Bring on Spring!

April 2018
Written By: 
Paul Grimshaw

Warm up with these great events as we welcome a milder season

--- Advertisement ---

PHOTO: The Blue Crab Festival’s many dining options.

After a particularly chilling winter along the Grand Strand, the coldest in recent memory, the common rallying-cry-turned-earnest-prayer “bring on the spring and summer” seems to have paid off. Warmer weather and a return to the outdoor active lifestyle so many crave is finally here. What better way to enjoy the Grand Strand than participating in some (or all) of the varied events in store for us this spring? We couldn’t list them all, but here is a sampling of outdoor concerts, food fairs, arts and crafts shows, long running annual events and a few events brand new to the area, all of which promise to help you ring in the spring. Enjoy!

April

PHOTO: Putt your way to victory at the MarshWalk Masters.

April 7

MarshWalk Masters
Murrells Inlet MarshWalk
4025 U.S. 17 Business, Murrells Inlet
Saturday, 2–8 p.m.
$20 registration; purchase food and beverage
marshwalk.com/marshwalk-masters

A fun event for groups and families, the ninth year of the MarshWalk Masters allows participants to “putt their way” around the MarshWalk for cash and prizes, all while enjoying food and drink specials from participating eateries. Dress in your best (or most outlandish) golf attire and shoot the lowest score for prizes awarded at 8 p.m. (Hint: purchase as many $5 mulligans as you want to improve your score!)

April 13–15

Myrtle Beach Jeep Jam
Former Myrtle Square Mall Site
2501 N. Kings Highway, Myrtle Beach
Friday, 11 a.m.–6 p.m.
Saturday, 9 a.m.–6 p.m.
Sunday, 9 a.m.–2:30 p.m.
(843) 448-0585
mbjeepjam.com

Jeepers, this is going to be big! Brought to you by Native Sons, the merchandising and apparel group behind the Salt Games, the inaugural Myrtle Beach Jeep Jam will attract Jeep lovers from around the U.S. and anyone seeking rip-roaring fun in the sun. The event grounds at the site of the former Myrtle Square Mall will host the Jeep Jam’s off-road obstacle courses, food trucks, live bands, a car show, a Power Wheels Kidz Course and plenty more.

April 14

Taste of the Coast
House of Blues
4640 U.S. 17 S., North Myrtle Beach (Barefoot Landing)
Saturday, 11 a.m.–4 p.m.
Admission $3 in advance or $5 day of; food and activity tickets, $1
(843) 272-8163
tocnmb.com

The 11th annual Taste of the Coast fundraiser, benefiting Risen Christ Christian Academy, will feature lots of family-friendly fun, including ticketed food samples from a number of area restaurants, kids’ activities and live entertainment. Some participating restaurants are Bimini’s, Dick’s Last Resort, Stillhouse BBQ and many more.

April 20–22

Myrtle Beach Food Truck Festival
Pavilion Place, between 8th Ave. N. and 9th Ave. N., Myrtle Beach
Friday, 6–10 p.m.
Saturday, 11 a.m.–10 p.m.
Sunday, 11 a.m.–6 p.m.
Free to attend; purchase food and beverage
(843) 855-0527
myrtlebeachfoodtruckfestival.com

After a spectacular opening year, the Myrtle Beach Food Truck Festival returns bigger and better with more days, more vendors, more live entertainment and more family fun. Some 30-plus food trucks are confirmed with more committing daily, offering a diversity of options for every taste. On-site ATMs, nearby parking, a beer garden, plus volleyball and cornhole tournaments for kids and adults all on the oceanfront make this the perfect spring event.

April 20–29

Horry County Fair
Myrtle Beach Speedway
455 Hospitality Lane, Myrtle Beach
Hours vary (see website for full schedule and special events)
Admission $3–$5, plus ride tickets/wristbands
(843) 236-0500
myrtlebeachspeedway.com/hcfair

The third year of the Horry County Fair will return to the 48-acre site of the Myrtle Beach Speedway, which first opened in 1958. Organizers hope to beat last year’s record of 90,000 attendees who came for 10 days of exhibits, the legendary James E. Strates Shows, carnival games and rides, live entertainment, a petting zoo, kiddie attractions and plenty of great fair food. There will be a variety of theme nights throuhgout the fair’s stay, so check the website for details.

