South Carolina Hometown Cookbook Southern Family Recipes

Get Mississippi Hometown Cookbook

by Kent Whitaker & Sheila Simmons

$18.95 • paper • 256 pages • 8 x 9 full-color
ISBN 978-1-934817-10-0


Sample Recipes:
Benne Seed Cookies
Easy Stuffed Mushrooms,
Country Peach Pie

About the Authors
Festivals included in the book


South Carolina Hometown Cookbook

A Delicious Collection of Deep South Dishes from South Carolina's Local Hometown Cooks

Fill your kitchen with the aroma of deep southern dishes from the locals of South Carolina. We’ve put together all of the easy-to-follow recipes along with fun-filled facts about this great state into the 6th edition of our State Hometown Cookbook Series. Whether you’re looking to barbeque and grill, or indulge in a traditional, habit-forming, homemade peach cobbler, you’ll find it here with these authentic down-home recipes straight from the heart of South Carolina.   

Satisfying your appetite for that irresistible southern cuisine has never been easier! From their home to yours, you’ll fall in love with local, tried and true recipes from hometown cooks across the state. Just open this first-rate new cookbook and you’ve got a dining experience at your fingertips with favorites like South Carolina Cheesy Shrimp and Vegetables, Lowcountry Catfish Stew, Gullah Style Fried Chicken & Rice, Mom’s Easy Sunday Spaghetti, or Darlington Pilot Club Sweet Potato Pies and many, many more.

You'll also enjoy interesting facts and stories about fun food festivals around the state... from Beaufort Shrimp Festival to Pickin’ in the Park in Moncks Corner, from South Carolina Peach Festival to Taste of the Town in Myrtle Beach, and South Carolina Sweet Potato Festival to Lowcountry Oyster Festival in Mt. Pleasant, you’ll never miss the celebration!   

South Carolina cooking is elegant yet southern, perfectly seasoned, and always unforgettable.  South Carolina Hometown Cookbook preserves South Carolina’s most treasured dishes... delectably.

Sample Recipes from South Carolina Hometown Cookbook:
Benne Seed Cookies South Carolina
Benne Seed Cookies
Easy Stuffed Mushrooms
Easy Stuffed Mushrooms
South Carolina Country Peach Pie
Country Peach Pie

South Carolina Hometown Cookbook Features South Carolina's Favorite Food Festivals

The following list is alphabetical by city. Click each link to take you to information about that festival and/or scroll down for the full list by date.  

View South Carolina Hometown in a larger map



Apple Harvest Festival
York • 3rd Saturday in October

The Apples are all picked and that means it is time to celebrate!  Come out for the Apple Harvest Festival --  a Fall family tradition featuring all of Windy Hill Orchard's apple products plus hayrides, fresh picked apples, scarecrow making, apple cider tasting, live music, apple butter making, apple cider slush, pumpkins, carmel apples, blacksmith demonstrations, and much more. Drop by the Cider Garden to try our award winning Hard Ciders on tap!

803-684-0690 •

#southcarolinahometowncookbook #southernrecipes #southcarolinacookbook

See also: Tennessee Hometown Cookbook

Arts & Seafood Festival, Historic Bluffton
Bluffton SC • October

The annual Historic Bluffton Arts and Seafood Festival is held the third week of October in the charming and eclectic historic district of Bluffton SC, well known for its quirky art community and natural river beauty. The festival is a week long event offering a myriad of activities, showcasing the locally harvested seafood, delicious Low Country cuisine, rich history, culture and art of the area and Southern hospitality found only in Bluffton. The highlight of the festival is the Streetfest which includes a juried fine art show featuring over 100 artists from 10 different states displaying and selling their art, delicious food provided by the area's premier restaurants and caterers and great music and entertainment on the final weekend of the festival. Where Fine Art & the Bounty of the Sea Come Together!
843-757-BLUF •

ASC Greenway BBQ & Bluegrass
Fort Mill • September

There’s music in the air and BBQ on your plate!   Join us for live music on Dairy Barn lawn plus horse rides, wagon rides, kids’ hay mazes, kayaking and canoeing, pedal karts and more. Beverages, including beer and sodas, will be available for purchase. The cook teams will be competing in pulled pork and ribs. With your entry you will be able to taste BBQ from our teams as they battle for the trophy and bragging rights.  This event is sanctioned by the Southern Barbecue Network. Admission is $10 for non-members, $8 for members.  Music only tickets are available for $5 per person.

