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A Visitor’s View of SC Old 96 District and Greenwood SC, Part 1

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We recently spent a weekend in South Carolina’s Old 96 District, and it was pretty much a perfect trip. I’ve been to the region before, but the only part of South Carolina my husband had ever explored was the coast … so the Old 96 was full of new adventures for us.

Our home base was the Inn on the Square in Greenwood – that’s Greenwood, not Greenville. Greenwood is perhaps best known to gardening enthusiasts – folks like my mom — as the headquarters of the Park Seed Company. The town still celebrates all things blooming with the South Carolina Festival of Flowers each June. But there’s a lot more to Greenwood than, well, things that are green.

The Inn is really charming, and it’s run by one of the most amazing hotel general managers I’ve had the privilege of meeting. Her name is Claire Griffith, and she’s affectionately called “Lady G.M.” She sets the tone for the whole hotel – so much fun, but also really committed to guest service. We checked in on a Friday evening and therefore got to sample their Carriage House restaurant’s famous Friday fish fry. (Well, I had shrimp … but both that and the flounder – Claire’s favorite – were delicious.) It should be noted, too, that breakfast is included with your stay at the Inn as each morning, guests visit the Carriage House for a full Southern breakfast that’s the perfect way to fuel up for a big day.

Uptown Greenwood is very walkable. Time your visit right and you can go to their famed farmers market. One morning we went poking around some of the indoor shops right down the street from our hotel. I’m particularly fond of Main & Maxwell, an art boutique (whose name gives away its street location) that specializes in South Carolina-made pieces. I always stop by when I’m in town and always leave with something special and one-of-a-kind.

We also visited McCaslan’s Book Store & Office Supply Inc. They have a great selection of books about the Old 96 District and South Carolina in general, but I’m also sort of obsessed with office supplies. You don’t often see an independent shop that can give the big office supply stores a run for their money … but their selection impressed me almost as much as the friendliness of the owners.

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