Favorite Rides & Destinations

Fall 2017

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On U.S. Route 17, west of Murrells Inlet, I encountered Brookgreen Gardens, a nature and wildlife preserve displaying the natural history of what is hereabouts called Lowcountry— essentially the marshes, inlets and Sea Islands that make up coastal South Carolina. Rice cultivation had been an integral part of the Lowcountry economy, and is exhibited on the acreage at Brookgreen. In the nearby village of Georgetown there is even a rice museum, so I proceeded on. I found the Rice Museum located below an impressive Greek Revival clock tower on Front Street, a downtown aligned with antebellum-era facades. Adjacent Thomas Café is a local institution open since 1929. After tasting their grits, I stepped next door to learn about rice. Cotton and tobacco aside, it was rice that drove the South Carolina lowland agrarian economy until the Civil War ended slavery and deprived plantation owners the workforce necessary to tend the labor-intensive crop. Modern methods ensued, but Hurricane Hugo in 1989 administered the coup de grace to South Carolina's rice industry. Along Georgetown's Harborwalk, I came www.FavoriteRidesAndDestinations.com | ridermagazine.com PAGE 24 FALL 2017 ISSUE 02 / VOL. 02 Far left: The Thomas Café in Georgetown is open for breakfast and lunch, serving hearty Southern fare. Above, inset: Need more be said? Main: This charming red bridge is at Magnolia Plantation and Gardens near Charleston.

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