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A Gullah festival is in the works in downtown Conway. Here’s what we know

Gullah food and Southern food, what’s the difference?

Ronald Daise, a Gullah culture preservationist, explains how Gullah food influenced Southern food.
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Ronald Daise, a Gullah culture preservationist, explains how Gullah food influenced Southern food.

Conway is looking to celebrate its Gullah heritage and population with a springtime festival.

On Monday, the City Council approved a special event permit for the Conway Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism to close Main Street on March 2 for a Gullah Heritage Festival. The U.S. 501 Business Bridge will still be closed, so Department Director Addison Jarrell said it shouldn’t disrupt traffic too much.

The Gullah culture originated from enslaved black people from West Africa. It continues to this day with its own unique food, customs and dialect. The Gullah population stretches along most of the southeastern seaboard, including Horry County.

The festival will take place from just before Scarborough Avenue to 3rd Avenue in downtown Conway, lasting from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Before voting to approve the festival, City Council Member Shane Hubbard had one caveat.

“I’m only going to vote ‘yes’ if someone promises to bring oxtails,” he joked before voting in favor of the festival.

Development and Horry County reporter Tyler Fleming joined The Sun News in May of 2018. He covers other stuff too, like reporting on beer, bears, breaking news and Coastal Carolina University. He graduated from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2018 and was the 2017-18 editor-in-chief of The Daily Tar Heel. He has won (and lost) several college journalism awards.


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