Protecting the Murrells Inlet Watershed begins with You

Closed Oyster Harvesting Sign in Murrells Inlet

When I grew up with the creek as my playground there was only a handful of families that called Murrells Inlet home.  Collecting fiddler crabs to sell to the few fishermen that fished off the old government pier, crabbing and fishing with the neighborhood kids and watching the Capt. Alex and other boats unload their catches at the end of the day provided much joy and entertainment back in the day.   Our small population has grown into a thriving community welcoming new familes and vistors alike to appreciate and enjoy our slice of a creekside town but beneath the beauty of Murrells Inlet lies troubled waters that must be protected.

Today Horry County Officials will be presented with a resolution to adopt a Watershed Management Plan to help protect the creeks of Murrells Inlet that are in danger due to high bacteria levels and in doing so will become part of this vital project that will pave the way for a healthier Murrells Inlet Watershed for our future.  Georgetown County will also follow suit and with the help of all community stakeholders a plan will be formulated to identify the cause of high bacteria levels in Murrells Inlet and the steps we need to take to ensure the levels decrease for years to come.

Community input and involvement is essential to not only creating but following this critical mission and in leading the effort Murrells Inlet 2020 needs to hear from you.  When the Murrells Inlet Watershed Management Plan is completed it will serve as a guide to help reduce high bacteria levels in our waters the ultimate responsibility lies with us all as we must be mindful of how each of us affects the land that surrounds the watershed since we are after all the reason our creeks are in danger.   Contact MI2020 Executive Director Sue Sledz @843-357-2007 for more information. Copyright©2012 Sandra Bundy, Broker-in-Charge, B&P, Inc.  Serving the Pee Dee and Grand Strand of South Carolina.

How you can help ~  Click here to report potential pollution sources in the Murrells Inlet Watershed.

 

Antiques Roadshow ~ Checking out local History for the 2013 Season

Antiques Roadshow in Myrtle Beach

In my book there is nothing else like the excitement of having a long held family treasure or garage sell find being appraised by the Antiques Roadshow and this weekend scores of people will be at the Myrtle Beach Convention Center to do just that if they were lucky enough to get a ticket to the event.

This week the Roadshow Crew landed in Myrtle Beach and has wasted no time in hitting some of the public treasures found along the Grand Strand.   No doubt Brookgreen Gardens was on the top of their list and according to their Facebook status updates they were there filming on Thursday and it is very likely Atalaya Castle was filmed too.  Today they were at Hobcaw Barony and surely will be hitting Historic Georgetown later in the day.

While living here we sometimes forget all the great historical sites we have access to in Murrells Inlet and along the Waccamaw Neck when the show airs for the new season of the Antiques Roadshow in 2013 it will certainly provide a glimpse into this wonderful place we call home.

Follow me on twitter for live updates from the Myrtle Beach Convention Center tomorrow as I brave the crowds for my appraisal.  Who knows you might just see me on TV.

New book on Murrells Inlet History ~ Release Date July 5th

For the past year longtime Murrells Inlet residents have pulled out their photo’s and stories for the soon to be published book “Murrells Inlet” that is part of Arcadia Publishing’s Images of America Series.   Steve Strickland has spent the last year soaking in both facts and likely many fish tale’s to complete the book that chronicles our little slice of South Carolina.

I for one can’t wait to see how the eyes of many who have lived in and love Murrells Inlet will be protrayed on the pages as I am sure this will be a wonderful tribute to this place many now call home.  Look for Steve on the Murrells Inlet Marshwalk to get copy in July.

Alex's Bait & Tackle Murrells Inlet, SC

Alex's Bait & Tackle circa 1950

10 things you need to know about Murrells Inlet

Growing up in Murrells Inlet has provided me with a lifetime of insight into this wonderful place so many new families now call home and some recent events around the Inlet started me thinking that there were are least 10 things new arrivals would find of interest or should know about their new hometown.   While the list of 10 may grow into many more over time I hope you will find “Things you need to know about Murrells Inlet” useful as you begin your new chapter living in Murrells Inlet neighborhoods and enjoying all the natural beauty and amenities our area has to offer to both homeowners and visitors alike.

