Few purchases give you a sense of pride and accomplishment like buying a new home. From white picket fences and lush green grass to cookouts with neighbors and holidays with the family, owning a home is magical. Like most great things, though, enduring the home-buying process takes a lot of work. There are many steps to take and difficult decisions to make along the way. One of the most crucial decisions is what type of home loan and mortgage broker to choose. Whether it's your first time buying a home or you're a seasoned owner with multiple properties, you will need a trusted mortgage broker in Cottageville, SC, with your best interests at heart.
If you're like most people, you need a mortgage professional whose top priority is their customers - an expert who can provide accurate advice and guidance so you can make educated decisions. That's where Mija Mortgage comes into the picture.
Whether you want the best interest rates or don't know where to start in the home-buying process, Mija Mortgage can set you up in the right direction. From getting you pre-qualified to buy a home to securing a veteran's loan, Mija Mortgage is the trusted solution you need. As Cottageville natives, we're proud to serve the Lowcountry and all of South Carolina with trusted mortgage brokerage services.
Unlike some mortgage companies in Cottageville, SC, we bring years of high-level experience and insight to the table. Having worked with hundreds of clients during our time in business, we know you're probably going through a range of emotions right now. Buying a new home can be a scary process, especially for first-time buyers. That's why we make every effort to make ourselves accessible and available for clients. Our primary goal is to help you make the right mortgage for your family and your budget.
We know that many home loan officers have horrible reputations. Some brokers only see their clients as transactions, and a means to make quick money. They come off as impatient and pushy, failing to understand that this is a very big decision for you. At Mija Mortgage, we take the opposite approach. We encourage our clients to take as much time as needed to ask us questions and review mortgage documents. We could say that our mission is to exceed your expectations, but we'd rather just show you. From assistance finding FHA, VA, or other loans to refinancing your current mortgage, Mija is the team you can trust.
Here are just a few reasons why home buyers choose Mija Mortgage:
Most people simply don't have access to the hundreds of thousands of dollars needed to purchase a home with cash. Instead, they take out a mortgage loan to buy a home. Unfortunately, many homebuyers are anxious to get the ball rolling and, due to their excitement, fail to shop around for the best mortgage rates. To some degree, avoiding this step makes sense, as it requires a lot of legwork and research to get the job done. For those not wanting to spend hours researching a reasonable mortgage, there's an alternative to consider - working with a mortgage broker.
To understand the benefits of working with a mortgage broker, you must first understand their role in the home-buying process.
Your mortgage broker is a third party that works to connect you with mortgage lenders. Essentially, a mortgage broker works as an intermediary between a person who wants to buy a home and the entities offering loans to buy a home. The mortgage broker works with both the borrower and lender to get the borrower approved. They also verify and collect paperwork from the borrower that the lender needs to finish a home purchase. Typically, mortgage brokers have relationships with several home loan lenders. Mija Mortgage, for example, has access to 50 different lenders, which gives us a wide range of home loans in Cottageville, SC, from which to choose.
In addition to finding a home loan lender, your mortgage broker will help you settle on the best loan options and interest rates for your budget. Ideally, your mortgage broker will take a great deal of stress and legwork off your plate while also potentially saving you money.
If you're ready to buy a home, getting pre-qualified is a great choice that will streamline the entire process. Your mortgage broker makes getting pre-approved easy by obtaining all the documents needed to get you pre-qualified. In taking a look at your application, they will determine if you're ready for the pre-approval process. If your application needs additional items, the mortgage company will help point you in the right direction to ensure your application is as strong as it can be. Your mortgage broker will also walk you through the different types of loans, from Conventional and FHA to VA and USDA.
In order to be pre-approved for a home in South Carolina, you must have the following:
Most people choose to use a mortgage broker because they have access to different lenders and interest rates. But a great mortgage broker brings more to the table than a choice of lenders.
Save You from Unneeded Stress:One of the biggest advantages of hiring a mortgage broker is that they can find and vet loans while managing the mortgage process on your behalf. The best mortgage companies, like Mija Mortgage, hire brokers who are experts at keeping underwriting on track, coordinating with relevant parties, and handling all paperwork involved. At the end of the day, mortgage brokers save you stress and time and often expedite the closing process.
