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Charleston-Born Vicious Biscuit Brings Fierce Flavors to Columbia Food Scene with New Location Coming Soon

Charleston-born Vicious Biscuit continues its rapid rise with the debut of its Columbia location this spring.

Mount Pleasant, S.C. – Vicious Biscuit, the award-winning fast-casual breakfast concept and Southern-made originator of bold biscuit creations, is coming soon to Columbia, South Carolina. The new location is set to open this spring at 3246 Forest Drive in Forest Acres.

Vicious Biscuit has amassed a devoted following of brunch fanatics with its irresistible biscuit inventions and unrivaled Southern hospitality.

Rising from Charleston, SC, Vicious Biscuit has amassed a devoted following of brunch fanatics with its vast menu of irresistible biscuit inventions and unrivaled Southern hospitality. Fierce flavors and imaginative combinations have garnered numerous accolades, with playfully dubbed favorites like The Vicious, The Fat Boy, Hen Solo and The Animal Farm. Shareable plates like Sweet Puppies coupled with Vicious Biscuit’s warm, attentive service highlight the brand’s multi-generational appeal in making brunch fun for guests of all ages.

“We are thrilled to bring Vicious Biscuit to Columbia,” says CEO and co-founder George McLaughlin. “This vibrant city is a perfect match for our brand’s lively energy and unique spin on Southern classics. Above all, our team is committed to delivering unparalleled service to our guests. We can’t wait to welcome Columbia locals and visitors, and caution them that our over-the-top menu may cause extreme mouth-watering.”

Vicious Biscuit’s newest location marks a homecoming for George McLaughlin, who began his prolific restaurant development career in Columbia.

Vicious Biscuit will serve weekday guests from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday, and on weekends from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Inside the new 3,250 square-foot Columbia location, Vicious Biscuit’s foodie-driven design and warm, attentive service invite guests to linger. The all-day-delicious menu spotlights its towering namesake: buttery, freshly baked biscuits sandwiching a bevy of indulgent twists on brunch traditions – from crispy fried chicken, candied bacon and maple sausage gravy to huevos rancheros and fried shrimp with Thai chili slaw. Guests can also pair brunch cocktails with Southern staples like shrimp and grits and jalapeno cheddar hush puppies, or lightly Vicious options like the keto bowl and oatmeal power bowl – all complemented by Vicious Biscuit’s beloved “Jam Bar” of custom fruit jams and house-made butters.

For employment opportunities with Vicious Biscuit, please visit

A Founder’s Homecoming Story

Vicious Biscuit’s soon-to-open Columbia location holds a special place in the brand’s growing portfolio: it was here that co-founder George McLaughlin opened his first franchise location of McAlister’s Deli, launching a prolific career as a restaurateur and developer. In 2004, McLaughlin opened The Original Italian Pie, housed in the exact location that Vicious Biscuit is now set to occupy more than two decades later.

“It’s an immense privilege to serve the community whose support was so instrumental in my formative years,” McLaughlin says. “Coming back to Columbia is truly a full-circle moment for me on the path from franchisee to franchisor. I’m excited to return to these familiar roots, and for our local guests to feel equally at home at Vicious Biscuit.”

Baked up as a Charleston-born business in 2018, Vicious Biscuit’s immediate success propelled a rapid rise as the brand expanded from its Mount Pleasant flagship to additional locations in South Carolina and across state lines.

Fresh off its five-year milestone, Vicious Biscuit currently operates six locations in three states, with its seventh coming soon to Columbia – growing its presence from the South’s culinary epicenter into North Carolina and Florida. Coinciding with its corporate development, the brand also recently awarded 38 franchise units in Utah, Florida, Ohio, Mississippi, Indiana, Louisiana, Alabama and Tennessee.

