Charleston’s historic districts, antebellum architecture, and cobblestone streets have made it one of the most popular tourist destinations in the South, attracting more than 5.15 million people in 2015. Travelers to this South Carolina destination will have no trouble finding things to do from learning about the origins of the Civil War at Fort Sumter to sampling some of the region's best cuisine at the Charleston Grill.
The North Charleston Arts Fest has been one of the leading showcases for South Carolina artisans since it began in 1982. This year’s event will take place May 3-7, at various parks, community centers, and libraries throughout the city. The Fest will feature more than 100 performers and artisans from the community and all over the globe, demonstrating their skills in visual and media arts, dance, music, literature, and more. Attendees should make sure to attend The Arts Fest Expo, which is the main event of the weekend featuring more than 40 live performers on multiple stages. Other activities include workshops, exhibitions, demonstrations, concerts, kids programs, theater performances, and more. We got the opportunity to interview Ann Simmons, a representative for the event to learn more about this unique gathering of artistic talent.
RAL: How long has the event been running?
AS: We have been showcasing the best art and artists in the state since 1982. We’re proud to be celebrating our 35th year in 2017!
RAL: How many annual participants do you draw?
AS: We expect more than 30,000 attendees.
RAL: What is the typical demographic makeup of the event? Children? Families? Couples?
AS: The Arts Fest offers something for everyone. We encourage everyone to check out our event.
RAL: What makes this event unique?
AS: We offer multiple days of events involving all arts disciplines in both traditional and non-traditional venues, mostly free of charge.
RAL: Take me through the activities of a day at the event.
AS: The festival schedule includes concerts, theater presentations, children’s programs, workshops, demonstrations, exhibitions, public art installations, and much more.
RAL: What dining options will attendees encounter?
AS: There is a food courtyard with a variety of food trucks at the Arts Fest Expo on Saturday (May 6) and Sunday (May 7). There are also some great dining options in and around North Charleston.
RAL: What will the environment be like?
AS: Will will have performances, workshops, exhibitions, and activities taking place in a variety of venues, including libraries, community centers, and parks.
RAL: What can an attendee expect to find for local lodging?
AS: North Charleston has a multitude of hotel options, especially since the airport is located here.
RAL: What does this event mean to the community?
AS: The mission of the Arts Fest closely mirrors that of our city’s Cultural Arts Department. We aim to present a comprehensive collection of events and activities which engage and inspire people of all ages and backgrounds.
RAL: Why should people come to your event?
AS: Named a Top 20 Event by the Southeast Tourism Society, the event has matured into one of the most comprehensive art festivals in the state of South Carolina with a schedule that offers something for everyone.
For more information about the North Charleston Arts Fest, please visit the event website.