City of North Charleston Cultural Arts Department Monthly E-Newsletter

City of North Charleston Cultural Arts Department Monthly E-Newsletter

Special Events

City of North Charleston’s 4th of July Festival N Chas 4th of July Festival

This fantastic Independence Day celebration kicks off at 3:00pm with opening remarks by Mayor Summey. Enjoy live concerts by Common Ground (3-4pm), The Coastrunner Band (4:15-5:30pm), The Atlanta Pleasure Band (5:45-7:30pm), American Idol’s Ruben Studdard (7:45-9:15pm), and The Equinox Jazz Band (9:15-9:45pm), as well as children’s activities and concessions. The evening will conclude with a grand fireworks display over the water. Guests are invited to bring lawn chairs and blankets, as there is no seating provided. No alcohol permitted.


North Charleston Riverfront Park

1001 Everglades Avenue, North Charleston

Wednesday, July 4



Works by Ron Melick

Seaside Sunset by Ron MelickLandscape painter, Ron Melick, will present 50 new works in his exhibit, Expressions and Variations of Imagination. Inspired by light, memories, experiences, and dreams, Melick utilizes design and the free use of color to create images of the physical and spiritual life combined.


North Charleston City Gallery (w/in Chas. Area Convention Ctr.)

5001 Coliseum Drive, North Charleston

On view: July 2-31

Gallery hours: 9:00am-5:00pm daily

Free Reception: Thursday, July 5, 5:00-7:00pm


Works by Sherrie Nesbitt

Local artist Sherrie Nesbitt will present Beauty in the Lowcountry, a collection of landscapes in acrylic and pastel.


The Meeting Place

1077 East Montague Avenue,  North Charleston

On view: July 2-31

Window viewing anytime

Free Reception: Friday, July 13, 5:00-7:00pm


National Outdoor Sculpture Competition and ExhibitionFlutter Gate II by Jim Gallucci

The seventh annual National Outdoor Sculpture Competition and Exhibition is currently installed at the stunning North Charleston Riverfront Park.  The eleven month exhibition features twelve established and emerging artists displaying imaginative and thought provoking large-scale sculpture.  Visitors can enjoy the sculpture displays among ten acres of walking paths, a fishing pier, boardwalk, an oversized sandbox and children’s play area. Click here for more information.


North Charleston Riverfront Park

1001 Everglades Avenue, North Charleston

On display through March 24, 2013

Park open daily


North Charleston Farmers Market Concerts

Shrimp City Slim

The Farmers Market takes place every Thursday through October 18. Offerings include an abundance of fresh, locally grown produce, food vendors, art & craft booths, and rotating entertainment. Enjoy live music every 1st, 3rd, and 5th Thursday. Shrimp City Slim will perform Lowcountry Blues on July 5. The V-Tones will perform Tropical Swing tunes on July 19.


Green space in Olde Village (next to DIG in the Park)

1055 East Montague Avenue, North Charleston

Thursdays, July 5 & 19

Market open 2:00-7:00pm / Concert 4:00-6:00pm


Open Studio Workshop

Adult workshop featuring Mandalas with Nancy Rodriguez, local artist and art therapist. Mandalas are circular designs signifying wholeness and have been used for centuries in ancient cultures because of their healing and transformative effects. Participants will be invited on a mandala journey with pastels on black paper. Materials are provided.

Fee: $15. Registration ends two days prior to class.

Call 843-740-5854 to register.

The Meeting Place

1077 East Montague Avenue, North Charleston

Tuesday, July 31



Drama Camp II

2010 Dramma II Camp

For children ages 9-13. Under the direction of local theatre and film professional, Julian Gooding, students will have the opportunity to learn intensive drama and/or film-making skills in a two week performance workshop format. Instruction will focus on a performance for parents and the community at the end of the camp. Registration forms can be downloaded here.

Fee: $100. Registration ends one week prior to first class.

Call Nancy Rodriguez at 843-740-5851 to register.

Sterett Hall at the Navy yard

1530 7th Street, North Charleston

Weekdays, July 9-20



African Drum and Dance Camp

African Drum & Dance Camp 2011For children ages 5-13. Rajeeyah Mujahid of RBM African Drum & Dance Company will teach students about the rhythms and techniques of drumming and dance from West African influences. Registration forms can be downloaded here.

Fee: $50. Registration ends one week prior to first class.

Call Nancy Rodriguez at 843-740-5851 to register.

