Who doesn’t get a little thrill watching the Oscars? The glitz, the glamour, the red-carpet and all those categories! Well, there’s one category Downtownies may want to take notice of…Short Films. Why? Because our very own hometown will have a rare chance to view these Oscar-worthy films in a unique way.

A short film, by the film industry’s definition, is a film that is 40 minutes or less in length. What they lack in duration, they more than make up for in quality, dramatic flair and thought-provoking subjects. This weekend, the Peace Center will play host to their first ever “Oscar Shorts Film Festival”.  Movie lovers will have the opportunity to view the Short Film nominees from three categories – live action, animation and documentary.

The three day long festival will begin Thursday, February 21 with the screening of the Live Action nominees. The films range in content and subject matter and are from such wide-flung countries as Belgium, Afghanistan and Somalia. Included are films that portray people from every walk of life – from  the adventures of a young man attempting  to manage his pre-teen niece in “Curfew”,   to “Asad” and “Buzkashi Boys”, coming of age stories set in the war-torn countries of Somalia and Afghanistan, and from a Canadian pianist struggling to deal with the sudden disappearance of his beloved in “Henry” to a tale of second chances in “Death of a Shadow”, the story of a young soldier who finds his shadow imprisoned by an eccentric collector.    

Friday will play host to screenings of the nominees in the Animation category.  Fans of “The Simpsons” will be delighted to see Maggie Simpson in her latest adventures at Ayn Rand Day Care in “The Longest Daycare”. “Adam and Doc” tells the story of the first dog in creation and delves into his relationship with the First man,  “Guacamole” is a campy look at how to turn everyday objects into guacamole and “Paperman” tells the story of a lonely NYC man trying desperately to catch the attention of a pretty young woman, using only his imagination and a stack of papers.  In addition to these wonderful animated shorts, three other award-winning films will also be shown on Friday – “The Gruffalo’s Child”, “Abiogenesis” and “Dripped”.

Saturday’s screenings will feature nominees in the Documentary category and, true to form, cover a variety of thought-provoking topics. “Redemption” is the story of poor NYC “dumpster divers” who comb through others’ discarded trash in order to survive, while “Innocente” features a young artist seeking to show the new face of homelessness in America. “Open Heart” follows eight Rwandan children who have left their homes and families to receive high-risk heart surgery in Sudan. “King’s Point” gives us a glimpse into the lives of five senior citizens in Florida and “Mondays at Racine” shares the wonderful work done by a Long Island hair salon that offers a unique service to women undergoing chemotherapy.  

The screenings begin at 7PM on Thursday and Friday and 3PM on Saturday afternoon. Tickets are available at The Peace Center Box Office for $10 per series. For more information, call 864-467-3000 or visit www.



Well, Downtownies…February 12th is Fat Tuesday, otherwise known as Mardi Gras. For those who don’t know, it is the day preceding Ash Wednesday, the start of the 40 days of Lent, when traditionally, you give up sweets ( and general frivolity) as a symbol of fasting.  Fat Tuesday (and the weekend before) is a customary time of celebration and decadence and no city does it better than New Orleans.

Now, anyone who knows me, knows of my love for the Crescent City. It is probably the only place with even a chance of ever pulling me away from my beloved Downtown Greenville. This time of year, I find myself feeling a little nostalgic for my “other” city. If you also feel the need to experience Mardi Gras – NOLA style – but can’t make the trip to the Gulf Coast, Downtown Greenville offers a little bit of The Big Easy, right here in the Upstate.

Probably the closest you can come to Bourbon Street without leaving Main Street is Ford’s Oyster House & Cajun Kitchen.  Located on South Main, this fun-loving eatery offers some of the best Cajun cooking outside The Quarter. And do they know how to do up Carnival Season! Starting this weekend, Chef Damon has created a special Mardi Gras menu that’ll make you start your own Second Line! They are kicking off the festivities on Saturday with a boisterous Masquerade Ball in their upstairs rooms, with dance music from DJ Apollo, drink specials and all the throw beads you can catch. The cost is $10 in advance and $15 at the door. Costumes are strongly encouraged. The festivities continue on Fat Tuesday with a party worthy of its own parade krewe. DJ Apollo will return to provide dance music and drink specials and party favors will having you shouting “Throw me somethin’ mister” in no time!

