Bursting into Fall 2013…Almost Too Much to Hold!

Too much information, that is.  But now that school has started, it seems that the number of fall activities is hitting high gear—even while it’s still steaming outside (although to be fair, this year it really isn’t the heat; it’s totally the humidity).  Many of our community-based entertainment series will be winding down, but there’s certainly no shortage of educational, challenging, and just plain fun things going on to take their place!

More information will be coming soon, but for now, here’s a quick overview of what’s happening in Sumter:

Fourth Fridays on Main will go out with not a bang, but a hypnotic reggae beat—the final performance will be on September 27, 2013 with Mystic Vibrations.Mystic-Vibrations  Admission is FREE; refreshments will be for sale.

Sumter’s highly successful Saturday morning Downtown Market will continue through September 28.  Taking place at Rotary Centennial Plaza (corner of E. Liberty and S. Main), in addition to fresh produce, there will be music, food demonstrations, arts and crafts, and kids’ games.  Fun for the whole family!

There’s indoor entertainment as well as food for deep thought at the Question Bridge: Black Males exhibit, featuring the work of Stacy Lynn Waddell, opening at the Sumter County Gallery of Art on September 5.  The exhibit will be in place through November 1.  Admission is FREE; donations are accepted.

Angels-for-Animals-Flyer2September 7, 2013
will bring an exciting downtown event, “Angels for Animals.”  Hosted and sponsored by Angel’s Mexican Restaurant at 33 N. Main Street, the day-long concert (1-9 p.m.) benefits the Sumter SPCA.  For more info, please call Angel’s at (803) 774-5150.

The Sumter County Museum is proud to unveil a new exhibit, “Sumter County: Past, Present, and Future,” with a special public opening on Monday, September 9, 2013 at 5:30 p.m. Sumter County has a rich and fascinating history—whether you’re a recent transplant or your family has been here for generations, you’re bound to learn something new.  Refreshments will be served.

Clean Night Entertainment hosts a night of wholesome fun at the Sumter Opera House with FAB-Nomenal!  This talent show, for young people ages eight to seventeen, features comedy, art, song and dance, poetry and more—all with Christian values in mind.  Admission is $10.  For more info, please call (800) 845-2238 or check it out online at www.CleanNight.com.

Remember that tickets are on sale NOW for the Sumter Green Fall Feast (September 19),Fall-Feast-02 one of the community’s most popular events.  $30 per person (advance—limited tickets will be available at the door for $40) gets you admission to an event with a cause.  Enjoying the year-round beauty brought to the community by Sumter Green is surely a good enough reason to forget counting calories just this once!  Well…okay, perhaps it’s not just once…

…because September is still party time!!!  Sumter’s annual Oktoberfest on Main will take place Saturday, September 21 on Main Street downtown.  With entertainment by the Little German Band and Painted Man, along with some amazing food and German beer and wine, it’s going toO-fest-2013-poster-new be a blast!  Tickets are $10 in advance, $15 at the door, and available at the Swan Lake Visitors Center and event sponsors, Hamptons Restaurant (4 W. Hampton Avenue).  A portion of the evening’s proceeds will benefit the Sumter County Gallery of Art.

By the way, you really don’t have to feel guilty for splurging—not if you get out first to the Forrest Ray 5K Run/Walk, Saturday morning (September 21) at 8 a.m.  Proceeds benefit the Sumter County Library, and you can register online here.

And just in case you are still feeling guilty, there’s also the Fire Ants 5k Fun Run at USC Sumter on Saturday, September 28 from 9-10 a.m.  Sign up for more information online here!

Hey—why not let your brain wake up and stretch!  The Sumter County Library begins “The Big Read” on October 1.  This year’s month-long program features John Steinbeck’s Depression-era classic, The Grapes of Wrath.  It is presented in The-Big-Readassociation with the National Endowment for the Arts, in partnership with Arts Midwest.  Each participant gets a free copy of the book to keep.

Want another chance to get out and meet your neighbors, check out some beautiful homes, enjoy live entertainment—and eat some more?  Don’t miss the Chamber of Commerce’s “Porches of Sumter—Simply Delicious” on October 3 from 6-9 p.m. at Memorial Park.  Tickets go on sale Monday, August 26, for $25 in advance, or $30 at Memorial Park the evening of the event.  Please contact the Chamber of Commerce at (803) 775-1231 for more info.

October 4
marks the launch of the all-new Fall Festival for the Arts, hosted by the Sumter County Cultural Commission at Patriot Hall through October 6.  The Commission is now accepting works for exhibit, which must meet the following guidelines:

  • Open to artists working in all media, living in the Shaw Air Force Base/3rd Army community in Sumter, SC.
  • Artists may submit up to three original works of art created in any media within the past five years.
  • No 2-D piece larger than 48” x 48” or 3-D piece larger than 48” x 72” will be accepted.
  • Wall pieces must be ready for hanging, including screw eyes and wire.
  • SCCC reserves the right to exclude any piece that requires special installation, or which does not conform to SCCC standards of quality and taste.

All submissions must be dropped off at:
Gallery 135/Patriot Hall
135 Haynsworth Street
Sumter, SC 29150
before 5 p.m. on Friday, September 27th. NO WORK will be received after this time.  Please call (803) 436-2260 for more details.

Run off some more fun—and have fun doing it!—on October 5 at the 3rd AnnualStop-Domestic-Violence Omega Men Against Domestic Violence 5k Fun Walk/Run at Dillon Park.  The Gamma Iota Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. hosts this important event from 7:30-10 a.m., with proceeds raised going to a local women’s non-profit organization.

Step into the past at the Carolina Backcountry Fall Harvest on Saturday, October 12, 2013 at the Sumter County Museum.  Starting at 10 a.m., the Backcountry will have costumed re-enactors sharing the life and times of Sumter past—way past!  For more information, visit http://www.sumtercountymuseum.org.finally/

Finally, don’t forget the 3rd Annual TriSumter Triathlon on Saturday, October 19, 2013.  SAVE THE DATE!  More details coming soon…

I could be wrong, but I think I’ve counted at least four food-centric events (I’m not sure—there are an awful lot of things going on).  I wish I could promise that all the calories will be removed by a top-secret process known only to Sumter officials, but…um, well, do you want to buy a bridge?  But seriously—fall is the time when hearty eating starts to feel really good after eating light all summer, and remember, it’s all for a great cause!  (And also, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to work it off.)

For more info on upcoming events, please call the Swan Lake Visitors Center at (803) 436-2640 or check out our community calendar here.

So—happy running, watching, dancing, reading, exploring…and eating!

by Colette Daniels

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