If you’re considering a trip to the Southeastern Spine Institute for a spinal medicine procedure, schedule it during the summer. Sure, it gets hot in Charleston. Sure, it gets crowded. But that’s because there’s so much to experience in the city during these months. Before your procedure or while you’re recuperating, attend the best summer events in Charleston, SC:
1. Sunset Wine-Tasting Cruises on the Schooner Pride, starting May 4
A catered affair with wine and food, these sunset cruises in the Charleston, SC harbor may be the quintessential Charleston activity. Setting sail on the first and third Wednesdays of each summer month, the wind-powered schooner serves up four to five wines and light hors d’oeuvres while you watch the beautiful skyline or the frolicking dolphins. And of course, the view of sunset from the water is spectacular. Just remember that wine and pain medication don’t always mix well.
2. Bands, Burgers and Brews Burger Throwdown, May 22 from 1:00 to 5:00
If you like the idea of a hoedown by the water, this might be your ticket. The Charleston Harbor Resort & Marina sponsors this event, which pits the area’s best chefs against each other for the opportunity to represent Charleston, SC on the national stage. Since Charleston is considered a foodie destination, you know the competition will be fierce. Admission is $10, and you can taste the burgers, one piece at a time, for a $1 per taste. Craft beer, live music and more — just don’t overdo it.
3. Spoleto Festival USA, May 27–June 12
When international arts collide with Southern culture, you get a festival that’s a visual and auditory feast. This festival requires you to research the events you want to attend, buy the tickets and show up on time. You’ll find a range of music (including orchestral, jazz and string), theater, opera, modern dance and more in venues scattered throughout the city. Some events are free; others can cost up to $50. Plan ahead.
4. Piccolo Spoleto Festival, May 27–June 12
A companion festival to the Spoleto Festival USA, this one highlights more local Southern literary, performing and visual arts. With more than 500 events, there are too many to list. You’ll find worthwhile acts and arts every single day of the festival. And many of the events are free. Don’t miss the June 4 Sand Sculpting Competition at Front Beach!
5. The Sweetgrass Cultural Arts Festival, June 4 from noon to 7PM
Held at the nearby Memorial Waterfront Park in Mount Pleasant, this arts and crafts event spotlights the Gullah Geechee culture and history. You’ll find food, drink, live music, storytelling, children’s activities and of course, the basket-making crafts that define the Gullah Geechee. Part African, part Southern, and all Charleston, the Sweetgrass Cultural Arts Festival will get you swaying, which could be a boost for your back recuperation. Also, check out the Taste of Gullah on May 27. See the website for more information.
6. Southern Living Live: The 50th Anniversary, June 10–June 12
Southern Living is one of the premier magazines of the South. It has chosen to celebrate its 50 years in existence in Charleston, SC. As a result, you get to participate in a rare treat. The magazine hosts home and garden events, food and drink extravaganzas, walking tours and special shopping outings. Each event requires a ticket priced between $40 and $175. Have fun and learn more about Charleston while recuperating from your back procedure.