Not to be outdone, Smiley’s Acoustic Café, throws  its own Mardi Gras soiree, that has become nearly legendary in the Greenville music community.  Featuring a casual jam session with members of local faves, The Work, Smley’s is all about “le Bon Temps”! With New Orleans inspired food & drink specials, Moon Pies and throw beads galore, this celebration will make you feel you’re in a rockin’ juke joint in the Treme’!!

Since Mardi Gras is all about “living it up, before giving it up”, a stop by a Downtown bakery on this most  decadent of Tuesdays may be in order. Chocolate Moose on Main,  is the perfect place to indulge in some sweet,  delicious cupcake debauchery! With cupcake flavors in Southern favorites like Red Velvet, French Toast and Bourbon Pecan Pie, your taste buds will be jazzed up big time!

The Mardi Gras festivities may put you in the mood to hear some of the music New Orleans gave birth to. Brown Street Club offers some mighty smooth jazz nightly from Tuesday to Saturday. On the 12th, enjoy the talented trio of Brendan Williamson and friends.  With the cool atmosphere and the hot tunes, you’ll think you’ve stepped into a underground jazz club on Frenchman Street.

So, there you have it Downtownies – lots of ways to experience a little NOLA in the DTGVL! So, let your hair down, kiss a stranger, dance in the street and Laissez le Bon Temps Rouler! See you Downtown!

It’s October…the temps are getting cooler, the leaves are changing colors and Downtown is decidely SPOOKIER! Halloween is around the corner & this is a very important tie of year for the little ones. Not only is the choice of costume so very important, but all the other things that make this time of year so frightfully fun must be addressed. So if you’re looking for some Halloween Happenings to entertain your little monsters (& your teen monsters too), head Downtown for these events sure to fright & delight!

The Greenville Library System is offering many family-friendly Halloween events. Their kids’ craft events – Kindercraft, CraftTime & In BeTween Crafts – are all offering Halloween & Fall-themed projects this month. The tiniest ghouls & boos can have some Howlin’ Good Fun at the Hughes Main Library’s Bouncing Baby BOO Bash, for babies 18 months and under. This event which offers games, prizes and costume contests, will take place October 30th, starting at 11AM. The Library’s Storytime events take on a certain spookiness as kids are encouraged to come in costume to hear scary, Halloween-themed stories. For more information on these and other events at your local library, visit

The Children’s Museum is offering two Halloween themed events this season. The first, BOO-seum, is returning for another year with science-themed, spooky fun every weekend in October. In addition to this family favorite, TCM is offering a twist on their art-themed events with Haunted Art Studios. Kids can create Halloween themed art projects under the guidance of the artist-in-residence. TCM also offers other events such as Halloween & Fall-themed craft projects to really get the kids in the Halloween spirit! For more info on these and other events at The Children’s Museum, visit

For many families, no event signals the coming of Halloween like the Greenville Zoo’s BOO in the Zoo! For more than two decades, this zoo sponsored trick-or-treating has been the “must-attend” Halloween event for the “under 12 set.” This year’s event takes place October 19-21 & 26-28. Cost is $3 for adults & $6 for children (Children must have an adult chaperone). For more information on this not-so-scary event, visit

The Saturday Market (on Court Street) is a favorite with families – and October is no exception. Join them on Saturday, October 27 for their Autumn Harvest from 8AM until noon. This year’s celebration will feature trick-or-treating for the kids, a cake walk, Ghost Buddies crafts with the folks from The Children’s Museum, a Fall Recipe Swap & a visit from the Star Wars 501st Legion, who will be roaming the Market. Best of all, it’s FREE!   For more info, visit

Looking for a Halloween event with a little more BITE? Then join the Zombie hoard on October 19 for the 3rd Annual Greenville Zombie Awakening. For the past couple of years, hundreds of the Walking Dead have invaded Main Street in search of BRAINS! A grassroots effort started by a group of college students & zombie enthusiasts, this year’s event promises to be even more “zombielicious”. Zombie costumes are required to participate & this is an all ages event. For more info, visit their Facebook Page at

Chills and thrills, with a little history thrown in, are what you will find when you take a Greenville Ghost Tour. Writer and paranormal specialist, Jason Profitt will lead you on a spine-tingling tour of Greenville’s supernatural side. 3 special Halloween night tours are scheduled, in addition to his regularly scheduled Thursday-Sunday 7PM tours. Tour cost is $20 for adults, $10 for children 13 & under. To book your tour & for more information, call 248-6472 or visit

