
From: Janie
Date: 21 Nov 11 - 11:02 PM

Really appreciate the ideas, suggestions and feedback. Want to make good use of our time. Realizing we are really only going to have 2 full days in Charleston, so these suggestions are especially helpful. Everything will be closed on Christmas day and we have to check out on Wednesday. Sum Yung Sun and I could also consider checking into a motel/hotel and staying a couple of days longer if he would like to do so. I'm sure he would enjoy touring the aircraft carrier but that would be a major physical challenge for Ma, and probably Sis after the bad car accident from which she is not fully recovered, and also not on the top of their lists of things to do and see.

Is the aquarium exceptional, or simply another decent aquarium? Not being snobby, but there are a lot of aquariums, and most of them are not that interesting after one has been to several, especially when they are so packed with people one can not linger at exhibits, has to peer over the tops of heads or disagreeably elbow one's way forward, and can not linger at points of interest for fear of adding to congestion. It is hard to take in the benefits and wonders of the natural world when surrounded by several thousand of your closest friends. I know Charleston is not an east coast hotspot for the week between Christmas and New Years, but school is out, families are visiting, and the kids need entertained. Remembering a very unsatisfactory visit to the Baltimore aquarium during the same time period a couple of years ago because of the crowds. But also a much higher population density. Midweek at the Long Beach aquarium in southern California during a non-school break was quite manageable, enjoyable and informative. Anyone with experience or insight?

Good jazz spots? Mom and I would love it.


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?
From: Janie
Date: 21 Nov 11 - 11:34 PM

Love the garden tour suggestions. I'm the only lover (addict) of gardens in the bunch, but Mom and Sis would enjoy at least one tour. If only one, which would you recommend?

Not for this family trip, necessarily, but Charleston is only about a 5 hour drive for me, and I could see myself driving down there alone for a weekend in late winter, saying "to hell with other responsibilities, I need this." A well constructed garden is really about the "bones" of the garden, not about plants. The best time to observe the bones of the garden are in winter or at night, under the moonlight. I can easily visualize plantings of perennials and/or annuals. I don't so easily visual the hardscape or the architectural impact of trees and shrubs throughout the seasons. When everything is in bloom it is easy to miss the elements of garden architecture that cause the garden to "work" 12 months of the year.

I digress. The main event for this trip is to nurture Mom and to begin to establish a new and affordable family tradition.


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?
From: Joe Offer
Date: 22 Nov 11 - 02:21 AM

Hi, Janie-
I was going to recommend the she-crab soup, but Spaw beat me to it. It has crab eggs mixed in with the crab meat. The deviled crab was great, too. I found a seafood restaurant just south of the central market, but I don't remember the name. The entire old city area is delightful for walking, and I especially liked the far east end of the old city, where stately old homes face the open water.

I was also going to recommend Folly Beach, and I see that's where you're staying. The north end of the beach is a wonderful natural area for walking and birdwatching, and it has a great view of TWO lighthouses - Morris Island Light and the ugly modern one at the north entrance to Charleston Harbor.

Have a great time, Janie!

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?
From: Janie
Date: 22 Dec 11 - 09:14 PM

Mom and Annie head that way tomorrow and Sean and I will be on the road by 6:00 or so Saturday morning. Looks like we will have decent enough weather. Thanks for the varied suggestions - we will definitely be taking some of the advice here!

Happy Holidays.

J


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?
From: Crowhugger
Date: 22 Dec 11 - 11:07 PM

I'm sure your 2 days will fill and pass quickly. But if you like the out of doors and natural phenomena, it may be worth the hour and a bit
drive to the state park on Edisto Island. It was really something spend some contemplative time at the dunes and the sawgrass marshes, osprey overhead, sunrise on the surf (we were camped there). Check out their list of 5 top things to do because #3 addresses mobility concerns.


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?
From: Bobert
Date: 22 Dec 11 - 11:10 PM

Hanks Seafood!!!

B~


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?
From: Micca
Date: 23 Dec 11 - 05:36 AM

Janie, I truly envy you, Charleston has been on my "Bucket List" for a long time!!!!for the beauty of the city and the wonderful ambience. I have been promised a trip there by Chance and Suzette and am avidly reading this thread for "Must sees" I already heard about "the squares! of the city and about Fort Sumpter but now I know there is a Sculpture Park as well!! I love sculpture! and a birdwatching area which would be full of birds I have never seen. I am sure you will enjoy your visit ( as I hope I will in time) and look forward to reading your reports


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?
From: GUEST,Dani
Date: 23 Dec 11 - 08:08 PM

Wish I'd seen this earlier!

I second everything.....

I liked the aquarium a lot, but we were there with little kids, so everything was cool and fun. They had neat stuff on the area waterways.

ANYwhere near the Battery is lovely to drive (or carriage!) around, or stroll, slowly.

Go to the Mills House for tea, or a drink. My alma mater!

When you're resting, read up on the history, then look up and around. It's astounding. Stan might like a drive around the Citadel?

I always ask hotel folks where THEY like best to eat, not the tourist traps (and there are plenty of those).

Have fun! I am jealous : )

Dani


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?
From: wysiwyg
Date: 23 Dec 11 - 10:35 PM

Gabby's-- superb breakfast joint. All the squids go there when they really need to EAT. Our two took us there-- downhome ugly of a place, but the FOOD... see if it's still there....?

~Susan


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?
From: LilyFestre
Date: 23 Dec 11 - 11:11 PM

My friend took me to a lesbian bar in Charleston, SC where we had a ton of fun playing pool! Probably not what you are looking for but hey..why not? :)

Michelle


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?
From: GUEST,Dani
Date: 24 Dec 11 - 09:24 AM

And when you come home, read "Slaves in the Family" by Edward Ball.

Anyone who loves Charleston (or wants to really understand some of the complicated history of the American slave trade in world history) should read this. I thought my eyes were pretty open, but they were not until I read that, and the next time I visited, there were some pretty big epiphanies.

I am not a songwriter, but there are several stories told in that book that made me want to write them, so I could hear the likes of you all sing them.

Dani


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Subject: RE: BS: What's to Do in Charleston, SC?
From: wysiwyg
Date: 24 Dec 11 - 11:47 AM

Or an audiobook at Libriovox... free, and told by the slave. Have to look it up...

~S~


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