- Crown Reef Beach Resort and Waterpark
- 2913 South Ocean Blvd. - Myrtle Beach
- South Carolina 29577 - United States
- (800) 291-6598
Unofficially, the South Strand includes Surfside Beach, Garden City, Murrells Inlet, Litchfield Beach and Pawleys Island. Compared to the rest of the Grand Strand, the South Strand subscribes to a more leisurely pace and lifestyle. Many praise this stretch of land rich with marshland, uninhabited beaches, bountiful inlets and maritime forest as the Carolina coast's finest treasure.
Surfside Beach was incorporated on March 14, 1964, with 881 residents. Today, the town's year-round population is more than 4,000. Immediately adjacent to Myrtle Beach and most like it in nature, Surfside Beach is growing by leaps and bounds, and traffic is more than a little frustrating during peak season.
In recent years, Surfside's roads and its water and sewer systems have been completely modified. The town plans to construct a new police station and public works building and improve the Town Complex Administration Building. In addition, a new branch of the Horry County Library is nearing completion at Fuller Park. U.S. Highway 17 in Surfside is lined with restaurants, beachwear shops, attractions and retail areas.
Pawleys Island is one of the oldest resorts along the coastal Carolinas. In the 1800s, the tiny barrier island was a summer retreat for wealthy plantation owners and their families. Despite storms and the ravages of time, many of their cottages, weather-worn and rustic looking, still remain. Hence, for many years, the term "arrogantly shabby" has been used to describe Pawleys Island.
Today, Pawleys is known for its low-key lifestyle, handmade hammocks and the Gray Man, a friendly phantom who warns of impending hurricanes. The cherished lifestyle is carefully protected by Islanders; the 2-mile island was incorporated as a township in 1984. Strict limitations exist in local building codes, and the construction of high-rise condominiums and hotels is prohibited. A few bed and breakfast inns flourish, however, and offer a taste of beach living as it used to be... simple, unassuming and perfectly tranquil.
The Naming of the Strand
In magazines and newspapers, on billboards, in storefronts and phone books, wafting on the airwaves of radio and television, and rolling off the tongues of residents and tourists alike, you're bound to notice the much-loved moniker "The Grand Strand." The terminology is perfect, and most folks are so accustomed to the phrase, no one gives much thought to where it originated and what it means. For the record, here's the story.
C.B. Berry, North Myrtle Beach Historian
When local folks have a question about the history of North Myrtle Beach, they don't necessarily go to the library or even to the courthouse. They head straight for C.B. Berry, a Crescent Beach surveyor who carefully stores in his head everything from the area's most important incidents to amusing minutiae. Berry moved to the area in 1937 and has witnessed most of the North Strand's development. He has bountiful stories to tell; here's just one:
"Indians lived here," Berry said, adding that they must have been Lumbee Indians from the Lumberton/Fayetteville, North Carolina, area. He believes they migrated to the area at the times of the year when fishing was good. "We find evidence of that all the time on Waties Island." (Waties Island is an undeveloped island across Hogg Inlet from Cherry Grove. It was donated to Coastal Carolina University for use by its marine science department.)
"I found an old Indian burial mound and I knew it was a burial mound because it had shells on it. The Indian custom was to place a rock on the mound when they walked by it, if there were rocks there. There were no rocks here so they used shells. They even put sticks on it if there were no rocks or other objects. It was just a custom of the Indians to put something on the burial mound when they were walking the paths that went by the mound. I found that mound on Waties Island and I carried two or three different groups from different colleges... one group from Alabama students in archaeology. They confirmed that it was a burial mound.
"Although Jim Michie... he had some questions about it. He's the former state archaeologist. He tried to dig into it with a shovel without making a real archaeological exploration of it. He questioned whether it was a burial mound. But you can go under the straw up on that mound, and there's no other explanation as to why those shells are there. And then I found another mound about 300 feet from the first one. It's got pine straw over it. It rises up about 15 to 20 feet high. It's higher than the other sand dunes around. It predates white civilization in America... possibly a thousand years; it's hard to say."
"It's a pure forest now. I've tried to find it since then... I think the Indians probably didn't live permanently over there on the island. I think they came down here during fishing season because the fish were so prevalent. And, of course, for oysters and clams too. Some of them lived there, possibly during the summer time. I find Indian pottery most all places inland. If the land is high and close to water, you'll find Indian pottery sometimes on top of the ground. In a plowed field? When it rains, it will wash it and show it, sometimes, in the plowed field."