• IB Header Ad August 2022
  • CCES Header June 2022
  • GFS Palmetto Basics July 2022
  • Five Oaks Header Ad April 2022
  • YMCA August 2022 Header
  • SCCT Header August 2022

Author Archive

End of Summer Bucket List for Greenville, SC

Posted on |

Stressing up soaking up the very last of summer break and need ideas of things to do with your family in or near Greenville, SC? That’s what we are here for!

If the last couple weeks of summer break have snuck up on you and you’re blanking on ideas of things to with your kids that haven’t yet done or just need some places to make those memories before sending kids back to school, we’ve put together some ideas for you based on cost (because budgeting matters, right?).

Last of Summer Break Bucket List

Free/Cheap Things to Do

All of these suggestions will be either totally free or cheap, under $5/person.

Fairy Trail at Bullington Gardens

Things to do $5-$12/person

All of these things are a little more person, from $5 up to $12.

SUP rentals at Sesqui
SUP rental at Sesqui State Park

Things to do for $12+/person

These fun adventures are a little more costly per person but also fun!

Splash Island at Big Water Marina & Campground

What are your end of summer plans with your family?

2022 Homeschool Days near Greenville, SC

Posted on |

Looking for a fun homeschool day event near Greenville, SC to attend this school year? We have a list of local and regional places that offer Homeschool Days including farms, zoos, and amusement parks.

Part of the fun of homeschooling is all the field trips my kids and I take. We try to go out as often as possible to any number of places that give a hands-on, visual, and educational experience and always have a lot of fun.  

There are so many fantastic places in our area Upstate SC area that offer Homeschool Days specifically for homeschooling families. I put them together here to help all of us homeschoolers have some options for extending learning beyond the home environment. 

You may also find our Homeschool Guide to Greenville, SC, Field Trip Guide, and Homeschool Discounts stories helpful as you plan out your year.

Also, check out these Educational Things to Do Near Greenville, SC.


The Wienermobile is Headed to the Upstate, SC

Posted on | 7 Comments

If you’ve ever dreamed of getting a photo in front of the famous Oscar Mayer Wienermobile, you’re in luck. The literal hot dog on wheels will be in town August 18-20, 2022.

The Wiernermobile is 85-years-old so it’s more than likely you’ve heard of this American icon, if you’d like to describe the mobile hot dog as such. At every event, fans of the 27-foot headturner will be able to take photos of and with the Wiernermobile, peek inside, and even better, receive an honorary Hotdogger name and iconic Wiener Whistle.

If you are a collector of unique items, you’ll be pleased to know that it is only when you see the famous Wienermobile in person can you obtain the mini hot dog on wheels.

There is no cost to attend the events where the Wienermobile will be stationed and as the press release sent to us aptly said when encouraging people to come, that this event “could be a  once-in-a-lifetime experience.” Quite the high bar to clear but then again, this the Wienermobile.

Where to See the Wienermobile in the Upstate

Thursday, August 18

1636 Sandifer Boulevard, Seneca
Noon – 6 pm

Friday, August 19

115 Rolling Hills Circle
Noon – 6 pm  

Saturday, August 20

1286 18 Mile Road, Central
2-7 pm

Wienermobile Fun Facts

The Wienermobile was born in 1936 as a way to lift spirits during the Great Depression. Starting in 1988, a dozen Hotdoggers are trained every year to drive the Wienermobile and act as brand ambassadors and spokespeople.

Here are some fun facts about the Wienermobile:

– More people have been to space than driven the Wienermobile.  

– The Wienermobile has visited all 50 states and 10 countries.  

– The Wienermobile is 60 hot dogs long (27 feet), 24 hot dogs high (11 feet), and 11 hot dogs wide  (18 feet).  

– There have been 12 version of the Wienermobile over the years.

Have you ever seen the Wienermobile in person?

Best Places in Greenville for Indoor Birthday Parties

Posted on | 6 Comments

Looking for options for indoor parties? Whether you are trying to avoid the chilly winter months, or the scorching hot summer heat, having an indoor birthday party is always a great idea! Of course, it’s a big parent win not having to do any cleanup after the little tornadoes make their way through the party, cake, and decorations. Kidding Around Greenville has compiled a list of some of the best indoor venues for birthday parties! 