803-548-7252 •

Bands, Brews & BBQ
Port Royal •  February

Bands, Brews & BBQ is held every February in downtown Port Royal.  This event features a Wing Throw Down Party and a barbecue cook-off, sanctioned by the South Carolina BBQ Association, in the categories of Ribs & Butts.  Join us to sample all you can eat of the best BBQ our area has to offer plus live music from local bands and entertainment for the children. It's great fun for the whole family and proceeds benefit Friends of Caroline Hospice a charity that has provided loving care to Beaufort for over 30 years.

843-525-6257 •

BBQ-Shag Festival
Hemingway • April

The SC BBQ Shag Festival celebrates 25 years of family fun for everyone.   In April, 10,000 to 15,000 people will join us for live music, the best fireworks show ever, a car show hosted by the Palmetto Cruisers, plus crafters and other vendors.   There will also be plenty of fun for the kids with rides, pony rides, a petting zoo, face painting, and blow up inflatables.  Our whole hog BBQ contest is one of the highest paying in the state with a $3000 first place prize ($1500 second place, $1250 third place, $1000 fourth place, and $750 for fifth place).  Visit our web site at for history info on the festival and pictures from previous festivals.

843-344-2527 •

Blessing of the Fleet & Seafood Festival,
Town of Mount Pleasant

Mount Pleasant, SC 29464 • Last Sunday in April

Since 1987, the Blessing of the Fleet and Seafood Festival has highlighted the importance of the local shrimping and fishing industry in Mount Pleasant.  Seafood lovers come from all over the country to enjoy a boat parade and blessing of the shrimp/fishing fleet, savory seafood samplings sold by some of Mount Pleasant's best restaurants, live music, an arts/crafts show and Mount Pleasant Artists Guild Exhibit, shag and shrimp eating contests and family-friendly activities.  Admission, activities and parking are free!

843-884-8517 •

The Palmetto Tasty Tomato Festival
Columbia • July

Do you love tomatoes, music, good food & drink, and old time festival fun? If so, come celebrate local food and the Champion of the Garden: The Heirloom Tomato. The Palmetto Tasty Tomato Festival is a celebration of locally grown food in the Midlands – the people who grow it, the restaurants who serve it, the markets that sell, and the people who eat it. The festival’s been named to Southern Living’s “Best in the South” list of things to do, so save the date for Columbia’s signature summer local food event… because there’s nothing better than a Tasty Tomato.

803.873.0442 •

Catfish Festival
Hardeeville • September

Hardeeville, SC hosts the two day Hardeeville Catfish Festival the third weekend in September each year. This is a family event with a beauty pageant each summer. Mr. Whiskers, our resident Catfish, invites you to come out to enjoy live entertainment, rides for the young and not so young, GREAT food and a fantastic variety of vendors to shop from! Please go to for applications to participate. Check out our Facebook page for more information and lots of pictures!

843-784-3606 -

Catfish Festival, Saint Stephen
Saint Stephen • First Weekend in April

The Saint Stephen Catfish Festival is a fun hometown festival featuring rides, live bands, clowns, a Catfish Stew Cook-Off, Sweet-Pea Contest and all types of food, plus craft and commerical vendors. The Catfish Festival is FREE to the public. Come and try our award-winning Catfish Stews and spend the day enjoying some good family fun at the Catfish Festiva in St. Stephen, South Carolina.

843-567-3597 •

Catfish Feastival, Ware Shoals
Ware Shoals  • Memorial Day Weekend

Ware Shoals Catfish "Feastival" is a time of fun entertainment, arts & crafts, carnival rides, a special children's program, classic car show, and delicious food. It's also a time of hospitality as we welcome former residents, guests and tourists. With great family fun for everyone to go along with catfish stew, fried catfish, plus fried and barbecue chicken, we encourage you to feast away at our Feastival!

864-554-7024 •

Catfish Stomp
Elgin • December

When the holiday season hits full swing, you know it’s time for the parade season that kicks off the annual Elgin Catfish Stomp. Friday night gets everything started with the Catfish Stomp Pageant followed by the parade on Saturday.  Elgin Catfish Stomp is a full 3-day schedule of parades, live entertainment, vendors, car show and of course, mouth-watering catfish stew and fried catfish with all the fixings cooked by the Blaney Fire Department and volunteer firemen.


