Myrtle Beach Summer Festivals
When the weather heats up, so do the celebrations on Myrtle Beach. Add an extra dose of fun to your summer vacation on the Grand Strand by checking out one of the high season’s many festivals. In June, you can celebrate the warm weather with the Sun Fun Festival, celebrate Independence day in a variety of ways in July, or enjoy a bit of Barbecue and Golf in August. With so many things to do, you’ll want to celebrate Myrtle Beach-style all summer long.
Myrtle Beach June Festivals
With Memorial Day Weekend out of the way, Myrtle Beach goes into full swing. The main attractions – the boardwalk, Broadway at the Beach and Barefoot Landing, to name just a few – hold little mini-festivals all summer long. It’s not at all unusual to see festival-style live entertainment, food, jugglers, clowns, unicyclists and what have you in any major gathering place where the main goal is to have a good time.
The Sun Fun Festival is not by any means a single event in a single location at any single day and time. The events and the venues change every year but typically include a Miss Sun Fun and Miss Sun Fun Teen Pageant during the opening two days of live entertainment and street fairs. Other events include a sand castle competition, concerts, beach sports competitions, an air show, a fun run and a parade.
The Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce sponsors the event and kicks it off the first weekend in June. Like some of the other big festivals, it can sprawl all across the region and all across the calendar. Call (843) 626-7444.
Makai Luau is an annual tradition at the Hot Fish Club in Murrells Inlet. Chief Kamu puts on a music, fire and hula show along with a traditional luau buffet, beer and wine selections and the local favorite Surfers Punch. Contests include the Ugliest Hawaiian Shirt and the Best Lei. Proceeds go to the Surfrider Foundation, a non-profit environmental organization. Call (843) 357-9175.
Myrtle Beach July Festivals
July vacationers tend to be focused on lounging in the sun and the sand, but if it’s a week-long beach rental cottage the kids are clamoring for something else by about Wednesday or so. And if everybody has sunburns by that time the whole family strikes off in search of other diversions.
Fourth of July takes place all up and down the beach, with fireworks from one end of the Grand Strand to the other. They’ll shoot from the Cherry Grove Pier, 3500 North Ocean Boulevard in North Myrtle Beach (843) 249-1625. They’ll light up the sky above the Myrtle Beach Boardwalk, courtesy of the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce, (843) 626-7444. Broadway at the Beach puts on a flash and boom show, 1325 Celebrity Circle, (843) 444-3200.
Shooting off fireworks goes on in these places all summer long, and you can pretty much be anywhere on the Grand Strand at any time after dusk to see some pyrotechnics. Throughout the summer, fireworks are a regular feature of the Pelicans games at BB&T Coastal Field (following the game) and at Broadway at the Beach (Tuesdays starting about 10 p.m.). Jimmy Buffett’s on the boardwalk has a nightly light show throughout the summer months.
An afternoon Fourth of July Concert at the Myrtle Beach Memorial Stadium, 33rd Avenue in Myrtle Beach, leads perfectly into an evening of rocket’s red glare and bombs bursting in air. Admission is free for bleacher seating and a number of local musical acts will lead into a performance of the Long Bay Symphony Orchestra. And that, of course, will lead into a fireworks display. Contact the symphony orchestra at (843) 448-8379.
Murrells Inlet Boat Parade is another Fourth of July tradition. When the parade is over the fireworks begin. The best viewing areas are Murrells Inlet Marshwalk, Captain Dick’s Marina, Belin Memorial United Methodist Church, Nance’s Restaurant and Hot Fish Club. Call (843) 357-2007.
Watch for the Shore Military Flyover no matter where you are on the strand during the Fourth of July. The F-16s of the 77th Fighter Squadron treat the entire coast to the growling sounds of freedom, and spectators are encouraged to wear and wave the red, white and blue. The flyover is organized by Salute from the Shore, a nonprofit organization, and by the Town of Pawleys Island. Call (803) 730-9289 or (843) 237-1698.
Mustang Week revs its vintage motors in mid-July, starting with a meet and greet at the Palace Theater. Then the fleet heads over to the Myrtle Beach Speedway for races and burnouts, and meets and greets again at Hooters in North Myrtle Beach as a warm-up for a cruise to Darlington Raceway. An annual car show at the Myrtle Beach Mall ends with a Mustang and STV cruise-in down the boulevard. Call (910) 893-3592.
Myrtle Beach August Festivals
The last month of summer brings with it the dreaded Labor Day Weekend, the end of beach season when lots of merchants close up shop for the season. It seems the party is over, but it goes out with a bang.
The annual Beach Boogie and Barbecue Festival is sponsored by the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce. If there’s any part of boogie or barbecue you don’t understand, call the chamber at (843) 626-7444 and they’ll explain it to you. They might also mention the festival’s live entertainment, wakeboard demonstrations and free boat rides on Grand Park Lake, and celebrity chefs. This is a competitive BBQ cookoff and kids also compete in a watermelon eating contest.
Craftsmen’s Classic Arts and Crafts Festival attracts approximately 250 vendors to the Myrtle Beach Convention Center the first weekend in August. Gilmore Shows puts on this annual extravaganza and charges a nominal admission fee for a three-day pass. Call (336) 282-5550.
World Amateur Golf Tournament is not open to the likes of Tiger Woods. It’s the world’s largest amateur handicap golf tournament and it is played on as many as 50 local courses over the four-day Labor Day weekend. As many as 5,000 contestants step up to the tee and then later converge on the 19th Hole at the Myrtle Beach Convention Center at the end of each day, where they find food, drink, golf accessories, and equipment. Call (843) 477-8833.