These suggestions are taken from both our reader recommendations as well as other recommendations that our staff has added. We would love to add to this list, so feel free to add your own favorite places in the comments. For even more birthday party ideas are sure to consult our Ultimate Birthday Guide to Upstate, SC. It’s packed with the many options that you can find in Greenville. In addition, we also have a list of 10 Inexpensive Birthday Parties, Birthday Parties for Babies, and Outdoor Birthday Parties.

This list includes recommendations from our readers as well as unpaid mentions of some of our sponsors.

Indoor Birthday Party Places in Greenville

The Pavilion

The Pavilion in Taylors gets big props from our readers. The Bounce House or Ice Skating parties are affordable and fun and include pizza, soft drinks, cake, and even ice cream. Packages also include a 2-hour rental of a private party room. The price is currently $20/child with a minimum of 10 guests and you can ice skate and jump for $24/person. 

400 Scottswood Road
Taylors, SC

Big Air

With locations in Greenville and Spartanburg, Big Air can offer awesome indoor birthday parties and often have some kind of deals going on. Birthday party packages include 10 jumpers, 60 minutes, 90 minutes, or 120 minutes of jumping depending on the package purchased, pizza, and drinks with 40 minutes of reserved seating time. Prices start at $300, with additional jump passes available for an additional fee.

660 Spartan Boulevard #200
Spartanburg, SC

36 Park Woodruff Drive
Greenville, SC


Good luck getting the kids to leave the giant trampoline and foam pit heaven of DEFY, although you may be able to drag them out because they are worn out! The birthday parties include set-up and take-down, plates, napkins, utensils, and cups, plus an hour of jump time. The Epic and VIP packages include 1 large pizza and 1 large soda for every 5 jumpers. Outside food and beverage are permitted, but the Basic Package must pay a $50 fee to bring in outside food. VIP and Epic packages can bring in food without charge. Parties start at $22/guest (minimum of 10 guests required).

48 Brookfield Oaks Drive
Greenville, SC

Sky Zone

Sky Zone offers a trampoline birthday party that includes pizza, drinks, 60 minutes in the party room, and more for up to 10 jumpers. They offer three packages to choose from, including:

  • Best Birthday Party ($275+tax; 90 minutes of jump time)
  • Black Light Party ($350 + tax; 120 minutes of jump time)
  • Little Leapers Party ($225 +tax; 60 minutes of jump time)

2465 Laurens Road
Greenville, SC

MOTIVE School of Movement

Want to party on a real ninja course designed by actual ninjas from the TV show? MOTIVE School of Movement offers parties for ages 5 and up and includes classic obstacles like the jumping spider, warped wall, rings, balance obstacles, and more! They offer parties Friday evening, Saturday, or Sunday. Prices start at $275.

10 Webb Road
Greenville, SC

The Children’s Museum of the Upstate

The Children’s Museum of the Upstate is one of the largest birthday party venues in Greenville. Birthday parties include private rooms, cupcakes, a dedicated party host, all-day admission to the museum included for you and your guests, and more! They also offer add-ons such as party games and LEGO land. Don’t miss our review. Prices start at $250.

300 College Street
Greenville, SC

Once Upon a Dream Parties

This beautiful indoor venue specializes in princess parties. Parties at the event venue include 2 hours of rental space, a character of your choice, songs, a dance with the birthday child, and more. You can even choose to purchase a full tea party with a princess character hosting the party from beginning to end.

1099 E. Butler Road
Greenville, SC

Golden Lanes & Skate

Go old school and have your child’s birthday party at roller-skating rinks Golden Lanes & Skate. They offer Skating Party Packages starting at $175.00 but also have Private Party Packages starting at $250.00 Golden Lanes also has a bowling alley and Bowling Package for up to 12 children starting at $175.00. Packages include pizza and soda in addition to skating.

108 Balcome Blvd
Simpsonville, SC

Dance Without Limits

This all-inclusive dance studio in Greer will host a dance party for your child at their beautiful indoor facility. Parties are for an hour and a half and can accommodate 20 children. Themes range from ballerina to hip hop to disco diva, or you can create your own theme. Parties cost $175 for students of the studio and $185 for those not members of the studio.

