The Best Christmas Events in Columbia, SC This Year

Christmas Events in Columbia

Columbia has its share of activities and attractions taking place this December. Check out some of these Christmas events in Columbia!

A great way to celebrate the time leading up to Christmas is to spend the holiday season attending festive events. Columbia has its share of activities and attractions taking place this December. Here are some of the Christmas events in Columbia that we’re looking forward to most.

Holiday Lights on the River: Attend the area’s largest drive-thru light show at Saluda Shoals Park, where more than a million lights are glowing. Until December 31st, there will be nightly activities, too. There’s a new entrance this year, so get directions at http://www.icrc.net/holiday-lights.

Laser Holidays: For an indoor light display, head to the SC State Museum, where a holiday-themed laser light show is projected in its planetarium. These musically choreographed laser displays are on weekends only. The planetarium is also showing a scientific, immersive experience studying the Bethlehem Star and its possible origin. Buy tickets at http://scmuseum.org/explore/planetarium/.

Main Street ICE: The city’s outdoor skating rink is the “cool” place to be; prices are affordable and the rink is open most evenings. Head to Boyd Plaza to show off your smooth moves—or to test your balance! Information is at http://columbiaparksandrecreationfoundation.org/mainstreetice/.

A Christmas Carol: No Christmas would be complete without a viewing of Dickens’ classic story. See Ebenezer Scrooge learn the error of his ways as the Town Theatre performs a musical version of A Christmas Carol. Tickets available at http://towntheatre.com/a-christmas-carol-the-musical/.

For a full list of the numerous other Christmas events in Columbia this winter, from theater shows to Santa meets, visit https://merrychristmascolumbia.com/category/holiday-events/.

Top Three State Parks in South Carolina

State Parks in South Carolina

Did you know there are 47 state parks in South Carolina? With that many, it can be hard to choose a destination, so here is our list of three of the best!

# 1 – Table Rock State Park Pickens

Table Rock State Park gets its name from the mountain that looms beautifully over the 3,000 acres that make up the park. The fun at this park is in the scenic hiking trails. Head down those time-worn paths and they’ll take you past stunning waterfalls and streams and up to the peaks of towering mountains.

# 2 – Edisto Beach State ParkEdisto Island

As far as oceanfront parks are concerned, Edisto Beach State Park is one of the finest. Camp right on the beach and fall asleep to the sound of waves softly crashing. Before you explore all of the exciting trails, be sure to visit the environmental education center so you can learn about the wildlife. Then you’ll know what to look for as you hike!

# 3 – Croft State Park – Spartanburg

There is a variety of activities to indulge in at Croft State Park. Rent a boat and fish at Lake Craig. Or ride your mountain bike through miles of trails. If you’re a horse lover, bring them along when you visit. Croft State Park is known for having the best equestrian trails in the state.

What are your favorite parks to frequent? Let us know in the comments below!

5 Great Restaurants in Columbia You Have to Try

Great Restaurants in Columbia

Driving a cool car is fun, but it’s even more fun when you can drive it to cool places! Columbia, South Carolina is filled with locations worth detouring to, including a wide selection of fancy, flavorful eateries. If you want to try a new bistro tonight, we suggest going to one of these great restaurants in Columbia.

  • Saluda’s: This upscale restaurant on Saluda Avenue serves up re-imagined Southern cuisine.
  • Alodia’s Cucina Italiana: Known as the best Italian eatery in the area, Alodia’s is a family restaurant where everything tastes like heaven.
  • Motor Supply Co. Bistro: We don’t just love this place for its name, but also for its innovative menu supplied by local ingredients.
  • Solstice Kitchen: A romantic place whose menu changes with the seasons, this intimate American restaurant will please your date and your taste buds.
  • Cellar on the Greene: While this bar specializes in a wide selection of wines, it also serves up simple, scrumptious dishes to accompany your drink.

Have any favorite restaurants you’d recommend?

Sunscreen Tips to Protect Your Skin at the Beach This Year

Sunscreen Tips to protect your skin

Now that summer is here, it’s time to hit the beach! Of course, the beach is a classic hot spot to not only get tanned – but also burned. Sunburns are more than just a source of temporary discomfort. Prolonged exposure to ultraviolet radiation can cause premature skin aging and even skin cancer.

Defend yourself at the beach this year, by using these sunscreen tips to protect your skin:

  • Know the difference between chemical sunscreens and physical sunscreens, which offer different UV filters and require differing application processes.
  • Be sure to cover all exposed skin – even your toes, ears, and as much of your scalp as you can.
  • Consider wearing loose clothing when outside the water, or look into a floppy, brimmed hat.
  • Check the expiration date on your sunscreen. There is a very good chance that expired sunscreens will not work. It’s worth it to pitch the old and buy more.
  • Set an alarm on your cell phone to remind you to re-apply sunscreen every couple of hours, even if you haven’t gotten in the water.

How do you protect yourself from the sun at the beach? Please, let us know in the comments.

Valentine’s Day in Columbia SC

Valentine's DayFebruary is almost here and you know what that means: the season of flowers, chocolates, and fancy dinners. We’re talking about Valentine’s Day! Looking for something special to do with someone special? There are plenty of great date options in Columbia, South Carolina.

Two restaurants in particular are offering special Valentine’s Day deals. Firstly is MoMo’s Bistro, a contemporary America restaurant. Patrons will enjoy live music and a four course meal for only $80 per couple. Want to pair some wine with dinner? MoMo’s is offering this addition for only $20.

