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Each year around this time, Charleston is saturated with parties, art openings, charitable events, performances, festivals, and other events. Despite the overflowing calendars of Chucktown’s socialites, art patrons, and philanthropists, a substantial crowd found their way Michael Mitchell Gallery for the second to last fete of this year’s Art for Charity events. Charleston Waterkeeper was the featured non-profit organization, and Charleston Executive Director and Waterkeeper Cyrus Buffum welcomed partygoers, saying, “Spoleto is in the air, and we are very, very grateful to have you spend a portion of your night with us.”

The early evening party welcomed guests into the colorful, airy space with glasses of wine and the opportunity to support Charleston Waterkeeper. Guests were invited to purchase cute little blue lightbulbs, which were screwed into the “Clean Water” sign illuminating the front of the gallery. Partygoers milled about, mingling and taking in the beautiful, inspiring pieces by local and regional artists. We caught up with Bluffum about his second year working with Michael Mitchell Gallery, and the charming waterkeeper laughed, “Selfishly, we’re so happy to be in this space with this beautiful artwork. If you look around at all of these pieces, there’s so much influence from the water. There are paintings of the marsh, of our waterways, sculptures of our marine life, there’s so much inspiration in this space.”

Partygoers relished the laid back fete, lingering over their glasses of wine while listening to the sounds of Spaced Invaders before heading out into the sultry summer evening.

Founded in 2008 by Cyrus Buffum, the Charleston Waterkeeper is a non-profit dedicated to preserving and protecting the integrity of Charleston’s waterways by defending against pollution and contamination. Charleston Waterkeeper is one of nearly 200 programs in the Waterkeeper Alliance, which strives to empower the public to take back our right to clean water.