Our little piece of paradise brings in a whole lotta revenue for the state. The Charleston CVB ran some numbers last year and says that in 2015 the average individual spent $869 on food, drinks, lodging, and shopping during their stay. Let me be clear, that's just on themselves during a weekend vacation.
Developers and landholders in our area see these dollar signs and want a piece of the pie, so, now comes the trickle.
An apartment that in many cities would be considered condemned is now a pricy, "quaint bungalow in a historic part of town" and no, your landlord doesn't want to fix your toilet for you. A 200 square foot artist studio with a communal bathroom is costing them more than one would spend on organic groceries for a family of 4 boys, monthly. What about a cultural storefront Downtown? You know, those places that make Charleston so cool? Each first of the month comes with the realization that we entirely rely on this community and it's visitors to support us.
The power to maintain a colorful, delicious, thriving city falls into the hands of the people who like what they see, not those that provide the charm day-in and day-out.
This holiday season we, the creative community, ask you to think before you Amazon. Support your local gallery, boutique, coffee roaster, brewery, whatever. We thank you for giving us another year as America's #1 city.
Join us on December 1st from 5-8pm for the CGA Artwalk and our 'Holiday Market'!