Although humility is a staple of Charleston's southern charm, we are not reluctant to voice our love for our city. With pride oozing from the drawl in our words, we will describe the beauty of the harbor, the quality of the restaurants, the kindness of the people, and gently imply (but never outright say) that Charleston, S.C., might just be one of the best towns in the country. Well, it just so happens that Outside magazine agrees.
Charleston has been chosen as a top-10 finalist for the publication's Best Town Ever contest. The competition is held exclusively on Facebook, with comments and posts encouraged to help sway potential voters. The contest seeks to find cities that have a balance of culture, ease of living, beautiful scenery, and attention to sports and outdoor activities. Charleston's ever-growing art and restaurant scene, laid-back lifestyle, and abundance of postcard-worthy waterways, wetlands, and beaches make Charleston an obvious pick. But it is the Holy City's love of sports and outdoor activities that piqued Outside's interest. According to the Charleston Convention and Visitors Bureau, there has been a conscious attempt to bring major sporting events to the Lowcountry. The city hosts the Family Circle Cup, a countless number of nationally recognized regattas, the nation's third largest 10K run, and the 2012 PGA Championship. These events, along with smaller marathons, triathlons, hikes, and swims, have increased Charleston's reputation as a sports town.
Pit against cities from Oregon to Vermont, Colorado to New Hampshire, Charleston will have stiff competition. "Charleston shares a magnetism with these other cities, that brings good people," remarks Outside editor Ryan Krogh. He knows first hand all Charleston has to offer, as he enjoyed the Lowcountry waterways on an excursion to Bull Island. Although he has a sweet spot for the Holy City, he says it was the city's constant presence in nationa rankings that helped land it a spot in this year's top 10. The contest ends Sun. June 26.
Log on to facebook.com/outsidemagazine and click on the "Best Town" link to vote for Charleston. Also, submit your photos, videos, and comments to prove that Charleston truly is the best city in the nation. If America agrees, Charleston could be featured on the October 2011 cover and Outsideonline.com, and have an exclusive segment on Outside television. Take advantage of a guilt-free opportunity to gush about our great city and help Charleston win the title of Best Town Ever.