21 Mar Historic Downtown Laurens, SC
Downtown Laurens, South Carolina is a historic community with roots that go back to the mid-18th century. Five roads intersect that lead to a charming and vibrant public square that is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. While still proud of its history, downtown Laurens is not resting on its laurels and living in the past. The public square is a beehive of activity with more than 140,000 square feet of commercial space housing unique shops, corner cafes, fine dining, and popular pubs.
There are a number of great places to grab a bite in Laurens, including the Clock Restaurant out at the fairgrounds and China Star on North Harper Street. Bojangles Chicken, a popular South Carolina eatery, has a restaurant on Hillcrest Drive selling its famous chicken and biscuits. Roma offers locals a chance to eat authentic Italian and Greek dishes at an affordable price; it’s a popular spot in downtown Laurens, South Carolina for large groups to meet.
One of the many “go to” spots downtown is The Capitol Theatre; originally constructed in 1926, the theatre has undergone a lengthy renovation and is finally showing first-run movies again. Aside from the Capitol Theatre, most types of entertainment in Laurens come in the form of outdoor activities. As part of South Carolina’s Old 96 District, Laurens offers a variety of options for camping, bicycling, fishing and hiking. There are many walking trails, streams and lakes in the area, as well as campsites where families can build memories while enjoying the great outdoors. Local campgrounds offer visitors the chance to rough it with just a blanket of stars, or you can pull in your 40 foot motorhome, plug in and enjoy a life of leisure.
The amphitheater in downtown Laurens, South Carolina is a great venue for concerts, conferences, weddings, and any public event that requires 3,000 comfortable seats. Popular entertainers like Hootie and the Blowfish and Tracy Lawrence have performed there. The annual “Boo in the Park” Halloween Festival draws well over 3,000 visitors each year to the amphitheater. The city has several other parks with idyllic settings either near the woods or river to promote an active outdoor lifestyle.
Along with the Halloween Festival, Laurens, South Carolina also hosts the Little River Spring Festival each year on the Saturday prior to Easter. The egg hunt is the star of the festival, but there are also craft stations and games for children. A free puppet show is a popular event for kids of all ages. The River Front Freedom Festival is the way the city celebrates the country’s independence each July. A talent show and concert lead into the grand finale ~ a fireworks display over the Little River.
There are three motels in Laurens offering weary travelers a place to lay their heads. Throughout the Old 96 District, there are a number of bed and breakfasts that allow visitors a chance to experience true hospitality and some real Southern home cooking. In nearby Clinton, look for the Farmhouse at Bush River Farm. The Farmhouse is an Irish Bed and Breakfast set in a beautiful rolling farmland where alpacas stroll behind stone walls and handcrafted accents by local artisans are everywhere you look. Enjoy queen beds covered in alpaca blankets, common game rooms, and an onsite masseuse to take the kinks out after a day of hiking.
Whether you’re just driving through or Laurens is your destination, take the time to explore and enjoy all the city has to offer!