115 Pelham Road, Unit 24
Greenville, SC

The Little Gym of Greenville

While The Little Gym was named Best Gym Party by Parents Magazine, it was also highly recommended by KAG readers. The Little Gym birthday team handles everything from start to finish, including addressing and mailing invitations, all set-up and clean-up, and cake and juice boxes. They offer several themes to choose from. Prices start at $300 for up to 15 children. 

1607 Laurens Road Suite 102
Greenville, SC

Kangaroo Jax

This indoor venue features bounce houses, a mini-Ferris wheel, and a carousel. Kids will love this place for an indoor birthday party; Kangaroo Jax offers several birthday party packages, starting at $169 for weekday parties, and $269 for parties Friday through Sunday.

2437 Laurens Road
Greenville, SC

Pump It Up Greenville

This local bounce house venue gives parents peace of mind with a private bounce house arena for parties and pizza included. Pricing starts at $209 for small weekday parties and $289 for weekend parties for 10 children. They offer additional options for larger groups and offer a Classic, Delux, and Ultimate party package

75 Brookfield Oaks Drive, Suite 100
Greenville, SC

Rockstar Cheer

Rockstar Cheer in Greer provides 90 minutes (Package 1) or 120 minutes (Package 2) for facility usage that includes a tumble track, an inflatable game zone, spring floor, tables, and chairs. Parties allow for 20 kids and are $120 for Package 1 and $160 for Package 2.

428 S. Buncombe Road
Greer, SC

Kroc Center

There are lots of options to have fun at the Kroc Center in Greenville – from a pool party to a climbing wall to basketball or volleyball and tennis. A bounce house birthday party is even an option. Parties include 60 minutes of play in the bounce houses or pools, along with 90 minutes of time in the party room for 12 to 25 children. They also provide catering for birthday parties for an additional cost. You may bring it your dessert or birthday cake. 

424 Westfield Street
Greenville, SC

Read: Are You Familiar with the Kroc Center

TR Makers Co.

At TR Makers Co, the birthday boy/girl receives a special t-shirt made during the party by all the guests. Parties include art instruction and materials for 9 guests ages 4 and up and cost $250 for two hours. Options are available to add food but parents can also bring in their own food or order delivery. There are plenty of great places in the area of downtown Travelers Rest, like Sidewall Pizza.

3 South Main Street
Travelers Rest, SC

Open Art Studios

This downtown art studio is perfect for a small birthday party. For children ages 6 and older, they offer a beading project, drawing project, or pottery project based on a theme. Parties are 3 hours long, with two hours of instruction and one hour for cake and presents. Parties start at $325. The instructor at the party also assists in set up, cleaning up, and serving. Read our review here.

14 South Main Street
Greenville, SC

TReehouse Café & Studio

A birthday party at the TReehouse Café & Studio in Travelers Rest guarantees to be a great experience. Kids can paint, color, and enjoy great food while getting lost in their own worlds creating art. Review here.

27 South Main Street
Travelers Rest, SC

Climb @ Blue Ridge

Our readers love Climb @ Blue Ridge for indoor birthday parties – it’s a unique experience for any level of climber and a fairly affordable option for birthday parties with an 8-person minimum at $12/climber and be for 1.5 hours. There is a $5 fee for training and gear, and a $7/belayer fee (and a parent can be the belayer). One belayer is needed per 5 climbers. You can bring your own food.

301 Bulls Road
Taylors, SC

Make and Believe Artists

Your birthday party can include an art project at Make and Believe Artists in Simpsonville. The price is $15 per participant for a 90-minute party (minimum event fee of $200). You can pick three art activities to do while at the party to take home. Food, drink, and cake are allowed to be brought in. 

110 Academy Street
Simpsonville, SC
864. 245.3977

Palmetto Proper

Palmetto Proper offers three birthday party packages, including You Bring the Party, Meet In the Middle, or Instant Party! They offer a private play area rental, character appearances, snacks and treats, and other add on’s. The Instant Party package offers many of the add on’s in the package, along with several themes to choose from, party favors, full concessions, birthday cake, and a party host. Prices start at $149 for members / $175 for non-members. 

