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Electrician Contractor in Columbia, SC

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We Keep Columbia Shining Bright

Electricity - it's one of the most important innovations in the history of humankind. It's hard to imagine life without electricity, and for good reason. Nearly every aspect of our lives is affected by electricity in some form or fashion, from the way you wash your clothes to the effort you put in at work. From a residential standpoint, you need it to cook, clean, entertain, and live comfortably. For commercial purposes, electricity is used to power the computers needed to keep America moving. That's why, when the electricity in your home or at your job is compromised, life grinds to a halt. Unfortunately, electrical problems are inevitable in today's day and age. When the electricity in your home or commercial workspace fails, you need a quick, effective solution that will get your life back on track. And that, in a nutshell, is where L&M Electric, Inc. shines the brightest.

Our company was founded in 2009 by Roger Lee and John Mezzles. With a combined 46 years of electrical experience, the two entrepreneurs set out to create a company that offers quality workmanship and unparalleled service to all its builders and clients. Today, we are proud to have served South Carolina for nearly two decades as the premier electrician contractor in Columbia, SC. Our family-owned business specializes in both residential and commercial electrical work. Our highly-trained team has the experience and skills to handle any electrical issue, from minor panel breaker problems to large-scale industrial issues.

Despite winning numerous awards and recognitions in the Southeast, we don't let our accolades go to our head. Our team is committed to providing effective, personalized electrical work for every one of our customers. We take pride in our ability to offer peace of mind to our customers when they need it most, and that's exactly what we aim to provide to you too. We're talking one-on-one service provided by a friendly, professional electrician. There are no corners cut, no hidden fees, and no excuses - only the highest quality work from the finest electricians in Columbia.

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What sets us apart from other electricians in Columbia, SC? It boils down to three reasons:
Customer-Centric, Quality Electric Service
Customer-Centric, Quality Electric Service

As guests in your home, you won't ever have to worry about a member of our team trying to sell you something you don't need. Our job is to serve your electrical needs. You expect the highest quality electrical work in South Carolina, and that's what we will provide.

Experienced, Affordable Electricians
Experienced, Affordable Electricians

You understand that the highest quality work requires fair compensation, but you're not made of money. Our commitment is to offer affordable electric work at a price you're satisfied paying.

Family Owned & Operated
Family Owned & Operated

We know that you are choosing L&M Electric for a reason. Unlike large corporations, we truly care about our customers. As a family business, serving you is personal for us. We stake our reputation on the quality of our work. As such, we are accountable and will always strive to deliver the service you have come to expect from our company.

Affordable Electric Service That Makes You Feel Like Family

At L&M Electric, we employ the brightest commercial and residential electricians in Columbia. Having electricians that specialize in both residential and commercial projects allow us to provide our customers with a wider range of services.

Our team fixes a broad range of electrical issues, but we have built our reputation on the following electric services:

 Smart Home Electrician Columbia, SC

Electrical Repairs

Every homeowner has to deal with an electrical component breaking or failing at some point. When that happens, you need a partner who can troubleshoot the problem and correct the issue efficiently and effectively. A few common problems that we help solve for our customers include:

  • Ceiling Fan Repair
  • Light Fixture Repair
  • Light Switch & Outlet Repair
  • Electrical Safety Inspection
 Smart Home Installation Columbia, SC

Electrical Installations

Whether you have a new ceiling fan that needs to be installed or you have a new electrical outlet that you'd like added to your bedroom, L&M Electric is here to help. Our team installs quality solutions every day of the week - there's no electrical installation job your residential electrician in Columbia, SC, can't handle. Here is a glance at some of the installation projects that we complete for homeowners:

  • Smart Home Installation
  • Electric Car Charging Station Installation
  • Whole-Home Surge Protection Installation
 Electrical Repairs Columbia, SC

Renovations and Remodeling

If you're renovating or remodeling your home, you need a professional electrician on-hand to work to properly install your new electrical devices and systems. Our skilled electricians are happy to work with you or your remodeling consultant to install your lights and keep your home shining bright. Common renovation and remodeling jobs include:

  • Hot Tub Wiring
  • Kitchen Lighting Renovations
  • Finished Basement Electrical Wiring
 Electrical Safety Inspection Company Columbia, SC

New Construction Electrical Projects

Many new construction homeowners stress about having their electrical system wired from scratch. For us, it's just another day on the job. If you're building your dream home, don't leave your electrical work to mediocre electricians. Trust L&M electric for reliable service and the highest quality electrical work in Columbia. A few new construction projects we handle are:

  • Breaker Panel Box Installation
  • Wiring for Backup Generator
  • Landscape Lighting Outdoors
  • Low Voltage Wiring
 Whole Home Electrical Install Columbia, SC

Your Residential Electrician in Columbia, SC

When you own a home, there's something inherently fulfilling about taking care of your property and fixing issues that pop up over time. When it comes to electrical work, however, DIY projects can be dangerous. Electricity is an amazing innovation, but if you aren't fully trained and licensed to handle such work, it's best to leave it to the experts at L&M Electric. Your home's safety is essential for you and your family. Our team will go above and beyond to ensure that your home's electrical system is operating correctly without any concerning problems.

