After The Carolina Opry opened in 1986 in Surfside Beach, the live entertainment options on the Grand Strand forever changed, according to owner Calvin Gilmore.
Prior to the venue’s opening, there were no live family entertainment options in the area, he said, adding that he saw a need when visiting the area while in college.
Years later, after performing and touring during his musical career, he remembered the need for something for families to do in the Myrtle Beach area.
“I couldn’t believe all of the people,” Gilmore said. “There were people eating in restaurants, but there was no live family entertainment.”
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Over the years, family entertainment options have quadrupled on the Grand Strand, Gilmore said. But he said he hasn’t seen the number of tourists grow proportionally.
Gilmore said he sees a bright future for the Myrtle Beach area, for entertainment options and in general.
“I don’t think there’s any limit to what Myrtle Beach can do in the next 75 years because of it’s great central location on the coast and because of the beach,” he said.