About Vicious Biscuit
Vicious Biscuit is a trailblazing fast-casual breakfast brand born in 2018 from the visionary minds of veteran restaurateur George McLaughlin and biscuit innovator Michael Greeley. Rooted in the heart of the South where biscuits are king, the brand serves up irresistibly delicious, creatively handcrafted comfort meals with the fiercest commitment to fresh, quality ingredients and unparalleled Southern hospitality. Vicious Biscuit’s over-the-top, fork-and-knife favorites have garnered numerous accolades and an appearance on The Cooking Channel’s “Food Paradise.” From its flagship in Mount Pleasant, SC, Vicious Biscuit now owns and operates seven locations across South Carolina, North Carolina and Florida. The rapidly expanding brand will also count 38 franchise locations in Utah, Florida, Ohio, Mississippi, Indiana, Louisiana, Alabama and Tennessee. Visit or follow Vicious Biscuit on Instagram @viciousbiscuits.

Global Water Center’s Co-Founder Dr. George Greene Transitions To Executive Chair Of The Board

CHARLESTON, S.C. — Global Water Center’s co-founder Dr. George Greene has transitioned from his role as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) to Executive Chair of the Board of Directors. On Friday, Feb. 9, Global Water Center’s Board of Directors unanimously appointed Thomas (TJ) Johnston, the former Chief Operations Officer (COO), as the organization’s new CEO.

“As Dr. Greene transitions to the leadership role of Executive Chair of our Board of Directors, I am honored to step into the role of CEO of Global Water Center,” Johnston said. “Global Water Center has an amazing leadership team, and together with them, we will press on in our mission to end global water poverty.”

Since becoming the COO of Global Water Center, Johnston has grown the non-profit’s team from 4 to 15 employees, bringing on many highly respected leaders from within the water sector. Johnston’s leadership experience has been varied and rich: from his work as an environmental lawyer to starting a non-profit in Haiti to serving as an Anglican Bishop.

Dr. Greene has worked on solving the global water crisis for over 25 years as co-founder and former CEO of both Water Mission and Global Water Center. During this transition time, Dr. Greene shared his full support of Johnston. “TJ Johnston’s strong leadership and team-building skills will ensure Global Water Center continues to move forward in its mission to end the global water crisis,” Dr. Greene said.

Regarding his new role, Johnston shared, “Global Water Center has a lot of bold dreams and exciting initiatives planned for 2024. We are building new trainings, forging new relationships, and harnessing new technology to bring safe water to more rural communities in Ghana, India, Zanzibar, Honduras, and beyond.”

“In 2024, I see something even bigger than training and technology. I see a movement of leaders transforming the rural water sector,” Johnston continued. “I see a movement of people who are committed to ending the water crisis together. I see a movement that will not stop until it brings safely managed water to everyone, everywhere.”

About Global Water Center

Global Water Center believes everyone deserves access to safely managed water. We provide education, innovation, and collaboration to keep rural water sources safe and flowing for good. As the go-to resource for the rural water sector, our safe water education courses have reached people in 81 countries. In addition to education, we also use innovative technology to make water projects more effective and reliable. All of our efforts are rooted in collaboration with non-profits, governments, and other entities. Together, we are solving the global water crisis.

Fifth Third Bank To Sponsor Three WTA Professional Tennis Tournaments In Charleston

CHARLESTON, S.C. – Fifth Third Bank announced its commitment to women’s sports and professional tennis through a new sponsorship of the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) 500 Credit One Charleston Open at Live To Play (LTP) Daniel Island and title sponsorship of two WTA 125 tennis tournaments at LTP Mount Pleasant.

The Fifth Third WTA 125 events, which will be contested March 10 – 16, 2024 and November 18 – 24, 2024, will feature a singles draw of 32 players and a doubles draw of 16 players. In addition, the Bank has partnered with the Charleston Open as an event sponsor and co-presenter of Tennis In The City, the tournament’s annual city-wide initiative to grow youth tennis in the Charleston community and provide affordable, quality tennis instruction to kids.

“I had the opportunity to spend time with the Fifth Third team to get a better understanding of who they are and their mission as they expand into the Charleston market,” said Bob Moran, president of Beemok Sports & Entertainment. “As we identified a need to provide lower ranked WTA players the opportunity to both play more and earn a living, Fifth Third quickly joined us, discerning a perfect fit to support women and help provide financial stability for players who are still making their way in their careers.”

“Their commitment to improving both the lives of their customers and the communities they serve resonated with me. Their partnership with the Charleston Open is a great addition, however their excitement with the idea of supporting our new WTA 125 events was uplifting.”

