For years, the raptor flight demonstrations by the Awendaw-based Center for Birds of Prey has wowed crowds gathered in Marion Square for the Southeastern Wildlife Exposition.
Eagles, hawks, falcons and owls put on a show of acrobatics, speed and grace in the heart of downtown Charleston in what is one of the regular, more educational features of the exposition.
Director Jim Elliott, who founded the center 23 years ago, says flight demonstrations and face-to-face contact with these magnificent birds remains important, especially in keeping young people engaged with wildlife and the valuable role they play in nature.
These demonstrations are just one part of the busy weekend of events known as SEWE.
The DockDogs retriever competition at Brittlebank Park is always a crowd pleaser. "Jungle Jack" Hanna, the animal guru, is a staple who occasionally startles attendees walking by in a crowd with something pretty wild on a chain. Tactile artistry like bronze animal sculptures captivate.
Then there's the sometimes overlooked fine crafts exhibits; table after table of custom work largely by regional artisans, items like carved canoe paddles and duck calls, exquisite iron fire kettles, jewelry, Damascus steel knives, some of it rare and pricey, some not. All of it as extraordinary as it is useful.
On our SEWE site now, you can find stories, a schedule of events, a list of venues, an event map and the official SEWE brochure. Throughout the weekend, we'll have photo galleries and coverage of some of your favorite events.