With more than 60 years of combined experience as electricians, we are capable of troubleshooting and fixing a litany of electrical issues in your house. Keep reading to learn more about the most common electrical issues our customers report, along with some handy tips on how to remediate such problems.

Electrical Services Columbia, SC

Panel Breaker is Tripped

If you don't have any power in your home, it might be time to check your electrical panel to see if there are any tripped breakers. If you spot a tripped breaker, try your best to switch it over to its original position. If you can't, remember that some breakers need to be flipped to the "off" position before turning it back on. If you don't have any luck, give our office a call. We'll send a trained residential electrician in Columbia to your home to fix the problem on-site.

 Remodel And Renovation Electrical Work Columbia, SC

Overhead Fan Stops Working

If you have an overhead fan in your living room or bedroom, you know how quickly it can accumulate dust. Most homeowners clean up using a rod duster. However, sometimes homeowners accidentally hit the fan direction switch when doing so. But, instead of flipping it "on" or "off," they bump it into a limbo zone where neither direction is selected. When this happens, your overhead fan will not spin. If one of your fans stops working suddenly, this is one of the most common reasons why. If you're sure you didn't hit the fan direction switch, it could be an indication of a larger problem. In this case, call our office for a free phone consultation. We'll troubleshoot with you over the phone and if necessary, send out an electrician.

 Electrician Columbia, SC

Kitchen Breaker Keeps Tripping

If your home was built in the last 35 years, chances are it has two 20-amp circuits running to your kitchen countertop outlets. Newer homes will have three circuits. If you're constantly tripping the breaker to your kitchen, it's most likely because you have too many electrical devices connected to the same circuit. To help alleviate this problem, place appliances like coffee makers and toasters on two different circuits. That way, they can share the load.

At the end of the day, your home is your place of solitude and relaxation. But, when you have electrical issues in your home, things can quickly go from peaceful to problematic. Whether you're renovating your home and need a new room wired for power or your panel breaker keeps giving your problems, L&M Electric is here to assist. If you have questions about an issue or need to schedule service, our team is ready to help answer your questions and coordinate the best time for a residential electrician to come to your home in Columbia.

 Smart Home Electrician Columbia, SC

Tips to Save Money and Maintain Your Home's Electrical Systems

Unlike some of our competitors, who are reluctant to provide any information that might prevent them from making a buck, L&M Electric is all about empowering our customers. If we can offer sound advice that will educate our clients and help them save money, we have no problem doing so. That's why we have put together some helpful tips and tricks for maintaining your home's most common electrical systems. Because, at the end of the day, a little knowledge can go a long way when it comes to your family's safety.

 Smart Home Installation Columbia, SC

Install Surge Protectors

Intense lighting storms can cause powerful surges of electricity that ruin your home's electrical appliances and amenities. Surge protectors installed at your electrical panel can help prevent these surges by grounding the electricity running through your home. They do so by directing it away from your electrical devices. This common solution is inexpensive, effective, and always a better choice than replacing expensive items like TVs and computers.

 Electrical Repairs Columbia, SC

Examine Your Breaker Panel

Breaker panels control the power to your home. When they go bad or are damaged, there's a good chance that you will lose power to most of the rooms in your house. Open your breaker panel and keep a sharp eye out for signs of corrosion and rust. Double-check that each breaker you see flips on and off properly. If you notice corrosion or if the breaker switches won't flip, it's time to get in touch with a residential electrician in Columbia, SC, who can inspect your breaker panel and recommend upgrades if necessary.