More Access: We touched on this earlier, but it bears repeating: A mortgage broker provides access to a range of loans, rates, and lenders. In fact, many mortgage brokers can get rates lower than what the average person could get from a lender.
Save You Money: There's a chance that your mortgage broker can get your mortgage fees reduced or waived by the lender, which could save you a good deal of money.
Help with Unfavorable Financial Situations: Expert mortgage brokers can often assist in challenging financial situations, like when a buyer has inconsistent income or less-than-perfect credit. Experienced brokers, like those at Mija Mortgage, are often aware of lenders willing to will work with nontraditional borrowers.
Provide Key Insights: Mortgage brokers share important insights, such as your chances for a home loan approval and exactly how much house you can afford. They can also save you from making costly mistakes based on their years of expertise in the mortgage industry.
While settling on the best type of home loan isn't as exciting as searching for the home of your dreams, it's equally important. Yes, your Mija Mortgage loan officer in Cottageville, SC, will be happy to help explain the differences between home loans. But understanding the basics ahead of time will save you stress and time in the long run.
Conventional loans can be used to purchase a new home or refinance your current one. Conventional loans include fixed-rate mortgages and adjustable-rate mortgages. Generally, borrowers must put down a 3% down payment for owner-occupants, 10% for a vacation property, and 20% for an investment home. If you are able to pay 20% of the total cost of the home, you can avoid private mortgage insurance, which is otherwise required. Conventional mortgages are often preferred by buyers with good credit or people needing a non-owner-occupied mortgage.
FHA mortgages are issued by the U.S. government and backed by the Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD). This loan is often preferred by first-time homebuyers because it only requires a 3.5% down payment and offers more flexibility with credit requirements and underwriting standards. FHA loans have several requirements you must meet to qualify. Contact Mija Mortgage today to learn more about FHA loans and whether or not they're best for your financial situation.
Also backed by the government, these loans are insured by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and don't require money down. These loans have lower insurance requirements when compared to FHA loans, offer 100% financing if you qualify, and allow for closing costs to be covered by the seller. In order to qualify for a USDA loan, you must live in a rural area, and your household income must meet certain standards. These loans are often preferred by low-income citizens who live in rural parts of South Carolina.
Also known as VA or Veteran's Affairs loans, these mortgages are reserved for the brave men and women who served in the military. VA loans help provide our military members, veterans, and their families with favorable loan terms and an easy home ownership experience. Often, those who qualify are not required to make a down payment on their home. Additionally, these loans often include less expensive closing costs.
If you are a veteran or the family member of a veteran, contact Mija Mortgage today to speak with our Vetted VA Professional, Debbie Haberny. Debbie helps our military members, veterans, and their family members obtain home loans utilizing veteran benefits and would be happy to help as you search for a home.
Do you have questions about the complexities of mortgages and home loans? As your advocate, Mija Mortgage is here to answer any questions you have about mortgages and the home-buying process. We encourage you to call our office to speak directly with one of our mortgage experts or continue reading below for answers to some frequently asked questions.
Q. I was talking to my spouse about mortgage brokers, and they mentioned the phrase home loan originator. What's the difference between a broker and a loan originator?
A. The mortgage industry is full of confusing jobs and titles, making it easy to confuse roles and responsibilities. Such is the case with mortgage brokers and home loan originators. Though their roles share similarities, a home loan originator in Cottageville, SC, works for a bank or credit union, while a mortgage broker works for a brokerage company. Home loan originators and mortgage brokers are both licensed by the Nationwide Multistate Licensing System (NMLS).
Q. I've heard from everyone that you must have mortgage insurance to buy a home. What is mortgage insurance?
A. Essentially, mortgage insurance helps protect lenders if a borrower forecloses on the home they bought. One advantage of mortgage insurance is that when borrowers pay it, lenders can often grant loans to buyers when they might not have otherwise. Though not always required to buy a home, mortgage insurance is often needed for down payments of less than 20%.
Q. I have just been pre-approved to buy a beautiful home in South Carolina. Is there anything I shouldn't do now that I'm pre-qualified?
A. Mortgage companies like Mija Mortgage, make getting pre-qualified for a home easy. However, as your loan process continues, your lender is required to run a new credit report before closing on a home. For that reason, it's to avoid any activity that might affect your credit score, such as:
Q. My brother-in-law recently refinanced his home in South Carolina. What is refinancing, and should I consider refinancing my home too?