Chitlin Strut
Salley • Saturday after Thanksgiving

The Chitlin Strut is one of the oldest festivals in the State of South Carolina.  We have completed our 46th year.  This event was started as a means of earning money to purchase Christmas decorations for the Town.  It is unique more from the standpoint that it "honors" hog intestines (chitterlings) as the main food item (fried or boiled).  Other than this, it is much like any other festival with a parade, music, carnival, food concessions and arts and crafts.  The Chitlin Strut also has a hog calling contest and a Strut dance contest.

803.258.3485 •

Collard and Barbecue Festival
Gaston • 1st weekend in October

Celebrate fall harvest at the annual Gaston Collard Festival with a parade, rides, games and live entertainment. There's even a beauty pageant, but the real queen of the festival is the collard. And, of course, more fixin's like rice and cornbread will be available.  You will enjoy our live auction, craft vendors, chili cookoff, and dessert contest.  But best of all is our famous collards, so join us for some good family fun. 131 North Carlisle Street in Gaston, SC  29053.  More information, call 803-796-7725.

803-796-7725 •

Flopeye Fish Festival
Great Falls • Memorial Day Weekend

On Memorial Day weekend of each year, the Flopeye Fish Festival means community-wide fun and recreation for locals and visitors. With a variety of food, fun and entertainment, along with the enthusiasm of homecoming atmosphere, the Flopeye Fish Festival attracts visitors from many states. The event brings our citizens together and preserves the saying, "After all, life is to enjoy."

803-482-6029 •

Hog Jam
Kershaw • October

Come on down to the Kershaw Hog Jam where there's plenty of Pork to eat, games to play, vintage cars to view, stage entertainment, plus food and merchandise vendors.  Kershaw Hog Jam is one of the BEST events in South Carolina with 3,000 to 5,000 in attendance.  Join us.  We'd LOVE to have YA'LL!

803.246.0369 •

Lobster Race
Aiken • First Friday in May

Conceived to spoof the Kentucky Derby and acknowledge the impact of the horse industry in Aiken, the inaugural Lobster Race was held in Aiken in 1984.  Beginning as a small get-together of local friends, it has grown into a large festival and dubbed as Aiken's biggest reunion.  Former residents and visitors return to enjoy the Lobster Race and renew old friendships.  Held the 1st Friday in May (day before Kentucky Derby) in downtown Aiken, the center of attention is the unique lobster track and  band stage.  Other attractions include children's rides, food vendors, and local bands completing the festival ambiance.

803.646.0523 •


Lowcountry Cajun Festival
Charleston • First Sunday in April

Bringing Louisiana to South Carolina, Lowcountry Cajun Festival is a full-day of Zydeco music, Cajun and Creole foods, children’s activities and all around ragin' entertainment! Spend the day at beautiful James Island County Park as you savor the tastes of authentic Cajun and Creole fare prepared fresh by local chefs. Enjoy jambalaya, alligator, etouffe, andouille sausage and of course, crawfish, crawfish, crawfish! Also enjoy Lowcountry favorites like seafood and Southern barbecue. And, crawfish connoisseurs are invited to take part in the annual crawfish eating contest.

843-795-4386 •

Lowcountry Oyster Festival
Mt. Pleasant • January

The Charleston Restaurant Association hosts the annual Lowcountry Oyster Festival on the 500+ acre grounds of historic Boone Hall Plantation in Mount Pleasant.  The Lowcountry Oyster Festival is the world’s largest oyster roast and has been named one of the “top 20 events in the southeast” by the Southeastern Tourism Society. More than 10,000 guests and 65,000 pounds of oysters are expected throughout the day on the back lawn of the plantation.  Other highlights include the legendary “Oyster Shucking” and “Oyster Eating,” contests, a selection of domestic and imported beers, live music on the main stage and a Children’s Area. For those who are not so keen on the mighty mollusk, there will be a Food Court with alternate food selections.

843.577.4030 •


Lowcountry Shrimp Festival
McClellanville • Spring

The Strawberry Festival at Boone Hall will offer four days and nights of fun and festivities. There will be amusement park rides for both large and small attendees as well as pig races, vendor exhibits, games, and concessions. Also offered is a jump pillow, a 3-story slide tower, the spider web, and a rock climbing wall,  Special prices are offered for special nights and wrist bands will allow access throughout the 4-day festival. Come join the fun and  pick strawberries on your way home.