WTA 125 level tournaments play an important role in providing an opportunity for professional tennis players to progress on the Hologic WTA Tour, earn ranking points and compensation. They strengthen the caliber of women’s professional tennis by giving new and seasoned players more freedom and possibility to compete during the year, which allows for growth and access to qualifying and main draw appearances at larger tournaments.

As part of Fifth Third’s commitment to championing women athletes and going the extra mile in banking, the company has agreed to go a “Fifth Third Better” and will provide an additional 166.7 percent (5/3 = 166.7 percent) of the winner’s purse or $9,900 to the winners of both WTA 125 events.

“To pledge a bonus to the winner of each WTA 125 event in the form of a ‘Fifth Third more’ on top of prize money is impactful,” said Moran. “I want to express my thanks and gratitude for making life a ‘Fifth Third Better’ for the next generation of aspiring WTA players!”

Headquartered in Cincinnati, Fifth Third services businesses and communities through 11 states and 13 regions. The financial institution is continuing its growth in the Carolinas market, recently opening two branches in the Charleston-area, one on James Island and another in Mount Pleasant. Fifth Third began operating in South Carolina in 2011 with a commercial team in Greenville and, in 2020, opened the first branch location in that market.

“Several years ago, Fifth Third announced its commitment and investment in South Carolina. As we expanded into the Charleston market with our experienced Commercial Banking team, led by Jason Hessberg, followed by a mortgage team and retail locations, we have looked for ways to make meaningful connections in the community,” said Charlie Arndt, South Carolina market president, Fifth Third Bank. “Partnering with Beemok Sports & Entertainment on this incredible opportunity to support female athletes and an event that benefits the local economy fits our strategy.”

“As Charleston tennis and this state-of-the art venue continue to draw growing crowds to the Lowcountry, we will all benefit.”

This is the Bank’s first foray into tennis and women’s sports. They currently partner with the Cincinnati Bengals, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Los Angeles Lakers, among others.

About LTP:
LTP Mount Pleasant is a hub for tennis enthusiasts, offering nine clay courts, seven hard courts and two pickleball courts. Other on-site offerings include the LTP Professional Player Development Program, LTP Academy and Synchronicity. LTP also has a Daniel Island location. LTP is part of Beemok Sports & Entertainment, whose portfolio also includes the Credit One Stadium, the Credit One Charleston Open and the Cincinnati Open.

About Fifth Third:
Fifth Third is a bank that’s as long on innovation as it is on history. Since 1858, we’ve been helping individuals, families, businesses and communities grow through smart financial services that improve lives. Our list of firsts is extensive, and it’s one that continues to expand as we explore the intersection of tech-driven innovation, dedicated people and focused community impact. Fifth Third is one of the few U.S.-based banks to have been named among Ethisphere’s World’s Most Ethical Companies® for several years. With a commitment to taking care of our customers, employees, communities and shareholders, our goal is not only to be the nation’s highest performing regional bank, but to be the bank people most value and trust.

Fifth Third Bank, National Association, is a federally chartered institution. Fifth Third Bancorp is the indirect parent company of Fifth Third Bank, and its common stock is traded on the NASDAQ® Global Select Market under the symbol “FITB.” Investor information and press releases can be viewed at

Charleston Parks Conservancy Highlights 2023 Achievements and Unveils 2024 Projects

Charleston Parks Conservancy Highlights 2023 Achievements and Unveils 2024 Projects

The Charleston Parks Conservancy reflects on a transformative 2023, emphasizing impactful achievements beyond statistics. Stewarding 24 parks, the Conservancy’s commitment to environmental stewardship, community engagement, and education resonates across the Charleston area.

