2011 | imagessumterco.

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What’s Online 
See how an accident turned in to a beautiful Sumter landmark.

Sumter, south carolina

the FISH is DELISH
Proximity to ocean means abundant seafood

PLENTY TO DECLARE
County aims to attract aircraft industry

Hitting the High Notes
Stately opera house also offers film, dance, theater
sponsored by the Greater Sumter Chamber of Commerce and the sumter economic development board

Enter to Learn; Depart to Serve.
Academic Excellence is Our Chief Objective
Bachelor of arts • Christian Education • Criminal Justice • English • English/Secondary Education • History • Liberal Studies • Pastoral Ministry • Political Science • Sociology • Social Studies/Secondary Education Bachelor of fine arts • Mass Communications Bachelor of science • Biology • Biology/Secondary Education • Business Administration • Health Science • Mathematics • Mathematics/Secondary Education • Recreation Administration • Organizational Management Bachelor of science in education • Early Childhood Education • Elementary Education

100 West college st. sumter, sc 29150-3599 (803) 934-3200 (866) 853-1345 toll-free (803) 773-8241 fax

Morris College is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to award baccalaureate degrees. Contact the Commisson on Colleges at 1866 Southern Ln., Decatur, GA 30033-4097 or call (404) 679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of Morris College.

www.morris.edu

2011 edition | volume 1
®

Sumter, South Carolina
co nte nt s F e atu r e s
14 plenty to declare

20

County aims to attract aircraft industry.

20 Building a healthier sumter
New center helps students and residents.

24 discover pinewood
Tiny Sumter County town holds treasures aplenty.

28 business Savvy
Shaw AFB, Pilgrim’s Pride among major employers.

36 A Lovely mistake
Sumter’s accidental garden is home to eight species of swans.

48 hitting the high notes
Stately opera house also offers film, dance, theater.

52 the fish is delish
Proximity to ocean means abundant seafood.

36

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2011 edition | volume 1
®

Sumter, South Carolina

48
d e pa r tm e nt s
10 Almanac 32 Biz Briefs 34 Chamber Report 35 Economic Profile 44 Health & Wellness

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44

47 Education 50 Sports & Recreation 55 Through the Lens 56 Community Profile

on the cover Sumter Opera House Photo by Todd Bennett

47

All or part of this magazine is printed on recycled paper containing 10% post-consumer waste.

Please recycle this magazine

i m ag e ss u m t e r c o . c o m

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Sumter County
S o u t h C a r o l i n a

Welcome to Our County …
Conveniently located in the middle of South Carolina, Sumter is just a short drive to many different beaches and to the mountains. We are located off interstate 95 at exit 135. Come visit, tour and make Sumter your home.

A community where history is honored, recreation is relished and cultural arts are treasured.

Visit us at www.sumtercountysc.org or call the County Administrator at (803) 436-2102.

What’s Online  imagessumterco.com

SHELLY A. LUNDBERG
Certified Public Accountant

Business Personal non-Profit
• Audits, Review, Compilations • Financial Reporting • Tax Consultation & Planning

Photos
See more photos in our online photo gallery Get the inside scoop from our photographers’ blog

• Tax Preparation
2011 | ImAGeSSumteRCO.COm
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What’s Online
See how an accident turned in to a beautiful Sumter landmark.

SumteR, SOuth CAROLINA

• Business Startup Consultation – Entity Selection & LLC Filing • Bookkeeping & Payroll

the FISh IS DeLISh
Proximity to ocean means abundant seafood

PLeNtY tO DeCLARe

Personal, Timely Attention
Executive Building 410 W. Liberty St. Suite 101 Sumter, SC 29150 (803) 775-1120 slundbergcpa@sc.rr.com
Member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) and the SC Association of Certified Public Accountants (SCACPA)

Facts & Stats
Dig deeper with in-depth data on industries, schools and more

County aims to attract aircraft industry

hitting the high Notes
Stately opera house also offers film, dance, theater
SPONSOReD bY the GReAteR SumteR ChAmbeR OF COmmeRCe AND the SumteR eCONOmIC DeveLOPmeNt bOARD

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Whether you are in Sumter for a visit, a tour or a lifetime, www.sumterchamber.com is your resource for information.

32 E. Calhoun St. Sumter, SC 29150 (803) 775-1231 (803) 775-0915 chamber@sumterchamber.com www.sumterchamber.com

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Sumter , South Carolina
Project Manager mitch kline Proofreading Manager Raven Petty Content Coordinator Jessica Walker Staff Writer Kevin Litwin Copy Editors Lisa Battles, Jill Wyatt Contributing writers cary estes, jessica mozo, cassandra van Hooser Media Technology Director Christina Carden Senior Graphic Designers Laura Gallagher, Jessica Manner, Janine Maryland, Kris Sexton, Candice Sweet, Vikki Williams Media Technology Analysts Chandra Bradshaw, lance Conzett, Michele Niccore, Marcus Snyder Photography Director Jeffrey S. Otto Senior Photographers Jeff Adkins, Brian McCord Staff Photographers Todd Bennett, Antony Boshier Web Content Managers John Hood, Kim Madlom Web Design Director Franco Scaramuzza Web Designer Leigh Guarin Web developer i Yamel Hall Ad Production Manager Katie Middendorf Ad Traffic Assistants Krystin Lemmon, Patricia Moisan I.T. Director Yancey Bond Regional Sales Manager Chris Sweeney Sales Support/Community, Business, Custom Rachael Goldsberry Senior Accountant Lisa Owens Accounts Payable Coordinator Maria McFarland Accounts Receivable Coordinator Diana Guzman Office Manager/Accounts Receivable Coordinator Shelly Miller Integrated Media Manager clay perry Sales Support Manager Cindy Hall color imaging technician Alison Hunter Chairman Greg Thurman President/Publisher Bob Schwartzman Executive Vice President Ray Langen Senior V.P./Sales Todd Potter, Carla Thurman Senior V.P./Operations Casey Hester Senior V.P./Client Development Jeff Heefner V.p./External Communications Teree Caruthers V.P./Custom Publishing Kim Newsom V.P./Visual Content Mark Forester V.P./Content Operations Natasha Lorens V.P./Sales Charles Fitzgibbon, Herb Harper, Jarek Swekosky Controller Chris Dudley Content Director/Travel Publications Susan Chappell Content Director/Business Publications Bill McMeekin Marketing Creative Director Keith Harris Distribution Director Gary Smith Executive Secretary Kristy Duncan Human Resources Manager Peggy Blake Receptionist Linda Bishop
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SUMTER

Digital Edition

TAKEOFF
THE SKY’S THE LIMIT FOR SUMTER AVIATION AND AEROSPACE TECHNOLOGY COMPANIES
STORY BY CASSANDRA M. VANHOOSER

Ready for

S

umter’s future literally is looking up. The aviation and aerospace technology industries rank high among the areas that community leaders have identified for potential growth, says Jay Schwedler, President and CEO of the Sumter Economic Development Board. This goal is the result of a long and thorough planning process that has included identifying the community’s assets and resources. Shaw Air Force Base Since 1941, Sumter has been home to Shaw Air Force Base. It’s home to the 20th Fighter Wing of the Air Combat Command, a unit that houses and supports the country’s largest operational F-16 wing. Shaw continues to grow. Sumter will welcome some 1,400 members of the 3rd Army and their families when Georgia’s Fort

Aviation and aerospace technology are expected to grow in Sumter.