Sterett Hall at the Navy yard

1530 7th Street, North Charleston

Monday-Friday, July 23-27



Teen Summer Art Camp: Fundamentals of Fine Art

Students ages 13-18 will obtain a higher level of art technique and practice in this two week visual art camp.  Under the direction of local artist, Latasha Hollins, participants will gain knowledge in painting, drawing, design principles, and vocabulary.  They will also learn how to create their own studio space and a portfolio of their artwork. The camp will conclude with a viewing of student artwork.  Students are encouraged to continue to develop their artistic skills in the fall in a weekly teen art workshop offered in late September through November.  Materials provided. Some previous basic art experience is a plus, but not required.

Fee: $100. Registration ends one week prior to first class.

Call 843-740-5854 to register.

The Meeting Place

1077 East Montague Avenue, North Charleston

Weekdays, July 30-August 10


North Charleston Farmers Market Art Demonstrations

Tina ChristophillisThe Farmers Market takes place every Thursday through October 18. Offerings include an abundance of fresh, locally grown produce, food vendors, art & craft booths, and rotating entertainment. Tina Christophillis will offer a painting demo during the July 12 Market and Pam Smith will give a drawing demo on July 26.


Green space in Olde Village area (next to DIG in the Park)

1055 East Montague Avenue, North Charleston

Thursdays, July 12 & 26

Market open 2:00-7:00pm / Demo 4:00-6:00pm



Teaching artists or arts agencies may submit proposals for classes and workshops in visual arts, photography, crafts, music, dance, theater, and more. Proposal forms can be downloaded here.

Submit by Aug 20 for Oct/Nov/Dec 2012

Submit by Nov 20 for Jan/Feb/Mar 2013

Submit by Feb 20 for Apr/May/Jun 2013


Artist-in-Residence Position Available – APPLY NOW!
The Cultural Arts Department hires one professional visual artist each fiscal year to serve as the City’s official Artist-in-Residence. The Artist-in-Residence (AIR) serves as a key resource for the department’s outreach programs, especially in the area of art instruction. Click here to read about the program. Applications for the AIR position for the 2012/13 school year are being accepted until Wednesday, July 11. The part-time position allows for up to 300 hours at $19/hr. Artists interested in applying should submit a resume/CV and images of artwork to Nancy Rodriguez at City of North Charleston Cultural Arts Department, PO Box 190016, North Charleston, SC 29419-9016, or
North Charleston Artist Guild LogoNorth Charleston Artist Guild

The guild is currently taking a “summer vacation.” Meetings will resume in September.


Over the summer, the guild will be looking for members who can commit to helping lead the guild throughout the coming year. As a club, the North Charleston Artist Guild (NCAG) is loosely organized by members who are willing to help with communications and organization. Some of the tasks your officers take care of each month are:

  • Managing the info@northcharlestonartistguild.orgemail address and sending out guild emails to the mailing list
  • Managing the guild’s Facebook and Twitter accounts
  • Updating the guild website as necessary
  • Coordinating with the Cultural Arts Department and the city on events and guild meetings.

NCAG needs members who are willing to assume some of these responsibilities. Please step forward and help keep this guild alive. We would like to have new officers in place when we meet again in September. If you are interested in playing a more active role, please email


2012/13 DINNER



Dinner Theatre presentations  take place in the Chas. Area Convention Center Ballroom at 5001 Coliseum Drive in North Charleston. The ballroom doors open at 7:00pm and the play begins at around 8:00pm. Table numbers are assigned for each play and given to patrons at check-in. Menus include an entrée, house salad, chef’s selection of vegetable & starch, rolls & butter, dessert, iced tea & coffee service. Chef’s choice vegetarian alternative available upon advance request.


Ticket price includes dinner, play, and gratuity. Parking is free. Cash, check (made payable to City of North Charleston), Visa, Mastercard, and AmEx accepted. No refunds. Call Pam Smith at 843-740-5847 to purchase.


Season Tickets:

$135 for individuals

$125 ea. for parties of 6+

Single Performance Tickets:

$40 for individuals

$37 ea. for parties of 6+

$15 for play only (no meal)



(subject to change):


Friday, Sept. 14, 2012

The Gentleman Pirate written & performed by Rodney Lee Rogers of PURE Theatre

Entree: Grilled Cypress Chicken


Friday, Nov. 9, 2012

When the Frost is On the Pumpkin presented by Storyteller Tim Lowry

Entree: Pork Chop-Boneless


Friday, Feb. 8, 2013

Waiting on You presented by The Actor’s Theatre of South Carolina

Entree: Three Cheese Chicken


Friday, March 22, 2013 Forever Plaid presented by The Flowertown Players of Summerville

Entree: Pulled Pork


The Tri-County area’s oldest and most advanced musical youth ensemble celebrates 40 years of excellence and inspiration during its 2012- 2013 season.  The Youth Orchestras of the Lowcountry (YOLOW),  honors the organization’s rich history of music education with an exciting season of concerts and workshops, all culminating in a Masterworks concert featuring alumni members and supporters for spring 2013.

