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Charleston’s summer bucket list

There’s nothing quite like summer in Charleston. We’ve got you covered with all the best festivals, events, and other activities throughout the Holy City.

This photo shows the light house standing tall in the ocean.

Let us help you explore the Lowcountry and all it has to offer this summer.

Photo by @darbyadkins

Table of Contents

Summer’s almost here and Charleston is so ready. From live music and Memorial Day celebrations to hiking and festivals, summer is when the 843 comes alive.

Get ready to get outside with this guide featuring 30+ summer events — including ideas for the Fourth of July — happening between May and August.

celebration with streamers for spoleto festival

Celebrate music and theater in this 17-day festival.

Photo by @lindsfleege

Festivals

Lowcountry Shrimp Festival | Saturday, May 4 | 11 a.m.-5 p.m. | Cape Romain Environmental Education Charter School, 1011 Old Cemetery Rd., McClellanville

Enjoy music, pony rides, face paint, vendors, and lots of shrimp. The blessing of local shrimp boat captains and crews preparing for the upcoming shrimp season takes place at 4 p.m.

It will cost $10 a car for parking.

Charleston Greek Festival | Friday, May 10-Sunday, May 12| Times vary | Greek Orthodox Church of the Holy Trinity, 30 Race St., Charleston

Get ready to celebrate Greek culture and eat moussaka, gyros, and baklava. You’ll also explore vendors and enjoy live music and performances at this festival.

General admission tickets are $5, seniors and students tickets are $3, and Veterans and children 12 and younger are free.

Spoleto Festival USA | Friday, May 24 -Sunday, June 9 | Times vary | Locations vary

For 17 days and nights, opera, theater, dance, and musical performances will take place in historic theaters, churches, and outdoor spaces.

Tickets start at $25, and all sales are final.

Charleston Carifest | Thursday, June 13-Sunday, June 16 | Times vary | Locations vary

This annual celebration celebrates Caribbean American Heritage Month with a costume parade, music, dancing, and food. Each year, a different Caribbean country is showcased at the cultural festival.

There are free and paid events at this festival.

Charleston Caribbean Jerk Festival | Saturday, July 20 | 3-10 p.m. | Riverfront Park, 1061 Everglades Ave., North Charleston

This family-friendly event celebrates the best of Caribbean food, culture, and music. Don’t miss the cooking challenge, chefs will battle to claim the title of Top Jerk Chef 2024.

Tickets start at $20.

Summer Wine Festival | Saturday, August 26 | 6-10 p.m. | Charleston Harbor Cruise Terminal, 196 Concord St.

There will be 50+ wines, mimosas, seltzers, and a small selection of beers. This venue will offer an air-conditioning indoor option as well as a waterside patio. Tickets include an acrylic wine glass, entertainment, and all wine and beer samples. Food will cost extra.

Festival Tickets are $50 in advance, $55 after Aug. 17, and $65 the day of the event.

This photo shows  juvenile green sea turtle receiving care at the South Carolina Aquarium.

Meet Eleanor, this juvenile green sea turtle arrived at the Sea Turtle Care Center with a hook in its flipper.

Only in the Lowcountry

Sweet Tea Trail | Dates, times, and locations vary

Did you know that Summerville is the official birthplace of sweet tea? Follow along this “trail” with dozens of stops to support local businesses.

Sea Turtle Care Center | Seven days a week | 9 a.m.-5 p.m | 100 Aquarium Wharf, Charleston

The South Carolina Aquarium Sea Turtle Care Center cares for sick and injured sea turtles, and the day-to-day operations are in full view. Visit interactive stations about the causes of sea turtle stranding, see current sea turtle patients, and learn the unique stories of each patient.

Tickets start at $30.

2nd Sunday on King Street | Second Sunday of the month | 12-5 p.m. | King Street

Once a month in downtown Charleston, King Street is closed to vehicles. Locals and visitors walk down the Holy City’s main street to enjoy shopping, live music, and food trucks.

Take an oyster farm tour | Times and dates vary | Lowcountry Oyster Company, 15833 Bennetts Point Rd., Green Pond

The perfect off-the-beaten-path tour will give you a true taste of the Lowcountry and offer guests a glimpse into the oyster’s journey from tide to table. You’ll see, smell, touch, and taste oysters.

Tickets start at $150.