PHOTOS COURTESY OF THE SUMTER DEVELOPMENT BOARD

IIM MAG AGE ES SS SU UM MT TE ER RC CO O..C CO OM M

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Images Sumter is published annually by Journal Communications Inc. and is distributed through the Greater Sumter Chamber of Commerce and its member businesses. For advertising information or to direct questions or comments about the magazine, contact Journal Communications Inc. at (615) 771-0080 or by e-mail at info@jnlcom.com. For more information, contact: Greater Sumter Chamber of Commerce 32 E. Calhoun St., Sumter, SC 29150 Phone: (803) 775-1231 • Fax: (803) 775-0915 www.sumterchamber.com Sumter Economic Development Board www.sumteredge.com Visit Images Sumter online at imagessumterco.com ©Copyright 2011 Journal Communications Inc., 725 Cool Springs Blvd., Suite 400, Franklin, TN 37067, (615) 771-0080. All rights reserved. No portion of this magazine may be reproduced in whole or in part without written consent. Member The Association of Magazine Media Member Custom Content Council

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Member Greater Sumter Chamber of Commerce

9

Almanac

Welcome to Sumter
An introduction to the area’s people, places and events

Complex Situation
Sumter County Cultural Complex serves as an important venue for the visual and performing arts. It is anchored by Patriot Hall, which hosts concerts, dance and theatrical performances. The adjacent Patriot Hall Gallery displays the work of artists with local connections, and leads directly into the Sumter County Gallery of Art, a modern facility with an avant-garde bent. Rounding out the Cultural Complex is the Sumter Little Theatre, a venue built in black box style.

Pampered Pets
Sumter offers something for all kinds of pet lovers. Multiple specialty stores cater to the four-legged crowd, with stores like C & N Pet Palace dominating the pet supplies scene. If your need is more specific, you're sure to find a place in Sumter as well. King Feed in Sumter caters to fish, birds and exotic animals as well as cats, dogs and larger livestock. Those just stopping by Sumter will find plenty of places to bring their pets – multiple hotels in the area are open to animals, including Candlewood Suites Sumter, Quality Inn and Travelers Inn.

A Game Filled With Love
Palmetto Tennis Center is one of the largest public tennis centers in all of South Carolina. The complex boasts 24 courts, 18 of which are lit for night play. Six of the courts feature all-weather, deco-turf surfaces. There are three on-site tennis pros who offer lessons and group clinics. The facility has locker rooms with showers, two ball machines, a stringing service and pro shop. The center is the site of many tournaments, including pro events. And best of all, general use of the courts is free.

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Sumter

The Club Scene
If golf is your bag, then Sumter is the place to be. There are four golf courses in Sumter County and more than 20 others within an hour's drive. Beech Creek Golf Club is nestled in the High Hills of the Santee, and is regarded as one of the most challenging in a 50-mile radius. Sunset Country Club’s course was designed by famed golf course architect Donald Ross. Crystal Lake is an 18-hole municipal course that can hold its own next to almost any private course. The Links at Lakewood features the area's only island green and was awarded 3.5 stars by Golf Digest.

Fast Facts
n Pro basketball player Ray Allen attended high school in Sumter County, where he led Hillcrest High School to a state championship. n Citadel Cadet George Edward “Tuck” Haynsworth, who fired the first shot of the Civil War, was born, raised and is buried in Sumter. n The Iris Festival, held every May at Swan Lake Iris Gardens, is a multiple winner of the Top 20 Events in the Southeast award, and is South Carolina’s oldest continuing festival. n The electric refrigerator was invented by Sumter native Charles T. Mason, Jr. n Sumter is named for General Thomas Sumter, the “Fighting Gamecock” of the American Revolution and one of the models for Mel Gibson’s character in the 2000 film The Patriot. n Sumter was the first city in the U.S. to adopt the councilmanager form of government, now used as the nation’s standard. n Sumter is home to country music star Lee Brice.
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Sumter At A Glance
population (2009 estimate) Sumter: 38,412 Sumter County: 104,495 location Sumter is located in the Midlands region of South Carolina, approximately 45 miles east of Columbia, the state capital. beginnings The city of Sumter was incorporated in 1845, starting out as an agricultural community. The opening of Shaw Air Force Base in 1941 gave the area an economic boost and growth spurt. for more information Greater Sumter Chamber of Commerce 32 E. Calhoun St. Sumter, SC 29150 (803) 775-1231 www.sumterchamber.com
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Rembert
401

Columbia
763

Oakland

Mayesville

301

Sumter
SUMTER

95
378

Pocalla Springs

Sumter

Pinewood Rimini

L. Marion

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Sumter

Encore, Encore
Bravo, Sumter Opera House. The historic building on North Main Street in downtown Sumter serves as the city's center for the performing arts. It hosts several monthly programs and special performances throughout the year, including film, dance, theater, concerts and more. The 100-foot clock tower atop the 1894 RichardsonRomanesque-style building is visible from many parts of downtown, and the performance hall is decorated in authentic Art Deco.

Photo courtesy of U.S. Air Force/Airman 1st Class Tabatha L. Duarte

Saluting the Troops
The Sumter-Shaw Street Fest is organized each year by the City of Sumter to salute the men and women stationed at Shaw Air Force Base. The first Street Fest was held in 2002, and the fall event is considered the largest free party in the region. There are musical performances, games and activities for children, military displays, food and lots of fun.

Good Sports
Patriot Park Sportsplex opened in 2008 and was funded by the community’s Penny for Progress tax initiative. The spacious attraction and destination features state-of-the-art soccer and softball fields that are ready for tournament play. Along with Palmetto and Dillon parks, it has helped to establish Sumter as one of the most important venues in the region for youth sports tournaments.

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Sumter

Takeoff
the Sky’s the limit for Sumter aviation and aerospace technology companies
Story By Cassandra M. Vanhooser

Ready for

S

umter’s future literally is looking up. The aviation and aerospace technology industries rank high among the areas that community leaders have identified for potential growth, says Jay Schwedler, President and CEO of the Sumter Economic Development Board. This goal is the result of a long and thorough planning process that has included identifying the community’s assets and resources. Shaw Air Force Base Since 1941, Sumter has been home to Shaw Air Force Base. It’s home to the 20th Fighter Wing of the Air Combat Command, a unit that houses and supports the country’s largest operational F-16 wing. Shaw continues to grow. Sumter will welcome some 1,400 members of the 3rd Army and their families when Georgia’s Fort

Aviation and aerospace technology are expected to grow in Sumter.

Photos Courtesy of the Sumter Development Board

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Sumter

Todd Bennett

Clockwise from top left: Sumter Municipal Airport; An F-16 from Shaw Air Force Base moves into refueling position; There are more than 6,000 workers with aviation skills living within 30 minutes of Sumter.

