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SC State Museum marks 30th anniversary with weekend of special events

The South Carolina State Museum celebrates its 30th anniversary with free admission and a full weekend of events.
The South Carolina State Museum celebrates its 30th anniversary with free admission and a full weekend of events. South Carolina State Museum

In celebration of its 30th anniversary, the South Carolina State Museum will host a Free Anniversary Weekend filled with family fun, including music, dancing, special exhibits, live demonstrations, hay rides, food, and craft beer.

The museum, located at 301 Gervais St., will offer free general admission Nov. 3 from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Nov. 4 from noon to 6 p.m.

Since opening its doors in October 1988, the State Museum’s mission has remained steadfast: to collect, preserve and showcase the state’s rich heritage for the education and entertainment of all its guests. The museum provides a space that represents the state’s geology, landscapes and lifeforms; its human history and culture; its accomplishments in science and technology; and its creativity in the arts.

“Our commitment over the years to deliver award winning cultural, educational and entertaining programs, events and exhibitions for all of our guests has landed us in the national and international spotlight,” said Willie Calloway, State Museum executive director. “Our success is in large part due to our wonderful members and guests who have entrusted us to provide them with a lasting experience and this free weekend is our way of saying, ‘thank you.’”

Here are some events the museum has planned for its anniversary weekend as well as special exhibits to celebrate its 30th anniversary. For a complete list of events and exhibits, go to scmuseum.org.

Fall Festival and Pickin’ Party

Celebrate the beginning of fall with live music and dance performances, a tractor parade, hay rides, artist demonstrations and kid-friendly Wizard of Oz activities. Guests will also enjoy South Carolina barbecue and craft beer (available for purchase). This is also the last day to see The Wizard of Oz 4D Experience and the Magical Maze of Oz walk-through. 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 3.

Celebracion de la Herencia Hispana

The fun continues with a celebration of Hispanic culture in South Carolina. The museum, in partnership with Anglo-Latino Promotions, will be full of Hispano-American music and dance performances, cultural displays and authentic Latin cuisine. Guests will also enjoy costumed interpreters throughout the museum, special gallery tours and one last chance to explore the Magical Maze of Oz. Noon-6 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 4.

Anniversary exhibit

In celebration of its 30th anniversary, the museum’s new exhibit showcases artifacts and fossils collected over the past 30 years. One iconic artifact or fossil from each year the museum was open will be on display, some for the very first time. Some notable finds include:

A 450,000-year-old saber-tooth cat skull discovered in Dorchester.

A 76-year-old loaf of bread made by an Army cook at Fort Jackson during World War II.

A 1960s-era phone booth from the University of South Carolina campus.

A portrait of Albert Einstein made from bottle caps.

Art exhibit

To celebrate the diversity of South Carolina art, the museum will host a juried exhibition, opening Nov. 3. Artists from across the state submitted more than 400 pieces and 64 works were selected for the exhibit. Five will be awarded cash prices with the winners announced at an upcoming opening reception.