1 A Spring $

Tubing, Kinetic Derby Day giant slide, and a shower area at Riverwalk highlight West Columbia spring

Are you ready to get outside and enjoy the spring? If so, West Columbia is the place to be. 

Palmetto Outdoor tubing trips down the Congaree River begin in mid-April. Kinetic Derby Day, with a giant slide, is April 22. And a new shower and restroom at Riverwalk Park is scheduled to be open before May. Those are some of the highlights of spring 2023 in West Columbia. 

New shower at Riverwalk Park

“We expect to be open every weekend, conducting tubing trips on the Congaree River, beginning April 16,” said Michael Mayo, owner of Palmetto Outdoor. Palmetto Outdoor will be open seven days a week beginning Memorial Day (May 29) until Labor Day (Sept. 4.)

In the tubing season more than 10,000 people will come to the West Columbia area to float down the river rapids from Riverbanks Zoo to the West Columbia Amphitheatre. Some weekends, more than 1,000 people tube the river via Palmetto Outdoor.

Palmetto Outdoor and the eco-tourism it attracts is substantial beginning in the spring. More than 50 percent of the river-tube visitors come from areas more than 50 miles away.

Mayo said more and more tubers come to town year after year and his goal is to have them stay around town after the tubing trip is over.

Kinetic Derby Day

“There’s a lot of value in this river,” Mayo said, “and West Columbia has made it possible for everyone to access the beauty and nature of it.”

He said his goal, and the goal of the Greater Cayce-West Columbia Chamber of Commerce, is to promote multi-day activities so that visitors will stay at local hotels and eat at the restaurants in the West Columbia area. 

The Chamber has a list of attractions for visitors: Click here for the link

The City of West Columbia is also adding facilities at Riverwalk Park, where the Palmetto Outdoors tubing trips end. The upgrades should make it easier for tubers to freshen up and spend more time, and money, at local businesses.

“We’re adding one family size (American Disabilities Act-compliant) restroom at Riverwalk,” said Tara Greenwood,  Assistant City Administrator of Development. She said the new restroom will be similar in style to one’s at Carraway Children’s Park. The city is also adding an outdoor shower area. The goal is for the additions to be complete before the end of April. 

Palmetto Outdoor at Riverwalk

The 4th Annual Kinetic Derby Day is Saturday, April 22. In addition to the art, soapbox racing, obstacle course and parade with an 80s costume theme, there will be something new and unique.

“We’ll have a giant slide at the intersection of State and Meeting streets,” said Steve Cohen, a member of the Kinetic Derby Day planning committee. 

Cohen said he’s expecting another gread Kinetic Derby Day this year. 

“It’s such a full event,” he said. “It’s kind of like a Barnum and Bailey Circus. There’s so much activity going on at one time and there’s something for everyone.” 

Kinetic Derby Day organizers are still seeking involvement at different levels. 

“We could use some more volunteers and participants in the Kinetic Derby Day Parade,” said Anna Huffman, West Columbia Communications Director. 

To volunteer click her To sign up as a parade entry click here

No matter if you want to get back to river recreation or celebrate the spirit of the city on Kinetic Derby Day, you can do it in West Columbia. 

List of West Columbia restaurants:

  • Grecian Gardens Restaurant – 2312 Sunset Blvd – 803-794-7552
  • Cafe Strudel – 300 State St. – 803 – 926-5255
  • West Columbia Fish Market – 529 N. 12th St. 803-851-1171
  • Compton’s Kitchen – 1118 B Ave – 803 791-0750
  • Breads and Such – 1220 C Ave. – (803) 851- 0566
  • Buttercream Dreams – 1230 C Ave. – (803) 708-4485
  • Hite’s BBQ – 240 Dreher Rd. – (803) 794-4120
  • The Original Brunches – 2245 Leaphart Rd – (803) 791-7477
  • Jimmy’s Mini Mart/Citgo – 812 Meeting St. – (803) 794-0090
  • Maurice’s Piggie Park – 1600 Charleston Highway – 803-796-0220J
  • Nick’s House of Pizza Restaurant- 1082 A Sunset Blvd – 803-794-9240
  • DeLuccas 1720 Sunset Blvd. – 803- 926-5255
  • Ariana’s Greek Restaurant – 1720 Sunset Blvd. – (803) 796-4430
  • Lizard’s Thicket – 2234 Sunset Blvd. 803 – 794-0923
  • True BBQ – 1237 D Ave – (803) 791-9950
  • Jin Jin Chinese Restaurant – 469 Sunset Blvd. (803) 739-8888
  • Chick-fil-A -2299 Augusta Rd. – (803) 939-1600
  • Rush’s 2332 Sunset Blvd. – (803) 796-5034
  • Breakfast at Ruiz – 116 State St. – 803 -550-9681

Comments are closed.

Share This