843-884-4371 •

Lowcountry Strawberry Festival at Boone Hall
Mount Pleasant • Spring

The Strawberry Festival at Boone Hall will offer four days and nights of fun and festivities. There will be amusement park rides for both large and small attendees as well as pig races, vendor exhibits, games, and concessions. Also offered is a jump pillow, a 3-story slide tower, the spider web, and a rock climbing wall,  Special prices are offered for special nights and wrist bands will allow access throughout the 4-day festival. Come join the fun and  pick strawberries on your way home.   

843-884-4371 •

Muscadine Festival, Williams
Nesmith • Labor Day Weekend

Bring your tents, campers and RVs and stay the weekend picking muscadines, enjoying wine tastings, pit-pig barbecue and fireworks! Tour the vineyard and farm, and learn the history of the early African-American farm. The festival kicks off with a wine tasting on Friday at 7:30pm. There will be numerous activities on Saturday 8am-midnight, and on Sunday 1pm-midnight. On Monday, the festival winds down but visitors are welcome to socialize and pick muscadines from 8am till dark! There is no admission fee to the festival, and refreshments will be sold.

843.355.7793 •

Okra Strut Festival
Irmo • Last weekend in Septemeber

The Irmo Okra Strut Festival will be celebrating its 41st Anniversary in 2014.  The festival opens from 6:00 p.m. until 1l:00 p.m. Friday night with the Street Dance beginning at 7:00 p.m. There will be lots of entertainment,,food, amusements and our famous Okra Eating Contest.  The festival site opens from 10:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. on  Saturday.  Beginning at 9:20 Saturday we will feature the largest festival parade in South Carolina featuring over 100 entries.  After watching the parade, please joing us for plenty of food, amusements and entertainment as well as 100 artists and crafters from across the Southeast. Of course the Irmo-Lake Murray Women's Club will be featuring their famous "Fried Okra" Friday night and all day Saturday.

803-661-1049 •

Oyster Festival, Hilton Head Island
Hilton Head • Second Weekend in November

Steamed, fried, raw, grilled and more…  there are many ways to eat oyster at the Hilton Head Oyster Festival.  Join us for a full day of live music and so many more activities for the whole family.  All proceeds benefit the Hilton Head Island Recreation Association’s Children’s Scholarship Fund.

843-681-7273 •

Peach Blossom Festival, Johnston
Johnston • First weekend in May

Johnston Peach Blossom Festival has celebrated 30 years of food, fun, and fellowship.  The celebration begins early with a beauty pageant the month before and a parade which starts at 10:30 the morning of the festival.   Festival weekend kicks off with a Friday night dance.  Saturday’s food, crafts, rides for small kids and local entertainment all day, offer guaranteed fun for the whole family. We hope to see you there.

803-275-2345 •

Peach Festival, Lexington County Peach Festival
Gilbert, SC • July 4th

Lexington County Peach Festival is a July 4 celebration of America at Gilbert Community Park with a variety of entertainment available throughout the day. Arts and crafts, children’s rides, and a variety of foods, especially peach desserts and drinks,  will be available for varying fees. The parade, three-stages of entertainment, antique tractor & farm equipment display, car show, Revolutionary War re-enactment, volleyball tournament, and fireworks show are available at no charge.  The parade begins at 9:30 a.m., and the fireworks show will begin at 10:00 p.m.  Celebrated since 1959 the Gilbert Community Club sponsors the Festival.

803-892-5207 •

Peach Festival, Ridge
Trenton • June

Our all day family festival kicks off with a morning parade led by Fort Gordon Signet military band. The festival features 115 unique arts and crafts, antiques, homemade peach desserts and preserves, peach ice cream, live music all day, rides for the children, a variety of food vendors and a softball tournament. Shuttles will run all day from the parking area to the park. Come out and enjoy the southern hospitality and richness of this wonderful town. Nestled between Aiken, North Augusta, and Edgefield, SC. This quiet, small town comes alive with the annual Ridge Peach Festival and plays host to more than 15,000 visitors from all across the south.

