Summerville is known for its YMCA Flowertown Festival. If you live in this community, chances are you have attended at least one of these festivals. Otherwise, if you just visited, you probably did some shopping in Azalea Square, which is the center of the Flowertown Festival.
During this time, hundreds of people flock to the city to participate in the festival. The b & b in Charleston often get packed, so it is wise to book ahead of time. If you want to get the best bed and breakfast in Charleston, you should make sure that you made reservations months ahead of the Flowertown Festival. This way, you can pick the accommodations that are near where the action is.
The History of the Flowertown Festival
Flowertown Festival originated about 80 years ago. Back then, there was a group of women who were known as the Civic League. They poured in efforts to raise funds and purchase 16 acres of land in the area. The land they bought is located between Magnolia Street and Central Avenue. This area became the group’s location for their garden club, which is known at present as Azalea Park. The garden club is called Flowertown Garden Club today.
In the middle of the Great Depression, the city’s mayor, Grange Cuthbert, had a vision that people will flock to Summerville if the park was full of azaleas. Being a flower enthusiast himself and believing that this will boost the city’s tourism, he pushed for this. He also believed that if the tourism in the area increased, this could greatly help improve the local economy.
Due to this, the Civic League donated the park that they built and groomed to the city. The mayor used a Works Public Administration (WPA) grant to turn the area into a beauty. He paid workers 10 cents an hour to transform the park into the scenic area that it is today. He even hired his own son to do some of the work in the park.
However, the park still didn’t have flowers at that time. So, Mayor Cuthbert talked to a local nurseryman named George Segelken to donate 33,000 azaleas and turn his vision of the park into a reality. The nurseryman agreed and they began planting azaleas. Even the mayor took part in the planting of the flowers. Today, the mayor’s vision has become true. Now, people go to Summerville to celebrate the Flowertown Festival and bask in the beauty of the azaleas.
In 2017, the Flowertown Festival won as one of the 20 best events as recognized by Southeast Tourism. Every year, the festival attracts more than 200,000 guests from all over the country. Aside from the flowers, the festival is also considered one of the biggest arts and crafts events in the country. The Flowertown Festival is held every year in April.