Key 2023 Achievements:
– Elevating Horticulture: The Conservancy planted 25,000 new plants in public spaces while increasing biodiversity in our urban spaces, a critical step to supporting wildlife, including birds and pollinators.
– Food Security Initiatives: Cultivated and donated 4,000 pounds of produce to local organizations addressing food insecurity.
– Community Outreach: 713 flower bouquets grown and donated to organizations supporting women and addressing social needs.
– Volunteer Engagement: Over 7,000 hours were donated by nearly 1,000 volunteers, contributing to watering, gardening, and harvesting efforts.
– Educational Programs: Hosted 40 free community events and educational programs, enriching community connections.
– Honeybee Hives: 1,024 ounces of honey harvested from 6 honeybee hives, showcasing sustainability efforts.
– Daffodil Project: Partnering with the Charleston Jewish Federation for the Daffodil Project, Charleston Parks Conservancy planted 1,500 bulbs in Marion Square to remember Holocaust victims.

“In 2023, our impactful initiatives extended beyond cultivating green spaces, weaving a dynamic tapestry that enhanced the lives of our residents and visitors. As we embark on the innovative projects lined up for 2024, we envision a city where nature thrives,” said Darlene Heater, Executive Director and CEO of Charleston Parks Conservancy. “Together, we are redefining the landscape, nurturing not just plants but a community where every individual finds a place to bloom.”

The realization of the Charleston Parks Conservancy’s ambitious 2024 program is made possible through the invaluable support of generous sponsors and supporters. Their commitment to education, environmental sustainability, and community well-being fuels the Conservancy’s innovative thinking and underscores the transformative impact it aims to achieve.

New 2024 projects include:
– Vego Garden Beds Grant: The Conservancy secured a $10,000 grant for raised Vego Garden beds from the HDR Foundation. The project aligns with HDR’s commitment to education, healthy communities and environmental stewardship.
– Charleston Trees: Dominion Energy and Bartlett Tree Experts committed to sponsoring 2024 Charleston Trees, supporting the city’s green initiatives by offering free trees to residents.
– “Design From Your Parks” Series: The Conservancy’s Horticulture Director will lead the series, unveiling the secrets of creating and maintaining stunning Lowcountry gardens across seasons.
– Wragg Square Improvements: Thanks to a generous donation from the McGee family and matching funds from the City of Charleston, Wragg Square will see a significant renovation and beautification in 2024.
– Ardmore Food Forest: A first-of-its-kind Food Forest supported by a grant from the South Carolina Forestry Commission, offers access to food trees, shrubs, and ground cover.
– Cut Flower Program Expansion: Expanding the program to a second location triples capacity, allowing the Conservancy to donate fresh flowers to more women in need through partnering with nonprofit organizations.
– Art Installation: The first art installation along the West Ashley Bikeway blends nature and art, creating a unique and inspiring experience for bikers and pedestrians alike.
– Colonial Lake Revitalization: While details on the revitalization are still unfolding, the Conservancy anticipates a harmonious blend of nature and design to the transformation.

For more information and an overview of all 2024 programs, visit or call 843.724.5003.

About the Charleston Parks Conservancy
The Charleston Parks Conservancy is a nonprofit organization dedicated to inspiring the people of Charleston to connect with their parks and create stunning public places and a strong community. For more than 15 years, the Conservancy has had a hand in renovating and beautifying 24 parks in partnership with the City of Charleston. Notable projects include the renovation of Colonial Lake, the Rose Pavilion at Hampton Park, Moultrie Playground, St. Julian Devine Community Center and Park, Magnolia Park and Community Garden, Medway Park and Community Garden, and Corrine Jones Community Garden. For more information, visit

Darius Rucker’s Riverfront Revival Music Festival Returns to North Charleston’s Riverfront Park

CHARLESTON, S.C. – Multi-time Diamond-certified artist and three-time GRAMMY Award-winner Darius Rucker has again teamed up with SRE Entertainment to bring the Riverfront Revival music festival back to North Charleston’s Riverfront Park for the third year in a row on Friday, October 11, and Saturday, October 12, 2024.

The lineup continues to impress every year, with this third iteration poised to be the best one yet. Festival goers will be able to enjoy a mix of country, Americana and rock music alongside a perfect pairing of local food, beverage, art and culture. Rucker will also grace the stage in his hometown once again.

