A LOOK AT A FEW OF THE LOWCOUNTRY’S MOST POPULAR SCHOOLS AND INSTITUTIONS.

DESIGNER DOGS ARE GAINING POPULARITY IN THE LOWCOUNTRY

Move over, Labs and beagles. There are some new dogs in town: schnoodles, puggles, cockapoos and bassetoodles, for starters. These “designer” breeds are the top dogs right now.

Designer dogs may sound like elite, sophisticated, high-priced canines — and in many cases, they are — but “designer dog” is just a term that means mixed breed.

dogsDOES YOUR DOG HAVE WHAT IT TAKES TO BE A GOOD CITIZEN?

There’s a test and accompanying certificate to prove that dogs know how to behave well in public. This is the AKC Canine Good Citizen (CGC) test, and thousands of dogs nationwide pass this exam every year. Why do owners want to do this rigorous testing of behavior, manners and basic obedience skills? Passing this test indicates that you have a well-mannered dog who can be trusted to behave well in public places and in your living environment. Some hotels and apartments now require that dogs be CGC-certified in order to be there. Also, many therapy dog organizations require the Canine Good Citizen certificate in order to volunteer in the community. Locally, Hos-Pets, the therapy dog program at Hospice Care of the Lowcountry, requires this, as does PAWS to Read, a volunteer group which helps kids at the Boys and Girls Club with reading.

stateofmind“BLUFFTON STATE OF MIND” — BY MARGE AGIN

A photographer for more than 40 years, Marge Agin started out shooting weddings and portraits. But she really wanted to work in fine art photography.

Now she does. Her work can be seen at Four Corners Fine Art & Framing in Old Town Bluffton. It can also be found in her book, “Bluffton State of Mind.”

WENDY JACOBSFIDO AND FLUFFY DESERVE TASTY TREATS, TOO

Dog-loving film buffs can tell you about Rin Tin Tin, a German shepard rescued by an American soldier during World War I. He became a box office canine star in Hollywood with 27 films to his name. Or Uggie from “The Artist”, who put his paws in cement at the Hollywood Walk of Fame — deservedly taking partial credit for the film’s Oscar for Best Picture. Other dogs we love from the silver screen include Toto, Lassie, all 101 of those adorable Dalmatians, Benji and, of course, Marley. But the dog who matters to us most is the one who greets us at the door every day with a tail wag and a friendly bark — and big eyes that beg for a treat.

SPONSOR A NEST TO HELP SAVE SEA TURTLES

Loggerhead turtles returned to Hilton Head Island when the nesting season began in May. As of mid- June, 79 nests had been laid on the island’s beaches. Many locals and visitors hope for the rare chance to see a female nest on the beach at night and eagerly anticipate the emergence of hatchlings. A few lucky beachgoers will witness the baby turtles’ first crawl into the ocean.

GET TO KNOW THE HOLY CITY

On Charleston’s cobblestone streets, history, hipsters and high style coexist side-by-side. The best visits to the Holy City combine some of each.

Over the course of a few days, visitors will barely scratch the surface of all that Charleston has to offer — especially if they’re on a family trip catering to different ages — but even a short getaway is enough to whet the appetite and gain an appreciation for South Carolina’s oldest and largest city. With a little planning, it’s possible to explore downtown, learn some history, get out on the water and venture outside the city to enjoy the shore before it’s time to head back home.

BEACH? WHAT BEACH?

There’s more to explore on Hilton Head than the surf and sand.

Look, we’re not here to badmouth the beach. It’s the beach — more than likely, it’s what brought you here. If you’re visiting Hilton Head Island, it’s the first place you go. If you’re a local, it’s probably the place where you were when you decided you wanted to live here.

PROFILING UPCOMING SUMMER CAMPS OF THE LOWCOUNTRY

Summer vacation is almost here, and with it the annual question faced by parents: what are we going to do with the kids? Whether you need care for them while you work, are looking to keep them entertained for a week or two, or just want to get children out of the house for a few hours so they don’t spend the whole day playing video games or watching netflix, the lowcountry has a great selection of summer camps.