164 South Main Street
Travelers Rest, SC

ReCraft Creative Reuse Center

Your birthday child and their friends can create crafts during their special day at ReCraft Creative Reuse Center. Prices start at $150 for up to 12 crafters.
Check out our review of ReCraft Greenville

525 Haywood Road
Greenville, SC

Where was your child’s favorite birthday party held?


Our Birthday Party Guide to Greenville
Outdoor Birthday Parties
Birthday Parties for Babies

Ever Wanted to Homeschool at Dollywood in TN? You can with their special Homeschooling Days!

Posted on | No Comments

Did you know that the famed theme park, Dollywood, has Homeschool Days? The park offers reduced admission and educational programs plus all the fun of the rides and experience of the attractions.

If you are looking to have an adventure, Dollywood will be offering Homeschool Days for families that are utilizing the homeschool option. These days focus on mostly science and math – and really, what’s cooler than learning about the laws of physics by riding a roller coaster?

Dollywood Roller Coaster

Be sure to check out the newly installed whimsical area of the park, Wildwood Grove, complete with rides, including a new roller coaster called DragonFly. There is plenty to see and do at the park in addition to the educational programs offered these days.

What Do Homeschool Days Include?

Homeschool Days at Dollywood are geared for kids in Kindergarten through 12th and include a new curriculum, Science in the Park, that utilizes the scientific principles that make many of the rides at the park actually happen like velocity and speed.

Wildwood Grove at Dollywood

There will also be lots of visual learning through craftspeople doing glass-blowing, candle making, and forging. The Tennessee Valley Authority partnered with Dollywood to create STEM-related learning experience that kids can do throughout the park. Some activities are learning about water filtration, kinetic energy, solar and wind energy, eco-friendly transportation, and weather.

Kids can also learn about the science of birds by visiting the 30,000 square feet Eagle Mountain Sanctuary at the park, which houses the largest collection of non-releasable bald eagles in the country.

Admission & Dates

Normal admission to Dollywood is $79+ for people ages 10-61 but on Homeschool Days, parents can take advantage of $39/ticket for kids in grades K-12 and $49/ticket for each accompanying adult. Huge savings!

To obtain the tickets, you need to call (888) 428-6789 at least 72 hours ahead of your visit. These tickets are not available at the gate. Parking is $20/car so plan for that cost as well.

Homeschool days for 2022 are August 8 – September 19, 2022. The park is not open every day so be sure to look at the calendar before planning your trip. Dollywood Splash Country also has homeschool days from August 5 – September 5, 2022 and tickets are discounted to $37/person.

Where to Stay

Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort is a beautiful hotel that offers free transportation to the park. The resort is offering 20% off a standard room for homeschool families Sunday – Thursday.

We’ve personally stayed at these places below and can recommend them as wonderful options for families.

Margaritaville Island Hotel
A stay at this beautiful and trendy hotel will be a relaxing experience. Margarita makers are in every room and balconies overlook either the river or the Island at Pigeon Forge. You can explore the Island, take a ride on the Great Smoky Mountain Wheel, grab a margarita at the bar (or in your room) and just chill. Read our review of our stay at this awesome hotel. 

131 The Island Dr, Pigeon Forge, TN

Greystone Lodge By the River
One of the very last family-owned hotels in Gatlinburg, the Greystone dates back originally to the early 1960s and has become the go-to hotel for generations of families. The location cannot be beat as it is steps from the aquarium and across the street from Anakeesta, within walking distance to shops and restaurants. They also have a great pool and free breakfast. It’s perfect for families looking to have a restful and accommodating place to call home during their trip. We stayed there and absolutely loved it

559 Parkway, Gatlinburg, TN

Lounge chairs and tables with umbrellas between a creek and a swimming pool.

Foothills RV Park & Cabins
If you are not into tent camping but are still looking for a cheaper option than a hotel, Foothills has bare bones cabins to rent where you bring your own linens/sleeping bags and pillows. This is a good option if you’re really trying to stay within a budget but want someplace clean and comfortable. The location is right on the cusp of Pigeon Forge, very close to Dollywood, and maybe ten minutes from Gatlinburg. Camping cabins are rented April through October and start at $52/night.