In addition to the Zombie Walk & the Ghost Tours, two Haunted attractions, which are particularly popular with teens, are open in Downtown Greenville. The first, The Haunted Vault of Horror, is located at 245 N. Main Street (across from The Hyatt). Open weekends, starting at 7:30PM, this haunted attraction will take you on a frightful tour of freaks and frights. Cost is $15 per person. For more info, visit The second haunted attraction is a longtime Greenville favorite, Nightmare on Pendleton Street. Cooked up by the guys at B93.7, this attraction is an ever-changing screamfest of terror. Located at 904 Pendleton Street, this event is open every weekend in October from 7PM until everyone has gone home . For more info, visit

There you have it…plenty of family-friendly events for kids of all ages. So, head Downtown to get your hair raised and your spine-tingled. For more Howlin’ Good Halloween Happenings, check out the Downtown Greenville, SC Facebook Page every Friday for a posting of a calendar of events. Happy Halloween!

{May 29, 2012}   Adopting a Furry Friend…

Greenvillians definitely love their dogs! With roomy sidewalks, water bowls and waste bag dispensers conveniently located throughout Main Street, a canine bakery and a great dog park, Downtown is very dog-friendly. But what if you don’t have a furry friend with whom to share a Downtown Doggie Excursion? Before you start researching dog breeders online, visit one of Greenville’s animal shelters and rescue groups to find the perfect canine companion.

The Greenville Humane Society has been finding loving homes for Upstate pets for decades. Averaging 450 placements per month, the Society’s new location on Airport Road has allowed them to care for more animals and as a result, they have a large selection of dogs, cats, puppies and kittens – all waiting for a “forever home”.  Adoption fees are reasonable – $50 – $95 for dogs and puppies, $25-$75 for cats and kittens – and the friendly, caring staff are happy to work with you to help find a pet that fits perfectly into your family. There is also a “Best Friend Finder” Program for those looking for purebreeds and specific mixes with an adoption fee of $145. Pet adoptions include: spaying/neutering, basic vaccinations, a bag of pet food and even 30 days of free pet insurance (opt-in and activation required). But pet adoptions are not all…the GHS has a number of services to help you care for your new furry family member. From low-cost vaccinations, microchipping and spay/neutering to full service grooming, the Humane Society helps keep your pet happy and healthy while keeping your budget happy and healthy too!

When the Humane Society moved to their new location, the Greenville County Animal Care Services were able to expand throughout the Furman Hall location.  With more room to house and care for more homeless animals, the GCACS is able to offer expanded adoption services as well as reduced cost veterinary services such as wellness care, low-cost vaccinations, spaying/neutering, microchipping, de-worming and some grooming. Adoption fees are reasonable ($50-$125) and include vaccinations, spay/neutering, microchipping and registration, de-worming, flea treatment, heartworm testing, a bag of pet food and coupons to local pet supply stores.  Because of May’s “Focus on Felines” Adopton Drive, many of their cats and kittens found loving homes (although they do still have a few available for adoption). In June, they hope to do the same for their canine friends with their “Who Let The Dogs Out” event on Friday, June 8 (Noon – 7PM) and Saturday, June 9 (11AM-8PM). With reduced adoption fees and fun dog (& people)-friendly activities, the GCACS hopes to find a home for every dog in the shelter!

In addition to the Humane Society and Animal Care Services, there are many smaller, independent organizations that rescue homeless animals. In recent years, the Golden Retriever has been a popualr breed. Unfortunately, people often don’t realize that the adorable ball of fur they adopted will grow into a very large, very rambunctious ball of energy! That’s where the Foothills Golden Retriever Rescue comes in – they find loving homes for Goldens that have been surrendered or are abandoned, abused and otherwise homeless. They are especially  devoted to finding good homes for senior and special needs dogs. Adoption rates vary – depending on the age and gender of the dog and the veterinary costs incurred in rehabilitation. If you prefer smaller dogs, organizations such as Boykin Spaniel Rescue, which rescues, rehabilitates and places the medium-sized breed, and Ararats Doxie Haven, which rescues, cares for and finds homes for dachshunds, may be what you are looking for. Many other non-profit organizations do wonderful work saving and placing homeless Upstate pets including Concerned Citizens for Animals, Carolina Loving Hound Rescue, Enoree River Rescue, Pet Tender Angels and Pet Haven of South Carolina. In addition to many of the organizations listed above, cat lovers can also find the purr-fect feline through Feline Urgent Rescue – whose adoptable pets can been visited at PetSmart on Laurens Road.

