Beaufort News

Port Royal considers packaging scheduled special events

  • Discussion at Wednesday's Port Royal Town Council workshop turned to revitalizing Paris Avenue and the historic village area -- including an update from a volunteer-led initiative that hopes to package already-planned activities throughout the year to make a bigger impact and attract more people downtown.
  • A group of Port Royal residents and business owners met last month and identified three time frames when multiple organizations have scheduled events, Ann-Marie Adams, a resident and facilitator of the meeting, told council.

    The group plans to coordinate a large-scale clean-up/garage sale between March 10-13 -- when several groups already have similar events planned, Adams said.

    It also hopes to create a unique activity the weekend of Sept. 23 that would highlight estuarium week, the town's Street Music on Paris Avenue series and Port Royal Elementary School's 100th anniversary -- a historic event that should not be overlooked, Adams said.

    The group also sees potential to coordinate Christmas efforts in November and December, Adams said.

    Volunteers will meet again at 3:30 p.m. Feb. 24 at Town Hall to begin making concrete plans, Adams said. The public is invited to attend and make suggestions.

    "We know other groups have singular activities that could be packaged," Adams said. "Just doing this one exercise showed us how much we already do."

    Ultimately the town would end up with a master events calendar that could appear on Port Royal's soon-to-be-revamped website and in print newsletters.

    Paris Avenue -- the town's main downtown corridor -- needs help now, resident Tom Kline said.

    Many agreed that in the immediate future, the town must look beyond the shuttered Port of Port Royal -- a 51-acre, state-owned site along Battery Creek that has struggled to find a buyer -- for economic revitalization.

    Among those was Councilwoman Beth Heyward, who said more must be done to encourage people to open businesses on the struggling street, even if it's as basic as inviting people down to walk through town and look at available commercial space.