 Electrical Safety Inspection Company Columbia, SC

Test Your GFIs

GFIs, or Ground Fault Interrupters, are similar to surge protectors in that they prevent electrical damage from happening in your home. The primary job of a GFI is to prevent electrical shocks that happen during a ground fault. Because water is a conductor of electricity, GFIs should be installed anywhere that an outlet comes into contact with water. You should try to test your GFIs every month, if possible, to ensure that they are working correctly. When you look closely at your GFI, you will notice a "test" and a "reset" button. Hit the "test" button to trip the GFI outlet and then hit "reset" to restore power. If your outlet resets, your GFI is working as it should. If not, you need to replace your GFI outlet. Because electricity is involved, we recommend hiring a professional to install new GFIs in your home. That way, you know the job is done right.

 Whole Home Electrical Install Columbia, SC

Replace Outdated Light Bulbs

The right light bulb can add the perfect amount of ambiance to your home. Eventually, however, even the best light bulbs will need replacing. While they don't need checking every month, it's a good idea to inspect all your bulbs at the beginning of the year. If any of your bulbs are dead, you should replace them. You should also consider replacing bulbs that are incandescent with LED lights. LED light bulbs may cost more upfront but use less electricity and are more efficient over the long run.

Electrical Services Columbia, SC

Schedule a Home Safety Inspection

In terms of preventative maintenance, scheduling a safety inspection for your home's electrical systems should be a high priority. These inspections will shine a light on the electrical features in your home that need to be fixed. Most modern electrical fires are caused by short circuit arcs, defective insulation, or broken wiring. An inspection conducted by a qualified electrician will help determine what needs to be fixed so you and your family stay safe in your home. Your inspector should cover your whole home and will examine common features such as:

  • Breakers
  • Fans
  • Exposed Wiring
  • Electrical Panels
  • Circuits
  • Switches
  • Outlets and More
 Remodel And Renovation Electrical Work Columbia, SC


he electrical system in your home brings it to life from the lights and appliances we use every day to the entertainment we all love and enjoy. You want an electrician that makes you feel safe while delivering the quality services you're promised.


Full-Service Electrical Work for Home and Business

Whether you need light switch services for your newly renovated home or need a generator installed at your commercial property, L&M Electric is here to serve you. Our team will get the job done right, so you can get back to loving your life in the Lowcountry.

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 Electrician Columbia, SC

Latest News in Columbia, SC

This company brings goats to mow your lawn. Will Columbia allow it to operate?

Pumpkin is an individual, but she’ll get her work done, Jacob Porter assures.“You hot, honey? Your water is over here if you want it,” he coos to her.Pumpkin’s colleag...

Pumpkin is an individual, but she’ll get her work done, Jacob Porter assures.

“You hot, honey? Your water is over here if you want it,” he coos to her.

Pumpkin’s colleagues — Sage, Paisley, Sally and Hot Mama — are already fully engrossed in consumption. As Pumpkin lazes under a tree to escape the mounting heat, Sally and Hot Mama are focused on the full, rounded leaves vining out before them.

The five goats will eat day and night for the next five or six days, working to clear weeds and overgrowth from a backyard on a residential street in Gaston, S.C.

Porter’s Green Goat Land Management promises to be an alternative to traditional landscaping. Hire goats to clear your weeds naturally, rather than using pesticides and heavy equipment, the sales pitch goes.

The idea has resonated, and Porter’s business has grown. But for Columbians wanting the Green Goat treatment, there’s a slight problem.

A lack of clarity in city code has meant operating in Columbia is a gamble for Porter. Goats aren’t technically allowed. He’s been allowed to operate by city officials, he says, unless someone complains.

On two recent jobs, somebody did. He had to pick up the goats, refund the customer and lose a day of business.

Now, he wants something written down. He’s asking the city to create new language to allow either a temporary use permit or some other consideration in city code that would allow his goats to work in the city.

Marilynn Fitzpatrick knew her yard was getting out of hand. So did the city — she was racking up Columbia code enforcement violations because of the overgrowth.

She needed an undeveloped lot and her backyard taken care of. She called a landscaping company and was quoted $1,800 for just the lot.

Dismayed, she hit the internet and stumbled across Porter’s website. She was quoted $500 for the whole job.

“I loved the idea, and as I shared it with other people, they loved the idea,” Fitzpatrick said.

She liked the idea of the goats for more than the reduced price tag. The goats were not loud, they didn’t smell, and they created an opportunity for a new experience, she said.

Porter is adamant on this point. The goats make little noise and don’t smell like a barnyard, two common fears of prospective customers. The animals also neutralize seeds once eaten, Porter explained, meaning their waste isn’t contributing to a new crop of weeds once they go.

“Goatscaping” is a growing industry nationwide. It’s been written about by academics and advertised by big businesses. Companies similar to Porter’s are popping up all over the U.S., and Porter’s isn’t even the only goatscaping company in South Carolina.