1.  Murrells Inlet is an unincorporated area in Georgetown County that runs from the Horry County line south to Huntington Beach State Park and stretches from the creek to the river but due to developers wanting to attach themselves to the popular fishing village the lines are blurred and now include areas from Burgess to Garden City.  The Inlet boundary for the purpose of this blog will remain as they were so you have an idea of the unique character of the area.  The Murrells Inlet natives love the creek and the trees especially the live oaks so please don’t take cutting them lightly and help us preserve the very reasons we all like to call it home.

2.  Murrells Inlet is one of the few creeks that have high salt consentrations and is home to some of the best oyster’s anywhere in the world.  Ok so I might be biased but with the Atlantic Ocean at our doorstep and tide changes every 6 hours our creek does have higher salinity than most inlets due to its size.  You might notice the Murrells Inlet Watershed sign along Highway 17 near Huntington Beach State Park where the inlet begins at the south and runs up to Garden City to the north.  Our creek is especially sensitive to runoff as pollutants can damage our Inlet so make sure to use safe practices when walking pets and don’t litter because it really does make us crabby.

3.  Once upon a time Murrells Inlet was all about fishing where pioneers in the industry ran head boats carrying passengers in sleek modern boats to the Gulf Stream.  Crowds would flock to Capt. Alex’s Marina in the afternoon when the boat docked at 6 PM to see the tremendous catch and were rarely dissapointed.  Back then there were few boat’s that ran such trips that served to attract both new and old to the sport of fishing in Murrells Inlet without having to own a boat or the equipment necessary to fish in the stream.  The Thunderbird, Sea Gypsy, Flying Fisher, Miss South Carolina, Capt Bill, Inlet Princess and New Inlet Princess were at one time part of the head boat fleet in Murrells Inlet and only a few remain today.  Regulation has made it more difficult for the commercial fishing industry along the east coast too and many of the fleets are gone but you can still get a glimpse of the fish hitting the dock in Murrells Inlet.

4.  Murrells Inlet aka ”The Seafood Capital of South Carolina” earned the title by having some of the best fresh seafood restaurants in SC.  Hundreds of thousands of visitors to Murrells Inlet have enjoyed our fresh local seafood over the years and have witnessed the evolution of the establishments that catered to them.  Many of the mainstays like Morse’s Oyster Roast, Oliver’s Lodge, Bay Harbor, Anchor Inn, Inlet View, Wayside & Sunnyside have been lost over the years and with the exception of Drunken Jacks, Dockside, Lee’s Inlet Kitchen & Nance’s been replaced by new restaurants serving up fresh seafood every day.  If you want a true glimpse into Old Murrells Inlet stopping by for dinner at Russell’s Seafood Grill will give you a good taste of what Murrells Inlet is famous for and some of the people that helped to make it that way.

5.  Murrells Inlet 2020 is responsible for creating the Murrells Inlet Marshwalk and many other worthy projects to help preserve, protect and promote infrastructure improvements in the Murrells Inlet area while enhancing environmental education.  The new ‘Jetty View’ project will add another destination for residents and visitors to access the Murrells Inlet waterfront.  This group puts on several fundraising events throughout the year in order to carry out their mission and you should make it your mission to support these efforts.

6.  The new Veteran’s Pier is the site of the former government pier and used to house crash boats before it was abandoned by the military and made a great fishing spot for many years before being destroyed by Hurricane Hugo.  This new pier was made possible by Murrells Inlet 2020 efforts and also is home to the “Captain’s Walk” that houses the names of many former Inlet boat captains.  The only thing missing is somebody selling fiddler crabs for bait so you’ll have to go to Perry’s or Capt. Dicks to get some other kind of bait.  You’ll notice many plaques along the pier and marshwalk and by getting one for your family you also help support MI2020 efforts.

7.  Spring Tide is a Day for the Inlet is held every year in April and this volunteer effort first began in 1990 after Hurricane Hugo left the creek littered with debris.  Area resident Chip Smith came up with the idea after observing the problem in addition to starting the Plus One Boating campaign to go beyond the one day event.  There is a chowder cook-off after the streets and creek are cleaned up and it is a great event to help you become involved by helping your new community.

8.  Murrells Inlet has Talent.  In addition to many musical groups that preform along the Grand Strand the Murrells Inlet Community Theatre puts on some really good shows!  The community center which once housed the Murrells Inlet Elemetary School and is home to the Murrells Inlet Magistrate also is the place to enjoy a good play that are held several times a year.  Talented local artists in every medium also call Murrells Inlet home.  You can check some of them out at The Ebb & Flow Gallery on Hwy 17 Bypass or look around our local shops and you are bound to see a few examples if you don’t miss the signs.