803-275-9487 •

Pickin' & Piggin' in the Park
Columbia • April/May

A world class barbeque cook-off & music celebration at Saluda Shoals Park!  Savor the flavor of award winning 'Q' from South Carolina's best barbeque cookers while enjoying great live music from local bands!  Barbeque tasting starts in the evening and goes until it runs out.  Enjoy music from live bands all afternoon.  Tickets are $10 per person/advance; $12 day of the event and $5 children 12 & under.  For tickets & information call 772-1228 or visit

803-772-1228 •

Pig in the Park
Williamston • Weekend after Mother's Day

The Williamston Masonic Lodge No.24 puts this cookoff on to help the Christian Learning Center and Operation Care and the Lodge. This also brings more people to our town. Check out our web site.

864.934.4040 OR 864.704.8131

Pig Pickin, Kingstree/ Bi-Lo
Kingstree, SC • October

Each autumn, the Town of Kingstree hosts a hometown festival that brings folks from everywhere. What exactly is "Pig Pickin'?" It's the best way to eat hot-off-the-fire barbeque. Whether you call it pullin', pickin' or just plain eatin', you're sure to come around to our way of thinkin' when you taste that first juicy strip of vinegar-sauce riddled pork melting in your mouth.  Hear crowds as they check out the competitions,   purchase craft or baked items, and see smiling faces of folks enjoying the good life.

843.355.7484 •

Pork Fest
Elloree • April

Held each April at Joe Miller Park in Elloree, Pork Fest is a hometown competition where teams throughout the community come to battle for bragging rights. Friday night is the popular Anything-but-Barbeque cook-off while Saturday is the barbeque competition. Judging is done by popular vote and a judges panel for both days of the event. Both events are open to the public for sampling while enjoying live music, a bake sale, and the wildly popular Pork Fest Pigs auction.

803-897-2821 •

Rice Festival, Colleton County Rice Festival
Walterboro • April

The Colleton County Rice Festival is a celebration of the rice-planting heritage that helped found Colleton County. The fun-filled family festival features parades, petting zoo and face painting for the kids, street dances, blue grass/gospel/country and pop entertainers, food and arts’ n’ crafts vendors, a golf tournament,5K run, dog shows, rice-cooking contests, horseshoe tournament, and fireworks display. Come see why Walterboro is the front porch of the Lowcountry and enjoy three fun-filled days of family activities in the warm Carolina sun. 

843.549.1079 •

Seafood Fest, Hilton Head Island
Hilton Head Island • April

The Hilton Head Island Seafood Fest which takes place annually in April, at the Shelter Cove Community Park is sponsored by the David M. Carmines Memorial Foundation and Hilton Head Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram, helps raise money for the American Cancer Society, MD Anderson Cancer Research Center & Island Recreation Scholarship Fund. The two day, family-friendly event features area restaurants/chefs serving up seafood specialties and other tasty cuisine, live entertainment, a Kids Zone, a silent auction, an Iron Chef-style competition (Art of Cuisine), and more.


Shuckin' in the Park
Moncks Corner • 2nd weekend in March

It is never too early to mark your calendars for the Annual Shuckin in the Park Oyster Roast.  There will be activities for the children including a jump castle.  Food tickets can be purchased inside the gate. Entertainment will feature beach music, oldies and popular songs. Small coolers are allowed but PLEASE no pets or golf carts.

843-899-5200 •

Shrimp Festival
Beaufort • First weekend in October

Shrimp Festival is the first weekend in October each year and includes a run and walk plus a huge exciting celebration of the shrimping industry. Enjoy local recipes and tastings. Shop in the craft market by the bay and browse the unique shops and galleries in the downtown historic district. Free entertainment, contests and plenty of shrimp make this annual event unforgettable.The festival is held in historic downtown Beaufort at the beautiful Waterfront Park.

843-525-6644 •

Shrimp Festival, Yemassee
Yemassee  • 3rd Weekend in September

For 18 years Yemassee, a small community of about 800, has opened their arms to all of the Lowcountry for an annual Shrimp Festival to celebrate everything shrimp. With the Lighted Boat Parade, a Mud run, a fireworks display and more, this fun family festival is sure to impress.  After all, there is “Nothin’ Finer than the Shrimp in Carolina.” 