“Everybody tries to reinvent the wheel. ‘Oh, there’s a newer, better way. Look at this fancy chemical I made in the lab.’ Well, nature designed (goats) to fight invasive species,” Porter said.

Porter and his employees are fastidious about the goats. They have mineral water, and customers are given activated charcoal just in case a goat gets sick.

Before the goats came to Fitzpatrick’s property, two of Porter’s employees showed up to measure her yards and make sure there wasn’t anything poisonous to goats. The company also sets up fabric netting with a low-wattage electrical current to keep the goats corralled and to protect any trees or plants the goats aren’t supposed to eat.

Fitzpatrick was excited for the goats to arrive, and so were her friends, who were eager to come by and meet the animals.

On their first day at her house, she brought them Saltine crackers. She’d never interacted with goats before and was surprised to find they each had their own personalities.

Fitzpatrick doesn’t know who complained, but Porter was told the city received a dozen calls about the goats. A day after dropping them off, Porter had to return to collect them.

The goats did not have the time to finish Fitzpatrick’s yard, but she’s still eager to hire Porter back.

“He wouldn’t even have to call me,” she said.

Green Goat Land Management has around 500 clients — Porter gives this estimate by recalling that he sends each client a Christmas card and a square of goat-milk soap each holiday season, and this year he sent about 500.

He didn’t plan to run this kind of business. When he retired from the military, he planned to buy and flip property. He had some land he planned to tidy up and flip first. He bought eight goats to take care of the overgrowth, but before his property-flipping dreams took off, one of his neighbors noticed the goats.

“As soon as I sold that land, before I could buy some more, somebody asked me, ‘Can I use (the goats) for my backyard?” he said. Then another neighbor asked, then another.

“Then somebody in Camden said they needed 15 acres cleaned up, and it just never stopped,” he said.

Most of Porter’s business growth has been from word of mouth.

He’s worked steadily in Columbia for years, despite the murky city code. But not knowing if he’ll have to cut a job short due to local complaints has complicated accepting jobs in the area, he said.

Porter has a business license, liability insurance and an LLC, but city ordinance doesn’t allow goats or other farm animals. It also doesn’t expressly allow the type of electric netting he uses to keep his goats contained.

He said he’s been allowed to do business in Columbia as long as he informs animal control of his location, how many goats he’ll have and how long they’ll be there. But, if neighbors complain, he has to collect the animals.

About a year ago, he dropped his goats off for a job in Columbia, and then the next day he was called to collect them — the neighbors had complained.

He tried to get momentum then for an ordinance change, but nothing happened. This July, he dropped his goats off at Fitzpatrick’s house, expecting them to take several days to clear her property. Instead, neighbors again complained, and the goats had to be retrieved.

So, he started a petition to publicly ask the city to change its code. As of Aug. 1, the petition had just under 200 signatures. Over the last few weeks, he’s also been in touch with city officials, including City Council members. He has at least two members of council in his corner.

Council members Howard Duvall and Will Brennan plan to co-sponsor an ordinance change to unambiguously allow Porter’s business, Duvall said. When reached by phone Monday, Duvall said the city’s legal department was already working on the language.

Porter plans to go before City Council Aug. 15 to plead his case to the rest of the body.

This story was originally published August 2, 2023, 10:53 AM.

Best Internet Providers in Columbia, South Carolina

Verizon 5G Home Internet - Best 5G home internet provider in ColumbiaColumbia, South Carolina’s capital city whose name is abbreviated to "Cola," is perhaps unsurprisingly nicknamed "Soda City" and is famously hot. Pondering these two unrelated facts brings up two questions for ...

Verizon 5G Home Internet - Best 5G home internet provider in Columbia

Columbia, South Carolina’s capital city whose name is abbreviated to "Cola," is perhaps unsurprisingly nicknamed "Soda City" and is famously hot. Pondering these two unrelated facts brings up two questions for those of us who'd rather stay safely indoors at home to beat the heat, watching Netflix with a fizzy beverage in hand: Do the internet speeds in Columbia pop? And who is the best internet service provider in the city?

Good news for residents of the former home of the world's largest fire hydrant: median download speeds in Columbia exceed 200Mbps, according to Ookla data. To answer the second question, fiber internet from AT&T is available in Soda City and that makes AT&T Fiber our choice for the best internet service provider in Columbia.