A. Refinancing your home basically means you're swapping your current mortgage for a new one, most often with a lower interest rate. If you would like to reduce the term of your loan, lower your monthly mortgage payments, or consolidate debt, refinancing may be a smart option. Many homeowners also choose to refinance if they want to switch from adjustable-rate mortgages to fixed-rate mortgages or to get cash back for home renovations. To learn whether refinancing is a viable option for your situation, contact Mija Mortgage ASAP, as loan rates change frequently.
Here at Mija Mortgage, we believe that the best communities begin with the dream of home ownership. Our mission is to make those dreams come true, with personalized service, expert guidance, and good old-fashioned hard work. As one of the most trusted mortgage companies in Cottageville, SC, we have years of experience working with a diverse range of clients, from first-time buyers and investors to self-employed borrowers and non-native English speakers.
Though every mortgage situation is different, one thing never changes: our commitment to clients. Contact our office today to get started on an exceptional home-buying experience.
COTTAGEVILLE, S.C. (WCBD) – A problem with a septic tank may force a small business in Colleton County to close its doors for good.David Stanfield and his wife opened Red Brick Pizza in Cottageville a few years ago. But they may have to close their business after South Carolina’s lead health agency, the Department of Health and Environmental Control, said their septic system is not fit for the job.“Almost two years ago we started, and almost immediately DHEC jumped on my back,” said Stanfield. “In ...
COTTAGEVILLE, S.C. (WCBD) – A problem with a septic tank may force a small business in Colleton County to close its doors for good.
David Stanfield and his wife opened Red Brick Pizza in Cottageville a few years ago. But they may have to close their business after South Carolina’s lead health agency, the Department of Health and Environmental Control, said their septic system is not fit for the job.
“Almost two years ago we started, and almost immediately DHEC jumped on my back,” said Stanfield. “In March of last year, we started takeout only, but in March I contacted them about opening a 12-person dining room. They said yes, you can open it.”
A month later, Stanfield said he was told that could not have a dining room.
“I asked them about the tables out front – I had four picnic tables out front – they said you can have all the picnic tables you want, so we built a patio which has a bunch of outside tables. And then five months later, during another inspection, and we’ve gone through eight in one year, during another inspection they said you can’t have these outside tables. I said, well, you told us we could.”
DHEC told Stanfield that his septic tank was too small, and he was given a ‘shut door’ order.
“Two months ago, I went before the council- I begged them, I said my septic system has never overflowed, it’s never had a problem, and they said you have 60 days to put this monstrosity in back here.”
His customers were outside protesting on Tuesday while raising money to help keep them in business.
Stanfield began installing the large septic system. He says he has now spent $51,000 on the project. But his business only makes about $800-$1,000 on a good week. So, he believes he will now have to just shut down.
Stanfield eventually put a water meter on his property after a suggestion from a neighbor to see how much water was being used each day.
“Our water meter shows that we use 350 gallons per night, my existing system will do 450 gallons and they’ve got me putting in the system it will do 1,500 gallons per night which is just crazy. They’ve bankrupted me. They’ve taken every dime that we have, and we don’t even have money to open for food this week.”
DHEC sent News 2 a statement saying Stanfield was not in compliance with his DHEC permit when he moved from take-out only to restaurant seating.
“Mr. Stanfield did not dispute the grounds for suspension but requested the suspension be rescinded because he was diligently working on gaining compliance with DHEC regulations,” the statement said. “Failure to install the upgraded system would not lead to closure of the facility but would result in the return to the original food service operation as approved and permitted by DHEC.”
“I don’t understand this because, you know, America is known for if you put everything into – whatever your dream is – you can get it accomplished and they are burying us alive,” said Heike Stanfield, Co-Owner, Red Brick Pizza.
Stanfield said they were last open on Saturday. But unless a miracle happens, he believes they may not be able to re-open again.
The matter was discussed during a DHEC board meeting on May 5, 2022 with the restaurant’s owner in attendance – a motion was made about two hours and thirty-three minutes into the meeting, following an executive session. You can watch that hearing by clicking here.
(Sponsored Content)(This post includes affiliate links if you purchase anything through these affiliated links, the author may earn a commission.)Kylen S. Barron is a writer whose passion for storytelling has taken her on a remarkable journey. Raised in Philadelphia, PA, and Cottageville, SC, she honed her skills through years of managing her children's acting careers, coaching them through countless scripts and auditions, and achieving SAG/AFTRA status i...