Tickets are now available using a presale code received after signing up for Riverfront Revival’s e-newsletter on their website. Fans who are already signed up for the e-newsletter will receive the presale code directly to their inboxes. New to the offerings this year is a limited allotment of General Admission Plus tickets, available for full weekend passes, which include a private bar, seating and restrooms. VIP tickets, which are limited in quantity and have sold out two years in a row, include dedicated entrances and viewing areas in front of the stages, exclusive premium lounge areas, bars and restrooms. Prices start at $160 for General Admission, $325 for General Admission Plus, and $550 for VIP, plus taxes and fees.

“We couldn’t be more honored to help Darius Rucker bring this specially curated festival to his hometown for the third year in a row,” says SRE Entertainment partner Rob Lamble. “We’re eager to continue to create an experience for Charleston to enjoy the best music, food and culture the area has to offer.”

“My love for Charleston has influenced so much of my career. Riverfront Revival, which made my longtime dream of bringing a music festival to this community a reality, is a celebration of the Lowcountry that gets better every year,” notes Rucker. “We can’t wait to show you what we have in store for our third festival!”

Rucker and the Riverfront Revival team are excited to continue to give back philanthropically to the Charleston community, with proceeds from each ticket sold once again benefitting the Arts in Healing program at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) Children’s Hospital and Just Be You, a local nonprofit helping to build teens’ confidence self-love and self-compassion.

For more details, visit and follow @riverfrontrevival on Facebook and Instagram.

About Darius Rucker
Rucker first achieved multi-Platinum status in the music industry as lead singer and rhythm guitarist of the GRAMMY Award-winning band Hootie & the Blowfish, who have sold more than 25 million albums worldwide including their Double Diamond-certified (21x Platinum) debut Cracked Rear View, which remains among the top 10 best-selling studio albums of all time. Since releasing his first Country album in 2008, Rucker has earned a whole new legion of fans with four No. 1 albums on the Billboard Country chart plus 10 No. 1 singles at Country radio and 11 Gold, Platinum or multi-Platinum certified hits. Rucker was inducted as a Grand Ole Opry member in 2012 and in 2014 he won his third career GRAMMY Award for Best Solo Country Performance with his Diamond-certified (11x Platinum) version of “Wagon Wheel,” one of the top five best-selling Country songs of all time. His brand-new album Carolyn’s Boy is available everywhere now and his first book, a memoir titled “Learn to Live” is set for release via Dey Street Books on May 28.

As a lifelong philanthropist, Rucker co-chaired the capital campaign that generated $150 million to help build the new MUSC Shawn Jenkins Children’s Hospital in his hometown of Charleston, S.C. and has raised over $3.6 million for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital through his annual Darius & Friends benefit concert and golf tournament. In addition, Rucker has advocated for over 200 charitable causes supporting public education and junior golf programs in South Carolina through the Hootie & the Blowfish Foundation and serves as a National Chair for the National Museum of African American Music in Nashville, Tenn. Rucker is also an avid sports fan, with his Darius Rucker Collection by Fanatics apparel line available at, and he is part of the Music City Baseball investment group working to bring an MLB team to Tennessee in addition to serving as a partner at the MGC Sports & Entertainment agency.

For more information, visit and follow on social media @DariusRucker.


Media Contact for SRE Entertainment
Elizabeth Heuser

Media Contacts for Darius Rucker
Ebie McFarland | Janet Buck
Essential Broadcast Media, LLC |

14th Annual Teddy Bear Picnic in Hampton Park on March 3

14th Annual Teddy Bear Picnic is a free community wide event in Hampton Park on March 3

The Charleston Parks Conservancy announces the 14th annual Teddy Bear Picnic presented by Dominion Energy on March 3 from 1:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. This beloved tradition brings families together for a day of exploration and fun at Hampton Park. This year’s event, which is free and open to the public, has the theme “Where the Wild Things Are,” and promises to make it the premier family event to kick off springtime in Charleston. Registration is encouraged at

In its 14th year, the Teddy Bear Picnic has expanded the experience to include more live entertainment, a food truck village, a concessions stand, and exciting activities for children aged 2-10. The event will feature special performances by Kyle K’Otic, The V-Tones of Charleston, Watoto Academy of the Performing Arts, and Creative Edge Dance Studio.

