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What to do on a rainy day

If you're unable to explore the salt-marsh or sandy beaches because of a little bad weather, the Beaufort area offers many indoor alternatives.

Take in a movie. Plaza Stadium Theatre, 41 Robert Smalls Parkway, shows the latest movies released to entertain you. You can even turn back time and catch a drive-in movie at Hwy. 21 Drive-In on U.S. 21 near the Marine Corps Air Station. 843-986-5806.

Go Shopping. From high-end specialty shops and boutiques in the downtown areas to traditional department stores, you're sure to find that perfect something.

Become inspired. Flourishing art galleries and craft shops in Beaufort, Port Royal and on St. Helena Island are filled with the work of local artists. Most are open Monday through Saturday. Visit Artworks, home of the Arts Council of Beaufort County, at 2127 Boundary St. for art classes, theater and exhibits. Beaufort was recently ranked the No. 12 Top City for Art in the small town division by American Style magazine.

Learn a little. Visit one of the area's museums. Learn about the architecture that shaped Beaufort's history at the John Mark Verdier House, 801 Bay St. or how two Northern missionaries began the first school for freed black slaves at Penn Center, 16 Penn Center Circle W., St. Helena Island. Explore your patriotic side by visiting the Parris Island Museum to learn about the history of the Marines.

Play a little. Take the kids bowling at AMF Ribaut Lanes, 1140 Ribaut Road. AMF. com/Ribautlanes. 843-524-3111. Or learn about the Lowcountry's coastal environment at the Lowcountry Estuarium at 14th Street and Paris Avenue, Port Royal. This learning center takes a hands-on approach to discovering the area's indigenous species.

Taste culinary delights. The Lowcountry's restaurants offer a host of local cuisine items ranging from fresh seafood to Southern comfort food such as barbecue.You can top it off with a tall glass of sweet tea or a wine tasting at a local winery. Area restaurants offer a variety of dining experiences including elegant haute cuisine, local seafood served on paper plates, and restaurants serving food from many different countries.