If you’re in a beach house Charleston this weekend, you picked a good one to be here.

Of course this weekend is one of the biggest festivals of the year, the Southeastern Wildlife Exhibition, which draws between 35,000 and 45,000 to the Charleston area.  Although festivals take place all across the whole calendar nowadays, SEWE has traditionally been seen as the kickoff to festival season here in the Lowcountry.

One exciting thing about this year’s festival is, it’s finally returning to the Gaillard after the venue’s being out of commission due to extensive renovations.  This will be the first annual event that’s taken place in the city’s gorgeous new arts center.  They’ll be using the main performance hall as well as event space for exhibitors with their handcrafted furniture, woodworking, leather goods, knives and outfitter goodies.  Famed animal expert Jack Hanna, one of David Letterman’s favorite repeat guests on “Late Night with David Letterman,” will be making several different appearances in the performance hall.


Dock Dogs near your beach house Charleston!

As usual, there are also exhibitors and demos at Marion Square as well as Charleston Place and various other venues around town.  And don’t forget one of the main draws, the beloved Dock Dogs which will be catching some serious air down at Brittlebank Park.  SEWE venues are convenient to all our SC vacation rentals, be they Isle of Palms vacation rentals or a Folly beach house Charleston.

SEWE’s going on today, Friday, February 12th, through Sunday, February 14th.  Here’s a full schedule of events:  http://sewe.com/events

AsianBrowWoodOwl in flight

This year also marks an important milestone for another of SEWE’s favorite guest stars, the birds from the Center for Birds of Prey in Awendaw.  This is the 25th year of the center, which serves as a crucial hospital, rehabilitation and education center for falcons, eagles, hawks, owls, kites and many other incredible creatures.  They’ll be giving flight demos from Marion Square, which is always a bit of a thrill to see one of these raptors take a flying dive right past your head, hopefully back to its handler.

David Quick of the Post & Courier just did a good story on the Center on its 25th birthday; here’s a link:  http://www.postandcourier.com/article/20160210/PC12/160219951

The Center sits on 152 acres just up Highway 17 from Mount Pleasant.  From your luxury house on Isle of Palms, take the IOP Connector to Hwy 17, turn right, and when you get to Awendaw, watch for the signs and the big metal gate with raptor wings on your right.  It’s a fun and wholesome outing for all ages staying in your Charleston beach house.

Chocolate --- Image by © Royalty-Free/Corbis

Another fun thing near your beach house Charleston…

A perennial favorite attraction among folks who stay in our luxury beach house rentals SC  –  Magnolia Plantation  –  is hosting a very appealing Valentine’s event this weekend.

It’s called the VALENTINE CHOCOLATE WALK, and it’s free with regular garden admission.

You’re invited to stroll with your sweetheart through the oldest gardens in America, enjoying one of the top collections of camellias in the world (over 20,000).  Along the way, you’ll be serenaded by string musicians, and you’re invited to enjoy ten different tasting stations with decadent chocolate creations.

heart chocolate

The famous camellias of Magnolia bloom from the middle of November to April.  November and December see the camellia sasanqua in bloom, with the japonicas hitting their stride from mid-January to mid-March.

Magnolia Plantation has this to say about their gardens:  “Unlike most of America’s gardens, which are formal and seek to control nature, Magnolia cooperates with nature to create a tranquil landscape like Eden where humanity and nature are in harmony.”

It’s going on both Saturday (Feb. 13th) and Sunday (February 14th) from 10:00 a.m. till 3:00 p.m.  If you’d like to enjoy a romantic chocolate walk just with your sweetie, separate interactive activities are available for the kids.  (By the way, children 6 and under are free.)  So this is yet another good option for all ages in your beach house Charleston.

For more info, go to their website: http://www.magnoliaplantation.com/

Magnolia is located at 3550 Ashley River Road in Charleston, and it’s an easy drive from all our rental homes South Carolina, whether they’re Isle of Palms luxury rentals or Folly Beach rentals Charleston.

So enjoy the wildlife and romance of the weekend, and when you are in the hunt for the best in beach house rentals Charleston SC, be sure to call EP.

All best,
Lowcountry Lisa
your Isle of Palms vacation blogger