Anderson has a population of over 26,000 residents and it’s situated in the lush expanse of Northwestern South Carolina. Perfect for you next getaway, you’ll love the activities on Lake Hartwell, unique attractions, and great festivals.
Lake Hartwell lies west of Anderson, covering a sprawling 56,000 acres and featuring 962 miles of shoreline. It’s popular among major professional fishing circuits and hosts multiple tournaments throughout the year. You’ll get the chance to catch a variety of different species including largemouth bass, crappie, and bream. If fishing is not your cup of tea, the lake is ideal for boating, waterskiing, wakeboarding, and tubing. The area surrounding the lake also has hiking/biking trails, campgrounds, and playgrounds for those who prefer to stay on dry land. The Lake Hartwell Outdoor Center is an experienced outfitter that can show you around locally and help with all your outdoor equipment needs.
The range of attractions in Anderson is impressive. The area offers an abundance of golf options with local courses challenging golfers of all skill levels including Brookstone Meadows Golf Course and Cobb’s Glen Country Club. If indoor activities are your type of adventure, the city has great museums including The Anderson County Museum, a great place to learn about local and regional history. They have a variety of events, programs, exhibits, and demonstrations that are fun and educational. When you’re done learning about the past, how about a unique view of the present? Skyscapes of America offers you the chance to take hot air balloon tours of the area. Imagine soaring high into the air to view breathtaking vistas of rolling green hills and distant mountain peaks. It’s truly a sight to behold!
Anderson has the perfect event to make your getaway one you won't forget. The Carolina BrewHaHa is a highly anticipated beer festival returning for it’s fourth year. The event was founded to showcase all the unique beers created and produced in the area. This is the ideal event if you're a beer enthusiast with short lines, quick pours, over 100 different types of beer, and the opportunity to speak directly with beer makers. Live music will be performed by three bands and you’ll find a variety of food options from the area's finest restaurants. We got the opportunity to interview Jake Grove, representative for the event, to talk all about this celebration of Anderson brewing.
RAL: Tell me a little bit about the event.
JG: The Carolina BrewHaHa has been around since 2013 and started as a way to showcase the craft beer from Anderson, Clemson, and Seneca. Greenville has a large craft beer presence and we wanted to show that Anderson and other areas are just as passionate. We strive for intimacy at our festival and that means shorter lines, more chances to try the beers, and time to talk to the people who make or represent the beer. We limit sales to 500 tickets per year and get a wide range of attendees from old to young. We are family friendly, but only for those kids who want to stay close to their parents.
RAL: What makes the event unique?
JG: As for what makes us unique, it's the attention to detail and the desire to stay intimate. We offer almost 100 beers, but we don't want anyone waiting longer than a few minutes to get that pour.
RAL: Take me through a day at the event.
JG: We start at 1:00 pm by opening the gates for our VIP ticket holders. Those attendees enjoy a large shaded area, rare beers you won't get out on the lawn, and snacks from our VIP area sponsor, Nick's Tavern and Deli. This is also when the band starts. We are featuring My Girl My Whiskey and Me, Highwire Hippo, and Thermonuclear Rodeo this year. We have corn hole games up, as well as local food from SummaJoe's, Mellow Mushroom, Doolittle's, and Earle Street Kitchen and Bar.
RAL: What can an attendee expect to find for local lodging?
JG: Actually, we have one of the best locally-owned lodging options in the state, The Bleckley Inn. It's a short drive to the festival where there’s ample parking, but there are Uber drivers available. The Bleckley also has some smaller rooms on Main Street that are a little less expensive. You can also stay at the Holiday Inn, Hampton Inn, or Hilton Garden Inn.
RAL: What does the event mean to the community?
JG: I think the effect of this event has only begun to reach its potential. Our breweries love coming here because of the atmosphere we have created. They come from Charleston, Columbia, Asheville, and all points along the East Coast. It doesn't hurt we are working with great local sponsors like Thomas Creek Brewery and BREWS on the Alley in Seneca.
Anderson has lost several events over the years and we wanted to bring something fun to do back to the Electric City. And we schedule it away from Clemson home games so that we don't have to worry about lodgings reaching max occupancy for the weekend.
Our event happens just before a massive oyster roast with our local chapter of Meals on Wheels so it's a great way to enjoy two awesome things, beer and oysters.
RAL: Why should people come to your event?
JG: I think what they will see at here is the kind of beer festival they went to a decade ago, as craft beer was rising. It's built around the craft beer lover, but we want the people working the festival to have as much fun as those who aren't behind the tables. This year we will have a film crew from Britain joining us as part of a nationwide beer feature for the British Travel Channel. It's fun for everyone and more than worth giving Anderson a try.
For more information about the Carolina BrewHaHa, please visit their website.