4235 Huskey St, Pigeon Forge, TN

Camp Margaritaville RV Resort & Lodge
A water slide, pool, beautiful rooms, on-site restaurant, arcade, and amazing staff make this spot an incredible place to stay. Relaxation and fun are perfectly balanced here. Read our review of Camp Margaritaville RV Resort & Lodge to plan your own trip.https://8df11a05bc5a80e7908558409f80dec9.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-38/html/container.html

149 Cates Lane, Pigeon Forge, TN

Pool at Camp Margaritaville

Smoky Hollow Outdoor Resort
Stay in a covered wagon or tipi at this resort in Sevierville, TN for the ultimate pioneer adventure. The resort is close to Soaky Mountain and minutes from Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, and the Smokies. Read our review here.

660 Gists Creek Road, Sevierville, TN

Smoky Hollow Wagon

Go Lodge

Be blown away by the 17 room game mansion in Gatlinburg! It has more than 300 indoor and outdoor games and sleeps up to 20 people. This is perfect for a multi-family or big friends vacation and about 15 minutes from the main strip in Gatlinburg.

Camp LeConte
Kicking up the glamping a notch further is Camp LeConte, which offers a treehouse, safari tents, and a retro camper. You can even catch the trolley into Gatlinburg from the campground. Depending on the time of year, the two-person safari tent starts around $128/night. Read our review here.

1739 East Pkwy, Gatlinburg, TN

Open outdoor canvas tent with rustic swing, table and chairs, and hanging lights.

Other Things to Do Nearby

There are a ton of things to do in the Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge area. The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is minutes away – and it’s free. Anakeesta, the SkyBridge, PINK Jeep Tours, and lots more are all within a 20-30 minute drive of each other and excellent opportunities for both learning and fun.

Here is our Ultimate Guide to Gatlinburg & Pigeon Forge, which has lists of all kinds of activities to enjoy during a trip to the area.

Will you take your kids to Dollywood for Homeschool Days?

A Little Bit of Heaven in Pisgah Forest at Pilot Cove

Posted on | No Comments

Searching for the perfect weekend away? You’ll want to book your trip to Pilot Cove in Pisgah National Forest after you read KAG’s review written by Kristina Hernandez. Find out what this unique spot near Brevard, NC offers its guests and all the nearby things to do. Complimentary nights were given at Pilot Cove and all opinions are those of the author.


Pristine Island, An Hour From Greenville, SC, Has Splash Park and Cabins on Lake Hartwell

Posted on |

The Big Water Marina on Lake Hartwell, just an hour from Greenville, SC has tons of family-friendly entertainment, food, water options, and even beautiful cabins. So stay for a day, a weekend, or a week! Media tickets were provided to Splash Island for this review.

I came to the Big Water Marina for Splash Island but stayed for the relaxing island vibe and really wish I could have ended our day watching the sunset from the restaurant, J.R. Cash’s, but had to get back home – which, thankfully, was only an hour drive back to Greenville. There’s some pretty intense Margaritaville vibes happening here, which truly will leave you relaxed and happy and wanting to return.

It’s not just the amazing Splash Island floating obstacle course that shines here. It’s the tiny cabins, the delicious cuisine at the restaurant, the hammocks on the beach, the chill pirate ship playground right next to the restaurant, and the staff that make this place so cool. I’m here to tell you all about it.

About the Big Water Marina

The family-friendly atmosphere is immediately apparent at the marina and campground and once I met one of the owners, Trey Boggs, a fifth generation Anderson, SC resident, who has three daughters of his own, it was easy to figure out why. He spoke my language immediately as he explained how his kids just love the aqua park so much and get so worn out while the parents chill on the beach in the sand – or join in on the fun if they want.

“If the kids aren’t having fun, they are going to whine about leaving and parents won’t have any fun either,” Trey said.