9.  Highway 17 Business in Murrells Inlet is offically named after famed mystery writer Mickey Spillane.  Now known as the Mickey Spillane Waterfront 17 Highway this new name doesn’t begin to describe what you will find once you drive in but you will likely not forget it once you arrive.  If you look to the left at the boat storage you might even spot Mickey’s boat ’817′ and while not much to look at it could raise the mackerel as I remember with trash cans full in a few hours.

10.  With her book “Heaven is A Beautiful Place” Genevieve ‘Sister’ Peterkin provided us with yet another glimpse of life in Murrells Inlet along with the struggles many face that weren’t lucky enough to have been here back in the day when things were much slower paced but just as complicated as things have become today.   Sister passed away in September of this year and with her passing Murrells Inlet lost a treasure but we are fortunate to have her writings and stories that will last forever and the memories of those that knew her.

So now you know 10 things you need to know about Murrells Inlet and as always let me know if you have any questions and we can add to the list.  Copyright©2011 Sandra Bundy, Broker-in-Charge, B&P, Inc.  Serving the Pee Dee and Grand Strand of South Carolina.

 

 

 

 

 

Peeking into the Past in Murrells Inlet

Oyster Roast Babe's in Murrells Inlet

If you want to get a taste of the way things used to be around Murrells Inlet a must see collection of photographs has been archived for future generations. Murrells Inlet photo’s on the Murrells Inlet History Project offer a peek into the past in Murrells Inlet and thanks to all the efforts and the sharing spirit of the people that live in and love our community these snapshots of times gone by can be viewed by everyone online. You can also join the converstation on the Murrells Inlet History Project facebook page.

Looking throught this collection brings back many fond memories for those who remember where and who they were but it also offers a glimpse into the makings of our creekside haven and how Murrells Inlet has evolved over time. Might be much like anyplace when you think about it because we all have old photographs and we can all remember because old photo’s represent little pieces of our time. Copyright©2011 Sandra Bundy, Broker-in-Charge, B&P, Inc. Serving the Pee Dee and Grand Strand of South Carolina.

The Inlet Wave of Freedom

Betty Jo & Alex Sing in Murrells Inlet

Today as I celebrate “Riding the Inlet Wave of Freedom” and the 4th of July I can’t help but take stock in how fortunate I am to live and work in Murrells Inlet as did many generations of my family before me. My granddaddy having the foresight to make his home along the creekfront allowed my father to do what he loved and become a pioneer in the fishing industry with the Capt. Alex. Not to be outdone my mother may very well have owned and operated one of the first women owned marina’s on the South Carolina coast at Inlet Port Marina in Murrells Inlet.

While these former Inlet Icons are gone and the locations of the thriving family businesses of yesterday are now the very parking lots that allow visitors to access the Inlet I am so proud of my Heritage and thankful for all the sacrafice that occurred to make us all Free.

So today as I celebrate the “Inlet Wave of Freedom” I am very thankful that my family decided that Murrells Inlet was the best place for them to land and that they had the freedom to make choices and follow their passions in this wonderful place I call home. I am also thankful to have been given the honor to be able to help many families find homes they love in Murrells Inlet and share this wonderful place with anyone who will listen. God Bless America and God Bless Murrells Inlet, South Carolina. Copyright©2011 Sandra Bundy, Broker-in-Charge, B&P, Inc. Serving the Pee Dee and Grand Strand of South Carolina.

A Murrells Inlet Fourth of July

When it comes to celebrating our independence Murrells Inlet certainly knows how to roll out the welcome mat and is home to some of the best July 4th celebrations on the Grand Strand. Much more than just the Seafood Capital of South Carolina the Murrells Inlet community is home to 2 great events on the 4th of July and the Murrells Inlet Boat Parade and Fireworks celebration are always crowd pleasers.

What started as a few friends celebrating the 4th on the creek has turned into one of the most popular and well attended parades on the water in Murrells Inlet. I was on a sailboat that year and it was great fun but certainly a much smaller event than it is today. There was no Marshwalk for spectators and Garden City participation was much more limited.