(This post includes affiliate links if you purchase anything through these affiliated links, the author may earn a commission.)
Kylen S. Barron is a writer whose passion for storytelling has taken her on a remarkable journey. Raised in Philadelphia, PA, and Cottageville, SC, she honed her skills through years of managing her children's acting careers, coaching them through countless scripts and auditions, and achieving SAG/AFTRA status in many principal roles. Her work in the entertainment industry brought her in close contact with pioneering directors and actors from national, regional commercials to featured films, where she developed a deep appreciation for the art of narrative.
As a retired Executive Director of AMarriage Entertainment, LLC, a recording studio that she owned and operated with her two sons, Jaret and Jordyn, [Author's Name] was inspired by her children's script writing and her work in organizing local concert venues. Encouraged by her publicist, she embarked on a lifelong passion for publishing her non-fiction book, "Unspoken-Truth From A Buried Past & I Think Differently Trilogy – A trilogy on one family’s journey with Autism." The book is a heartfelt account of her family's struggles and triumphs with autism, and it showcases Kylen's gift for weaving together a powerful and thought-provoking narrative.
Through her work, Kylen S. Barron is dedicated to inspiring others and shining a light on important issues. Her writing is a testament to the power of storytelling and its ability to connect people across different backgrounds and experiences.
What inspired you to write your first book?
A brother, our mother’s son, whom no one outside of only two people in the world ever knew existed. In 2014, 5-years after her passing, he would found a family/siblings through the Ancestry DNA platform while preparing for a wedding he would participate in, taking place in the United Kingdom (Scotland). This epic finding of who he is and finding his family would have him locate me through the Facebook platform for verification of whom the woman named through his DNA on his tree, as his biological mother through “Ancestry” is. His find would eventually lead him directly to my front door with many unanswered questions that none of her surviving adult children could ever knowingly answer. She and her first husband would be the only two people who would ever know her secret, which would eventually take her life down a spiraling, very dark path throughout the remainder of her life. Unattached emotionally from the five children she would subsequently have within her second marriage, she would live her life since 1957 in emotional exile, taking with her, her “Unspoken Truth from A Buried Past” to her grave, and no one could ever answer the one non-stop nagging question “Why” until five years after her death. Two years after our brother found us, I had the pleasure of meeting her first husband for the first time in the summer of 2016. He would give me 17 hours of his very detailed description of the son he believed to be his child. He would speak about his young wife and who my mother was, and what would eventually drive her, eventually ending their marriage. He passed away in October 2018 at the age of 92.
How much of the book is realistic?
“Unspoken Truth from A Buried Past” is a Nonfiction- Memoir- All of it is real.
What are your current projects?
I have currently completed a children’s/Adolescent trilogy titled: “I Think Differently,” which has also been co-authored by my autistic grandson Journey-affectionately named “JAB,” and is available now everywhere, including Barnes & Noble and Amazon.
Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
Since the age of twelve, I was constantly told by family & friends, “You will be a writer someday.” I was always inspired by the thought of writing but never took it seriously until the day I felt I needed to.
Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?
Yes, at my age, I find myself traveling quite a bit for either book-signings, promotions, virtual interviews, and podcast interviews with no end in sight. I love it because this keeps me moving and keeps me young, I believe.
Who designed the covers?
I designed my own covers. Each one beginning with my own thought process of how I wanted to present myself to the world and working with my illustrators until they got each and every detail I wanted to be presented accurately for the unveiling of each presentation.
What were the challenges (research, literary, psychological, and logistical) in bringing it to life?
Writing is an art and a talent. There are always challenges that come with this territory. Like anything else in life, It is definitely hard work when it comes to research, the literary content one wants to share with the universe, the psychology behind the writing, regardless of genre, and the logistical balance of it all that could possibly bring one’s work to life. It’s always about balancing and believing in yourself and all that comes with this particular territory. It depends on how serious you are and how deep your passion goes regarding this lifestyle to be able to put the necessary work in that will either make you or break you as a writer/author. Either you’re successful at it, or you are not. It all depends on how deep your passion truly is.
Do you like audiobooks, physical books, or e-books better? Why?
