If you’ve spent much time in Charleston, you know we essentially have one “off” month – January. And as January begins to wind to a close, the Holy City gears up for an exceptionally busy springtime. The somewhat official kickoff to the festival is the Southeastern Wildlife Exposition (SEWE), a three-day celebration of wildlife and nature through fine art, conservation education, sporting demonstrations, food and more.
The largest event of its kind in the United States, SEWE welcomes locals and visitors to a myriad of events at various parks and facilities around the City of Charleston. The first expo was in 1983 with just 100 exhibitors and 5,000 attendees. Today, more than 40,000 attendees come to see more than 500 artists, exhibitors and wildlife experts from around the world. In addition to educating the public about nature, wildlife and conservation, SEWE is a boom to the local economy, generating some $50 million for the area each year.
Special events in 2015 include:
- Living With Wolves presentation at the Charleston Music Hall: Jim and Jamie Dutcher spent six years living with a pack of wolves at the edge of Idaho’s Sawtooth Wilderness, and are returning to SEWE for an encore presentation. Dedicated to bringing about a better understanding of the true nature of wolves and their importance to a healthy ecosystem, they will share their intimate story and unique insight to life with the wolves.
- Richard Wiese at the Charleston Music Hall: Richard Wiese, host of “Born to Explore with Richard Wiese,” an Emmy Award-winning travel and adventure program on ABC, will bring his stories to life. Wiese is a world-class explorer, Emmy-winning producer, respected field scientist, author, and youngest recipient of the 100-year-old Explorer’s Club. Wiese has circled the globe, capturing images and living one adventure after another since a young age.
SEWE is Feb. 13-15 at various venues around the city. General admission 3-day tickets are $40 each; general admission 1-day tickets are $20 each. For more information or to purchase tickets online, visit www.sewe.com.
(photo at right by Paul Mulkey Images)