This week my occupation took me to Charleston, South Carolina for a spring industry meeting. As usual, I left Oklahoma bright and early on Tuesday morning and headed through Atlanta to Charleston, SC. My arrrival was a day late to the meeting, but in time for the primary industry speaker scheduled to attend on Wednesday. Having traveled to Charleston before for work I did not attend the meeting with any expectations. It was a pleasant surprise that the week agenda included social outings to experience Charleston and to mingle with other attendees who also came from many other locations.
Tuesday evening kicked off the socialization with a Lowcountry Boil prepared at the Oak Plantation Campground. This was a fun way to socialize with a large group of industry peers. The campground had a large pavilion which easily accommodated 50-100 guests and was surrounded by campers, recreational vehicles and beautiful trees. With perfect spring weather, and lush green grass the evening was well on its way when I arrived at the campground with other conference attendees. Conference volunteers had gathered the supplies, the food, and had inflated a kiddie pool filled with ice for guests to place their beverages in, and multiple pots of boiling water had been assembled for the shirmp boil.
Horse shoes were tossed by some as others chatted with one another seated at the picnic tables. I quickly found that was the best location to be as the cooks were quick to pass along baskets to the tables of guests of freshly cooked hushpuppies.
The conference meeting was located at the Francis Marion Hotel on King Street. If you have been to Charleston then you may know that King Street has great food, shopping and is in walking distance to many other local attractions such as the local market. The market is where local vendors sell their goods and you can walk from one end to the other experience local crafts and food. After the Wednesday meeting session, the attendees broke off into smaller groups to shop, take a ghost tour, or take a horse-drawn carriage tour.
I quickly signed up to take a historic carriage tour of Charleston and grabbed my tennis shoes and headed toward the Old South Carriage Company. The carriage rode past local houses, mansions and historical churches. The carriage driver was full of historical information about the area. Our carriage horse, Johnny, was magnificent and the event was enjoyable, informative, and a delightful carriage ride through local neighborhoods.
The spring conference meeting concluded on Thursday afternoon and with only a few hours of time left in Charleston I took one final walk down King Street to the local market and grabbed a quick meal along the way at a local café, Jacks.
I enjoyed my week both professionally, and personally, and I will look forward to a return visit to Charleston South Carolina soon.