Monthly Archives: May 2007

SCAD Industrial and Furniture Design Show June 1

The Savannah College of Art and Design industrial and furniture design students will present a senior show tomorrow night on Friday, June 1, 7-9 p.m., at the Jep3
Jepson Center for the Arts located on West York Street facing Telfair Square
The show has been characterized as representing “the final stage of our students’ progress through our degree courses in furniture and industrial design, and allows a public forum for the presentation of the work" according to SCAD industrial design professor Ivan Drummond. "Attendees can expect to see a wide diversity of projects from full-scale furniture and motorcycle prototypes to next generation consumer products for subcultures and planetary exploration concept designs."  The Jepson Center for the Arts is a wonderful venue that is open free of charge for all lovers of the arts from the public sector for this presentation.Furopenhousewcm05062
  If you are coming to Savannah this weekend to take in our history, culture, and arts, you would be hard pressed to choose a better way to start your Savannah Getaway weekend.

A few days in the life of the New York Times Frugal Traveler

New York Times Reporter, Matt Gross, AKA The Frugal Traveler sallied forth on a twelve week road trip adventure across the United States in his trusty 1989 Volvo last week that will be covered every Wednesday in the Travel Section of the New York Times.  The premise of his three month journey will be one of seeking “low cost adventure” all across the US of A.  We pick up the tale of the trail where our intrepid reporter is running the lowcountry from Myrtle Beach, S.C. enroute to the Okefenokee Swamp on the Florida/Georgia border before heading north to a Blue Grass Festival in the Blue Ridge Mountains of north Georgia.

"They started in Myrtle Beach, S.C., then drove south toward Savannah, Ga., sizing up beach communities along the way. When they came upon Isle of Palms, a barrier island 15 miles east of Charleston, S.C., they stopped looking.
Most compelling to them was the beauty of the white beaches on Isle of Palms and its sister, Welcome_to_si_sign
Sullivan’s Island, which is 100 yards across a small inlet next to the Intracoastal Waterway.  Mr. and Mrs. Baumann, who live in Wilmington, Del., bought a three-bedroom, three-story, three-bath, single-family home for less than $1 million in the gated community of Wild Dunes on Isle of Palms.
Their house is typical of the two islands, built in what Mr. Baumann, who is a tax lawyer, calls ”the typical Charleston style, where the houses go up and not out.” That kind of construction is dictated by the region’s vulnerability to storm surges."

Tune in every Wednesday to the NYT to follow this documentary of the Great American Road Trip as laid out by reporter Gross.  Nothing like the possibility of low adventure sans the Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas variety a few decades ago with apologies to Legendary Gonzo Journalist, Hunter S. Thompson, God rest his soul.

All Aboard for the Folkston Funnel, Casey Jones you better…

Folkfun2 Nearly every freight train from the eastern half of the United States passes through Folkston, Georgia making it a train lover’s paradise. Folkston serves as Gateway to the Okefenokee Swamp just north of Jacksonville Florida across the state line. This Heritage Corridor Township has parlayed her strategic location where so much train traffic is funneled through into a nice view to enjoy the "reign of the train" through coastal Georgia. A viewing platform was erected a few years ago to accommodate the growing number of train enthusiasts that come to watch northbound and southbound rains rumble through the “Folkston Funnel” as this USA Today story reports.

They turn their video cameras toward the south. They speculate excitedly about what type of machine will soon be rumbling into town. One grabs a notebook, preparing to log all the vital details such as engine model and number. On cue, the telltale ringing of a nearby crossing gate pierces the calm of a sleepy weekend day, its slender arm slowly drooping toward the ground, cutting off a pickup truck that had hopes of slipping across the two sets of tracks. It’s show time in Folkston, a hamlet of 2,200 that hugs the Georgia border about 40 miles northwest of Jacksonville, Fla. For train lovers, this is nirvana."It’s something large and majestic," said Bob Holmes, a 76-year-old retired pastor from Ohio, trying to explain why he started visiting Folkston a couple years ago just to see the trains. "It’s noisy. There’s a great variety of colors. There’s all the different types of cars." I don’t really know what it is. It’s just fun."