Photo courtesy of U.S. Air Force/Master Sgt. Kevin Gruenwald

McPherson closes. The pool of former service men and women gives Sumter an edge when it comes to attracting new business, says Major General Tom Olsen (USAFRetired), who served as deputy commander of the U.S. Central Command Air Forces at Shaw. A recent study shows that of the 15,000 workers in South Carolina with aviation skills, more than 6,000 live in the Sumter area. “We have a highly skilled, highly capable workforce with an excellent work ethic,” Olsen says. “The average retiree has 10 to 20 years of experience working with all aspects of aircraft operations and maintenance.” Motivated Labor Pool Over the years, Sumter has proven hospitable to industry, with about 16 percent of area workers involved in manufacturing. Eaton Corporation, a Cleveland-based manufacturer of electrical products, employs more than 500 people at their Sumter facility. Plant manager Dan Yount says the Development Board is on target with their assessment of the local labor pool. “Our experience with the workforce in Sumter is that people are very motivated,” Yount says. “They are very eager to learn and very energized about being real partners in your business.” Convenient Location Another notable asset is the county’s location. Sumter sits just off I-95, about 50 miles from the state’s capitol in Columbia and 100 miles from the deepwater port city of Charleston. Perhaps

more important to Sumter’s ability to attract aviation businesses, though, is its proximity to North Charleston, which will soon to be home to a plant that will manufacture Boeing’s new 787 Dreamliner. Schwedler predicts that many aviation-related businesses will look to relocate to the area once the Boeing plant is up and running. Sumter is poised to capitalize on this trend. The county and city have worked diligently to prepare for growth by developing and certifying industrial sites near the Sumter Municipal Airport. Strategic Plan for Growth While Sumter’s focus is on an aviation industry, Schwedler believes Sumter’s strategic plan is more than pie-in-the-sky dreaming. “A lot of the pieces of the puzzle are beginning to fit together,” he notes. “We just have to keep chipping away. We feel like we have an incredible opportunity to be a community that supports these industries as well as many others, including support for our existing industrial partners.” As with any worthwhile endeavor, there are real challenges. The competition for such businesses is stiff. Sumter competes with much larger cities including Charlotte, Atlanta and Nashville, and leaders must aggressively pursue new business opportunities. “Timing is critical but we are not afraid of competition because we are prepared,” Schwedler says. “We cannot wait for them to seek us out. We’ve got to go knock on their doors.”

American Spirit. Global Edge.
Photo Courtesy of the Sumter Development Board

In june 2009, the Sumter Development Board and the Sumter Smarter Growth Initiative (SSGI) unveiled a new marketing campaign designed to attract the attention of development prospects. The goal of the campaign, called “American Spirit. Global Edge.” is to create local jobs and capital investment for the Sumter community. The campaign, which has won seven awards from economic development associations,

includes promotional and educational materials, such as printed materials to inform visitors about Sumter, as well as interactive software materials designed for industrial and commercial development prospects. The SSGI is hoping to grab the attention of corporate executives, site consultants and others who decide where their companies will build or expand. Visit www.sumteredge.com for more info.

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Pennies for Progress
sumter’s 1-Cent Tax Goes a Long Way
hat will a penny buy these days? Quite a lot, as it turns out. In November 2008, Sumter County residents passed a 1-cent sales tax designed to create jobs, improve public safety and recreational opportunities. By the time the Capital Projects Sales Tax, also known as Penny for Progress, took effect in May 2009, some 16 projects were approved and moving forward. Included on the list are grassroots initiatives that range from improving rural fire departments to building neighborhood sidewalks. The new Patriot Park Athletic Complex added new ball fields and a nature trail for locals, as well as facilities for state and regional tournaments. Also under way is the Sumter County Judicial Center, a 100,000-square-foot building designed to house all of the county’s legal services under one roof. Each of the 16 projects improves Sumter County in some way, says Will Holmes, chairman of the Greater Sumter Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, but most impressive was how residents banded together to build a better tomorrow. “Our communities came together and decided that we wanted to make ourselves better,” Holmes says. “We didn’t wait for someone else to do it for us. We took it upon our own shoulders and said, ‘We can do this!’” For more information, visit the Penny for Progress website at www.sumtercountysc.org/p4p.  – Cassandra M. Vanhooser

W

Pharmacy • Bakery • Photo Lab • Portrait Studio • Jewelry • Tire/Lube Express

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Just call 866-730-green or visit www.epa.gov/radon

i m ag e ss u m t e r c o . c o m

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Healthier

Building a

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Sumter

Sumter

new Center helps Students, Residents
Story By Cassandra M. Vanhooser Photography By todd bennett

e asked for the moon, and they tried to give it to us,” says Miriam Laney, dean of Health Sciences at Central Carolina Technical College. That’s how she describes the college’s new Health Sciences Center that opened in downtown Sumter in August 2010. The sprawling building features nearly 70,000 square feet of classrooms and state-of-the-art laboratories equipped with the latest developments in medical technology. The grand opening was a triumphant moment for everyone involved in making the dream come true. “This new facility is a reality because of the cooperation that exists between our partners, such as the city of Sumter, our legislative delegation and the health-care providers in this region,” says CCTC President Dr. Tim Hardee. “The Health Sciences Center will enable many of our 4,300 students to reach their career goals because of the state-of-the-art technology available for training health-care professionals.”

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State-of-the-Art Teaching Technology The dean, herself a registered nurse, can barely suppress her excitement when she talks about the new building and the far-reaching benefits it provides. “Before we opened the
Central Carolina Technical College’s new Health Sciences Center in downtown Sumter

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Sumter

The new Health Sciences Center features nearly 70,000 square feet of classrooms and state-of-the-art laboratories equipped with the latest developments in medical technology.

new Health Sciences Center, we subscribed to the ‘pretend theory of learning,’” she explains. “We had to ‘pretend’ to turn on the oxygen flow meter or ‘pretend’ to turn on an operating room light. Now, we have the actual equipment to practice on.” In addition to more and better classrooms, the new Health Sciences Center replicates doctors’ offices, operating rooms and hospital wards. When studying childbirth, for example, nursing students now come face-to-face with a computerized Gaumard simulator named NOELLE. “She talks. She urinates. She bleeds,” the dean explains. “She actually pushes baby HAL out of her body. We can even make the simulator die. It’s as close to having a real patient as you can get.” Health Sciences Medical Degree and Certificate Programs The Health Sciences Department offers diploma programs that range from nursing to surgical technology,

and certificate programs from phlebotomy to massage therapy, and the college has always graduated topnotch students. In May 2010, CCTC was one of only seven of the state’s 23 nursing schools to have a 100 percent passing rate for those taking the state licensing exam. The new facility simply ensures that the college continues to offer the best education available. “The medical field is a scary place because you have people’s lives in your hands,” Laney continues. “The technological boom simply requires that medical professionals be trained differently. Computer-simulated training decreases a student’s anxiety and increases their experience so that when they get in a real situation, they know what to do.” New Life for Downtown Sumter Certainly the new Health Sciences Center benefits students and teachers, Laney says, but it has also breathed new life into downtown Sumter. The

city donated the rambling old Western Auto Building for the project. Not only has a downtown landmark been repurposed, but local businesses also report an influx of new customers. Though the current job market is tight, numerous studies point to a coming shortage of skilled health-care workers – and the people who teach those workers – in not only South Carolina, but also nationwide. The college admitted its largest class of nurses in 2010, and has also increased enrollment for other health-care-related majors. Residents in Clarendon, Lee, Kershaw and Sumter counties stand to benefit most, as the majority of graduates go to work in nearby hospitals and doctors’ offices. “If you haven’t been a patient recently, sooner or later you are going to be one,” the dean says. “Then you are going to want a phlebotomist who only has to stick you once to draw blood or a massage therapist who can relieve your suffering with the touch of her hands.”
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Pinew oo

