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The Charleston Museum knows how to throw an oyster roast. Guests stepped from their cars to be greeted with the magnificent scenery of the Charleston Museum Dill Sanctuary before hurrying toward long tables already heaped high with steaming, fresh oysters. While many hungry partygoers dove right in, oyster knives flying, others were content to stake out their spot under the ancient, moss-covered oaks and drink in the view of the Stono River.

The pleasant twang of bluegrass music from the Blue Plantation Band floated across the lawn, and people began to find their way from the oyster tables to the chili pot, giving newcomers a chance. Hot, savory chili was the perfect compliment to the cool breezes off the Stono River, and soon people gathered by the fireplace to snack and mingle.

A curator-led history walk kicked off as the afternoon wore on, and many of the guests eager to explore the property headed off through the fields. Others were content with a lazy, relaxing afternoon by the Stono, however, and guests continued to eat their fill at the oyster tables before retiring to blankets and lawn chairs.

The Charleston Museum Oyster Roast at Dill Sanctuary benefited The Charleston Museum, a non-profit organization. The museum was originally founded in 1773, and proudly bares the title of America’s Oldest Museum. The Dill Sanctuary contains assorted habitats for wildlife and numerous cultural features including four earthen Confederate batteries and prehistoric, colonial, antebellum, and postbellum archaeological sites. The Dill Sanctuary has been protected for purposes of preservation, wildlife enhancement, research and education, and is used only for Museum-sponsored programs.