Platform_ant If you find yourself in coastal Georgia, and have an abiding love for railroading, you may want to take a daytrip on down to Folkston and watch the rolling freight and passenger streamliners go rolling by.

Square-Dancing at the Oatland Island Center

DancingThe Savannah Folk Music Society presents Old Time Country Dances at the Oatland Island Education Center on June 9th at 7:45 – 11:00.

The Glow In The Dark Stringband –A tuneful and talented bunch of musicians from Savannah and Statesboro who blend traditional melodies with the smooth and energetic sound relished by today’s contra dancers. Joe Nelson on fiddle/banjo/mandolin/banjo-uke, James Pittman and Judy Williams alternate on bass and guitar.

Newcomers – there will be pre-dance lessons at 7:45. General admission is $7.00.

Flying the Friendly Skies into the Lowcountry

The Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport
recently announced that this spring tourism high season the air traffic coming into the airport is running substantially greater than March and April of 2006 last year.  April had a 12% increase in passenger boardings and March reported an 8% increase over last year.  While many regional travelers continue to drive into Savannah and Hilton Head Island, air traffic is most definitely on the grow. This robust growth is expected to continue on into the future.  This is good news indeed as International and National Travelers continue to make coastal Carolina and Georgia their vacation destination be it for a week at a time or merely a long weekend getaway.

If you are planning an excursion to Savannah’s Historic District and back home again via our airport facility, plan to arrive a minimum of at least 90 minutes prior to your flight leaving.  Shuttle Service to and from the City of Savannah and Hilton Head is available as well as shuttle service from the long term parking garage. Always remember, you could arrive by car, could arrive by a train, and you could arrive by plane, makes no difference to us as long as you arrive safe and secure to our wonderfully unique destination.  As our neighbors to the south along the Golden Isles like to say, “Y’all come on down and coast awhile.”  If the Savannah Hilton Head International Airport is any indication, we do some world class coasting round here ourselves.    

Georgia’s First Designated Natural Heritage Area in Augusta

When most people think of Augusta Georgia, they tend to think of the Masters Golf Tournament or the recently deceased and famous first son, James Brown.  But Augusta is known regionally among Georgians for her rich historic past.  And chief among these are undoubtedly her placement far upriver on the mighty Savannah. In the mid 1840’s Augusta enhanced her placement on the Savannah River with the creation of an industrial canal. By the time of the American Civil War, the border city of Augusta was of strategic importance to the south as she sat astride the Savannah River between Georgia and South Carolina.Geoffcelebrate20
  Due to this navigable river environment this far inland, she had become one of the South’s few manufacturing centers. The industrial importance afforded by the Canal led Confederate Leadership to select Augusta as the location for the Confederate States Powder works. Augusta’s place in Confederate History was sealed when the only buildings ever constructed by the government of The Confederate States of America were a large number of Powder works structures situated along a two mile stretch of the Canal.

After the Civil War, Augusta enhanced her position by enlarging the Canal, a feat accomplished by 1875. For the next 75 years, Augusta was a southern boom town in the textile industry that flourished along the canal.  The Canal later became one of the initial eighteen designated Heritage Corridor areas throughout the country and the first in the State of Georgia.Musiccruise
  Today the Augusta Canal is a popular tourist attraction in the region featuring Riverboat Tours on 49 passenger Petersburg Tour Boats.  The open boats leave the docks at Enterprise Mill for hour-long excursions past histsoric19th Century textile mills and an 18th Century trading post.  Check out this nice day trip along the Savannah River up the Heritage Corridor.

African American Heritage in Coastal Georgia’s Hostess City

Savannah’s long ago charter signed by England’s King George II created in 1732 resulted in our historic city coming to be known as the “Cradle of Georgia”. Initially Savannah’s founder General James Oglethorpe did not want Savannah to have any involvement with slavery and as a result of this unpopular Policy, Georgia was the first colony of the original 13 to outright ban slavery. Unfortunately by the latter part of the 18th Century the ban on slavery was no longer enforced due to the growing number of smuggled slaves brought into Georgia to serve the needs of Plantation Owners.Nglad
With the invention of the cotton gin in 1793 by Eli Whitney that greatly impacted our coastal Georgia economy, Savannah became a major American trading hub due in large part to the cotton and slave trade of this major seaport.