Discover

24

Sumter

w ood

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Sumter

Tiny Sumter County Town Holds Treasures Aplenty
Story By Cassandra M. Vanhooser | Photography By todd bennett

rive through Pinewood and you’ll see a snapshot of the quintessential small Southern town. Quiet. Unassuming. Beautiful in a way that’s both endearing and heartbreaking in the same instant. A wide thoroughfare pierces the heart of downtown. Most folks around these parts call it Main Street, but the signs contradict them. This is Clarke Street. There’s a town hall, a smattering of tidy, well-groomed churches and houses for the nearly 500 souls who call this South Carolina town home. The old Pinewood Depot remains the town’s most recognized and cherished landmark. Though it was built in 1889, only a year after the town was founded, the station has been lovingly restored and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Curved braces support wide eaves, and the end rafters form an ellipse. Stand on the station’s steps and you can easily imagine the excitement passengers of yesteryear must have felt when waiting for a train to arrive. The Atlantic Coastal Railroad was the only conduit to the outside world, both the way in and the way out. There are many ways out of town these days, but some people choose to return home. “Pinewood is a great place to live,” says lifelong resident Travis McIntosh, a financial consultant in nearby Sumter. “We have all the benefits of a small town, but we’re 15 to 20 minutes from larger towns like Sumter, Manning and Summerton, and

D

less than an hour from Columbia.” If the people make the place, McIntosh says there’s none better than Pinewood. “The best thing about this community is the people,” he continues. “You know your neighbors. They’re friends you’ve known your whole life. You don’t worry about your kids walking down the street to play.” Still, if you confine your exploration to the 1.1 square mile that encloses Pinewood proper, you will miss some of the area’s greatest treasures. Head out of town and you’ll find wild and wonderful Sparkleberry Swamp just a few miles to the southwest. Named for the untamed bushes that populate the region, this area is actually an old cypress and tupelo forest submerged in the north end of Lake Marion. Favored by bird watchers, kayakers and fishermen, the swamp is crawling with wildlife. There are snakes and alligators, osprey and egrets, woodpeckers and warblers. Sparkleberry is paradise for nature lovers, but unless you’re experienced – or traveling with someone who is – you’ll want to hire a guide to help you navigate the swamp. There are camping sites available near the swamp, including Elliott’s Landing and Campground, the oldest campground on Lake Marion. History and Architecture at Millford Plantation Pinewood also sits at the southern entrance to the High Hills of the Santee, a long, hilly ridge at the county’s western border. Because even a slight

elevation cools the air, these low hills once hid many summer homes built by wealthy plantation owners looking to escape the heat of the Low Country. Considering this history, it’s only mildly surprising that one of the South’s most beautiful homes can be found 5 miles west of Clarke Street. “We’re in the suburbs of Pinewood,” quips Louie Hall, the caretaker at Millford Plantation. To reach the house, one meanders through moss-draped forests and along dirt roads, seemingly headed nowhere. But reaching the destination is its own reward. The Greek Revival-style Millford Plantation is flanked by live oaks and magnolias, and boasts soaring Corinthian columns and a wide, sweeping porch. The interior is equally dazzling. A domed rotunda encloses a breathtaking circular staircase, plus there’s a grand dining room with circular walls at one end. Much of the custom-made Duncan Phyfe furniture still graces the home. Then there are the stories. Millford is said to have escaped burning during the Civil War because the Union general was the brother of the home’s architect. A phone call secures a group tour year round, but public tours are offered on the first Saturday of most months (closed in January, open every weekend in April). “I’m a little prejudiced,” says Hall, “but you won’t see a house anywhere any prettier than this. If you like great architecture, this is the one to see. And once you see Millford, you’ll want to come back.”

Top: Sparkleberry Swamp in Pinewood Bottom: Pinewood Depot is listed on the National Register of Historic Places

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Photo Courtesy of the Sumter Development Board

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Sumter

Todd Bennett

Todd Bennett

Savvy
Shaw AFB, Pilgrim’s Pride among major employers
Story By Jessica Mozo

Business

B

eing home to Shaw Air Force Base means great things for Sumter. Driving the local economy, the base is made up of 5,400 military and civilian employees and approximately 11,000 family members. It is home to the Air Force’s largest combat F-16 wing – the 20th Fighter Wing – whose mission is to provide, project and sustain combat-ready air forces. But Shaw Air Force Base is just the beginning. Sumter County’s diverse employment base also includes manufacturing jobs, positions in

the medical field, educators, service providers and more. Major Employers Pilgrim’s Pride Corp. is one of the county’s largest industrial employers. The fresh and frozen poultry company employs 2,150 workers at its Sumter County processing and prepared-food plants and is one of the largest chicken companies in the United States and Mexico. The Tuomey Healthcare System is another major employer in Sumter County, with more than 1,500 employees,

followed by Sumter School District 17 with 1,400 employees and Sumter School District 2 with 1,200 employees. Downtown Revitalization Downtown Sumter is becoming the place to see and be seen in Sumter, thanks to the city’s vision for a revitalized downtown core. Several downtown beautification projects are under way, including streetscape, building renovations, and the development of several plazas that will feature picturesque fountains and new construction. Downtown living is also becoming

Shaw Air Force Base, Sumter Municipal Airport and Tuomey Regional Medical Center contribute to Sumter’s economy.

i m ag e ss u m t e r c o . c o m

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Living Room

From the

Board Room,
• A full-service real estate agency

to the

Realty & Development

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Turning Vision into Action

Nicole Norris, ASID, Sherry Rice, Allied Member ASID, and Randy Abbott

YOUR DESIGN TEAM

✔ District Two has nine elementary schools, four middle schools, two high schools and an alternative program, and covers 676 square miles of Sumter County. ✔ The district received AdvancED District Accreditation in March 2009, a powerful systems approach to improving student performance results and organizational effectiveness over time. ✔ The senior classes of 2010 from Crestwood and Lakewood High Schools earned more than $12.1 million in scholarships for college. ✔ The District Two graduation rate was 81.5%, the 12th highest in the state, exceeding the state average of 73.7%.