Isn’t that the truth? There’s no danger of that happening at the Big Water Marina thankfully. Trey and his brother bought the marina back in 2017 and gradually added more acreage as time went on so that today, the marina is now about 200 acres in total and an island unto itself with multiple RV slots, boat slips, Splash Island, a restaurant, and shop.


Ever the entrepreneur, Trey and his brother are planning a lot of new builds in the near future, including treehouses, yurts, more cabins (more on those in a bit), adding to Splash Island, more RV pads, and beach tent camping.

Splash Island

Splash Island is an interlocking floating obstacle course on Lake Hartwell at the Big Water Marina. Wibit is a German company who manufactures the actual parts to the obstacle course and they are moveable to create new routes or add onto existing obstacles. This is the second Wibit course I’ve run (well, tried to run, more like slipped around) and it’s so much fun!

The course as they have it set up now is more than 80 feet long and is in deep enough water where you can safely jump off the highest obstacles and into the nice, warm water. They have monkey bars and running obstacles similar to the show, Wipeout, which I love to watch and laugh at all the people falling into the water. Now that I’ve done it myself, people are laughing at me falling into the water after failing to make it across some obstacle.

About to wipeout

My kids had such a blast and time just flew by. We were on the course for about two hours but it didn’t even feel that long except that we were completely and utterly exhausted. That thing is a major workout! Kids need to be 46 inches tall to do it by themselves. Kids under that height can still do it but they will need to have a parent or guardian with them on the course.

There was always a staff member on the course paying close attention to the kids – and adults – running it and just making sure everyone was safe. You have to wear lifejackets to do the course as well, which are provided. Tickets are $15/hour or $25/two hours. Splash Island will likely be open through September weather-dependent.

The Beach & Other Water Rentals

There’s a good size beach with sand at Big Water Marina in front of Splash Island. And they have chairs and hammocks and strung lights and picnic tables and I never wanted to leave. It was so relaxing. You don’t need to be doing the water obstacle course in order to use the beach and there is no charge to park or to be admitted to the sandy space on the lake. Pets can be there but they must be leashed and owners must clean up after them.

Big Water Marina also rents paddleboards, kayaks, hydrobikes, and pontoon boats. I didn’t know what a hydrobike was and the good people at the marina let me try one. They are fun! You basically just work it like you’re riding a bike, super easy but also a little tiring. You have to wear a lifejacket and kids ages 8+ who can reach the pedals can ride one. They are $25/hour but also are available for day and weekly rentals.

If a hydrobike isn’t up your alley, give a paddleboard or a kayak a try. I personally love paddleboarding and find it to be an excellent water activity. Those are $25/hour and kids must be age 13+. With kayaks, you can rent a single ($25/hour) or a tandem ($35/hour) and you can bring a smaller child with you on a tandem.

Pontoon boat rentals, which can fit up to 10 people, start at $330 for a half day (four hours). You can rent by half day, full day, sunset cruise, or a weekly rental.

Tiny Cabins

I have a thing for tiny houses. My dream is to live in one somewhere in the woods and read all the books I want. But until I can do that, I’m always on the hunt for awesome tiny cabins to stay in and I’ve finally found the perfect – and I mean, perfect – one at the Big Water Marina.

I got a tour of a one bedroom tiny cabin with a double loft (so a loft on both sides of the house), full kitchen, living area, bathroom, and porch and I want it so bad. I wanted to take that little cabin with me to my non-existent plot of land in a forest somewhere. It was so cute and beautiful and decorated with a rustic minimalism. There are ladders that lead to each loft that kids would just love and the master bedroom was gorgeous. They face west so you’ll get to enjoy a glass of wine on the porch and watch a stunning sunset. Trey tells me the sunsets there rival those of Key West. I’m gonna need to test that out.

There are one bedroom and two bedroom cabins. The one bedroom ones can fit a family of six and the two bedroom cabins can fit up to seven people. Cabins can generally fit between four and seven people comfortably. If a weekend getaway is on your mind or a quick summer family trip, this is the place. You’re saving on gas, you have the water and beach for activities, a restaurant to eat at or a kitchen in your cabin to cook in, and Splash Island to wear the kids out at. Prices vary for the different cabins and seasons.