843-589-2120 •

South Carolina Apple Festival
Westminster • September

Beginning the day after Labor Day and running through the following weekend, the South Carolina Apple Festival celebrates the beginning of apple harvest season in Oconee County, the largest apple-producing area in the state. This fun annual festival has drawn thousands of visitors to the Westminster since 1961.  Whether you enjoy whitewater rafting, shopping for arts and crafts, browsing antique shops,  or just kicking back and listening to live musical entertainment, the Apple Festival offers something for everyone in the family.

864.647.7223 •


South Carolina Chili Cook-off Championship
Belton  • 2nd Weekend in April

Sanctioned by the International Chili Society, the SC Chili Cook-off is one of the Southeast's fastest growing family events. Prizes awarded for Red Chili, Chili Verde, Salsa, Peoples Choice and Showmanship. Proceeds benefit local charities.

864-940-3111 •

South Carolina Cornbread Festival
Columbia, SC • First weekend in April

The North Columbia Business Association, in partnership with the City of Columbia, Richland County and Pepsi-Cola bring you the South Carolina Cornbread Festival and 5K Run/Walk. The event takes place at the corner of the 2800 Block of Main Street and Newman Street, in North Columbia. This popular festival offers fun and excitement for the whole family with a 5K Run/Walk, Cornbread Cook-Off, Children's Cook-Off, Little Miss Muffin Pageant, live music and more.

803-840-5270 •

SC / GS Barbeque Cook-Off
Hardeeville • April

When Spring is in the air, you know it's that time of year when nothing tastes sweeter than a plate of barbecue.  And the best barbecue by the best cooks along the state's border will return to Hardeeville in April for a tough competition.  The Greater Hardeeville Chamber of Commerce hosts the South Carolina-Georgia Border Barbecue Cook-off with big money prizes.  Friday night starts the competition with local "celebrity" judges taste-testing chicken wings drizzled in sauces.  Unlike other competitions, this one features four different sauces:  pepper and vinegar, mustard based, and  heavy or light tomato-based sauces, so come sample all. Join us and eat the best BBQ of South Carolina and Georgia at one festival.

843-784-3606 •

South Carolina Peach Festival
Gaffney • Third Weekend in July

The SC Peach Festival includes a sanctioned BBQ cookoff, parade, sanctioned 5K & 10K road race, arts & crafts, food vendors, live concerts, cornhole tournament, golf tournament, peach dessert contest, carnival rides, mud bog and more!! This is one festival you don't want to miss!

864.489.5716 •

South Carolina Pelion Peanut Party
Pelion • 2nd weekend in August

"Peanuts For The Good Life!", celebrating the South Carolina Official State Snack, the boiled peanut, our progressive, yet rural, agricultural community provides a safe and family friendly venue for your enjoyment of our boiled peanuts! Join us for 2 days of yummy festival food, crafts, car show, softball contest, talent show, exhibits, parade, Princess Pageant, cooking contest, amusement rides, and country/rock and roll entertainment.

803-606-9522 or 803-785-3272 •

South Carolina Poultry Festival
Batesburg-Leesville • 2nd Saturday in May

As a tribute to the largest employer in the region -- the poultry companies, South Carolina Poultry Festival invites everyone to “Come Sample the South” in Batesburg-Leesville and to eggs-perience the eggs-cellent place to live, work, worship, and shop.  At the festival, everyone will enjoy family entertainment and fun with a parade, six stages of live entertainment, contests, crafts, food vendors, a street dance, car show, fireworks, amusement rides, volleyball tournament, golf tournament and a 5K road race.  The festival proudly hosts the annual state 4H cooking contest, and everyone loves the “Cook-Cluck-Win-A-Buck” chicken cooking contest.  South Carolina Poultry Festival -- almost 30 Years And Still Chickin’ Lickin’ Good!

803.532.4601 •

South Carolina Strawberry Festival
Fort Mill • First weekend in May

The South Carolina Strawberry Festival is Fort Mill's signature salute to spring. Held each May in Downtown Fort Mill, the Strawberry Festival offers five full days of family-friendly events and activities. Each year, the festival features hundreds of arts and crafts and vendors, three stages of live entertainment at the "Strawberry Jam," children's rides and activities, our popular "Berry the Competition" strawberry recipe contest, and of course, lots of delicious, locally grown strawberries! Other events during Strawberry Week include a golf tournament, gala, 5K walk/run, pageant, and strawberry picking at Fort Mill's Springs Farm.  You won't want to miss the South Carolina Strawberry Festival. Come on out and join us...