April 21

Taste of The Market Common
3060 Howard Ave., Myrtle Beach
Saturday, 11 a.m.–4 p.m.
Free to attend; $1 per food ticket (required for sampling)
(843) 839-3500
marketcommonmb.com

This popular foodie event allows participants to pick and choose the chefs’ best sampling menus from most of The Market Common’s excellent eateries. Stroll the food district, shop, catch a movie and then eat some more. From savory to sweet, most items are priced from $1–$5.

April 28

Dragon Boat Festival
Grand Park at The Market Common, Myrtle Beach
Saturday, 9 a.m.–4 p.m.
Free to attend; additional activities available for a fee
(843) 945-9440
gzdragonboat.com

Benefiting Ground Zero, a faith-based ministry for teens, the tenth annual Dragon Boat Festival pits teams in brightly painted “dragon boats” against each other, racing to finish first as they row across the lake at The Market Common’s Grand Park at surprising speeds. Some 1,000 participants and more than 5,000 spectators are expected, plus food vendors, kids’ activities and more.

MAY

May 5

Blessing of the Inlet
Belin Memorial United Methodist Church
4182 U.S. 17 Business, Murrells Inlet
Saturday, 9 a.m.–3 p.m.
Free to attend; purchase food and beverage
(843) 450-4235
blessingoftheinlet.com

On the waterfront in picturesque Murrells Inlet, the 22nd Blessing of the Inlet features more than 100 arts and crafts vendors, food for purchase from area restaurants, choirs, dance troupes, contemporary Christian bands, and a ceremony at 11:30 a.m. on the creek side of the historic church. Parking shuttles run throughout the event, which is free to attend.

May 5

Rivertown Music & Craft Beer Festival
428 Main St., Conway Historic District
Saturday, 11 a.m.–8 p.m.
Free to attend; purchase food and beverage
(843) 248-6260
conwayalive.com

This family-friendly event features dozens of food vendors from among Conway’s fine restaurants, plus food trucks, mom and pop delicacies and, of course, plenty of beer. Throughout Conway’s Historic District enjoy live music from start to finish, a car show, arts and crafts and more.

PHOTO: North Myrtle Beach’s Mayfest on Main celebration.

May 12

Mayfest on Main
231 Main St., North Myrtle Beach
Saturday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.
(843) 280-5570
parks.nmb.us
Free to attend; purchase food and beverage

Mayfest on Main is the unofficial kickoff to summer for some 15,000 attendees who pack Main Street in North Myrtle Beach from the oceanfront to Hillside Drive. Here two stages offer non-stop live entertainment and some 100 vendors offer food, beverages, arts and crafts, exhibits and more. This year’s event will also commemorate North Myrtle Beach’s 50th anniversary.

PHOTO: The world famous Blue Crab Festival in Little River is the place to be for fresh, delicious seafood, as well as lots of great vendors and entertainment.

May 19 & 20

Blue Crab Festival
Little River Waterfront
Mineola Ave., Little River
Saturday & Sunday, 9 a.m.–6 p.m.
Admission $5; kids 12 & under free
(843) 249-6604
bluecrabfestival.org

Marylanders, eat your crabby hearts out! The Grand Strand’s blue crab stocks are among the best on the east coast and the crustacean is celebrated in style each year in Little River along the Waterfront. The 37th annual Blue Crab Festival will greet some 50,000 attendees. More than 300 vendors offer their arts and crafts, specialty foods and every oddity you’d expect at a big fair. With live music, including traditional Carolina beach music from bands such as Jim Quick & Coastline, Gary Lowder & Smokin’ Hot, Carolina Soul Band and others, plus a Kidz Zone and all the local flavor of the quirky Little River Waterfront District, this event has been a favorite rite of spring for decades.

May 26

Memorial Saturday Music & Cookout
La Belle Amie Vineyard
1120 St. Joseph Road, Little River
Saturday, noon–5 p.m.
$5 ($3 with donation of two canned goods)
(843) 399-9463
labelleamie.com

For nearly two decades, La Belle Amie Vineyard has hosted regular music festivals on the park-like grounds of the historic farmland-turned-working-vineyard. In addition to wine tastings in the large gift shop, a natural outdoor amphitheater and stage host a wide variety of bands from island-inspired trop rock to oldies to big band. Food vendors, arts and crafts, and, of course, wine (and beer) are available for purchase. This event is family-friendly and unlike anything else in the area.

Resources: 

PHOTOGRAPHS BY IZZY WEST (2) AND DAVID SMITH, PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY OF THE MURRELLS INLET MARSHWALK,