466 N. Guignard Dr. Sumter, SC 29150 (803) 773-8083 nndsinc@ftc-i.net

✔ Of the 630 certified employees in Sumter School District Two, 64% have earned a master’s degree or higher, and almost half of those have earned a master’s plus 30 designation or a doctorate. For more information about Sumter School District Two, or to set up a tour of our schools, call us at (803) 469-6900 or visit our website at www.sumter2.org.

www.nicolenorrisdesign.com

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Sumter County’s diverse employment base includes manufacturing jobs, positions in the medical field, educators, service providers and more.

popular in Sumter. The upper level of the historic Piedmont building on Caldwell Street is being converted into trendy apartments, and people are already heading downtown for shopping, dining and community events, such as the Downtown Sumter Farmers’ Market and Sumter’s WineFest Sip ’n’ Stroll. Easy Come, Easy Go Sumter’s location in the middle of South Carolina appeals to businesses looking for ease of transportation. It is only 45 miles east of the state capital of Columbia, and a short drive from Interstates 95, 20, 77 and 26. Sumter’s closest airport is the Sumter Airport, which is owned by the City and County of Sumter. Two commercial airports, Florence Regional Airport and Columbia Metropolitan Airport, are less than an hour’s drive from the city. Conservation Efforts Sumter takes pride in being environmentally responsible, and holds an Earth Day celebration each April to demonstrate what it means to “live green.” Local government programs recycle used motor oil, scrap metal, cardboard, plastic, paper, aluminum, steel, tires and glass. The City of Sumter has even developed a process for recycling wastewater and sludge into a low-grade organic fertilizer and soil conditioner called Poconite. The city creates roughly 2,000 tons of Poconite each year and sells it to golf courses that use it as fertilizer.

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Biz Briefs
Businesses – both large and small – that help define sumter’s economic climate

Scorecard
Business At A Glance

$1.5 billion
Annual retail sales

$15,318
Retail sales per capita

$66 million
Annual hotel and food sales

3,039
Total number of firms
Source: U.S. Census QuickFacts

GARNAY INC. Biz: Gingko trees Buzz: Gingko production in South Carolina is second only to China, and much of the local industry’s success is due to the 12 million trees at Garnay Inc. in Sumter County. A group of European firms owns the 12,000-acre expanse. Gingko leaf extract is used to treat ailments such as asthma, fatigue, leg pain and more, and the herb is also used to improve memory. (803) 469-8078

HAMPTONS Biz: Fine dining restaurant Buzz: Hamptons is an upscale restaurant that opened in 2008. The Southern cuisine restaurant serves lunch Tuesday through Friday, casual dinners on Wednesday and fine dining Thursday through Saturday nights. The seasonably inspired menu is filled with fresh, local seafood, produce and meats, plus artisan breads and pastries are made on-site daily. www.hamptonsfoods.net

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NICOLE NORRIS DESIGN STUDIO Biz: Interior design Buzz: Nicole Norris has owned her design studio since 1997, and today she is known for high-end residential and commercial work with clients from all over. Norris had a design consulting business in both California and Nevada before opening her studio in Sumter. (803) 773-8083

SUMTER CUT RATE DRUGS Biz: Pharmacy, restaurant Buzz: Sumter Cut Rate opened for business in 1936 and has been owned by local residents since. The motto is, “Make a positive difference in someone’s life today.” The store features a soda fountain and snack bar that serves a hot country breakfast at 7 a.m., and a lunchtime meat-and-three menu. www.sumtercutratedrugs.com

TEAM IMAGE MARKETING Biz: Cardboard stand-ups Buzz: Team Image is licensed with NASCAR and several individual stock car drivers to make and sell life-size cardboard stand-ups. Team Image also does custom projects for in-store displays. Their product line of drivers includes Danica Patrick, Tony Stewart, Mark Martin and Richard Petty. www.teamimagemarketing.com

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Chamber Report
Chamber’s Annual Get-Together Turns 40
he first year, 35 people were in attendance, and now most of the annual retreats organized by the Greater Sumter Chamber of Commerce attract 200-250 people. Back in 1971, the chamber began hosting an annual retreat to inform and chat with chamber members and their spouses about plans for the upcoming year. The Westin Poinsett Hotel was

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chosen as the location of the 40th annual get-together (held Feb. 4-6, 2011). “We always book rooms at a fivestar resort and then schedule a 2.5-day program for participants,” says Grier Blackwelder, president of the Greater Sumter Chamber of Commerce. “Some of the past retreats have been held at South Carolina destinations like Hilton Head, Myrtle Beach and Charleston, as

Matt, Brad, Wayne and Cathy
We carry many name brands, plus many one-ofa-kinds at 50-60% below other furniture stores. Come in and compare the quality, and price before you buy. We currently have our store warehouse packed with values. Remember: Discount only means great prices, not cheap furniture.

Mon.-Fri. 10 a.m.-7 p.m. • Sat. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Closed Sundays
2891 Broad St. Ext. • Sumter, SC 29150 (803) 469-8733 • (803) 469-8732 Fax

well as Pinehurst in North Carolina and Augusta, Georgia.” Blackwelder says the cost is reasonable at about $600 per couple, which includes accommodations, food and beverages, plus the whole program. “The program provides information about where the Sumter County community is headed, and we allow our members to have major input on the chamber’s overall plans for the upcoming year,” he says. “People in attendance come from the world of education, government, industry, the arts, small business and several other professions, and you probably wouldn’t be able to get such a diverse crosssection of people at any other function during the year. But they are all in attendance at the retreat.” Blackwelder says several subjects will be covered at the upcoming 40th anniversary event, including the chamber’s official unveiling of its new Images Sumter 2011 magazine. “We will also present awards such as Business Person of the Year, Military Citizen of the Year, Manufacturer of the Year, Teacher of the Year and beautification awards,” he says. “The 2011 retreat will also feature important discussions about the upcoming consolidation of our two school districts that will happen in July 2011. That consolidation will involve 17,000 students and a $100 million budget.” The long-standing Greater Sumter Chamber of Commerce currently has 1,000 members and will turn an impressive 100 years old in 2012. It also recently became accredited as a four-star chamber by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. “Good things always come out of the retreat,” Blackwelder says. “There are a lot of interesting discussions, problemsolving and camaraderie.” For more information about the Greater Sumter Chamber of Commerce, visit www.sumterchamber.com.  – Kevin Litwin

www.outletfurniture.com

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economic profile
Economic overview
Sumter’s location, along with its expanding industries, a thriving retail environment and one of the largest health care systems in the state, will allow the area to continue to grow and prosper.

