They say that March ushers the spring season “in like a lion, and out like a lamb.” We’re pretty sure they are referring to the weather, but let’s be honest: the Lowcountry’s version of March 1 is not nearly as menacing as that in other parts of the country. In fact, our exit from February is generally not a stark departure from our entrance to April. It stands, then, that our definition of the famed idiom would be a bit different in Charleston. Rather than a forecaster of extreme temperature and precip activity, our “lion” is a roaring harbinger of extreme social and cultural activity.
Case in point? Of the Travel Channel’s 10 “Can’t-Miss” annual Charleston events, three land in the month of March:
Charleston Wine + Food Festival
During this four-day culinary extravaganza, nationally-recognized chefs, sommeliers, restaurateurs, and food artisans converge with their award-winning peers in the Holy City. Now in its 13th year, the aim of CHSWFF is simple: “to create meaningful experiences that ignite a spark in our culinary + hospitality industry and community as a whole.” Those experiences range from signature dinners at some of Charleston’s most beloved restaurants to hands-on oyster shucking and mixology workshops. At the heart of it all is the Culinary Village, an arrangement of white tents that transforms the historic Marion Square into an eating, drinking, and shopping mecca. Warm wafts of smoky barbecue mingle with cool vapors of distilled spirits, luring locals and visitors into the tasting tents, where they just might find themselves talking boiled peanuts with the Lee Brothers or heirloom seeds with Sean Brock.
Charleston Fashion Week
In case you haven’t heard, Charleston style is so much more than seersucker and printed shifts. Spend some time at Charleston Fashion Week, celebrating its 12th year, and witness for yourself the City’s stunning engagement with all things fashion. Live shows, special events, and catwalks run over five dazzling nights. CFW not only attracts top international designers; it also serves as an incredible showcase for local, up-and-coming talent. The sets, lights, and music that turn Marion Square into its annual alter-ego runway are a sight to behold – just be sure to save some energy for the after-parties.
Charleston Antiques Show
You simply can’t disconnect Charleston from its rich history, and with good fortune (plus a lot of luck), much of that tangible history has been preserved. During the three-day Charleston Antiques Show, championed by the Historic Charleston Foundation, collectors and enthusiasts rub elbows with dealers and designers. Showcases of 17th to mid–century modern English, European, and American period furnishings, decorative and fine art, architectural elements, garden furniture, vintage jewelry, silver and more take over the beautiful Gaillard Center.
Oh, sure, there are enough fabulous events in Charleston to fill your calendar every weekend of every month of the year. And most of the weeks in between. But for some reason – perhaps the full official recovery from the holidays, perhaps the calm before the spring break swell - March gets the lion’s share.