Discover Morris Island Lighthouse | Seven days a week | Sunrise-sunset | 1750 E. Ashley Ave., Folly Beach

While the Morris Island Lighthouse is offshore, you can get a great view of this iconic landmark from Lighthouse Inlet Heritage Preserve. You can also book a boat tour for a closer look at the lighthouse.

Charleston City Night Market | Friday and Saturday | 6:30 p.m.–10:30 p.m. | 188 Meeting St.

You’ve probably visited the Charleston City Market during the daytime, but did you know you can go… at night? On Friday and Saturday evenings, you can explore the downtown marketplace under the twinkling lights and listen to live music.

Discover filming locations | Dates, times, and locations vary

Calling all TV and film buffs: We rounded up local filming locations for Netflix’s drama series “Outer Banks” and the feature film “The Notebook.” Reminder: Always be respectful of private property.

This photo shows a firework display.

Celebrate the Fourth of July with a fireworks show.

Summer Holidays

Memorial Day

Remembrance Ceremony 2024 “Honor Them” | Monday, May 27 | 2:30-3:30 p.m. | Hutchinson Square, 102 S. Main St., Summerville

Hear from leaders and guest speakers while remembering and honoring the men and women who died while serving in the military.

This event is free.

Memorial Day Concert | Monday, May 27 | 3-4 p.m. | Hampton Park, 30 Mary Murray Dr.

This patriotic presentation honors those who made the ultimate sacrifice to protect our country and its freedom. Bring your chair and watch the Charleston Concert Band and Columbia Community Band team up to pay respects to the fallen.

Support the Charleston Concert Band with a donation.

Juneteenth

Juneteenth Family Fest | Saturday, June 15 | 3-10 p.m. | Riverfront Park, 1061 Everglades Ave., North Charleston

You’ll enjoy live performances, art, games, and food at this event. The night ends with a grand fireworks show.

Tickets start at $15 for adults and $5 for children 17 and younger.

Fourth of July

July 4 At Patriots Point | Thursday, July 4 | 6-10 p.m. | Patriots Point Naval & Maritime Museum, 40 Patriots Point Rd., Mount Pleasant

Have the best seat in the Lowcountry for fireworks and celebrating the red, white, and blue. You’ll enjoy music, food trucks, and a fireworks show over Charleston Harbor.

The event is free, but you do have to pay for parking.

Charleston RiverDogs vs Myrtle Beach Pelicans | Thursday, July 4 | 6:35 p.m. | Joe Riley Ball Park, 360 Fishburne St.

Celebrate Independence Day with a night out watching America’s favorite pastime. Pro tip: Stay in your seat after the game ends to watch the sky light up with postgame fireworks.

Tickets start at $8.

Several cities and towns hold parades, celebrations, and events — stay up to date and keep an eye on their websites.

An aerial shot of Credit One Stadium

Credit One Stadium hosts a variety of events year-round.

Photo provided by Credit One Stadium

Concerts

Pro tip: Most venues in the Charleston area have a clear bag policy in effect.

Live Under the Oaks Concert Series | May outdoor concert series | Mount Pleasant Towne Centre, 1218 Belk Dr., Mount Pleasant

Enjoy the warm Lowcountry evenings. Grab your chair or blanket and dinner from the food trucks at this weekly outdoor concert series.

This is a free event.

Bonnie Raitt: Just Like That... Tour | Thursday, May 9 | 7:30 p.m. | North Charleston Performing Arts Center, 5001 Coliseum Dr., North Charleston

Enjoy the show by this singer, guitarist, and songwriter as she performs blues, rock, folk, and country hits.

Tickets start at $66.

Lady A with Matt Stell | Monday, June 10 | 7:30 p.m. | North Charleston Coliseum, 5001 Coliseum Dr., North Charleston

This country music group will make a stop in the 843. You know just they’ll own the night.

Tickets start at $34.

Steve Miller Band | Thursday, June 13 | 7:30 p.m. | North Charleston Performing Arts Center, 5001 Coliseum Dr., North Charleston

This group, founded in the 70s, will bring their blues, psychedelic, and pop rock hits to the Holy City.

Tickets start at $83.

Brooks & Dunn Reboot 2024 Tour with David Lee Murphy & Ernest | Saturday, June 15 | 7 p.m. | Credit One Stadium, 161 Seven Farms Dr.

