Of country clubs, peanuts & wrecks

Saturday is rib-eye night.

I was reminded recently of all the things I love about living in Charleston. When I first moved here from New Jersey, (hi, culture shock) my friend Deanne, born and raised in Mount Pleasant, took great delight in a little game I came to call “Shock the Yankee.”

As my self-appointed guide to Southern culture, Deanne set out on a quest to immerse me in a variety of experiences. And really, after any initial shock, I thoroughly enjoyed myself.

Here are three of my favorite moments:

  1. Harold’s Country Club in Yemassee. First of all, if you’re going to Harold’s, you call ahead to reserve food. Saturday is rib-eye steak night, so call ahead for your slab o’ meat. Once there, you’ll hunker down over a very satisfying steak dinner with hunters, fishermen, bikers, plantation owners and other randoms who’ve been lured in by the promise of a good time. After dinner, you can bloat over a beer at the bar and watch the line dancing ensue. By the way, as it did originally, Harold’s still sells both gasoline and live bait. Score!
  2. The Peanut Festival in Pelion. Not only did I get to hear Miss South Carolina flub the Pledge of Allegiance,  (I’m serious. We all winced.) I got to suck on some EXCELLENT boiled peanuts and watch the Peanut Parade, complete with Shriners in fezzes tearing around on go-carts.
  3. The Wreck of the Richard & Charlene. A Mount Pleasant institution. Named for the trawler  tragically impaled on a piling during Hurricane Hugo, The Wreck is a bit of a Shem Creek secret. I know people who have lived here for years who get lost at least twice when trying to find it. A sweet and endearing dive, The Wreck is about seafood of all varieties. And if you know what’s good for you, order it fried. Honestly, go big or go home, people.
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