CNET examines customer service, speed, pricing and overall value before recommending the best broadband in your area. While we recommend AT&T’s fiber internet, its expected speeds are on par with Spectrum’s, its largest competitor within Columbia, according to Ookla. Other than these two national brands, some Soda City citizens can connect to the internet with Verizon and T-Mobile’s 5G home internet, EarthLink (likely using AT&T’s network), smaller providers ispMint and EIN, as well as satellite internet through HughesNet or Viasat. Find out more about each of these options below.

Best internet providers in Soda City

The choice of ISP in Columbia mainly boils down to two main options: AT&T or Spectrum. However, the city is also serviced by T-Mobile, Verizon, EarthLink, two smaller carriers and satellite internet providers. All prices listed on this page reflect available discounts for setting up paperless billing. If you decide not to go with automatic monthly payments, your price will be higher.

Note: The prices, speeds and features detailed in the article text may differ from those listed in the product detail cards, which represent providers' national offerings. Your particular internet service options -- including prices and speeds -- depend on your address and may differ from those detailed here.

Source: CNET analysis of provider data

All available Columbia, South Carolina, residential internet providers

Most of the city will have access to AT&T’s fiber internet (or EarthLink's piggybacked option) or cable internet through Spectrum. In contrast, some neighborhoods have access to T-Mobile or Verizon's 5G options, as well as regional carriers ispMint and EIN. Here are the other options in the city not listed above.

Pricing details on Columbia, South Carolina, home internet service

Expect to spend around $50 per month to connect to the internet in Columbia. If you want more speed, there are many options to choose from. That's good news for people who want to beat the city's famous heat by staying indoors.

Cheap internet options in the Columbia metro area

Unfortunately, for those looking for cheap internet options in Columbia, there aren't many. Most plans start at $50 per month unless you’re an existing customer of T-Mobile or Verizon and are eligible for their 5G home internet offerings. That said, if you live in a low-income household, you might qualify for the FCC's Affordable Connectivity Program, which provides a discount of $30 monthly on home internet services.

Source: CNET analysis of provider data

Fastest internet providers in Columbia, South Carolina

Columbia residents have access to comfortable median download speeds above 200Mbps. Gig-plus options are available from AT&T, Spectrum or EarthLink for higher speeds. AT&T, EarthLink and EIN have the fastest hookup with 5,000Mbps fiber plans, though it should be noted that EarthLink and EIN are using AT&T’s network.

Source: CNET analysis of provider data

What’s the final word on internet providers in Columbia?

Most Columbia residents will be well served by AT&T's fiber internet or Spectrum's cable connection, the options most available in the city. Some Cola residents have access to 5G home internet from T-Mobile or Verizon -- each makes for a good option for existing customers of their wireless services due to the deep monthly discounts they offer.

How CNET chose the best internet providers in Columbia

Internet service providers are numerous and regional. Unlike the latest smartphone, laptop, router or kitchen tool, it's impractical to personally test every ISP in a given city. So what’s our approach? We start by researching the pricing, availability and speed information drawing on our own historical ISP data, the provider sites and mapping information from the Federal Communications Commission at

But it doesn’t end there. We go to the FCC's website to check our data and ensure we're considering every ISP that provides service in an area. We also input local addresses on provider websites to find specific options for residents. To evaluate how happy customers are with an ISP's service, we look at sources including the American Customer Satisfaction Index and J.D. Power. ISP plans and prices are subject to frequent changes; all information provided is accurate as of the time of publication.

Once we have this localized information, we ask three main questions:

While the answer to those questions is often layered and complex, the providers who come closest to "yes" on all three are the ones we recommend.

To explore our process in more depth, visit our How We Test ISPs page.

Internet providers in Columbia FAQs

Can another business use the name Motor Supply? Columbia top restaurant sues for name rights

One of Columbia’s top restaurants is suing a trucking company over the rights for the Motor Supply name.Motor Supply Company Bistro is one of the oldest restaurants in Columbia’s Vista a...

One of Columbia’s top restaurants is suing a trucking company over the rights for the Motor Supply name.

Motor Supply Company Bistro is one of the oldest restaurants in Columbia’s Vista and one of the top-rated city-wide. The upscale eatery opened in 1989 in a building formerly used by a mechanic and motor supply business – hence the restaurant’s name.

Now, a trucking company doing business as Motor Supply Inc. has caused confusion, a lawsuit seeking to defend the restaurant’s trademark alleges.

The two businesses have been quietly battling since late 2021. Now, a jury could decide who has a right to the Motor Supply name.

Motor Supply Co. is spelled out in bright neon letters on a vintage sign outside of one of Columbia’s premier fine dining restaurants. The business’ first owner, Eric Nord, found the sign while renovating the historic building and the rest was history.