In its 40th Season, YOLOW is under the baton of Ruben Camacho. This diverse group of talented young musicians shares a passion for music and the dedication to meet the challenge of performing advanced orchestral repertoire as a full symphony orchestra. According to Mr. Camacho, “We want the beauty and discipline involved in learning classical music to be interwoven into a much broader community through youth orchestras. This program is an asset to our society and has so much untapped potential for enriching the lives of our kids.”


Visit for more information.


The Cultural Arts Department offices will be closed in observance of the following federal holidays:

 Wednesday, July 4


District 9 Updates – June 18, 2012

On June 12, 1972 our city was born.  On June 12, 2012 in honor of our founding Mayor John Bourne and current Mayor Keith Summey, we renamed the City Center Complex to the North Charleston City Center Complex and dedicated it to both of these mayors.  The North Charleston City Center Complex consists of the North Charleston Coliseum, Performing Arts Center and the Convention Center.  Our finale celebration will be on July 4th with the largest firework display in the state of South Carolina.  Come and join our celebration at Riverfront park.  American Idol Rueben Studdard will be performing while families picnic and enjoy the fun activities at the park before the fireworks begin. 
During the past 40 years our city population has grown from about 20,000 people to about 100,000.  We are now the 3rd largest city in our state.  That’s no small feat considering the age of the frontrunners Columbia and Charleston; they’ve had a huge head start and imagine where North Charleston will be 40 years from now.  Our city is ranked No. 1 in South Carolina retail sales and we continue to prosper despite the downturn in our national economy.  We are blessed to live in North Charleston!



We now have a name for our North Charleston resident advocacy association for Districts 4 and 9.  It is named the Fort Dorchester Residential Association (FDRA).  Our Steering Committee is composed of five generous volunteers.  Kenny Skipper, Jamie McDowell, Lisa Thompson, Rich Symuleski, and Robert Fackovec are hard at work developing our organization by-laws.  Once this is completed, they will schedule a meeting for all of us to participate in and to adopt the by-laws and elect our first officers.  I would like to thank these volunteers for their dedication to our community and for their service to our districts.  Go team, go!  The FDRA will be our collective neighborhood advocacy and vigilance organization.  It will provide representation in the city planning and zoning processes for new and existing developments to each and every neighborhood group in the Dorchester County sections of North Charleston.



Construction is beginning this month.  Wescott Commons PDD is a new 26 home subdivision coming soon to the Wescott Plantation area.  The subdivision will be located off of Ballentine Drive next to Sandpines subdivision and just before you enter the Woodlands subdivision.  Homes will be priced from $140k to $200k. 

Undoubtably a lot of you will be disappointed to see all of the beautiful trees cut down to make room for this new subdivision.  Many of the Planned Development Districts (PDDs) in our area were approved years ago and the state of our economy has put these on hold until recently.  Kilnsea Village, Wescott Commons, Wescott Traffic Circle, The Abberley Crossing Apartments are all PDDs that were approved over 5 years ago.  While this PDD was approved 5 years ago, and is now just beginning construction, Councilman Brinson and I have discussed the potential for the city to establish PDD approval time limitations from the time a PDD is approved to the time construction is commenced.  This may be a way to prevent “old” PDDs from being implemented many years later before a 2nd review can take place.



Renderings for The Corner at Wescott will be available soon and these will be posted on our website.  The following stores are planned to be part of this shopping center:  Harris Teeter, Marshalls, Rack Room Shoes, Pet Supplies “Plus,” Starbucks Coffee, and Moe’s southwest grill.  The developer, Hendon Properties, stated “we are still working on permits with the City, DCPW, and SCDOT.  We are also out for bids on site work and utilities.  Based on the way we are currently tracking, I would anticipate a late July start date.” 

If changes occur with more stores being added, or others pulling out, I will let you know. 



The acreage across from the new Joseph Pye school is a planned development district [in District 4] approved nearly five years ago.  We’re seeing some “activity” and this is the beginning of what could be a 10-year development cycle.  This first project — THE ABBERLEY CROSSING APARTMENTS, a 320-unit facility on 24 acres.



We have a “service request” link on our website.  This a link to a PowerPoint presentation that will step you through the process to create a service request for the City of North Charleston.  Do you have a request to the city but don’t know how to process it?  Go here and learn how.  If you need a cross-walk in your neighborhood, need to replace a damaged street sign, need to contact public works or code enforcement, this is a good way to do it.  You can get help with these and other city services by following this process.  You may contact me directly for help too! 