Over 20 community partners throughout Hampton Park will offer engaging programs focused on horticulture, nature, health, wellness, community gardening, and public art. Dress up as your favorite Wild Things character and join us for an afternoon of adventure and excitement. Families are encouraged to bring their favorite stuffed animals to participate in the festivities. The Wild Rumpus Teddy Bear Parade will cap off the day with a triumphant “roar!”

“The Teddy Bear Picnic has evolved into a cherished tradition that brings joy to families and strengthens our community’s bond with nature,” said Darlene Heater, executive director of Charleston Parks Conservancy. “This event exemplifies the Conservancy’s commitment to creating vibrant public spaces where families can gather, play, and connect. It is not just a picnic; it’s a celebration of the wild spirit within us and a testament to the importance of fostering a deep appreciation for our parks.”

Children can bring their stuffed animals for the Teddy Bear “Emergency Room” sponsored by Access Urgent, where “doctors” will be on-site for necessary repairs.

The Teddy Bear Picnic is a free, rain-or-shine event. Food and beverages will be available for purchase. Join us in celebrating the spirit of the Wild Things and creating lasting memories with your loved ones. Families are invited to bring picnic lunches, blankets, and chairs and set up a picnic starting at 12:30 p.m.

Parking will be available in the bike lanes along Mary Murray Drive and on side streets surrounding Hampton Park.

For more information and to register, visit

About the Charleston Parks Conservancy

The Charleston Parks Conservancy is a nonprofit organization dedicated to inspiring the people of Charleston to connect with their parks and create stunning public places and a strong community. For more than 15 years, the Conservancy has had a hand in renovating and beautifying 24 parks in partnership with the City of Charleston. Notable projects include the renovation of Colonial Lake, the Rose Pavilion at Hampton Park, Moultrie Playground, St. Julian Devine Community Center and Park, Magnolia Park and Community Garden, Medway Park and Community Garden, and Corrine Jones Community Garden. For more information, visit

Compassion International Selects Water Mission as Partner in New Global WASH Alliance

Pilot WASH Project in Chimwenje, Malawi, Will Leverage Water Mission’s Safe Water Delivery Model

N. Charleston, SC — Water Mission is partnering with Compassion International on a global safe water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) alliance through a pilot project initiating in Chimwenje, Malawi. The alliance will strive to bring holistic care to children and families experiencing poverty through safe water access.

The newly piloted program will reach Chimwenje’s more than 6,000 residents upon completion in 2024. The project will mainstream Water Mission’s well-established safe water processes and standards in Compassion’s program in Malawi and help to refine and align operational standards and processes for joint church and community engagement.

“Water Mission’s technical excellence, church engagement strategies, and presence in vulnerable communities makes them a wonderful, strategically aligned partner for Compassion,” said Herb Ehresman, Director of Strategic Alliances at Compassion International. “We can reach exponentially more children and families through this partnership than we could on our own. We’re looking forward to working together to provide sustainable WASH programming to Compassion’s local church partners and participants in our child development program. Clean, safe water and improved hygiene and sanitation behaviors reduce diarrheal disease and help us to release children from poverty in Jesus’ name.”

WASH solutions change lives and create opportunities that can help break the cycle of poverty. Increased water security is linked to gains in food security, economic development, and improved health. Safe water access also enables and encourages healthy hygiene and sanitation behaviors. This access is particularly critical for children as they are less likely to experience malnutrition, disease, and death.

Children are less likely to miss school due to deadly water-related illnesses, increasing education outcomes. Parents are more productive at home and work, spending less time gathering water, freeing up time for women and children when they no longer spend hours a day walking in remote areas to gather water that often makes them sick.

Fifteen-year-old Rabecca is a student living in Chimwenje. She experiences the challenges of water scarcity daily, struggling in school because she spends so much time collecting water and cannot make it to school on time. “I wake up in the morning at 5 a.m. to fetch water, but there are many people there, so I go to school late,” Rabecca explained. “If you’re too late, the teachers send you home, so you miss a whole day of learning.” She collects water from a borehole that is downhill from a latrine, so the runoff contaminates the water. “My family gets sick, my younger sister especially. It just pains me when I miss school. I don’t feel good at all. When writing exams, I don’t perform well. [If I do well in school], I want to be a doctor.”