Another avenue to finding a furry addition to your family is This online search engine features adoptable pets from the organizations previously listed as well as other shelters and rescue groups throughout the country. This is especially useful if you are looking for a specific type, size or breed of animal. Most shelters and groups will require you to complete an application for adoption and provide a pictured ID. Some shelters provide a leash or carrier for transport of your new pet, others don’t – so it’s best to ask. There may be a small waiting period while the organization screens your application or prepares the animal for adoption. Guidelines  vary from group to group.

Shelter and rescue animals often come from tramatic backgrounds. Don’t let this scare you. Shelters carefully screen potential adoptees for any socialization problems and work hard to rehabilitate them for adoption into loving homes. As the parent of a rescue dog myself, I can assure you, that with some patience and lots of love, you will have a wonderful pet that will bring joy into your home for many years to come!

Shelter & Rescue Group Info:

Greenville Humane Society:305 Airport Road, Greenville; ;;  Hours: Noon-6:30PM, Monday-Friday; 11AM-5PM, Saturday; 1-5PM, Sunday

Greenville County Animal Care Services:328 Furman Hall Road, Greenville; 864-467-3950;; Hours: Noon-7PM, Monday-Friday; 11AM-6PM, Saturday

Foothills Golden Retriever Rescue: 864-234-9739;;

Boykin Spaniel Rescue:

Ararats Doxie Haven ; : 864-706-5131;

Concerned Citizens For Animals;  864-243-4CCA;

Carolina Loving Hound Rescue :
Enoree River Rescue ; : 864-505-9061;

Pet Tender Angels : 864-787-2498;

Pet Haven of South Carolina

Feline Urgent Rescue:


These shelters and rescue groups are non-profits and rely on donations to continue their good deeds. If you cannot commit to adopting a pet at this time, please ask them about fostering homeless animals or donations.

Tis the Season…when adults become kids again and kids do their very best to stay on Santa’s “Good” List. With the Christmas lights in the trees (that stay up all year) and Main Street all decked out in red and green, silver and gold – who can resist the festive lure of Downtown Greenville.  So, come all ye faithful to DTGVL and join the merrymaking!

Ask any Greenvillian which event heralds the start of the Holiday Season and most will say the Poinsettia Christmas Parade. For over 20 years, this family friendly event has been a cherished tradition here in Downtown Greenville. Starting at Augusta Street, a wonderful collection of bands, floats, dancers and marchers will parade down Main Street to Elford this Saturday December 3rd. Parade goers will want to show up well before the 6PM start time to get the best spot. Temps will drop to the 30’s once the sun sets, so dress warmly – blankets and hot chocolate are definitely recommended! For more information and a map of the parade route, visit:

Running a close second to the Parade for Greenville’s most beloved Holiday event is the St. Francis Festival of Trees. Every Thanksgiving, several Downtown hotels come alive with the Christmas spirit through a display of beautifully decorated trees.  This year, exhibits can be viewed at the Marriott Greenville, Courtyard Greenville Downtown, Hampton Inn & Suites – RiverPlace and throughout Downtown Greenville. The trees will remain on display until December 31st.

This year, a little bit of Rockerfeller Center has been brought to Greenville. No, not The Rockettes – but an outdoor ice skating rink in the heart of Downtown, modeled after the famous NYC rink.  Ice On Main invites you to bring your friends and family for a spin around this open-air rink – the only one of its kind in South Carolina! The cost is $10 for adults and $8 for kids 12 and under – this includes the cost of skate rental and is good for one full day of skating.  Located at Village Green, in front of the Courtyard Marriott, Ice On Main is open from 11AM to 9PM and boasts plenty of places to purchase hot chocolate and other goodies, as well as spectator spots to watch the fun. For more information and a calendar of special events, visit:

What would the Holiday Season be without a performance of “The Nutcracker”? The Peace Center will be offering performances of this beloved ballet, not once but twice.  From Friday, December 2 through Sunday, December 4, The Carolina Ballet will be performing the holiday classic. Tickets for evening and matinee performances are available. Starting Friday, December 9 through Sunday, December 11, The International Ballet will put their own spin (or should I say “pirouette”) on the story of Clara and her adventure through the “Land of Sweets”.  For performance times, tickets and more information, visit:

