The townspeople of St. George have been declared the grits eating champions of the world, so it’s only fitting that they host the World Grits Festival in mid-April of every year. The festival kicks off with a goal to help the community in various ways while at the same time, introducing visitors to the flavor of grits.
Vendor booths serve dishes that highlight the ground, dried corn at its best. Shrimp with grits, grits smothered in gravy, and grits mixed with honey are a few of the staple recipes for a traditional serving. Attend the festival to see just how versatile this food item can be.
While there, try your shot at the dunking booth or have a blast at the carnival. Watch, or join in, the grits eating contest. Listen to local music and take part in line dancing. To top off a perfect weekend, marvel in the bravery of those in the Rolling in the Grits contest. It’s a challenge to see who can roll in a pool filled with grits and come out with the heaviest weight of the cornmeal on their body.
Get to know the area by visiting the local museum and then head to Brosnan Forest, a wildlife preserve designed to let visitors explore the wonders of the outdoors.
This fun and unique festival is free to attend. You may want to bring cash along to support local craftspeople as you shop and to purchase grits in many forms. Funds raised at the World Grits Festival go toward the betterment of the community for causes such as scholarships. See www.worldgritsfestival.com for information on how to take part in the fun.
The World Grits Festival takes place between major South Carolina cities like Charleston, Hilton Head, and Columbia. I-95 and the I-26 are the major routes that point your RV toward the fun. As you enter town, signage will direct you to the event. The friendly townspeople will more than happily answer questions about the festival if you make a pit stop as you roll into the area.
Being a small town, the parking options along county roads should be plentiful. However, you may want to call ahead to festival organizers to ask for advice on parking. The three-day event includes a parade as well as a 5k road race, and these events may necessitate the closure of some of the streets in town.
With a population in St. George just over 2,000 people, there is no need for a public transit bussing system, so travelers will not have this as an option. If you don’t want to bring your rig into town, find a suitable all-day parking spot and taxi or rideshare to the festival.
The World Grits Festival does not offer onsite camping, but you have nearby options that will allow for an exploration of this beautiful area of the southern United States. You can choose to camp inland, park by a river, or claim a spot at a resort near the ocean.
Whether you want to camp ten minutes away from the festival or want to set up camp somewhere within the state, there are campgrounds to suit every taste. You will experience the great outdoors at its best. Enjoy large, pull-through accommodations, lakeside campsites, and campgrounds that offer an interactive type of stay. You can revel in private, panoramic views in a no hookup facility, or plan an amenity-filled stay that will be closer to other campers.
Wear your most comfortable shoes as the World Grits Festival is all about walking from one event to the next. There is much to see and you won’t want to miss a booth, contest, or craft display. The terrain is asphalt and grass, so maneuvering a stroller, kiddie wagon, or a wheelchair is not a problem.
Pleasant weather this time of year allows for a versatile suitcase of clothes. Pack pants, shorts, light dresses, sweaters, and comfy shirts. Your wardrobe is of your choosing, but make sure that your RV closet is full of wash and wear items so that the family can partake in all that’s fun about camping. Remember to bring a change of clothes for the Rolling in the Grits Contest. What outfit do you think will retain the most cornmeal for a win?
The World Grits festival does not restrict what gear you can tote along to the event, but it is recommended to keep the backpack light and bring essentials only. A refillable water bottle is always a must. Back at camp, stock the camper with toiletries, flashlights, cooking gear, and a small radio.
Campsite fun is always better when the family is protected from bugs and sunburn. Pack your favorite spray and a high SPF sunscreen to keep the family comfortable throughout the vacation. At the festival, have the kiddos take a break in the shade at regular intervals and remind everyone to hydrate often.
Cook soup in a dutch oven over the fire for a light but filling meal after a day of sampling grits. You may want to keep the fare minimal, yet healthy, so you have room to enjoy the festival delights. If a snack-type meal is in the cards due to the need for quick sustenance, try chili cheese dip with celery and pepper sticks or whole wheat crackers for dipping. Before leaving home, check the inventory of camp stove fuel, briquets, and propane.
St. George may be small, but Southern fare for meat eaters and vegetarians alike is readily available. Crab cakes and mixed greens salads or burgers and fries will sate the appetite of every festival-goer, making their way into town. Dessert lovers can grab a dipped cone to enjoy on a walk around town after dinner.
Save room every morning as you enjoy breakfast so that you still have an appetite for grits cooked all ways. The main festival building hosts meals as do the many local vendors who line the streets of the event, ready to show off their skills. Artisans of the community craft jewelry, clothing, and merchandise that will remind you of the fantastic weekend you experienced in St. George.
Volunteers work all year to plan the World Grits Festival, fine-tuning every detail. A family-oriented event, the focus is on helping the people of the community as well as inspiring the youth to strive for their best. There are usually few established rules, other than “have a good time” and dogs are not allowed to be on festival grounds.
As with any outdoor event, good weather is always wished for in April. However, if rain makes an appearance, gather the all-weather gear and head out for fun anyway. There may be a mix of sun and rain, so be sure to bring along both umbrellas and sun hats. Pack the RV with plenty of towels for drying off and extra blankets in the event a cool night rolls into South Carolina.
A well-stocked first aid kit contains a list of medications and well-identified storage containers. Band-aids, antibiotic ointment and peroxide are necessities too, as are tweezers and rubbing alcohol. When making your camping preparation list, add medications as the most important items. While at camp, teach the children to stay well away from the campfire, barbecue, and camp stove.