Water Mission and Compassion International have a history of serving together, most recently in 2023 while responding to extensive flooding from Cyclone Freddy. Compassion International provided a $150,000 grant for continued disaster response safe water projects, creating new safe water access for internally displaced people affected by the storm. This new WASH alliance will grow their shared work as faith-aligned organizations serving in remote, rural areas in Africa, Asia, and Latin America.

“As our partnership with Compassion International continues to grow, we are excited to serve alongside them, blessing people with safe and Living Water and meeting physical and spiritual needs,” said Water Mission CEO and President George Greene IV, PE. “The new WASH alliance will facilitate the sharing of information and best practices with the goal to accelerate our shared work to other countries beyond Malawi.”

As part of the project, there is a strong church engagement strategy designed to empower local church leaders with training and focused resources. Water Mission will mobilize the church in Chimwenje as a model to aid in WASH advocacy and training, which can positively improve community health.

Water Mission’s Living Water Program creates an environment where churches can share the gospel. These training activities empower local church leaders, which will lead to greater engagement in their local communities. Water Mission’s Living Water staff will collaborate with Compassion International’s Church Leadership Network to conduct a community survey to identify and eventually address needs in communities.

About Water Mission
Water Mission is a Christian engineering nonprofit that builds sustainable safe water solutions for people in developing countries, refugee camps, and disaster areas. Since 2001, Water Mission has served more than 8 million people in 60 countries, sharing safe water and the message of God’s love. Water Mission’s global headquarters is in North Charleston, SC, and the organization has more than 400 staff members based in Africa; Asia; and North, South, and Central America. Charity Navigator has awarded Water Mission its top four-star rating 17 years in a row, a distinction shared by less than 1% of the charities rated by the organization. To learn more, visit, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, YouTube, or X.

The Sanctuary at Kiawah Island Golf Resort Earns Triple Five-Star Rating

Kiawah Island, SC – For the second consecutive year, The Sanctuary at Kiawah Island Golf Resort has earned a Triple Five-Star rating from Forbes Travel Guide. The Sanctuary hotel, The Spa at The Sanctuary, and The Ocean Room, the resort’s flagship restaurant, were awarded Five Stars by the international authority on assessing service and facility standards. The Sanctuary becomes one of only fifteen properties worldwide to hold a Triple Five-Star rating.

“Everyone at The Sanctuary and throughout Kiawah Island Golf Resort is deeply honored to once again be recognized by Forbes Travel Guide as one of the world’s premier destinations,” says The Sanctuary General Manager, Bill Lacey. “The Five-Star rating recognizes properties that consistently provide the very highest level of anticipatory service, genuine hospitality, and unsurpassed amenities. To be listed as one of the handful of hotels across the globe that have earned the Triple Five-Star rating is a testament to the unwavering passion and dedication our entire team has for providing incomparable service to our valued guests.”

The Forbes Travel Guide is the only independent global rating system for luxury hotels, restaurants, spas and ocean cruises.
To learn more about The Sanctuary Hotel and Spa at Kiawah Island Golf resort, visit To view the full Star Ratings for 2023 and learn more about how Forbes Travel Guide determines its Star Ratings, visit

Located along 10 miles of pristine beach less than 30 miles south of Charleston, S.C., Kiawah Island Golf Resort consistently ranks as one of the country’s top resorts. It includes The Sanctuary at Kiawah Island Golf Resort, the resort’s Forbes Five Star/AAA Five Diamond 255-room hotel and spa, nearly 500 private villas and luxury homes, and five championship golf courses, including The Ocean Course, host of the 1991 Ryder Cup, the 2012 PGA Championship and 2021 PGA Championship. For 13 of the past 15 years, the resort has ranked as the number-one tennis resort in the world by, and features acclaimed recreation and nature programs. For more information, visit

Bryan Hunter, Director of Public Relations | 843-768-2749 |

Black Food Truck Festival Returns April 26-28

photo credit Katrina S. Crawford Photography

An incredible weekend of non-stop food, music and culture

The Black Food Truck Festival returns this spring celebrating Black businesses and culture with food, music, family friendly activities, and entertainment. Tickets are on sale now for the two-day festival on April 26-28 at the Exchange Park Fairgrounds in Ladson.