J.R. Cash’s Grill & Bar

The restaurant on site at the marina, J.R. Cash’s Grill & Bar, has some Margaritaville vibes going on, complete with open air dining overlooking the lake, teal chairs, and strung lights. The food is upscale bar food with burgers, fish platters, chicken tenders, and shrimp, plus a creative cocktail menu.

On the suggestion of one of the staff members down at Splash Island, we got an order of the Chicken Tenders and oh my gosh, these chicken tenders were the most tender, flavorful and light chicken tenders I’ve ever had. The honey mustard sauce was really good as well. I may have to go back to this place just for these chicken tenders. We also tried a burger, which was super tasty. But oh, those chicken tenders.

Besides the chicken tenders at J.R. Cash’s, the pirate ship playground really made this place stand out. There is a legit pirate ship that has slides, swinging rings, rope ladders, and even a covered bow. So cool. My kids really loved this and once again, Big Water Marina proved they know what parents want when going out to dinner – a place for the kids to play and them to enjoy their drinks and food. The play area also had a hammock and tire swing for the bigger kids.

Honest Mom Review

I’ve been to a lot of neat places in our area but really, really loved this one for a few reasons. I felt that the owners thoughtfully took into consideration the needs of families to have quality time together in a fun and safe environment without having to even leave if they were staying at the campground. Everything they need is right there and it’s set up for maximum enjoyment. I was also so impressed by the staff members. They were attentive and kind and interacted with my kids and were just cool people. You could tell they liked being there.

Pirate Ship Playground

I think the biggest shocker for me was that this place was only an hour away from Greenville. An hour! This is easily a day trip or a weekend trip if I can snag one of those tiny homes. I can’t wait to see what Trey and his family does next at the Big Water Marina.

Tips on Visiting the Big Water Marina

There are a few important things to note if you want to visit the marina and Splash Island.

Aerial photo provided by Big Water Marina
  • Splash Island is open Thursday-Sunday so don’t go on Monday and except to achieve all your Wipeout dreams. Check the schedule before you go. They are open 10 am – 6 pm and the two hour sessions are 10 am – Noon, 1-3 pm, and 4-6 pm.
  • Purchase your tickets online to ensure your spot at Splash Island. They have a limit of 55 people per session. The cost for an hour is $15 and for two hours is $25. Kids must be 46″ tall to do the obstacle course by themselves.
  • J.R. Cash’s restaurant is open Thursday-Sunday as well and they don’t open until 3 pm on Thursday so just plan accordingly. We went to Splash Island first and then to eat and it worked out great since we were so hungry after doing the floating obstacle course.
  • You can bring chairs, tents, and coolers to the beach. There’s no admission or parking charge.
  • Bring water and a change of clothes. I hate driving around in a wet bathing suit and it’s hot so you really need to make sure you’re hydrated.

Are you planning to visit Big Water Marina?

Big Water Marina & Campground
320 Big Water Road, Starr, SC

11 Best Back-to-School Hacks Our Readers Swear By

Posted on |

Make back-to-school time easy this year! Our readers are really smart, which is why we asked them about their very best back-to-school hacks.

Getting back into the swing of things for a new school year is no joke. It is hard. The early mornings, the bus schedule, the lunch packing, the homework, the extracurricular sports, the chalkboard first day or school photos. It can be overwhelming, which is why we turned to the most knowledgeable group of people we know to ask for tips: our readers. Here’s what they said.

Back to School Hacks

Wilderness at the Smokies: This Resort Has 3 Waterparks in Sevierville, TN

Posted on |

Did you know Wilderness at the Smokies is under three hours’ drive and has three waterparks? Sign us up! Kristina took her family to Wilderness at the Smokies in Sevierville, TN to experience this family-friendly resort and tells us all about it and why it’s such a perfect place for a family trip. Thanks to the Wilderness at the Smokies for providing us with media tickets.

If you are looking for a weekend trip, a few days for a family vacation, or a special getaway with a birthday kid or special occasion, the Wilderness at the Smokies resort is an excellent option. Why? Because you don’t even need to leave the property for entertainment and dining. Park the car and have a blast. And it’s all under three hours driving distance from the Upstate.