TAXES

WORKFORCE

8%
City Sales and Use Tax

53,682
Total Workforce

ECONOMIC RESOURCES
Greater Sumter Chamber of Commerce 32 E. Calhoun St. Sumter, SC 29150 (803) 775-1231 chamber@sumterchamber.com www.sumterchamber.com City of Sumter 21 N. Main St. Sumter, SC 29150 (803) 436-2500 info@sumter-sc.com www.sumter-sc.com Sumter County 13 E. Canal St. Sumter, SC 29150 (803) 436-2102 www.sumtercountysc.org helpdesk@sumtercountysc.org Sumter Economic Development Board 32 E. Calhoun St. Sumter, SC 29150 (803) 418-0700, (800) 888-7926 www.sumteredge.com

7%
County Sales Tax

79%
White Collar Jobs

6%
State Sales Tax

21%
Blue Collar Jobs

2.5%-7%
State Income Tax

EDUCATION

TRANSPORTATION
Buses Santee-Wateree RTA www.swrta.com South Eastern Bus Lines (803) 773-8113 Airports Sumter Municipal Airport (803) 469-4639 Columbia Metropolitan Airport www.columbiaairport.com Florence Regional Airport www.florencescairport.com Taxis Alston & Alston (803) 778-1899 City Service Cab Co. (803) 775-2248 Southside Service (803) 775-4131 Sumter Taxi (803) 773-9615 Yellow Cab Co. (803) 773-3333

81%
High School or Higher

18%
Bachelor’s Degree

7%
Graduate or Professional Degree

MAJOR EMPLOYERS
Shaw Air Force Base 6,866 Pilgrim’s Pride 2,210 Tuomey Healthcare System 1,544 Sumter School District 17 1,410 Sumter School District 2 1,200

INCOME

$21,765
Per Capita Income

$44,501
Average Annual Household Expenditure

What’s Online 
Pay a visit to the business section at imagessumterco.com to learn more about Sumter’s business climate.

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Sumter

Mistake
sumter’s accidental garden is home to eight species of swans
Photography By todd bennett

A Lovely

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wan Lake Iris Gardens is a 120-acre park that began as an accident. In 1927, local businessman Hamilton Carr Bland was landscaping the grounds of his home with irises, but the plants failed to bloom. He ordered all the bulbs dug up and dumped into a swamp. The next spring, they burst into bloom, creating what Southern Living magazine called “a lovely mistake.” Bland then imported the first of the swans, Australian Black swans, to the park and continued to add more throughout the years. Today, the park features all eight species of swans. Swan Lake hosts the Sumter Iris Festival, which began in 1940 and is South Carolina’s oldest continuing festival, and is also routinely used as a wedding venue.
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Health & Wellness

Aiming for Good Health
Sumter’s Tuomey Healthcare System provides first-rate services
Sumter County citizens don’t have to travel far for quality health care. Tuomey Healthcare System’s first-rate, 301-bed hospital in Sumter recently received a multimillion-dollar upgrade, making it an even greater asset to the community.

Tuomey Regional Medical Center serves patients in every stage of life, from an infant’s first breath to end-of-life hospice care. Accredited by the Joint Commission, it provides more than 1,500 jobs, making it the largest non-industrial employer in the county. More than 150 physicians practice there.

Women's Services
Tuomey’s James E. Bell Jr. Women and Infants Pavilion was added to the hospital campus in 2007 to better serve women and babies. The $23.6 million, 18,000-square-foot facility has 24

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Photos by Todd Bennett

cozy inpatient rooms decorated to make patients feel at home, with comfortable furniture and ample space for in-room treatment and examinations. The nursery system includes four separate nurseries capable of treating high-risk newborns who need to stay at Tuomey for extended periods of time. The Bell Women and Infants Pavilion also has high-risk incubators and customizable baby stations, breastfeeding rooms and lactation consultants, and wrist and ankle monitors for mothers and babies to ensure their security.

Advanced Cancer Technology
Tuomey is known for the latest advances in cancer care and offers a Cancer Treatment Center with the most advanced radiation therapy technology available. Radiation oncologists at the Cancer Treatment Center provide intensity-modulated radiotherapy (IMRT), a cutting-edge treatment few hospitals in the state provide. In 2004, Tuomey added a new

Outpatient Surgery Center with four operating rooms, one procedure room and 20 pre- and post-operative beds to give Sumter County residents more convenience, greater comfort and the latest in technological advancements. The Outpatient Surgery Center is located in front of the main hospital and provides a covered, all-weather access for patients. One of the Outpatient Surgery Center’s most impressive features is its HERMES voice control system for networking medical equipment. The FDA-approved system gives surgeons direct control over surgical devices using simple verbal commands, which contributes to efficiency and accuracy during surgical procedures.

By the Numbers 301
Number of beds at Tuomey Regional Medical Center

150
More than 150 physicians are employed at Tuomey Regional Medical Center

10
Number of operating suites in the hospital

Long-term Care
When living at home proves too difficult for elderly or terminally ill Sumter residents, they and their families have plenty of options. Hopewell Healthcare Center, NHC Healthcare and Sumter East Health & Rehab Center are just a few of the county’s long-term care facilities.  – Jessica Mozo

The New You Starts Here ...
• Implant Therapy • Outpatient General Anesthesia • Pain-Free Procedure • Board Certified • Insurance Providers • Same-Day Appointments • Care Credit Interest-Free Financing

1210 Wilson Hall Rd. • Sumter, SC 29150 (803) 905-4404 T • (803) 905-4406 F www.dentalimplantcenterofsumter.com

SUMTER ORAL & MAXILLOFACIAL SURGERY PA
Michael A. McGinnis, DDS, MS
Diplomate, American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery

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Wilson Hall
Sumter, SC

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Sumter

A College Preparatory Day School Grades Preschool-12 www.wilsonhall.org

Education

An Emphasis on Education
Sumter offers public schools, private schools and more
When it comes to education, Sumter knows what parents want – and Sumter School District 17 proves it. The district has received numerous recognitions, including the What Parents Want Award from SchoolMatch, an Ohio-based consulting firm.

Sumter’s public school system is divided into District 17 and District Two. In fall 2011, the two districts will combine to form the Sumter Consolidated School District. District 17 is the smaller of the two and geographically the smallest school district in South Carolina. But what it lacks in size, it certainly makes up for in excellence. In addition to the What Parents Want Award, District 17 has received three National Blue Ribbon Schools of Excellence awards. Its only high school, Sumter High, has been named a Model High School for South Carolina, a Grammy Signature School and an International Baccalaureate site.

Private Schools
Parents who prefer a private or faith-based education can find it at many area schools. They include Sumter Christian School, St. Anne Catholic School, St. Francis Xavier High School, Sumter Academy, Thomas Sumter Academy, Wilson Hall and Westside Christian Academy.

Higher Education
High school graduates can further their education without leaving the area. Among Sumter’s higher education options are Central Carolina Technical College, a comprehensive, public two-year institution that confers associate degrees, diplomas and certificates; Morris College, a historically black, coeducational liberal arts college operated by the Baptist Educational and Missionary Convention of South Carolina; and the University of South Carolina Sumter, which offers a full range of programs, from associate degrees through graduate programs. Students living at Shaw Air Force Base can also easily access a college education. Saint Leo University, Troy University, Webster University and Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University all offer course and degree programs at the base. – Jessica Mozo

Sumter School District 17
District 17 is made up of 11 schools, including seven elementary, three middle and one high school. The district enrolls more than 8,600 students from preschool through grade 12 and employs more than 1,500 staff members. Sumter High School has first-rate choral, band and athletic programs. In 2007 the Sumter High School Marching Band performed in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City. SHS’s football team has made it to the 4A Division I State Championships.