Nowadays, African Americans comprise 55% of Savannah’s population.  A growing number of travelers are attracted to Savannah due to our vast repository of history of those colonial days right on down to the present day.  Poi17
And Black History has become one of the major growth areas in our historic city for tours with such points of interests and attractions such as the Beach Institute, one our nation’s oldest black primary schools founded in America or a trio of historic black churches, The First African Baptist Church, First Bryan Baptist Church, and Second African Baptist Church.  Whether your interest lies in antebellum black history or civil rights history, Savannah’s black history attractions like the Ralph Mark Gilbert Civil Rights Museum on MLK Blvd has you covered.  Poi94
To customize your very own black history while visiting the historic district on your next long getaway weekend, contact our reservation desk by phone or E-mail.

Oragami lotus flowers on display at the Jepson Center in historic Savannah

HsuFrom June 13th – 17th the Telfair Museum invites you to:

…enjoy artist Pang-Chieh Hsu’s new installation of origami lotus flowers in the Jepson Center’s Eckberg Atrium during the week leading up to the Savannah Asian Festival. The Festival proper takes place Saturday, June 16 at the Savannah Civic Center. A native of Taiwan, Hsu is a recipient of the prestigious Joan Mitchell Foundation Fellowship and currently teaches at Armstrong Atlantic State University. Known for his stunning realist paintings, Hsu will create a fifteen foot tall arrangement with 108 origami lotus flowers arranged in 12 tiers reflective of Buddhist philosophy.

This display will take place at the Jepson Center in conjunction with the Savannah Asian Festival and is free.


Oktoberfest — A can’t miss River Street Festival

Oktoberfest is coming to Savannah October 5th – October 7th. Help the Savannah Waterfront Association celebrate Savannah’s German heritage on River Street with German food, beer, wine, contests, children’s activities and much more!

Weinerdog_2Thousands of locals and guests will enjoy the creative arts and crafts, live entertainment. Take the Georgia Bulldog Shrimp Boat Tours, watch the Wiener Dog Races Saturday at 11 a.m., live Entertainment featuring Headliner and Oompah Bands.  There will be fireworks on the River on Friday at 9:30 p.m.

This will lots of fun for everyone, so be sure to mark your calendar and join in when Oktoberfest begins in Historic Savannah.  This event is free and open to the public.


Savannah’s Historic District Top Tourist Attraction in Georgia

565 Whaleshark The Georgia State Department of Economic Development reported recently that a growing number of travelers have Georgia on their Mind as tourism is increasing at a robust rate from year to year. No surprise there as the Peach State has a plethora of attractions throughout the state from the seashore clear up to the continental divide in the Georgia Mountains. Visitors can escape the heat in the Bavarian themed City of Helen in the Georgia Blue Ridge Mountains, or visit the New Aquarium in Atlanta with a day trip to nearby Stone Mountain. Then again you can embrace the beaches of coastal Georgia with the rich and near famous on exclusive Sea Island, Georgia that hosted the G8 Conference in their facilities a few years back.

But the Number One mega attraction throughout the state of Georgia is (drum roll please), Savannah’s Landmark Historic District. Those of us that have spent many years in the hospitality industry are not at all surprised by those findings as we have experienced the growth first hand to our Top Ten Vacation Destination throughout the USA from one year to the next. Gasavannah1 We are in the midst of a record breaking spring high season as we speak which bodes well for our future in light of the off the scale tourism in calendar year 2007, with a whopping $1.3 billion – that’s Billion with a B – in tourism dollars pumped into the local economy last year alone. Just wanted to congratulate all you savvy travelers and your wise decision to visit Georgia’s First City, Sultry Savannah. Come on down the district is a one of a kind happening with her very own ambience to keep you coming back for more.