Before he bought it, the structure housed an auto-shop. The owners were in their 90s and ready to retire, according to court filings.

Eddie Wales, a one-time waiter at Motor Supply Co. Bistro, bought the shop from Nord in 2000 and has led the restaurant ever since.

Motor Supply Inc, is a newer presence in Columbia. The long-haul trucking company was incorporated in 2019, according to the South Carolina Secretary of State’s Office. It’s website,, says it specializes in “dry van, flatbed, power only, and temperature-controlled freight.”

The company’s office address is listed as 1332 Main Street, Suite 204 – inside the Arcade Mall in downtown Columbia.

Wales learned about Motor Supply, Inc. in 2021. In November of that year, Wales’ attorneys sent the business a cease and desist letter asking that they stop using the Motor Supply name because it was causing confusion in town and among other business owners, according to a legal complaint filed Feb. 2022.

The confusion led some to question if the businesses were associated and other business owners asked Wales about the dual names, attorneys for the restaurant Lyndey Bryant and Kirby Shealy argued in the complaint.

“I’m not a litigious person, I’ve never been involved in a lawsuit or anything,” Wales told The State. “But we … have worked hard for over 33 years now to build this business and our brand in the Columbia area and the surrounding areas and I need to do what I have to to defend that brand.”

An attorney for Motor Supply Inc., the trucking company, did not respond to questions by press time.

The Motor Supply Co. Bistro is incorporated under the name The Vista Cafe, Inc, which it has operated under since 1989. In Nov. 2021, Wales trademarked the Motor Supply Company Bistro name. That trademark is active until Nov. 12, 2026, according to the South Carolina Secretary of State website.

Motor Supply Inc.’s attorneys have argued that “if there is no likelihood of confusion, classic trademark law mandates that it is possible that the exact same marks can peacefully coexist on different goods and services,” they wrote in a motion responding to Wales’ initial complaint.

Champion, Delta, Eagle and United, for example, are all names shared by companies in different industries, the response adds.

The attorneys argue that a restaurant is “vastly different and unrelated” to a trucking company and that Wales has not provided evidence that the shared names have harmed the Motor Supply Co. Bistro’s business.

The trucking company is being represented by Dawes Cooke, Hunter Freeman and John Fletcher.

The case is on a jury roster for Richland County Circuit Court, noting that the case won’t be heard before August 14.

Some help for parents looking for back to school supplies

Most events will help your student with back to school supplies, some ask you to register.Credit: TEGNASOUTH COLUMBIA, Columbia — Looking for some help with back to school supplies. Hers are some events to help your student get ready for the school year.Friday July 28, 2023Richland County --6pm Back to School drive thru (North Springs Park 1320 Clemson Road)We will have stations set up in the parking lot where you can stop to get each item bef...

Most events will help your student with back to school supplies, some ask you to register.

Credit: TEGNA

SOUTH COLUMBIA, Columbia — Looking for some help with back to school supplies. Hers are some events to help your student get ready for the school year.

Friday July 28, 2023

Richland County

--6pm Back to School drive thru (North Springs Park 1320 Clemson Road)

We will have stations set up in the parking lot where you can stop to get each item before heading home! Kids must be present in the car at the time of the event. Supplies are limited, and offered on a first-come, first served basis

Saturday July 29, 2023

Richland County

--9am-noon Jumpstart back to school ( First Choice Community Center, 217 Park Terrace Drive, Columbia)

Select Health of South Carolina's First Choice health plan will host its second Jump-Start Back-to-School event of the summer, featuring back-to-school information, children's activities, and backpacks with school supplies provided at no cost (while quantities last). The event will be held Saturday, July 29 from 9 a.m. to noon, at the First Choice Community Center, 217 Park Terrace Drive, Columbia, SC 29212. Participants are asked to register in advance by calling 1-888-676-9588.

--10am-11am Free bookbag giveaway (Irmo Community Park)

Arise Church is hosting out 4th Annual Back 2 School Bash & Book Bag Giveaway. We will be giving out FREE Book Bags FILLED with supplies (while supplies last) on July 29th at the Irmo Community Park 7505 Eastview Drive Irmo, SC 29063. We will also have music, bouncy houses, FREE SPORTS PHYSICALS, FREE FOOD, sno cones and much more. Please invite your friends and family!! We can't wait to see you there.

