Lowcountry Weekly and the Friends of Hunting Island are pleased to present the first of three groups of finalists in our Hunting Island Memories Essay Contest. In our next two issues, we’ll publish two more groups of finalists, then announce the contest winners in our July 23rd issue, where we’ll also tell you all about Hunting Island’s 75th anniversary celebration, happening August 2nd & 3rd.
    Thank you to all the wonderful Hunting Island fans who entered the contest! 

Adult Category 

As a teen at the beach I walked with friends, showing off our new suits and tanned bodies and even broke up with a boyfriend after prom the previous night. My young family’s vacation was always at the campground in a tent where we felt miles from home and learned the secrets and sounds of nature. I will always have fond memories of holding onto my children in the surf and seeing the sun reflect off their beautiful faces. Filling sand pails, looking for shells, sharks teeth, mermaids… crabbing, chasing the waves, breathing in the salt air… embracing the comforts of the shore… visiting as well on overcast, wintry, cold days searching for shrimp boats offshore as well as renewal of my soul… storm waters swept away more than our castles… peering into tidal pools for hidden life… and seeing the sun come up on the horizon… introducing my new love and now husband to the beauty of Hunting Island… discovering and joining Friends I became a “new mother” protecting loggerhead turtle eggs and marveling as the hatchlings ventured forth, hopefully someday to return to their birthplace. This is my beach. This is your beach. It will always return. These are my memories. Thank you Hunting Island. Thank you God.

Sandra Biszak


Youth Category 


The beautiful things
about Hunting Island
are when the breeze is just right
and when you can hear
the waves roll upon the shore.

When you lie
on the warm sand
and the water runs
    right under you.

the best time to be there
is about 6:00 p.m.
when the sun is setting.
Walking along the water line–
leaving the last footprints on the beach.

Those are the beautiful things
about Hunting Island.   

Misty Hellams
7th Grade
Robert Smalls Middle School


Child Category

Shell Seeking with Grandma

        As I awoke from the night, I yawned and walked over to the window. Suddenly, seeing the ocean helped me to remember Grandma’s promise. She promised to go seashell hunting with me. I ran and woke her up and she yawned and got out of bed. As soon as we were ready, we walked out onto the sand. The sand felt warm and comforting as it rubbed my feet early that morning. Out on the beach, the sea air hypnotized me as if it wanted to lull me back to sleep. I stood there inhaling and exhaling the cool morning breeze. Then, the screeching of a seagull broke the silence. My grandma was at the ocean already greeting the sunrise as it appeared over the horizon. The waves were calm and quiet at low tide. Once I got to the water, it massaged my feet and the wind brushed against my face. We stood there for a few moments trying to imagine anything better than this.    
    “Well, are you ready?” my grandma said slowly, still watching the waves roll over her toes.
“I’m ready!” I said with excitement. Suddenly, out of the corner of my eye, I saw a sand dollar. I quickly picked it up and placed it in my bag. After searching for a while, I sat down on the beach near the waves and closed my eyes and breathed.

Katie Crane, age 10