I like them all, to be honest, but I prefer audio most times because I am constantly on the go, either in my car, plane, or train; I can sit back and listen to a great story during my journey.
If you have pictures on your writing desk, who/what are they of?
There will always be pictures of my three favorite people in this whole world. My grandchildren Journey, Jade & Justice. They’re always there to inspire me every waking moment. I am blessed to still be here and to be able to enjoy my life with them as my grandmother did with her 21 grandchildren.
What is your favorite cover out of all your books? Why is it your favorite?
My fourth book out of the “I Think Differently” series, “I am me, I Am Proud To Be Me,” The cover is amazing, along with every review that came with presenting the cover before its release. The colors are absolutely outstanding, and it presents “JAB” as an adolescent, now a teenager, as he presents himself to the world.
How can readers discover more about you and your work?
You can find me at www.kylensbarron.com or google me: Kylen S. Barron
Kylen's books can be purchased on Amazon
BookBuzz helps indie authors, hybrid authors, and small publishers promote and market their books. They also help with book reviews, publicity, and more. Let's Create Some Buzz For Your Book!!!
Cottageville residents have seen change in their community in the last few years, and now the Greater Cottageville Chamber of Commerce is ready to encourage more improvements.Frank Santorella, a resident of Cottageville, said he is proud of the small town and wants to showcase its beauty, friendly people, and excellent location.“We want to create a chamber of commerce here. We already have a 501-3C non-profit status, Maryann Blake is serving as our attorney, and we are ready to roll,” said Santorella. “We have...
Cottageville residents have seen change in their community in the last few years, and now the Greater Cottageville Chamber of Commerce is ready to encourage more improvements.
Frank Santorella, a resident of Cottageville, said he is proud of the small town and wants to showcase its beauty, friendly people, and excellent location.
“We want to create a chamber of commerce here. We already have a 501-3C non-profit status, Maryann Blake is serving as our attorney, and we are ready to roll,” said Santorella. “We have ‘Friends of the Park’ which is comprised of people who helped develop the park into what it is now.” He says there are also plans at the park to install a memorial with engraved bricks to honor veterans. This will be accomplished by applying for grants and accepting donations.
Santorella, who plans to initiate the chamber, will serve as a temporary director. He says he already has seven merchants who are interested in joining.
“We want to make Cottageville a destination. Red Brick Pizza and Beer Garden is the anchor store for starting the chamber,” said Santorella. “It’s a one-of-a-kind business in the entire region. Once the chamber officially opens, we want to pick a member of the chamber and promote that business each week, and once a month promote everyone. There will be a rotation, and this will be good for everybody.”
He went on to say that the brick-and-mortar stores are the life of Cottageville, not the transient businesses. He feels that transient businesses will not want to invest their funds in the chamber, but the stationary businesses are here to stay.
“I think the people of Cottageville will be positively affected by the chamber and will accept it with open arms. Hopefully, this will bring even more businesses our way. Our only option now is to travel to Summerville or Walterboro to purchase some items. That’s between 15 to 20 miles away. Cottageville has a lot of people in the rural areas, and though our local gas stations try hard to serve the needs of the community, it would be nice to have boutique shops here. We already have a new vape store that has a coffee bar. So we are starting off well,” said Santorella.
He is hoping to have the new chamber up and running by the end of the first quarter of 2022.
“There will be a fee for stores to become part of the chamber,” said Santorella, who gathered ideas and patterned the Cottageville chamber after the City of Walteboro’s. “I received ideas on how to structure the fees. They won’t be impressive because social media provides a lot of free advertising. We will have a website and newsletter for the community. We will be out there,” he added.
Anyone interested in joining the new chamber can write to: Greater Cottageville Chamber of Commerce, P.O. Box 464, Cottageville, SC, 29435. Businesses can also contact Santorella on Facebook at Friends of the Park or call The Vape Stop at 843-701-4262.
Written by: Anna S. BrightSubmitted by: Herman G. Bright, Parade ChairmanPhoto: SubmittedFor 35 years, the Walterboro Shrine Club of Arabian Temple #139 has sponsored the town’s parade, honoring the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. As a nation, we honor this slain civil rights leader whose mission was to advocate for all people who had been oppressed by unjust laws and immoral abuses. King vowed, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” Serving this year as parade marshal is...