Sumter School District two
The area’s larger public school district, Sumter School District Two, is made up of 15 schools, 10 of which have been designated Red Carpet Schools by the State Department of Education for their familyfriendly environments. The district includes nine elementary, four middle and two high schools, with a combined enrollment of approximately 9,400 students. District 2 boasts several accomplishments of its own. It received the iAm statewide laptop grant, which provided 685 laptop computers and $1 million. And its Hillcrest Middle School was the only middle school in the area chosen by Santee Cooper and Black River Electric Cooperative to receive a solar panel to enhance its science curriculum.

Todd Bennett

University of South Carolina Sumter

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Arts & Culture

Always Something To Do
Sumter’s culture rich in history, arts, gardens and festivals
From arts and theater to local festivals and attractions, there’s plenty to keep the whole family entertained in Sumter County. Here’s just a sampling of some of the area’s landmarks and events held throughout the year. Art and Theater
Need a little artistic inspiration? Browse artwork by locally and nationally renowned artists at the Sumter County Gallery of Art. The gallery offers free tours by reservation and a gift shop filled with one-of-a-kind gifts and decorative items. Art classes are available for kids, teens and adults in several different media, from pottery to basket-making. Patriot Hall is a performing arts facility that is host to performances by local actors and musicians, cultural events and conventions. Tours of Patriot Hall, which includes a 1,000-seat auditorium, meeting rooms and more, can be arranged. The Sumter Little Theatre offers a variety of plays and musicals for all ages. Performances are held at the Sumter County Cultural Center. The nonprofit group includes a youth theater, which allows children to participate in all aspects of stage performance, including set building, costumes, makeup and acting.

Festivals Galore
Sumter County citizens sure know how to throw a party – and they do it often. Sumter’s longrunning Iris Festival is held every May and features a flower show, crowning of the Iris Festival king and queen, concerts and more. In September, the Sumter Shaw Street Fest salutes the men and women stationed at nearby Shaw Air Force Base with a huge street festival. From April through October, people flock downtown toting lawn chairs for Sumter @ Six, a monthly lineup of live bands, food vendors and good old-fashioned fun. Each October, downtown Sumter hosts the Halloween on Main festival for costumed kids and pets. Come November, it’s time for Accessibility, an annual exhibition of public art. December finds Sumter celebrating the holiday season with the Swan Lake Fantasy of Lights, the largest free Christmas light display in the state, and the Sumter Poinsettia Festival featuring a drive-through nativity, visits from Santa and live local entertainment.

Local Landmarks
The Sumter Opera House on Main Street is often called the crown jewel of downtown Sumter. The historic opera house has been entertaining crowds since it was built in the 1890s. Today the restored building houses City Hall as well as city departments and offices. The first-floor auditorium, decorated in the Art Deco style, hosts local and national acts ranging from concerts and theater to dance and classic films. The opera house’s 100-foot clock tower atop the RichardsonRomanesque style building is visible from much of downtown. Bask in the beauty of nature at Sumter’s Swan Lake Iris Gardens, the only public park in the United States that features all eight swan species. The shiny black waters of Swan Lake provide a striking backdrop for its many islands bursting with colorful irises, camellias, azaleas, daylilies and Japanese magnolias. The floral wonderland is visited by more than 250,000 people annually and has become a haven for wildlife.

Sumter County Gallery of Art www.sumtergallery.org Sumter Little Theatre www.sumterlittletheatre.org

SUmter iris festival www.sumter-sc.com/VisitingUs/ festivals_iris.aspx Sumter @ Six www.sumter-sc.com/VisitingUs/ Festivals_SumterAtSix.aspx

Sumter opera house www.sumter-sc.com/visitingus/ operahouse.aspx Swan Lake Iris Gardens www.sumter-sc.com/visitingus/ swanlake.aspx

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Arts & Culture

Sumter County Museum
Love history? Sumter County has a rich 300-year heritage you can relive with a visit to the Sumter County Museum complex. It is home to a collection of historic structures, more than 108,000 artifacts and re-enactors who bring the county’s heritage to life. The museum campus includes the 1916 Williams-Brice House, the Genealogical and Historical Research Center, the Heritage Education Center, the Carolina Backcountry Homestead and the beautiful Martha Brice Gardens. The Carolina Backcountry Homestead hosts periodic living history events and includes a log cabin, smokehouse, barn, commissary, loomhouse, outhouse, blacksmith shop and gardens.
photos by Todd Bennett

Sumter County Museum www.sumtercountymuseum.org

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Sports & Recreation

Calling All Outdoor Enthusiasts
Sumter boasts parks, tennis, aquatics, a speedway and more
Sumter County is an outdoor-lover’s dream, with 24 parks offering boating, birding, hiking, biking, fishing, horseback riding and many other activities. There’s also the Palmetto Tennis Center, which has 24 courts, and offers group clinics and private lessons.

Golf Courses
Notable golf courses in Sumter include Beech Creek Golf Club, Crystal Lakes Public Golf Course and the Sunset Country Club. Nestled in the High Hills of the Santee Passage, Beech Creek is considered one of the most challenging and best-conditioned courses in a 50-mile radius. It has a fully stocked pro shop, grill, putting green and driving range.

Sumter Speedway
Racing fans love the Sumter Speedway, a dirt track that hosts racing events every Saturday night. The track has a diverse entertainment lineup, with everything from stock car racing to children’s dirt bikes. Its nickname is “The Toughest Dirt Track in the South.”

Parks and Trails
The Sumter County Recreation and Parks Department oversees a wide array of parks, sports leagues and trails that contribute to the county’s quality of life. The Cypress Trail is a scenic 6-mile, natural-surface walking trail open

Beech Creek Golf Club

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Todd Bennett

Poinsett State Park

daily from dawn until dusk. There are also walking tracks at V.I.M. Park, Wedgefield Community Park, Cherryvale Community Center, Live Oak Park, RembertRafting Creek Community Center and Dillon Park. Senior citizens stay active in Sumter, too. The Sumter County Recreation and Parks Department sponsors Senior Fitness Days, with competitive games of golf, track and field, horseshoes, bowling, basketball, table tennis and more.

its abundant supply of bass, catfish and crappie. Fishing is also a favorite activity at Manchester State Forest’s four ponds and many creeks. Other popular places to enjoy the outdoors include Poinsett State Park, High Hills of the Santee Passage, Woods Bay State Natural Area and Lynches River.  – Jessica Mozo

For More Info
beech creek golf club www.beechcreekgolfclub.com city of sumter aquatics center www.sumter-sc.com/visitingus/ aquatic.aspx palmetto tennis center www.sumtersc.gov/VisitingUs/Tennis.aspx sumter county recreation and parks department www.sumtercountysc.org/departments/ recreation/recreation.htm sumter speedway www.sumterspeedway.com sunset country club www.sunsetcountryclubsc.com

Pools and Lakes
Make a splash at the City of Sumter Aquatics Center, which has competition swim meets, a slide, wade pool entrance and fountain. The Aquatics Center provides water aerobics classes, swim camps for kids, lifeguard training and swim lessons for kids 3 and older. Area lakes provide great fishing opportunities, with Lake Marion sprawling across more than 110,000 acres in Sumter and four surrounding counties. The lake is popular with fishermen, thanks to