*each child has to be present to receive bookbag

RELATED: Students in the Clarendon County School District got free school supplies and backpacks

Sumter County

--11am-1pm Knowledge for College (Birnie Hope Center 210 S. Purdy Street Sumter )

Birnie Hope Park for the Knowledge for College Back to School Bash! Bring your kids, we will have school supplies, food, police and fire fighter demos!

SUNDAY July 25, 2023


--2pm Back to school bash (1337 Peach Tree Road Sumter)

Four Brothers with an Impact helping Hands food, back to school supplies, games.

TUESDAY August 1, 2023


-- 5:00pm-7:00pm (Irmo Strong Back to School Kick Off (Irmo High School 6671 St Andrews Rd, Columbia)

Irmo Strong Community Back to School Kick-Off The Irmo community is invited for an evening of information and resources to prepare children for the upcoming school year. The first 500 attendees enjoy a free Chick-fil-A dinner. There will also be a DJ, free books and a limited number of free backpacks and school supplies.

THURSDAY August 3, 2023

Richland County

--6pm Back to School Drive Thru (Meadowlake Park 600 Beckman Road)

We will have stations set up in the parking lot where you can stop to get each item before heading home! Kids must be present in the car at the time of the event. Supplies are limited, and offered on a first-come, first served basis

FRIDAY August 4, 2023

Richland County

--6pm Back to School drive thru (Friarsgate Park 1712 Chatford Road Irmo)

We will have stations set up in the parking lot where you can stop to get each item before heading home! Kids must be present in the car at the time of the event. Supplies are limited, and offered on a first-come, first served basis.

SATURDAY August 5, 2023

Richland County

--10am-4pm Welcome Back Shamrockfest 2023 (Eau Claire High School 4800 Monticello Road)

Free school supplies for students, food, music, vendors and hairstylists.

SUNDAY August 6, 2023

Richland County

--7am-4pm 2nd Back To School (1055 Sparkleberry Lane Ext Suite Q Columbia)

Live Music, back to school supplies, free hairstyles. More details call (803) 497-3001

THURSDAY August 10, 2023

Richland County

--6pm Back to School Drive Thru (St. Andrews Park 920 Beatty Road Columbia)

We will have stations set up in the parking lot where you can stop to get each item before heading home! Kids must be present in the car at the time of the event. Supplies are limited, and offered on a first-come, first served basis

FRIDAY August 11, 2023

Richland County

--6pm Back to School Drive Thru (Hopkins Park Hopkins Park Road Hopkins)

We will have stations set up in the parking lot where you can stop to get each item before heading home! Kids must be present in the car at the time of the event. Supplies are limited, and offered on a first-come, first served basis

SATURDAY August 12, 2023

Richland County

--11am Back To School Drive Thur (Eastover Park 1031 Main Street Eastover SC)

We will have stations set up in the parking lot where you can stop to get each item before heading home! Kids must be present in the car at the time of the event. Supplies are limited, and offered on a first-come, first served basis.

Unlock the Hidden Gems of Columbia, South Carolina: 10 Places to Visit in Columbia

Welcome to Columbia, South Carolina, a city with a rich history, vibrant culture, and an abundance of hidden gems waiting to be discovered. Whether you’re a local looking at houses for sale in Columbia on Redfin, or moving into an ...

Welcome to Columbia, South Carolina, a city with a rich history, vibrant culture, and an abundance of hidden gems waiting to be discovered. Whether you’re a local looking at houses for sale in Columbia on Redfin, or moving into an apartment near USC, there’s always something new and exciting to explore. From the bustling streets of downtown to the peaceful parks and gardens, living in Columbia offers a unique blend of urban and natural beauty.

But beyond the well-known attractions lies a world of hidden treasures that are waiting to be unlocked. We’ll take you on a journey to discover 10 of Columbia’s best-kept secrets, from off-the-beaten-path eateries to secluded parks and historic landmarks. So put on your exploring shoes and get ready to uncover the hidden gems of Columbia, South Carolina.

1. The M. Gallery

This hidden gem on Main Street is a must-visit for lovers of art and culture. Tucked away in a historic building, The M. Gallery is an art gallery and event space that showcases a wide range of contemporary art exhibitions throughout the year. The space itself is impressive, with high ceilings and large windows that let in plenty of natural light, creating a bright and welcoming atmosphere. The M. Gallery also hosts a variety of events, from art openings and live music performances to yoga classes and poetry readings. Whether you’re an art enthusiast or simply looking for a unique and inspiring experience, the gallery is a hidden gem that’s well worth discovering.

