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Jimmy Carter's Fireworks / Strip Club / Adult Video Store, 4713 Highway 301 & 76 West (Marion): 1980s/2010s   7 comments

Posted at 12:52 am in closing

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Commenter Andy Farmer asks about Jimmy Carter's in Marion. Here's what I remember, and have been able to find out.

First of all, we never went this way to the beach while I was growing up as access to the South Strand was easier through Georgetown. I guess the first time I ever came this way was sometime in the early 1980s when I was in college and going to the beach after visiting relatives in Hartsville. My memory is that the store had a big mural on one wall, probably the Southern wall, as that is the one you would see best going towards Myrtle Beach, depicting a toothy and widely grinning man, or possibly a toothy and widely grinning anthropomorphic peanut. This was of course a caricature of our then President, James Earl Carter who was often depicted in that way. I don't really remember anything but that image and the big signage for Jimmy Carter's. I could not have told you what kind of business it was. It was, however very distinctive, even apart from that, because it sits in the median of US-76/US-301, and this is the only area from Florence to the Beach where that is done.

This Reddit thread establishes Jimmy Carter's as mainly a fireworks store, though incorporating a greasy-spoon diner and various tourist trap merchandise. It also establishes that the owner really was named Jimmy Carter (I suppose hundereds of people must share that), that this was the second building in that location, and that Mr. Carter has passed away.

Once I moved to Fayetteville, I would come to the beach this way more often (if I were not going cross country from South Of THe Border), and at some point I noticed that Jimmy Carter's was gone, and the building now housed a strip club. I can't recall the name, and google is no help, but I think it might have been Paradise City. Then at some point later, the strip club apparently moved to the East side of the building, and the West side became an adult video store. This news story establishes that both of those businesses were gone by October 2015, and based on the facade peel back to the painted over Jimmy Carter signage, I'm thinking they actually closed several years before that.

This real estate flyer gives an address for the building (though somewhat ambiguously, and without a zip code) and has much better pictures than mine (which were taken under an umbrella) to include some interior shots. It also establishes the city location as Marion, which I would not have guessed, as I would put the place much closer to Florence, and that the Jimmy Carter's era was more than 40 years. I will also note that the map button is set to street view and also has a much better picture of the place than any of mine.

As one final note, the Reddit thread mentions that the logical successor to this store is Sparky's Fireworks & Gifts several miles further east and on your left. I second the notion, and you should stop there at least once.

(Hat tip to commenter Andy Farmer)

Written by ted on September 25th, 2018

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A Roadside Mystery: US-501 Between Galivants Ferry & Marion   3 comments

Posted at 12:33 am in Uncategorized

This mysterious billboard is on the South side of US-501 in betwen Galivants Ferry & Marion. If I'm reading google maps right, it would be at the intersection of US-501 and SC-41. At any rate, it's before you get to Sparky's Fireworks. The sign has been up for at least two years, and was always a bit mysterious to me.

For one thing, there is no indication of what it's for. I mean, sure it says "Web Site of The Year", but that's not really an explanation. Is there a contest? Web site of the year according to whom? Why would anyone driving through the most rural and un-webby parts of South Carolina care? What's more, it's not pithy. Invariably by the time I got home, I never could remember exactly what it was: Um, bestwebsite.com? Yearsbestsite.com? Finally I took this picture to help me remember to check it out.

The first time I did -- it didn't help. I duly went to the site, but it was obviously the text provided by the hosting company. Stuff like

Insert description of your site here.

Insert URL of your logo

Write a few paragraphs describing your products and services. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Phasellus ligula lorem, consectetur ut mattis eget, varius at justo. Aliquam sodales gravida arcu. Etiam a viverra metus. Pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus et netus et malesuada fames ac turpis egestas. Class aptent taciti sociosqu ad litora torquent per conubia nostra, per inceptos himenaeos. Nunc tincidunt nunc nec augue volutpat eget venenatis lacus pharetra. Donec mollis, leo auctor molestie placerat, eros ante tristique lectus, in accumsan enim nibh quis purus. Curabitur eget enim quis ligula fermentum faucibus eget tempus tellus. Etiam dignissim, augue non tristique fringilla, urna nibh viverra felis, vitae commodo eros urna et ante. In et odio erat. Nunc consectetur volutpat sagittis. Ut eu elit nisi. Nam accumsan sapien pulvinar elit pretium egestas sit amet nec elit. Phasellus mattis dapibus accumsan. Suspendisse egestas, justo ut imperdiet vehicula, dui eros tempus lorem, vel molestie dolor tortor vel dui. Vestibulum odio metus, tempus vel auctor sed, commodo nec leo. In sit amet magna et mi hendrerit vehicula vel et neque.

(OK, I used the Lorem Ipsum generator for that last paragraph..)

Anyway, I never got around to doing a post on it then, and now there is something of an explanation, if not a great one. Apparently someone is now using it to sell generic domain names, and push various small coastal oriented sites. It kind of has the feeling of an I might as well do something with it sort of project.

Written by ted on June 12th, 2010

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