The Red Cross needs 1,200 disaster trained volunteers to adequately assist the community in the event of a large scale disaster! The Red Cross has partnered with the City of North Charleston to train interested residents to become disaster volunteers ready to mobilize at a moment’s notice. Since hurricane season is upon us, won’t you get trained so you can help your neighbors in their time of need? This Ready When the Time Comes (RWTC) training will be held: Thursday, July 28th, 5pm-8pm at the Carolina Lowcountry Chapter, 8085 Rivers Avenue. The training includes condensed training of Disaster Services Overview, Shelter Operations and Disaster Assessment. Please contact Nancy Olson, or 843-764-2323 x 321 to register or for more information.


The best website for all things census is .  You can download all kinds of tables related to present and past census data for any City of your choice. 

Reduce crime and improve public safety.  A great resource to keep abreast of crimes in our area is at  RAIDS stands for Regional Analysis and Information Sharing.  This website provides crime mapping, email reports and alerts, tips, and neighborhood watch emails all for the public at no cost.


The SCDOT plans to re-pave Dorchester Rd. from the Oakbrook area to the area around Summerville Ford this summer.

Go to my website at for daily posts pertaining to our city ( and greater neighborhood that includes Districts 4 and 9.  Councilman Brinson and I have designed this to be a one-stop resource for the daily crime report and helpful links for useful information about our city.  Councilman Brinson also posts his District 4 newsletter there.  The information he writes is equally informative and often touches on different topics of interest.  So, it’s a must read if you can make the time. 

I am on Facebook and I periodically post updates there as well.


Tell your friends and neighbors, about these newsletters and our district website so they can get the help and information they need or want.  Help them get plugged into our community.  Do you have a new neighbor?  Only a small fraction of you in our District are receiving this information.  Please help to get the word out and distribute this email via your HOA’s!  If they contact me, I will add them to my next newsletter mailing and serve them in any way I can.

Thank you for contacting me with your advice, concerns, feedback, or requests.  Please continue to do so!

District 4 Updates June 16, 2012

Remember, you can check daily crime reports without having to download them at And you can get lots of other information about life in your city at that site and at

The Corner at Wescott –

Otherwise  known as the Harris Teeter/Marshall’s project– is moving along with minimal delays. Site clearing should begin next month (July) and the first stores open in late Spring 2013. We should know more about the roster of stores and food service entities and I’ll pass this information on as soon as it’s “reliable”.


Money, Money, Money !

As new city councilmen, Dwight Stigler and I have made it a point to learn and understand the financial structure of our city as Council considers the proposed Fiscal Year 2013 budget and financial plan.

The first and most important conclusion to share —our city ‘s financial management performance is very good. The city’s financial health is excellent, and has been for many years. Mayor Keith Summey and his team have done a good job with taxpayers’ money.      

The Fiscal 2013 budget and financial management documents are hundreds of pages. Here are some broad points of interest for our region of the city:

–The 2013 operating budget is revenues-expenditures balanced at  –$94.01 million. That’s a 6.2 per cent increase over Fiscal 2012. None- property tax revenues are projected to increase sufficiently to cover this growth.      

–Our City employs 989 full time employees. Of that number, 638 are deployed in fire and police operations.

–Ad valorem property taxes generate $40.5 million. That’s less than half the operating budget. This confirms the importance of businesses operating in our city, businesses that provide employment and pay business license and permit fees. It also confirms the value of expanding the business base. The bottom-line reality —the growing business base of our city pays its fair share of municipal services, and a growing business base is key to keeping residential taxes as low as possible.

–The combined budgets of the police and fire departments total $47.2 million. That’s nearly $7 million more than property taxes generate and another       reason to value the city’s growing business base.      

–Last year, outlays for Wescott golf operations totaled $1.64 million. That includes debt service payments of about $964,000. The Fiscal 2013 budget provides $140,000 for capital improvements and full support of the Wescott golf and clubhouse operations. The Wescott golf operation is the core community amenity for a residential development complex that now generates nearly $7.5 million in property tax revenues. Surely, it’s an asset that must be nurtured. But Councilman Stigler and I have urged the administration to direct the contracted management company to do everything possible to bring operating deficits down.      

–Mayor Summey proposed – and Council has approved – a small millage increase to increase funding for several new and ongoing capital improvements. These include a long-needed new public works operations and maintenance complex. This $38 million campus of facilities will be built on city-owned property off Aviation Avenue. The additional revenue would also boost funding for completion of the new Wescott ball-field complex now under construction off Dorchester Road, and several senior citizen service centers that would include aquatic exercise facilities. An $8.6 million redesign and expansion project at the Coliseum also is included. The four-mill assessment amounts to a “tax increase” of $16 annually for each $100,000 of net valuation for owner-occupied residential properties.      