Food has played a significant role in Black culture for centuries. It has served as a means of preserving cultural traditions, a source of community and socialization, and a way to transmit historical and cultural knowledge. These dishes often have cultural and historical significance and can be traced back to the African diaspora. The Black Food Truck Festival celebrates this history by inviting over 40 food trucks offering an array of cuisines from Black American Soul Food to West African dishes.

photo credit Katrina S. Crawford Photography

In addition to highlighting the region’s food truck cuisine, the annual Black Food Truck Festival has a greater mission of making an economic and social impact on the community by showcasing and investing in Black-owned businesses.

Festival founder Marcus Hammond is thrilled about the national brand recognition the Black Food Truck Festival is garnering and the positive impact it brings to the vibrant city of Charleston. “This event goes beyond food; it is a family-friendly experience that captures the essence of black culture locally, nationally, and around the world.” Marcus continues, “Attendees will not only have the opportunity to network and enjoy an incredible atmosphere but also play a pivotal role in showcasing the rich beauty of black culture.”

photo credit Katrina S. Crawford Photography

This family friendly event also features live entertainment, dancing, artisans and a host of games and lounges. More activities, entertainment and performances are to be announced.

Festival times are 12 p.m. to 7 p.m. for general admission and 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. for VIP. The Exchange Park Fairgrounds is located at 9850 Highway 78 in Ladson, S.C. General admission ticket prices start at $20 with VIP starting at $140. Two day and weekend passes are available as well. Up for grabs are tickets to the Rhythm & Booze Opening Party at The Wonderer and Saturday Night After Party tickets. Tickets do not include food. Children ages 12 and under are admitted free. No pets allowed. Purchase tickets at Follow along on social media at @blackfoodtruckfestival.

Watch the 2023 Black Food Truck Festival Recap video:

Third Annual Car Show in Summerville to Benefit Families Living with Alzheimer’s and Related Dementia

March 23 Car Show to Benefit Families Living with Alzheimer’s and Related Dementia

The ARK of South Carolina announced that it will be hosting its third annual Car Show on Saturday, March 23, 2024, at Nexton (201 Sigma Drive, Summerville, SC 29483). The free, family-friendly event will be open to the public at 9 a.m. and will include food trucks, prizes, raffles, and, of course, cars. Car enthusiasts of all makes and models are invited to enter their vehicle for an entry fee of $25 by March 22 for a chance to win one of several awards. The onsite entry fee will increase to $30 per car on the day of the event.

Proceeds from this event will fund the nonprofit’s mission of providing hope and relief to families living with Alzheimer’s disease or related dementia. The ARK of South Carolina offers programs such as memory screenings, resource fairs, educational workshops, and support groups in Berkeley, Charleston, Colleton, Dorchester, and Orangeburg counties, plus respite centers in Harleyville and Summerville.

“The Car Show is always a vibrant celebration of community, compassion, and commitment, driving positive change for those in need,” said Peg Lahmeyer, executive director of The ARK of SC. “We understand the stresses that come with being a caregiver for someone living with Alzheimer’s, and we work to ensure that those caregivers know that they are not alone and have resources to help them on their caregiving journey.”

According to the Alzheimer’s Association, 219,000 caregivers bear the burden of dementia in the State of South Carolina, and 68% of these caregivers are living with chronic health conditions of their own. There are over 15,000 individuals living with Alzheimer’s Disease just in The ARK’s five-county service area (Charleston, Dorchester, Berkeley, Colleton, Orangeburg). Alzheimer’s Disease is a degenerative disease of the brain that affects memory, awareness, social conversation, loss of self-care, and speech.

Learn more and register a car to be featured in The ARK’s Third Annual Car Show at For more information regarding sponsorship levels, contact The ARK at or visit,

Based in Summerville, The ARK is a local nonsectarian nonprofit outreach program providing hope and relief to families living with Alzheimer’s Disease or Related Dementia (ADRD). Support services include social respite care, support groups, education, caregiver consultations, resource referrals, and community development. For more information, call 843-471-1360 or visit