803.547.2116 •

South Carolina Sweet Potato Festival
Darlington • 2nd Saturday in October

The South Carolina Sweet Potato Festival is a yearly daylong extravaganza held in Darlington, South Carolina, on the second Saturday in October.  Held in the heart of downtown, birthplace of stock car racing, the festival fills the air with more than 25,000 visitors enjoying a variety of the 150 food/craft vendors, live entertainment, antique car show, door prizes throughout the day, and of course lots of sweet potatoes.

843.393.3526 •

Southern Living Taste of Charleston
Mt. Pleasant • October

The Southern Living Taste of Charleston is a three-day celebration of Lowcountry cuisine featuring Charleston favorite dining establishments. The kick off event, Taste: Iron-Chef, will be held on Friday, October 7 at the Culinary Institute of Charleston?s Palmer Campus in downtown Charleston.  It will showcase some of the best local chefs in a heated head-to-head battle in the Institute?s state-of-the-art amphitheater kitchen. The Taste of the Arts on Gallery Row will be held the evening of Saturday, October 8. This event is where the talents of Lowcountry artists merge with the culinary arts. Guests will stroll through a dozen art galleries while sampling appetizers from a variety of Charleston restaurants. This year we are excited to announce that Southern Living is joining the Charleston Restaurant Association to present the Southern Living Taste of Charleston 2011. For the first time this year, the main event expands from one day to two. It will be held at historic Boone Hall Plantation in Mt. Pleasant on Saturday, October 8 and Sunday, October 9, 2011. This celebration of Lowcountry cuisine will feature 50 of Charleston?s top restaurants offering samples of their signature dishes, as well as Southern Living editor appearances, editorial-inspired vignettes, demonstrations, giveaways and more.

843.577.4030 •

Strawberry Festival, Marrietta
Slater SC • May

"Join Foothills Family Resources to usher in summer at the  Annual Strawberry Festival presented by North Greenville Hospital, benefiting Foothills Family Resources and Blue Wall Group held on the grounds of historic Slater Hall  in Slater.  A benefit Pancake Breakfast begins the day followed by a full day of kids, family and senior friendly fun. No entrance fee; tickets are purchased to buy food and crafts. This festival supports two community organizations that nurture area citizens in stressful times, educate them on healthy diets, provide opportunities for further education, and nourishment when cupboards are bare ."

864-836-1100 •

Taste of the Town
Myrtle Beach • Mid October (Always on a Tuesday)

Poised as the Grand Strand?s largest culinary and social event of the year, and Myrtle Beach?s premier food festival, this year?s Taste of the Town will include over 50 area restaurants offering samples from their menus. Event to be held at The Myrtle Beach Convention Center:

843-448-6062 •

Watermelon Festival, Hampton County Watermelon Festival
Hampton • June

Hampton County is the home of the world’s original Watermelon Festival. Since 1939, the Hampton County Watermelon Festival has grown to become South Carolina’s oldest continuing festival. From the beginning, it has been a celebration of, for, and by the people of this friendly Lowcountry County, timed to the melon harvest every summer. The Watermelon Festival Parade is the longest in the state of South Carolina at 3.2 miles, extending from the Town of Varnville to the Town of Hampton.  You will enjoy a Street Dance featuring live music, food, craft and souvenir vendors, fun rides for the kids, and day-long fishing contest.  You won't want to miss the Watermelon Eating Contest and the Seed Spitting Contest.  And, of course, we will be serving Lots of watermelon.  , watermelon, watermelon served.  Join us for good family fun!

Watermelon Festival, Pageland
Pageland • 3rd full weekend in July

Come and enjoy live music and entertainment as you walk through the streets of downtown Pageland. See one of the largest parades on Saturday morning that will provide plenty of entertainment by itself. Savor the delicious variety of foods and the beautiful wares of the crafters. Our children will enjoy a variety of events throughout the day. Don't forget the old fashion seed spittin' and watermelon eatin' contests for all ages. Enjoy reminiscing about yesteryear with our classic car show and admire the talents displayed at the festival rodeo. Then enjoy the company of friends and visitors at the end of each day, and take in the music and entertainment of live bands.