Our city was officially incorporated June 12, 1972. The 40th anniversary celebration began June 12 with an anniversary gala and a ceremony honoring founding Mayor John Bourne and Mayor Keith Summey. By act of City Council, the campus of the Coliseum, the Greater Charleston Convention Center and the Performing Arts Center is now officially the “North Charleston City Center Complex”, dedicated to the vision and leadership of Mayors Bourne and Summey. The ceremony also recognized the 39 men and women who have served on city council over the last 40 years.

EARTH WIND AND FIRE at the Coliseum June 26.

An anniversary celebration featuring Sevenites Music at Seventies prices!

Earth, Wind & Fire was formed in Chicago in 1969. The band’s brass players were known as the Phoenix Horns. They dominated the charts in the 1970s and were inducted into the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame in  2000.

Led by three longtime members — vocalist Philip Bailey, bassist Verdine White, and percussionist Ralph Johnson‚ EW&F embark on their Guiding Lights Tour this summer in support of a new studio album titled Then and Forever (Legacy). They’ll perform with the new North Charleston Pops Orchestra with support from local pop/rock band the Explorer’s Club.

Tickets are on sale — $25 and $45– at the Coliseum box office, or via Ticketmaster outlets, online at, or you can charge by phone at (800)745-3000…or visit and

THE FINALE….. The public birthday celebration will end July 4 at the North Charleston Riverfront Park with an afternoon of family picnicking and an       evening featuring South Carolina’s largest fireworks display. Several nationally-known bands, including Reuben Studdard, an American Idol winner, will perform. This, of course is free, and EVERYONE is invited! The park is located at the old navy yard site. It’s easy to find, but if you need directions contact me at

There are many interesting activities throughout our city. Here’s one for antique lovers and one that has become very popular throughout the Lowcountry….

Fourth of July Festival in North Charleston

NORTH CHARLESTON, SC – The City of North Charleston will hold its Fourth of July Festival at Riverfront Park on Wednesday, July 4, 2012, 3:00 pm – 10:00 pm.  The event and parking are free of charge and all general admission.


North Charleston’s Fourth of July Festival will feature the largest show of fireworks in the State of South Carolina.


The following is a schedule of events:

3:00 pm

3:00 pm – 4:00 pm

4:15 pm – 5:30 pm

5:45 pm – 7:30 pm

7:45 pm – 9:15 pm

9:15 pm – 9:45 pm

Festivities begin

Common Ground


Atlanta Pleasure Band

Ruben Studdard, former American Idol

Show of fireworks over the Cooper River by Zambelli Fireworks International with music performed by Equinox Jazz Band


Guests are invited to bring lawn chairs and blankets, as there will be no seating provided.  No alcohol is permissible within the park.  A wide variety of food vendors will be on site.  Children activities will be available free of charge, including inflatable jump castles, games, the play area, the giant sandbox, and the water fountain.


Riverfront Park is located on the former Charleston Naval Base, easily accessible from I-526 and I-26.  Enter the former Charleston Naval Base by the McMillan Avenue or Virginia Avenue gate and turn onto Hobson Avenue.  Riverfront Park signs are visible for easy to follow directions.  All parking is free and shuttles will be available for the convenience of guests.


Open to the public year-round, Riverfront Park has become a favorite destination for residents and visitors.  Set on the banks of the beautiful Cooper River, the park is adjacent to the historic homes once occupied by the Charleston Naval Base officers, surrounded by graceful grand oak trees and peaceful river vistas.  Bordered by Noisette Creek, the park boasts a magnificent contemporary Performance Pavilion and meadow.


Riverfront Park is home to the Greater Charleston Naval Base Memorial, erected in honor of the countless military personnel and civilians that served the United States and the Greater Charleston region while the Charleston Naval Base was operational.  The Memorial is the only location in the United States that displays both the Lone Sailor and the Homecoming statues.  Riverfront Park is also the location of North Charleston’s Annual National Outdoor Sculpture Competition and Exhibition.  A component of the 2012 North Charleston Arts Festival, the Competition and Exhibition features large-scale contemporary sculptures on display throughout the year.


Photos from the 2011 Show of Fireworks (in video).

Photos of the 2011 Fourth of July Festival.

Video of 2010’s Fourth of July Festival musical performances and fireworks (watch until the end to see Mayor Summey’s solo).


For further information, visit the City’s website at