Is theatre more your thing? From the traditional to the musical to the slightly irreverent, the many theatres of Downtown Greenville are only too happy to entertain you! Starting with the traditional, the Greenville Little Theatre will be performing  “A Christmas Carol” December 9 – 11 and again December 15 – 18. For more information, visit: The South Carolina Children’s Theatre offers its own musical version of Scrooge’s tale with “Ebenezer – A Musical Christmas Carol”. Performances will take place at The Gunter Theatre- Peace Center,  December 2 – 11. For more information, visit: www.scchildrenstheatre.orgCentre Stage adds a little rock to  holiday musical theatre with “Rock N’ Roll Yule”.  Performances take place  Thursday through Saturday, December 1 – 17, with Sunday afternoon matinees and special Wednesday performances. For ticket and showtime information, visit: Café & Then Some brings its own satirical twist to the Holiday Season with “Christmas Re-Gifted”. Dinner performances are every Wednesday through Saturday until the end of December. For more information, visit

Many revelers can’t imagine the holidays without music and Downtown Greenville is happy to oblige! Trans-Siberian Orchestra will be offering their unique blend of rock and traditional  holiday tunes at the BILO Center for 2 shows on Saturday, December 3rd (visit for tickets). The following day, the Greenville County Museum of Art ( invites you to join the Carolina Bronze Handbell Choir for “Holiday Music in the Galleries”. Want more? The Peace Center will play host to “Holiday at Peace” December 16 – 18. The Greenville Symphony Orchestra will perform holiday favorites for 2 evening performances and a Sunday matinee.

There are so many Holiday Happenings going on in Downtown Greenville, even old Scrooge would kick up his heels. So gather up your friends and family and join us for some festive fun! You may even feel the urge to go “wassailing”. For a list of Holiday events in Downtown Greenville, visit: Happy Holidays!

Saturday, November 26 was “Small Business Saturday.” The brainchild of American Express, this campaign encourages shoppers to do at least some of their holiday shopping at those small, locally-owned establishments that are the lifeblood of a community. Forget the Mall – Main Street is where it’s at!

The eclectic mix of local businesses is what gives Downtown Greenville its unique character. I mean, where else but Dark Corner Distillery could you purchase a bottle of moonshine, made of local ingredients and distilled right here on Main Street. Where else but at Palmetto Drum Company would you be able to meet Freddie, a true craftsman who custom makes drum kits for some of the best musicians in the South? And art lovers can not only view some incredible local art at the Matthew Campbell Gallery, but they can meet the artist too.

But don’t limit yourself to only the 26th for frequenting small businesses – make shopping local part of your holiday mantra. Need a sweet treat for a family gathering? Get a batch of Red Velvet cupcakes at Chocolate Moose on Main or a gorgeous cake at Coffee to a Tea. Looking for some holiday music? Instead of going to one of those huge “super-stores” with their limited selection, go by Horizon Records and buy some classic tunes on vinyl. Got a funky fashionista on your gift list? You could go to one of those designer chain stores and shell out hundreds for a purse that will be on everyone’s arm next season, or opt for a uniquely beautiful vintage handbag from the 1950’s at Clothing Wearhouse.

So, whether you visit the Saturday Market in the summer, the SLAM Local Art Market in the Fall or any of the wonderfully diverse businesses located in our beautiful Downtown, shop local and enjoy the charm of Main Street all year long.

Each November 11th, Americans pause to commemorate the sacrifices our military men and women have made for our country. Downtown Greenville offers many opportunities to honor our vets. The first event is a Veterans’ Day Celebration which will take place at 6PM on Friday, November 11 at the Greenville Vietnam Memorial in Cleveland Park. This special outdoor ceremony will honor all branches of the military and veterans of several wars.

Saturday’s events honoring our military service people will begin with The Children’s Museum’s “Salute to Military Families” at 10AM. This special program will teach children the very special role families play in supporting our military. Just a few yards from TCM, is the Upcountry History Museum, who will be honoring our veterans with not just one, but two days of special events, with special tribute given to veterans of the Korean Conflict. The weekend’s activities will include special exhibits of military items from private collections, including personal items that belonged to Gen. Douglass MacArthur (on loan from the MacArthur Museum) as well as continuous screenings of the award-winning documentary, “Threads of Victory” and special children’s activities including a take home “Victory Garden”. Saturday’s events, which begin at 10AM, will showcase the talents of the Carolina Youth Symphony and their musical “Tribute to the Troops”, offer special insights of the Korean Conflict and give visitors the opportunity to explore the GI Bill’s impact on returning vets and SC football with educator, Heather Yenco. Sunday’s events begin at 1PM and include a screening of “Pork Chop Hill’ with an introduction by military historian, Jack Green…as well as complimentary popcorn & sodas! The museum is open until 5PM both days.

