Broadway at the Beach has become a familiar name and place for locals and tourists in the 20 years since it opened. But here are 20 facts you might not know about the entertainment complex:
▪ Lake Broadway was initially stocked with 29,000 fish. The fish eat 34,000 pounds of fish food annually.
▪ The city of Myrtle Beach owns Celebrity Circle, the road that loops the entertainment complex
▪ Liberty Brewery & Grill, one of the original tenants at Broadway, was one of the first brewpubs in S.C.
▪ Hard Rock Cafe, with its pyramid-shaped building, was Broadway’s first big anchor
▪ Lake Broadway totals 23 acres
▪ Broadway won the S.C. Governor’s Cup for tourism in 1997. The Governor’s Cup, given annually by the S.C. Parks, Recreation and Tourism department, is given to the state’s best travel destination.
▪ The complex sits on 350 acres with more land for future development
▪ Broadway hosts 30 fireworks shows every year and explodes nearly 100,000 shots over the lake by year’s end
▪ “Radio Broadway” is the complex’s very own pre-recorded radio station
▪ KISS, Lee Ann Rhimes, Joan Jett and Bill Cosby all performed at or visited Broadway
▪ Wee R Sweetz produces an average of 650 pounds of taffy a day
▪ Dragon’s Lair’s 30-foot animatronic dragon is named Sir Alfred. The dragon, a signature at the miniature golf course, regularly emerges from atop the course’s castle talking and spitting fire.
▪ Palace Theatre was originally called “Carolina Palace” – officials dropped “Carolina” so it wouldn’t be confused with another local live theater, the Carolina Opry.
▪ Broadway’s amusement area – “Pavilion Park” – opened after the Myrtle Beach Pavilion Amusement Park closed for good along the oceanfront and Ocean Boulevard in 2006. Burroughs & Chapin Co. Inc., which owns Broadway, also owned the Pavilion downtown.
▪ Pelican’s Ballpark, Hollywood Wax Museum and Legends in Concert are all considered Broadway at the Beach
▪ In May 1998, B&C canceled “The Village People” concert during the ‘98 Gay and Lesbian Pride Festival; officials said the festival “endangers the ‘traditional family values’' on which it is based.”
▪ Broadway developers originally planned to build at least four live theaters, but that didn’t pan out because the theater market had become saturated, B&C officials have said. Broadway is home to two live theaters, the Palace and Legends in Concert
▪ Sen. Strom Thurmond was one of a number of officials who attended the ribbon-cutting ceremony in September 1995. Others who attended: U.S. Rep. Mark Sanford and Grace McGown, then-director of S.C. Department of Parks, Recreation & Tourism.
▪ The bronze statues featured in the “Generations at Play” fountain, near the visitor’s center, took eight months to complete
▪ Dinosaur statues created from wood and plastic paint by Garden City Beach artist Shane Goosman