Get ready to Boot Scoot Boogie under a “Neon Moon,” this country music duo will rock the Lowcountry with several special guests.

Tickets start at start at $33

New Kids On The Block | Thursday, July 25 | 7 p.m. | Credit One Stadium, 161 Seven Farms Dr.

The Magic Summer Tour is making a stop on Daniel Island. Special guests Paula Abdul and DJ Jazzy Jeff will be along for the fun.

Tickets start at $17.

T-Pain’s Mansion in Wiscansin Party | Thursday, June 27 | 7 p.m. | Firefly Distillery, 4201 Spruill Ave. North Charleston

Grammy Award-winner T-Pain is bringing his tour to the Lowcountry. The rapper and singer will bring special guests LaRussell, NandoSTL, and Young Ca$h.

Tickets are $55.

Party at the Point | Weekly Friday concerts until July 7 | 5 p.m. | Charleston Harbor Resort & Marina, 20 Patriots Point Rd., Mount Pleasant

Start the weekend early every Thursday with live music, drinks, and beautiful views.

Tickets are $10.

The photo shows the  Folly Beach Pier at dusk.

See what’s biting at the new Folly Beach Pier.

Photo courtesy of Charleston County Parks

Competitions

Fine Art and Photography Competition and Exhibition | Wednesday, May 1 | 6-8 p.m. | Charleston Area Convention Center, 5001 Coliseum Dr., Exhibit Hall C, North Charleston

Enjoy browsing and admiring the work of talented local artists and photographers. The award ceremony takes place Wednesday, May 1, but you can enjoy the works through Sunday, May 5.

There is a $10 fee per fine art entry and a $5 fee per photography entry.

Cast Off Fishing Tournament | Mount Pleasant Pier: Saturday, May 11 + Saturday, June 15 | 6 a.m.-2 p.m. | Folly Beach Pier: Saturday, May 25 + Saturday, June 22

This summer enjoy some spectacular views while reeling in sheepshead and spotted sea trout. Prize categories include the biggest three by weight, the biggest youth catch (12 and under), and the best five fish by total weight. There are several tournament dates this summer the first starting in May.

Tournament Fees range from $5-$12 per person.

Floppin’ Flounder 5K | Saturday, June 8 | 8 a.m. | Sullivan’s Island Fire Department Fish Fry Shack, 1424 Hennessy St., Sullivan’s Island

Run for a reason. This annual run benefits the Sullivan’s Island Fire and Rescue Dept., Charleston Running Club, and the Charleston Animal Society. There are awards for the top finishers of the race + for top finishes in every age group.

The race fees start at $40.

This photo shows a white bucket of strawberries.

What’s better than freshly-picked strawberries?

Photo by 6AM City

Fresh crops

Bugby Plantation | Monday-Saturday | 9 a.m.-5 p.m. | Bugby Plantation Road, Wadmalaw Island

Rain or shine, you can pick strawberries at this farm between Wadmalaw and Johns Island, not far from the Angel Oak tree. Pro tip: Double check hours of operation, these berries are delicious and prone to sell out.

Willie’s Roadside Market | Seven days a week | 10 a.m.-5 p.m. | 2434 N. Hwy. 17, Mount Pleasant

From the farm to the market to your table. There is nothing better than fresh fruits and veggies in the summer, check out this produce spot for the freshest ingredients for your meal.

Sea Island Farmers Market | Saturdays, year-round | 9:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.| 2024 Academy Dr., Johns Island

There is so much to explore at this local market, from fresh offerings to food trucks, and other gems from 40+ vendors.

West Ashley Farmers Market | Wednesdays | 3 p.m.-7 p.m. | 55 Sycamore Ave., Charleston

Enjoy sweet and savory foods and family-friendly entertainment while you shop for all things summer.

Seasonal essentials

  • Tired of losing your sunglasses in the water? These floating sunglasses provide optimal clarity and comfort for all your summer adventures.
  • Shield yourself from the sun while adding a touch of flair to your outfit with one of our hats.
  • This iceless cooler keeps your drinks cold for 7 hours.

Tell us the best time of the year to explore the Holy City.

If you snap a cool photo of your adventures, send the image or social media link our way here for a chance to be featured in our newsletter. Happy exploring.

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