Also on Saturday, our local hockey team, the Greenville Road Warriors, will pay tribute to our military personnel with their “Thank You Military” night. Active military service people and veterans can see the Road Warriors take on the South Carolina Stingrays (at 7PM) for the special price of $6 – just show your military ID at the box office to receive your discount tickets. But that’s not all! For the 2nd year, the Road Warriors are partnering with Greenville area Blue Star Mothers to gather donations to send to troops overseas. Fans are asked to bring individual packets of powdered drink mix, beef jerky, prepaid iTunes cards, hand & foot warmers and/or monetary donations to cover the $12 cost of sending each of these care packages. Special guests of the Road Warriors for this special night include Simpsonville native, Edie Melson, author of “Fighting Fear: Winning the War at Home When Your Soldier Leaves for Battle”, who will be selling and signing copies of her book at the game, and Colonel Mindy Williams, Assistant Chief of Staff G-1, 4th Marine Forces Reserve, who will participate in the ceremonial puck drop.

No Veterans’ Day Celebration in Downtown Greenville would be complete without visiting the American Legion War Museum, located at the American Legion Post #3 on the corner of Main and Academy (look for the “big gun”). South Carolina’s role in every conflict from the Revolutionary War to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are showcased with exhibits of maps, photographs, weaponry and uniforms, many of which are personal effects from Greenville natives. Tours are led by veterans whose personal insights and fascinating accounts bring the exhibits to life.

But no matter how you choose spend this weekend, take a moment to tell a veteran or a member of the military (and their families) “Thank You” for their service.

For More info, visit: 

Greenville Vietnam Memorial:

The Children’s Museum:

The Upcountry History Museum: 

Greenville Road Warriors: 

American Legion War Museum:

While Downtown, you may also want to visit:

Springwood Cemetery: Located at the corner of Main and Elford, Greenville’s oldest public cemetery contains the graves of several unknown Confederate soldiers, soldiers who died at Camp Sevier (Greenville’s WWI training camp), and veterans of several wars from the War of 1812 to the Gulf War.

Richland Cemetery: Located near Stone Avenue, this cemetery is Greenville’s oldest African American cemetery and is the final resting place for many prominent Greenville African-Americans, including veterans from the Spanish-American War, WWI & II. Korea and Vietnam.

Lincoln Veteran’s Cemetery: Located on Rutherford Road, this small cemetery contains the gravesites of over 300 veterans of both World Wars and the Korean Conflict. The cemetery is maintained by volunteers from the American Legion.

Greenville Cultural Exchange Center: Located at 700 Arlington Avenue, the unique museum showcases the history and contributions of Greenville’s African American community. Museum curator, Ms. Ruth Ann Butler, is a wealth of information.

Major Rudoplh Anderson Memorial: Located in Cleveland Park, the F-86 Saber Jet is a tribute to the memory of Major Rudolph Anderson, Greenville native and the only American casualty of the Cuban Missile Crisis.

Museum and Library of Confederate History: Located at 15 Boyce Avenue, this museum contains an extensive collection of Antebellum and Civil War era clothing, uniforms, maps, weaponry and photographs

Downtown Greenville has long had a special place in its heart for the arts. With special events such as Greenville’s Open Studios every November, which allows the public a rare glimpse of the artist at work, to the family-friendly Artisphere held every spring, Greenville celebrates local artists and their creative endeavors. But you needn’t wait until a special event to see some incredible artwork. Downtown Greenville offers a multitude of opportunities to “get your art on.” The many galleries and museums feature not only works by local and regional artists, but those of national and even international acclaim as well.

Perhaps the best place to start your personal art tour is the Greenville County Museum of Art, located at Heritage Green ( A cornerstone of the Greenville art scene for over 30 years, featured artists range from South Carolina natives such as Mary Whyte and Matt Baumgardner to such art legends as Andrew Wyeth and Jasper Johns. Be sure to check out their “Sundays @ 2” – special programs that present everything from private concerts to guided tours (often lead by the artists themselves). And it’s FREE (although donations are greatly appreciated).