843-672-6400 •

Shelter Park Cove in Hilton Head • End of March

Around 20 local restaurants cook up their best wings.  Your vote counts in the people’s choice award.  All day there is live music and so many more activities for the whole family.  All proceeds benefit the Hilton Head Island Recreation Association’s Children’s scholarship fund.

843-681-7273 •

World Famous Blue Crab Festival
Little River • May

The purpose of this festival is and will continue to be, one that supports and showcases the fabulous atmosphere of the local Little River Community, North Myrtle Beach and the entire Grand Strand area.  You will experience arts and crafts vendors, food vendors, live music, a kids area and lots of family fun.   We encourage you to be a part of this tradition, and join us for our World Famous Blue Crab Festival, on the Waterfront in Little River. 

803-795-9755 •

World Grits Festival
Saint George • April

The objective of the grits festival is to stimulate pride in the town of St. George and surrounding communities and to provide wholesome recreation and entertainment for  the entire family. Activities are unlimited for all ages, such as - rolling in the grits, 5k run, corn toss, grits eating, grits grinding, grits meals, corn shelling, parade, carnival, food booths, grits sampling, corn shelling, and much more.

843.563.7943 •


Back to top of South Carolina Hometown Cookbook


About the Authors:      

Kent Whitaker has taken his down-home, Southern-style cooking to an art-form. “I like to do a bit more than burgers and dogs on the grill.” He is the author of three cookbooks, Tennessee Hometown Cookbook (Great American Publishers, 2007), Smoke in the Mountains (Quail Ridge Press, 2004) and Checkered Flag Cooking (Quail Ridge Press, 2005), and has written and illustrated two children’s books, Why are the Mountains Smoky? (Overmountain Press, 2004) and Big Mo’s Tennis Ball Hunt (Great American Publishers, 2006).

Kent has appeared on the Food Network and other network television stations. He frequently hosts cooking classes at the Chattanooga Market and throughout the South. He writes a cooking column for the Catoosa County News and the Chattanoogan, and writes monthly articles for both The National Barbecue News and Racing Milestones Magazine. A dog-lover and advocate for local animal shelters and rescue organizations, Kent and his grilling buddy, Moses, are spokesperson and spokesdog for ALPO. Kent and Moses travel the country presenting grilling and cooking demos promoting the idea of including your canine family members in on the backyard grilling fun. Kent gives human grilling and cooking tips while Moses enjoys APLO Chophouse Ribeye-Flavored dog food.

Kent and his wife Ally live in East Tennessee with one son, Macee, a Golden Retriever named Moses and a Shitzu named Barney.

Sheila Simmons is passionate about cooking and cookbooks. In her travels, when people come to stay at her “rambling house in the country,” when entertaining, and especially when attending church events, the subject will always, eventually, turn to recipes.

Sheila’s interest in regional recipes was originally born during her 18 years with Quail Ridge Press in Brandon, Mississippi. In 2006, she left QRP to focus her love of publishing on Great American Publishers where she is Publisher and co-owner along with husband Roger Simmons.

Sheila has also found an outlet for her regional recipe passion in the State Hometown Cookbook Series. She and co-author Kent Whitaker collect favorite recipes from every state in the country for the series. A “job” that is perfect for someone who loves to talk about and share great recipes and equally enjoys trying new recipes in her kitchen.

Sheila is publisher of Great American Publishers (Lena, MS), author of the State Hometown Cookbook Series, and Children's Director for Mt Pisgah Baptist Church (Brandon, MS). She lives in Lena, Mississippi with her husband Roger and son Nicholas. Her fist-born son, Ryan, lives close-by with his wife, Shelbie who is pregnant with Sheila's first grandchild. In addition to publishing, cooking, and collecting recipes Sheila enjoys spending time with family, reading, collecting first edition books, and classic cars.

Back to top of South Carolina Hometown Cookbook

Great American Publishers
501 Avalon Way, Suite B
Brandon MS 39047

Contact Us

The Ultimate Venison Cookbook for Deer Camp
NEW! Great American Grilling Cookbook
State Hometown Cookbook Series
Eat & Explore State Cookbook Series
Back Road Restaurants Cookbook Series
Church Suppers State Cookbook Series

Family Favorite Recipes
Game for All Seasons

More from GAP
Recipe Database
Join our List
You in a Cookbook


I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength. -- Phillipians 4:13

Home Products Recipes Newsroom Join Our List