Photo courtesy of Rob Pongsajapan

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Local Flavor

Palate Pleasers
Sumter offers a variety of restaurants to satisfy any taste bud
You won’t go hungry in Sumter. From Italian to Japanese, Chinese to Mexican – and everything in between – Sumter will fill you up with your favorite foods from around the world, and right here at home.

seafood
Sumter’s close proximity to the ocean means fresh seafood – and local restaurants serve it up in abundance. The Shrimper is a favorite local eatery known for fresh seafood and lively conversation. The menu includes combination dinners featuring
Sumter is known for its fresh seafood.
photo by Brian M c Cord

shrimp, flounder, deviled crab, oysters, scallops or chicken with two sides and hushpuppies.

owned and operated Sambino’s Bistro has been dishing up Italian favorites for more than 30 years. Hungry customers keep coming back to Sambino’s for its savory garlic rolls, reasonable prices and exceptional service. The bistro is also known for its handmade lasagna, brick oven pizzas, chicken Parmesan and specialty sandwiches. You can also find tasty international cuisine at Hibachi Grill & Supreme Buffet, Kobe Japanese Steakhouse & Sushi Bar, Mon Café Japan, Teriyaki Wok, Georgio’s II Pizza and Angel’s Mexican Restaurant.

International Restaurants
International cuisine is easy to find in Sumter, with restaurants offering Italian, Japanese, Chinese and Mexican dishes. The family-

Fine Dining
Sumter also boasts fine dining establishments, such as the Imperial and Hamptons. The Imperial opened in 2008 and quickly gained a following

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for its upscale menu and live music. The 11,000-square-foot building that houses the Imperial invites diners with warm wooden trim, cozy leather booths and a renovated lounge. The Imperial’s dinner menu features appetizers such as oysters Rockefeller and fresh jumbo crab cakes, and entrees run the gamut from Imperial Rack of Lamb to filet mignon and slow-roasted prime rib. Seafood lovers can find much to please their palates too, from blackened red snapper to Alaskan salmon. Hamptons opened in 2008 and has become a favorite for distinctive diners. Hamptons serves redefined Southern cuisine from Chef Raffaele Dall’Erta, who has concocted delicate tasting dishes with seared beef tenderloin, crab, oysters and tartar. The restaurant also offers casual dining Wednesday through Saturday in an outdoor setting that features a stone fireplace and stage for live music performances. Fresh artisan breads and pastries are made on-site daily at Hamptons' bakery, which also sells custom cakes.

Sweets and Treats
Baker’s Sweets Bakery & Cafe is the place to go in Sumter to indulge in heavenly cinnamon rolls, cakes, cream horns, brownies, lemon bars and cookies. It’s also a hot spot with the lunch crowd, with sandwiches prepared on fresh baked breads, salads and gourmet quiche. For a steaming cup of coffee or tea, head for Brick Street Coffee Break on Caldwell Street, Sumter’s last remaining brick-paved downtown street. The coffee shop serves freshly roasted, just-ground specialty coffees with muffins, scones and bagels. On the third Thursday of every month Brick Street invites customers to participate in an oldfashioned afternoon tea, with white linen tablecloths, elegant china and an array of teas, teacakes and finger foods. Brick Street also hosts special-occasion teas. At Special Teas on Main, you can enjoy an old fashioned lunch with cloth napkins and tablecloths and an array of hot tea. Special events and children’s tea parties are also offered.  – Jessica Mozo

Contact Info
Baker’s Sweets Bakery & Cafe 1089-D Alice Dr. (803) 775-6016 Brick Street Coffee Break 9 Caldwell St. (803) 773-4433 Hamptons 4 W. Hampton Ave. (803) 774-4400 The Imperial 451 Broad St. (803) 774-6327 Sambino’s Bistro 1104 Alice Dr. (803) 469-9231 The Shrimper 438 Broad St. (803) 773-5456 Special teas on main 5 S. Main St. (803) 774-8287

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B C
• • • • •

SUMTER BEAUTY COLLEGE

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Sumter

community profile
community overview
Sumter is growing – and not just economically. The area’s arts, historic and environmental preservation, and sports are all growing as well, with more than 100 clubs and community organizations devoted to these interests and much more.

Household Information

Numbers to know
Driver’s License State of South Carolina – Driver License Division 430 S. Pike E. Sumter, SC 29150 (803) 775-8559 Vehicle Registration South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles www.scdmvonline.com/ DMVNew/default. aspx?n=titleandreg Voter Registration Sumter County Registration/ Election Office 141 N. Main St. Sumter, SC 29150 (803) 436-2310 www.sumtercountysc.org/ departments/Voterreg1.htm Recycling City of Sumter Sanitation Department (803) 436-2558 Sumter County Public Works 1289 N. Main St. (803) 436-2242

Cost of Living

38,412
City Population

$40,302
Median Household Income

104,138
County Population

$94,400
Median Home Value

38
Median Resident Age

$578
Median Rent for a Two-Bedroom Apartment

51%
Married

Weather

44 F
Average January Temperature

27%
Age 19 and Under

80 F
Average July Temperature

46%
Age 20-54

48.4”
Average Precipitation

27%
Age 55 and Over

This section is sponsored by

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Through the Lens

Get the Story Behind the Photo
Now that you’ve experienced Sumter through our photos, see it through the eyes of our photographers. Visit imagessumterco.com to view our exclusive photographers’ blog documenting what all went in to capturing those perfect moments.

From Our Photo Blog: Sumter
It’s funny how little you know about a place even though you’ve been there numerous times. Having been to Sumter on many occasions for work, I’ve passed under the footbridge on Liberty Street, but I’ve never taken a gander at what lies beyond the fences. To my surprise, I found a 120-acre garden, the Swan Lake Iris Gardens, that contains all manners of flora, from camellias to day lilies and azaleas. But the most prized of them all is the Japanese iris. If the flora doesn’t impress you, the fauna definitely will. Swan Lake is home to all eight species of swans from five continents. The birds and their waterfowl brethren are amazing to see. Over the course of several days, I visited the lake at different times. I’m convinced that swans only do two things: eat and groom themselves. They’re magnificent to watch as their heads and necks disappear under the water to feed on the vegetation at the bottom of the lake. As they surface, water droplets dripping from their bills glisten in the late afternoon sunlight …

Posted by todd bennett

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Sumter

Ad Index
31 ArborOne 53 Bioenergy Technologies 18 Central Carolina Technical College C4 City of Sumter 45 Dental Implant Center of Sumter 34 Discount Furniture Outlet C3 FTC 8 Greater Sumter Chamber of Commerce 22 Hampton Inn Sumter 55 Hamptons 54 Sumter Beauty College Inc. 2 Morris College 12 NBSC 30 Nicole Norris Design Studio Inc. 51 SAFE Federal Credit Union 33 Shealy Electrical Wholesalers 7 Shelly A Lundberg CPA 12 St. Francis Xavier High School 30 Summit Realty & Development

Ad Index (cont.)
6 Sumter County 30 Sumter School District Two 4 Sykes Enterprises Inc. C2 Thompson Construction Group 1 University of South Carolina Sumter 22 Vigier Computer Services LLC 19 Walmart Sumter 46 Wilson Hall

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