MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - Myrtle Beach is celebrating the 54th Annual Canadian-American Days Festival. The week is full of activities kicking off tourist season here in the Grand Strand.
The festival is underway and events continue through the week. Free events, concerts and tours are all happening, so if you're looking for a way to enjoy the weather we've all been waiting for, you have options.
Can-Am Days has been a success for 53 years and this year organizers expect no different. The festival kicked off Sunday, and Monday, there's a free concert at Inlet Square Mall. Performances by Legends in Concert and Beach Brass Quintet start at noon.
The Chamber plans this week around spring break in Canada to accommodate families there, but it's not just for Canadians. Americans are more than welcome to visit too, and they do every year.
New to the festival this year, the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce will host a meet-and-greet Wednesday thru Friday this week. This is on Oak Street at the chamber. You can meet chamber staff, and even the Consulate General of Canada will be in town. There will be a free breakfast then a free bus tour to show historical downtown Conway. You'll be able to explore the Riverwalk, take a trolley to the Horry County Museum and visit the downtown district.
The city prides itself on adding something new or fresh to the festival each year to keep people coming back.
"We're definitely brainstorming for next year to bring up, you know, different ideas," according to Kema Faulk, Can-Am Days coordinator. "We try not to have the same thing going on each year, which is why we brought in the meet and greet this year and a couple other this with Downtown Conway Live. So next year, we're definitely brainstorming on what we can do to um add more excitement to the event to keep visitors coming."
Now that the weather is finally warming up, the festival is as welcome to Canadians in town on spring break as it is to local business.
During the winter many businesses close or slow, but local leaders are working to make Can-Am Days kick off tourist season with a bang.
Two airlines that fly direct to Canada are bringing in solid numbers to the Grand Strand.
And more people visiting, means more money being spent. "Getting the Canadians in the area and the Snowbirds, they love to visit the Grand Strand area," says Faulk. "And this is just a great way to have them here. Just enjoy the 60 miles of the Grand Strand area, from Little River to Pawley's Island. And it's just a great opportunity for them during their spring break."
For the full list of events and information, visit the website: http://www.visitmyrtlebeach.com/things-to-do/events/can-am-days/.