Environmentalists take a walk on the 'Wild Side' for law project fundraiser
Published Thursday, October 10, 2013
By CHRIS SOKOLOSKICSOKOLOSKI@GTOWNTIMES.COM
Georgetown, S.C. — About 300 people gathered in one of the area's most beautiful spots on Saturday night to support a nonprofit that fights to protect the environment.
The fourth annual “Wild Side” event at Hobcaw Barony celebrated the work of the South Carolina Environmental Law Project (SCELP), and paid tribute to its founder, Jimmy Chandler.
Chandler started SCELP in 1987 in an office at Hobcaw Barony. He ran the nonprofit until his death in 2010.
Saturday night's event featured a walking tour and talk by naturalist Patrick McMillan, a boat tour on the Carolina Rover, music, dinner catered by Bistro 217 in Pawleys Island, and a silent auction.
McMillan called the Lowcountry a “sublimely beautiful part of the country.” He said the effects of decisions made by people 5,000 years ago are still being felt today, and urged people to consider what the effects of decisions made today will be.
“The world will never forget,” McMillan said.
McMillan's talk was “very moving,” said Amy Armstrong, SCELP's executive director.
“He couldn't have done a better job in my mind,” she added.
Armstrong told the crowd that 2013 has been a “wonderful and exciting year” for the nonprofit. SCELP added an attorney to its staff and helped save the historic Angel Oak Tree, and 42 acres surrounding it, on Johns Island.
SCELP is currently fighting a plan to put another groin on the south end of Pawleys Island and a proposal to put another landfill in Laurens County.
The nonprofit was also part of the successful effort to stop a big-box store from being built in Pawleys Plaza last year, and worked with DeBordieu to stop three groins from being built along its beach.
All the work SCELP does would not be possible without sponsors and donations from individuals, like the people at the Wild Side event.
“This event has come to be something we rely on to keep doing the work,” Armstrong said.
She estimates that Saturday's event raised $35,000, which is about 8 percent of SCELP's annual budget.
“That's a significant number,” she said.
Wild Side also gives people a chance to connect with other like-minded people, reconnect with friends, and have fun, Armstrong added.
For more information on the South Carolina Environmental Law Project, go to www.scelp.org.