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Water Festival just one good reason to visit Beaufort

The Beaufort Water Festival is poised to start this week over in Beaufort.

Beaufort is about a 45 minute drive, and this is a great time to drive there. There are lots of farm stands on Lady's Island and on St. Helena Island, where you can buy all sorts of fresh vegetables. I am sure lots of the produce sold at our Bluffton Farmers Market comes from the area.

The York W. Bailey Museum at Penn Center will host an exhibit featuring sweetgrass baskets through Aug. 26. The exhibit is a first in the series celebrating Gullah traditional art in South Carolina. The gallery also will preview the film "Grass Roots: African Origins of an American Art," a companion to the national traveling exhibit at noon Saturday. The exhibit opens the same day at 1 p.m. with a debut exhibition of "The Beaufort Basket" by sweetgrass basket maker, Jery Bennett-Taylor. Museum admission is $5 for adults. The exhibit is at 16 Penn Center Circle West on St. Helena Island. Details: 843-838-2474

This is a wonderful day trip to take your children or guests on -- and a great way to learn more about the surrounding area.

  • Tree planting is under way all over America. The goal is to help nature's champion carbon-eaters change Earth's thermostat for the better. Recent studies have shown we need to pay more attention to the types of trees we plant and where we do so. All plants can take carbon dioxide from the air and turn it into leaves, bark, flowers, etc., but trees can do more than smaller plants. And some trees do more for our environment than others. An interesting site at which you can learn more about this is www.fs.fed.us/ccrc/topics/urban-forests.
  • Garden and Gun Magazine has announced its 2011 Made in the South Awards. Any company based in the South is invited to enter. A well-known group of judges will choose the winners. There is a $500 cash prize for first place. The winners will be announced in the December/January issue of the magazine. You can get started by filling out an online application at www.gardenandgun.com.
  • It would be swell if we had a winner from Bluffton.

  • Thursday is Bastille Day in France. It marks the begining of the French Revolution and the establishment of a constitutional monarchy in France. Marie Antoinette was sorry, I'm hoping, that she uttered those fateful words about eating cake. Do you have any plans Thursday? If not, come to the farmers market and toast the day with some homemade lemonade -- and, if you are brave, have some cake!
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