Next is Solstice Kitchen, winner of Open Table’s Best Overall Restaurant. Come on Valentine’s Day for their wine and cocktail specials. Or you can head over to World of Beer for the Valentine’s Day Sweet Pairing. Enjoy beers like Youngs Chocolate Stout paired with Framboise cupcakes.

Valentine's DayLooking for something little more out of the ordinary? Go to Love on the Wild Side at the Riverbanks Zoo. Couples will experience a walking tour of the zoo and a dinner prepared by the Riverbank’s executive chef. The Harbison Theatre is also playing Casablanca, one of the most romantic movies of all time. Champagne and desserts will be provided before the feature.

Make this Valentine’s Day one to remember. Experience a truly magical night with your loved one in Columbia, South Carolina.

Toyota Accepts Pikes Peak Challenge

Colorado’s Pikes Peak will be the racing site for high-performance electric vehicles next month, including a Toyota TMG EV P002 motorsport.

This 12.4 mile course along the mountain will allow electric motors to race up one at a time. This exciting event has attracted many car companies over the past few years and Toyota believes that their motorsport has a shot at winning after setting an electric lap record at the Nürburgring Nordschleife.

The course for this race is quite different from the average racecar course.  Fumio Nutahara, driver of the Toyota TMG EV P002, along with the drivers will start off at an altitude of 9,390 feet and complete 156 total turns to reach the final destination at the 14,110 feet summit.

There will be one winner only on July 8. Check in to see if the TMG EV P002 can triumph over the other models on Pikes Peak.

Save in May Sales Event in Columbia South Carolina

The Toyota Save in May sales event is here. Toyota already offers highly reliable and well-constructed models, but with the Save in May event, there are even more reasons to buy a new Toyota.

Here are some of the great deals Dick Dyer Toyota is offering during this sale:

  • 2012 Prius: $259 a month for 39 months
  • 2012 Corolla: 0% APR financing for up to 48 months
  • 2012 Camry SE: $199 per month for 39 months
  • 2012 Avalon: $399 a month for 39 months
  • 2012 Venza: 0% APR financing for up to 60 months
  • 2012 Highlander: $279 a month for 39 months
  • 2012 Sienna: 0% APR financing for up to 60 months
  • 2012 Tacoma: 1.9% APR financing for 48 months
  • 2012 Tundra Double Cab: $319 a month for 39 months

This is just a snapshot of the savings being offered. To see the complete list of incentives and offers, visit the Dick Dyer Toyota website. Buy your new Toyota in May and save big!

Used Car Sales in Columbia South Carolina

Dick Dyer Toyota has some excellent used car sales going on now. Both the 2011 Hyundai Genesis and the 2011 Toyota Tundra are being offered at low, sale prices.

The 2011 Genesis is powered by a V6 engine, has 30,564 miles on it, and comes with leather seats, Bluetooth hands-free phone, auto-dimming rearview mirror, push-button start, and a universal home remote. This four-door sedan can be yours for only $23,006.

Next, the 2011 Toyota Tundra is rear-wheel drive Double Cab truck with seating for six. It is powered by a 4.6-liter V8 engine and has 30,284 miles on it. Standard features include dual-zone air conditioning, remote keyless entry, power locks and windows, and tire pressure monitor. Dick Dyer Toyota has priced this Tundra at $20,058.

Both of these models come with Dick Dyer Toyota’s Nationwide Lifetime Warranty and a CARFAX vehicle history report. Stop by the dealership to learn more or visit their website.

Toyota’s New Excess Wear and Use Protection Plan

Leasing a vehicle has its perks but it can also cause added stress and concern. Leasees often wonder what they will be charged if their leased car is dented, dinged, or scratched. And what if a rock hits the windshield or a part falls off?

Toyota understands these concerns and that is why Toyota Financial Services developed a new Excess Wear & Use protection plan (EWU). This plan is offered to leasees and takes care of any charges the customer would be responsible for at the end of the lease because of excess use and wear. This includes:

  • Interior stains, burns, or cuts
  • Tire, rim, or hubcap damage
  • Broken or scratched windshield, mirrors, or lights
  • Bumper dents, dings, or scratches
  • Body dents
  • Missing parts or equipment

Toyota is excited to offer this new EWU plan and to make the leasing process even more enjoyable and pain free. Contact Toyota Customer Service at 1-800-331-4331 with any questions you have.

2012 Toyota Camry Ranked Among Top Sedans

The 2012 Toyota Camry has been named among the year’s best sedans under $25,000. The Camry is no stranger to the spotlight, having held the title of America’s best-selling passenger car for nine consecutive years.

Toyota is looking to continue its rein of dominance in the competitive, midsize vehicle segment with the redesigned 2012 Toyota Camry.

The Camry has proven time and again that it has quite the fan-base, but Toyota hopes to gain the approval of a younger audience with a newly defined exterior look, retailored interior, and the addition of updated features, like Toyota’s new multimedia system, Entune.

The 2012 Toyota Camry received improvements in performance, fuel economy, cargo room, and passenger comfort, and standard equipment,

In addition, buyers have multiple under-the-hood options to choose from. The 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine delivers 178 horsepower and 25/35 mpg. Also available is the 3.5-liter V6 option, which delivers 268 horsepower and 21/30 mpg. Lastly, the Camry Hybrid offers drivers a fuel efficient alternative.

While the award for 2012’s best-selling passenger car is still up for grabs, it appears that the 2012 Toyota Camry will certainly be in contention. Stop by Dick Dyer Toyota to get your 2012 Camry today!