2. Lula Drake Wine Parlour

This hidden wine bar and restaurant is located in the heart of downtown, but is easy to miss if you’re not looking for it. Housed in a historic building, Lula Drake offers a cozy and intimate setting for enjoying a glass of wine or a delicious meal. The menu features a selection of small plates, perfect for sharing, as well as a wide range of wines by the glass or bottle. The staff are knowledgeable and friendly, and happy to help you find the perfect wine to pair with your meal. With its warm and inviting atmosphere, Lula Drake is a hidden gem that’s perfect for a romantic date night or a night out with friends.

3. Finlay Park

Located just a few blocks from the Statehouse, Finlay Park is a hidden oasis in the heart of downtown Columbia. This beautiful green space offers a peaceful retreat from the hustle and bustle of the city, with walking paths, fountains, and a large lake. There are plenty of benches and picnic tables throughout the park, making it the perfect spot for a leisurely lunch or a quiet afternoon of reading. Finlay Park also hosts a variety of events throughout the year, including live music concerts, food festivals, and cultural celebrations. With its tranquil setting and lively events, Finlay Park is a hidden gem that’s not to be missed.

4. Hunter-Gatherer Brewery & Alehouse

This hidden gem brewery and alehouse is located in a historic warehouse just a few blocks from Main Street. The brewery has been producing craft beer since 1995, and the alehouse offers a casual and laid-back setting for enjoying a pint or two. The menu features a variety of pub-style dishes, including burgers, sandwiches, and pizzas, as well as daily specials. The staff are friendly and knowledgeable about the beer selection, and happy to offer recommendations. With its relaxed atmosphere and delicious beer and food, Hunter-Gatherer Brewery & Alehouse is perfect for a low-key night out with friends.

5. 701 Center for Contemporary Art

This hidden gem art center is housed in a historic railroad station just a few blocks from the Statehouse. The center showcases a variety of contemporary art exhibitions throughout the year, featuring local and national artists working in a range of media. The space itself is impressive, with high ceilings and large windows that flood the galleries with natural light. The center also hosts a variety of events, from artist talks and workshops to film screenings and live music performances. With its inspiring exhibitions and lively events, 701 Center for Contemporary Art is an outlet for art lovers and anyone looking for a unique and engaging cultural experience.

6. The Nickelodeon Theatre

This hidden gem movie theater is located in the heart of the historic district of Columbia. The theater specializes in independent and foreign films, as well as documentaries and classic cinema. The intimate theater has a cozy atmosphere and is decorated with vintage movie posters and art. The Nickelodeon Theatre hosts a variety of events, from film festivals and special screenings to Q&A sessions with directors and actors.

7. The Old Mill Antique Mall

The antique mall is located in West Columbia, just a few miles from downtown Columbia. Housed in a historic brick mill building, The Old Mill Antique Mall features over 75 dealers offering a wide range of antiques and collectibles. The mall is organized into themed sections, making it easy to browse and find exactly what you’re looking for. From vintage clothing and jewelry to antique furniture and artwork, this place is an extravaganza for antique lovers, collectors, window shoppers, and anyone looking to repurpose things,

8. The State House Grounds

Located in the heart of downtown Columbia, the State House Grounds is a hidden gem park that offers a peaceful escape from the city. The park features walking paths, gardens, and fountains, as well as a variety of historical monuments and statues. The park is also home to the South Carolina State House, a historic building that dates back to the 19th century. Visitors can take a guided tour of the State House or simply enjoy the beauty and tranquility of the park.

One of the most iconic features of the park is the African American History Monument and the Japanese Gardens.

9. The Gervais Street Bridge

The Gervais Street Bridge is a hidden gem landmark in Columbia that spans across the Congaree River. The bridge is not only a stunning sight, but it also has a rich history dating back to the early 20th century. Originally built as a toll bridge, the Gervais Street Bridge has undergone several renovations over the years, including the addition of pedestrian and bike lanes. Take a leisurely stroll or bike ride across the bridge to enjoy the breathtaking views of the river and the city skyline.

10. Goat’s

Goat’s restaurant is located in the heart of Five Points, a popular neighborhood in Columbia. Goat’s is a unique eatery that serves up an eclectic mix of dishes inspired by global cuisine, from tacos and sushi to pizza and pasta. The restaurant has a cozy atmosphere and is decorated with quirky artwork and vintage finds. One of the standout features of Goat’s is its impressive beer selection, featuring a rotating tap list of local and craft brews. Whether you’re in the mood for a quick bite or a leisurely meal, swing by Goat’s a one-of-a-kind dining experience.

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