July 4th 2011 marks the 28th annual Murrells Inlet Boat Parade and boats will line up for the parade leaving the Garden City point at 10:00 a.m. Over the years the Murrells Inlet Boat Parade themes have proved to be quite an inspiration for the entrants and this year’s “Ride the Inlet Wave of Freedom’ is sure to inspire many more as both boats and boat docks from Garden City to Murrells Inlet are decorated to compete for the Murrells Inlet top prize and bragging rights as the best!

The popularity of the Murrells Inlet Boat Parade has grown every year and while viewing is possible from at private homes in Garden City and peeks from Marlin Quay Marina the best place to view the parade is along the Murrells Inlet Marshwalk. Want to hang out all day and have a seat for the festivities check in at Bubba’s Love Shack or Capt. Dave’s Dockside and ask about the $50 rocking chair rental with all proceeds going to Murrells Inlet 2020.

The Marshwalk is also one of the best public viewing locations for the Murrells Inlet Fireworks extravaganza that will start at 10 p.m. This years fireworks are set to be bigger and better than ever and when it comes to celebrating the 4th of July Murrells Inlet, South Carolina is definately the place to be.

Fishing for History in Murrells Inlet

Alex's Bait & Tackle Murrells Inlet SC

The Murrells Inlet History Project and Murrells Inlet Fishing are very popular facebook pages that prove that fishing in Murrells Inlet is enjoyed by the masses today, much as has been the joy of many locals and tourist alike in years past. While today many people have access to fish the Atlantic in personal watercraft back in the day Murrells Inlet was home to no less than 3 Marinas each with head boats to take fishermen out for half and full day trips and was a big part of the Murrells Inlet experience much like the seafood resturants are today.

I remember how busy it used to be around Captain Alex Marina before the 7 am departure of the Capt. Alex and the air of anticipation as the passengers arrived to get on board to head out to the Gulf Stream for a full day of fishing. Back then fishing in Murrells Inlet was much more of an adventure and my daddy certainly took a huge leap when he and my mother brought the first Gulf Stream Head Boat to Murrells Inlet and made fishing more accessible to all. I didn’t know enough at the time to appreciate the pioneering spirit my parents along with the other great boat captains and crews had as they made the daily trips out of Murrells Inlet to go catch the big fish.

Yes the fastest boat that would take passengers to the Gulf Stream in two and a half hours proved to be quite popular and the 6 pm return became an event that was much more important when nobody watched TV and the Sun News reported on the large catches on a regular basis. The lines would be stretching out the door at the Bay Harbor Resturant and one of the local kids would be outside ringing the old bell behind the rose garden alerting everyone that the Capt. Alex was backing into the dock with a load snapper and grouper from the day at sea.

The Capt. Bill, New Inlet Princess and Miss South Carolina were other popular headboats that docked in Murrells Inlet along with the Flying Fisher, Sun Gypsy, Thunderbird to name a few and all were head boats that dock along the Murrells Inlet waterfront where the popular Murrells Inlet Marshwalk is located today. The history of Murrells Inlet fishing is likely to change depending on the teller but one thing is for sure fishing in Murrells Inlet is as popular today as is was in the early days but today it is a whole lot easier to get out in the Inlet and go fish. Copyright©2011 Sandra Bundy, Broker-in-Charge, B&P, Inc. Serving the Pee Dee and Grand Strand of South Carolina.

Bubbas Love Shack

If you have ever strolled down the Murrells Inlet Marshwalk you could not miss ‘Bubba Love’ sitting on a bench with a seat just for you. 24/7 the wooded statue looks over the entry to the creek front walkway and welcomes you to take a load off and soak in goat island and great views beyond. The statue carved out by local artist Lee Arthur perfectly captures the essence of ‘Bubba Love’ and restaurateur Dave Owens carved out a niche with Bubbas Love Shack on the Marshwalk in Murrells Inlet.

From the moment you enter Bubbas Love Shack you can follow the story of ‘Bubba Love’ from goat tender to oyster catcher and everything in between spread out in the many photographs that cover the walls. Nothing fancy here at ‘Bubbas’ everyone feels right at home in the laid back atmosphere and first welcome from another wooden statue of this Murrells Inlet Icon.

If you are looking for fresh local seafood with no frills and fast friendly service with a lot of love ‘Bubbas Love Shack’ is the place. Serving lunch and dinner daily on the Marshwalk in Murrells Inlet. Best kept secrets: Friday lunch special of fried flounder with slaw and fries is a great bargin. Take a break in the brightly colored rocking chairs outside on the creek and soak it in!