Written by: Anna S. Bright
Submitted by: Herman G. Bright, Parade Chairman
For 35 years, the Walterboro Shrine Club of Arabian Temple #139 has sponsored the town’s parade, honoring the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. As a nation, we honor this slain civil rights leader whose mission was to advocate for all people who had been oppressed by unjust laws and immoral abuses. King vowed, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” Serving this year as parade marshal is a former Colleton County Councilman and retired pastor, Rev. Evon Arrington Robinson, Sr. When given the invitation to serve as this year’s marshal, Rev. Robinson expressed many words of gratitude and was most elated to accept this honor. Due to COVID restrictions, the parade was not held in 2021, and it was not held in 2022 because of inclement weather.
Rev. Robinson, a retired pastor of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, is a native of Cottageville, South Carolina. He is the son of the late Mr. Easley Robinson, Sr., and Mrs. Bula Mae Haynes Robinson. After graduating from Colleton Training School, he attended SC Trade School and later completed a tour of duty in the United States Army. In 1970 he received the call to ministry. He attended South Carolina State University, subsequently attending the Nichols Theological Seminary Extension in Charleston, South Carolina for religious training.
Having served in the pastoral ministry of Jesus Christ for 47 years, all of which were in the South Carolina Annual Conference, among his assignments were the Fairfax, St. Paul, Holly Hill, St. Matthew, and St. Stephens Circuits. Rev. Robinson led the Greater St. Paul and Greater Target congregations in the construction of brand-new edifices. In addition, he led the congregations at St. Peters, New Hope, St. Matthew, and St. Stephens in total renovation projects.
Rev. Robinson served the SC Conference in the following capacities: the Board of Examiners, the Ministerial Efficiency Committee, Presiding Elders’ Salary Committee, the Conference Finance Committee, Chairman of the Finance Committee for the Beaufort District, Station and Circuit Committee, Deeds and Abstracts Committee, and Abandoned Property Committee. Further, he was one of the initial organizers of the Sons of Allen Ministry and served on this committee for many years.
His ministry outside the walls of the church includes being elected to the Colleton County Board of Education. During Rev. Robinson’s tenure while serving as the board chairman, he led the historic event of hiring the first African American superintendent in the county. He was later elected and served on the Colleton County Council for 16 years, three of which he was a chairman. He served for 15 years on the Board of Directors of the Lowcountry Regional Council of Government, and he also served as treasurer for the South Carolina Coalition of Black County Officials. In addition, he served on the Lowcountry Community Action Agency Community Action Agency Board of Directors for several years, four of which he was chairman.
Previously, he was chairman of the Equal Opportunity Committee for the Department of the United States Navy, Naval Weapons Station, Charleston for 12 years, and as the president of the American Federation of Government Employees Union-Local 2298, for two years. Lastly, he is a member of the Colleton Branch of the NAACP and the Hiram Mann Chapter of the Tuskegee Airmen, Inc., of which four years he was the president.
For 57 years Rev. Robinson and his wife, Gloria Smalls Robinson, have been united as one. They are the proud parents of four children: Evon, Jr., Ronald, Rhonda Lynn, and Keon. They have been blessed with nine grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. After 28 years of service, Rev. Robinson retired from the Naval Weapons Station in Charleston in 1995. In addition, he owned and operated Robinson’s Barbershop in Walterboro for many years.
After having served more than four decades as a pastor in the A.M.E. Church, in November 2018, Rev. Robinson retired from active ministry, a calling of which he loved so dearly. He plans to travel extensively throughout the nation to share his experiences as a servant of God in the wider ecumenical circles, as well as his beloved A.M.E. Church.
The Walterboro Shrine Club’s Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Parade will take place on Sunday, January 15, 2023, at 2:30 p.m. on Jefferies Boulevard. At 1:30 p.m., the lineup will begin in front of Live Oak Cemetery. The public is cordially invited and encouraged to attend.
CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – Grab a cup of hot chocolate and turn the Christmas tunes on the radio – there are several options for checking out Christmas lights beyond your neighborhood.Enjoy a night with friends and family as you drive through bright shining lights on display in Moncks Corner, North Charleston, Cottageville, and the largest drive-thru holiday light event at James Island County Park. ...
CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – Grab a cup of hot chocolate and turn the Christmas tunes on the radio – there are several options for checking out Christmas lights beyond your neighborhood.
Enjoy a night with friends and family as you drive through bright shining lights on display in Moncks Corner, North Charleston, Cottageville, and the largest drive-thru holiday light event at James Island County Park.
Holiday Festival of Lights – James Island County Park871 Riverland Dr, Charleston
A trip to the Holiday Festival of Lights at James Island County Park is a Christmas-time tradition filled with thousands of dazzling lights and displays.
Guests are invited to drive along a three-mile stretch lined with more than 700 light displays each night through December 31. A stop at Winter Wonderland – about halfway through the drive – gives you an opportunity to stretch your legs and view the area’s largest holiday sand sculpture.
You can view shops, search for gifts, or enjoy sweet treats or a cup of hot chocolate. Hop on a train ride for a fun look at light displays or take a stroll through the Enchanted Walking Trail for a fun look at nature-themed light displays.
Santa Claus will meet children each night from November 21 – December 23. Plus, enjoy an array of large greeting cards decorated by students from across the Charleston area.
Ticket prices on a regular night will cost $15 per vehicle if purchased online at HolidayFestivalofLights.com or $20 at the gate. Peak night prices increase to $25 per vehicle online and $30 at the gate.
The 33rd Annual Holiday Festival of Lights is open every evening from November 11 through December 31 from 5:30 p.m. until 10:00 p.m.
The Lights at Park Circle4800 Park Circle, North Charleston
Pack up the car and take a drive or go for a relaxing stroll around North Charleston’s Park Circle to see dozens of Christmas light displays.
Trees, lights, and displays will be shining bright around the circle at the Felix C. Davis Community Center.
City leaders say the lights will shine until New Year’s Day. There is no fee to enjoy the lights.
Bee City Zoo’s Christmas Wonderland of Lights1066 Holly Ridge Ln. Cottageville, SC 29435
On select nights in November and December, guests can enjoy a combination of animals and Christmas lights at Bee City Zoo’s Christmas Wonderland of Lights festival.
Santa Claus will make a special appearance during some nights of the event for a photo opportunity.
Those attending can also attend an ‘Australian Walkabout’ which is included in the price of admission. And for some additional costs, you can enjoy roasting s’mores, ornament decorating, grabbing a cup of hot chocolate, or feeding animals during the festival.
Admission is $12 or you can purchase a combo pass which includes day access to the zoo and entry to the lights at $20. Click here to learn more.
Holiday Lights Driving Tour – Old Santee Canal Park900 Stoney Landing Rd, Moncks Corner
Celebrate the season with family and friends on a driving tour filled with sparkling Christmas lights and displays at Old Santee Canal Park powered by Santee Cooper.
The event runs each night from 6:00 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. from November 25 – December 30. It will be closed on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.
Admission to the event is $5 per vehicle. Proceeds benefit local charities.
Guests will enter the Holiday Lights Driving Tour at 1 Riverwood Drive in Moncks Corner.
“The beautiful LED lighting displays are powered by 100% Santee Cooper Green Power, which is Green-e Energy certified and meets the environmental and consumer-protection standards set forth by the nonprofit Center for Resource Solutions,” organizers said.
Santee Cooper is also inviting guests to attend its two-night event ‘Holiday in the Park’ on November 24 and 25. You’ll have the chance to meet Santa Claus, enjoy crafts, roast marshmallows, and sample some seasonal foods.
“This event is included with admission to Holiday Lights Driving Tour, which runs through Dec. 30, so you can start your holiday season early at this fun-filled meetup,” said organizers.
To learn more or purchase tickets online, please click here.
Cougar Night Lights – The College of CharlestonNear the corner of George and St. Philip Streets
A holiday tradition that brings a fun and dazzling light show to the College of Charleston’s Cistern Yard and Randolph Hall will light up with the spirit of the season each night, offering a holiday light show featuring festive music and visual performances each half-hour from 6:00 p.m. until 9:00 p.m.
The display will be open to the public beginning December 1 through January 2. It is free to view and this year’s show will include new music and lighting displays.
Visitors can find the Cistern Yard at the corner of George and St. Philip Streets. Public parking garages are available at two nearby locations – the George Street Garage and the St. Philip Street Garage.
Did we miss something? Email us with details about a local Christmas light show.