One look at Main Street will tell you – Greenville loves art! Sprinkled throughout the “main drag” of Downtown is a diverse collection of sculptural artwork. Ranging from the life-like sculptures of notable Greenvillians and avant garde interpretations of Greenville landmarks to the whimsical “Mice on Main” found peeking out from various Main Street locations, these sculptures are all part of the city’s “Art in Public Places” project (www.greenvillesc,gov/Culture/ArtinPublicPlaces/). While enjoying the outdoor art, take a moment to visit The Artists’ Guild Gallery of Greenville, located on Main Street at E. North ( This cooperative gallery provides space for local artists to display and sell their work. The AGGG chooses a monthly Featured Artist and organizes gallery events that are open and free to the public.

Another little gem in Greenville’s visual arts scene is Art Crossing at RiverPlace ( Situated along the Reedy River, this collection of galleries and studios is home to a wonderfully eclectic mix of artwork – ranging from fine to funky. Art Crossing gives the public a chance to meet local artists and watch the creative process in action.

For those wishing to venture off the “beaten path”, The Pendleton Arts District provides an appropriately “BoHo” experience ( This developing area is home to over 30 artisans in a variety of galleries and studios. Be there the first Friday of every month for their fun and funky gallery crawl, named…you guessed it…”First Fridays“.

All this visual stimulation may give you the urge to design something sensational yourself. Check out Design with Wine ( located in Greenville’s historic WestEnd, which gives you the unique opportunity to have a glass of wine and create your own work of art. They even have similar events for kids, called Design with Cheerwine. Or, just grab a sketch pad and head to Falls Park, where the Reedy River, its Falls and the surrounding foliage will certainly delight and inspire you! But no matter what gets your creative juices flowing, Downtown Greenville offers plenty of art to fill your heart and feed your soul!

{September 15, 2011}   Greenville’s Spice of Life

Just one look around Downtown will tell you…Greenvillians love good food! And not just any kind of food, we want flavors as diverse and unique as our city! If your taste buds crave something with a little spice to appeal to your inner world-traveler, Downtown Greenville offers a plethera of delectable culinary options.

 If you love the succulent flavors of India, then you’ll discover curry heaven at Handi Indian Cuisine. Just follow your nose to discover their Main Street location. With traditional entrees slow-cooked to release its natural aromas and flavors and drenched in flavorful spices, Handi offers a menu that appeals to vegans, vegetarians and carnivores alike. Combine your dinner with a complimenting beer or wine and you’ll swear you’ve found nirvana!

If you like your curry coupled with a little Caribbean jerk…then Jamaica Twist (also located on Main Street) is the place for you! Divulge in the rich flavors of authentic Caribbean food while relaxing with regulars and listening to a selection of Bob Marley classics. Try the Curried Goat, my favorite (just watch for all the little bones) and top it off with a tropical tea. If you want something a little stronger, ask the bartender to mix up something with rum…and soon you’ll have “No problems, Mon.”

If you like your spice in the form of cayenne and file’, then take a trip to the Bayou, by way of Ford’s Oyster House and Cajun Kitchen. A relative newcomer to the Downtown restaurant scene, this culinary delight is the brainchild of Green Room owner, Jason Fletcher. Located in Greenville’s West End, Ford’s offers fresh oysters from all over the Eastern seaboard (and served with a bottle of hot sauce…of course). Their Cajun-inspired menu, with the best Red Beans and Rice outside the Crescent City, will make you think you’ve detoured onto Bourbon Street!

If you prefer a menu with an exotic Mediterranean flavor, then The Lazy Goat, located at Riverplace, will transport you to the Spice Road of the Middle East. You’ll be greeted at the door by the mouth-watering aroma of their handmade pasta and sauces. For a real treat, have your meal served on their outdoor patio, with gorgeous views of the Reedy River. Watch out for the fried goat cheese…it’s so addicting, you may end up doing a stint in rehab!

With such a diversity of culinary delights, Downtown Greenville offers the perfect opportunity to take your taste buds on a world tour…and you don’t even need your passport! Enjoy!

{August 22, 2011}   Hello World!

Downtown Greenville, SC is a gorgeous, award-winning Downtown with plenty of local color! We Downtownies have kept this little gem in Upstate South Carolina to ourselves for entirely too long, so I felt it’s about time to share! So grab a cup of coffee, sit back & join me as I ponder the many happenings, events, attractions and adventures that make Downtown Greenville great!

et cetera