A Myrtle Beach vacation is always special. But visiting the Grand Strand during certain times of the year, especially ones with big festivals and other major events, can take your vacation experience to the next level. That’s why Compass Cove Oceanfront Resort has compiled a list of events you should check out if you get the chance. Here are seven we highly recommend:
* Restaurant Week: Foodies will love this statewide event, which features dozens of local restaurants taking part in the culinary showcase. Many of the participating restaurants offer prix fixe menus so guests can sample a variety of the house's specialties. Wine tastings, dessert displays and other events are held in conjunction of the event.
* St. Patrick's Day: The Grand Strand goes green for St. Patrick's Day, which falls on a Friday in 2017 and promises lots of green and a weekend filled with Irish-themed events. Celebrate the occasion at dozens of St. Paddy's Day parties at restaurants and bars all along the 60-mile stretch of sandy coastline on March 17, followed by the 29th Annual North Myrtle Beach St. Patrick's Day Parade, the Eighth Annual Irish Festival at The Market Common and the Luck of the MarshWalk festival in Murrells Inlet on Saturday, March 18.
* La Belle Amie Festivals: This Little River winery knows how to throw a party, and does so biweekly with a year-long series of concerts and bonfires. Tour the vineyard, take part in wine-tasting sessions, catch live music on the outdoor stage and gather around the bonfire to stay warm during the colder months. Among the most popular festivals scheduled for 2017 are the Spring Big Band Fest (March 25), Blue & Jazz Fest (April 8), the Key West Music Fest (May 6), and the Summer's First Saturday Cookout (June 17).
* Mayfest on Main: Make plans to attend this traditional summer kickoff in the Ocean Drive section of North Myrtle Beach. Featuring outdoor stages with live music, rows of arts and crafts vendor tents, and shaggers dancing in the streets in the Horseshoe create a festive start to the summer season. Later on, the after-party moves to the dance clubs in the district. The 2017 event will be held Saturday, May 13.
* Salt Games: Downtown Myrtle Beach becomes an Olympic village for a mash up of watersports and extreme games events on the oceanfront June 3-4. Sports like surfing, beach volleyball, skateboarding and lifeguard games are among the athletic competitions and exhibitions, and a hot dog eating contest and live music are among the spectator sports. There are also fun and games for kids.
* Carolina Country Music Festival: Get ready to go honky-tonking on the beach at the Third Annual CCMF, which has attracted more than 50,000 country music fans and lots of big-name artists in its first two years. The 2017 headliners are even bigger, with South Carolina's own Darius Rucker, Kenny Chesney and Jason Aldean among the approximately 30 acts that will take the main stage on the downtown oceanfront. Crowds of more than 30,000 are expected again for the 2017 event, which will be held June 8-11.
* Hot Summer Nights: The Myrtle Beach Boardwalk is the place to be for free entertainment all summer long. Featuring a Kids Festival on Mondays, fireworks on Wednesdays, and concerts nearly every other night of the week, there's something going on in the downtown district from June through Labor Day weekend. Be sure to check the upcoming schedule for special events you and your family will not want to miss.
Seven events down, and an endless number of fun times still to go. Be sure to reserve your dates at Compass Cove Oceanfront Resort and enjoy your vacation experience both on and off the property.