Technically part of Piccolo Spoleto  but gathering its own following, the Sweetgrass Cultural Arts Festival (www.sweetgrassfestival.org ) is held the first week in June over in Mount Pleasant at the Laing Middle School (2213 Hwy. 17 N.). The event celebrates the traditional sweetgrass basketmaking skills of African Americans in the historical Christ Church Parish area of Mount Pleasant. If you want to buy some sweetgrass baskets made by the world’s foremost experts in the field, this would be the time.
The free, weekend-long, outdoor Charleston Harbor Fest (www.charlestonharborfest.org , free) at the Maritime Center on the waterfront is without a doubt one of the coolest events in town for the whole family. You can see and tour working tall ships, and watch master boatwrights at work building new ones. There are free sailboat rides into the harbor and the U.S. Navy provides displays. As if all that weren’t enough, you get to witness the start of the 777-mile annual Charleston-to-Bermuda race .