blufftonteensCould the Lowcountry be home to another “American Idol”? Three seasons after St. Helena Island native Candice Glover won the 12th season of the popular reality singing competition, two Bluffton teenagers have advanced to the celebrity judge round of the 15th and final season of the show.

affordablehousingThe Bluffton House, an affordable apartment community located at 20 Simmonsville Road, is upgrading to two- and three-bedroom luxury apartments. Vacant apartments that were once home to low-income families who paid discounted monthly rent are being completely remodeled with new appliances, granite-like countertops, wood-style flooring and ceiling fans in every bedroom.

blufftonculturalA group of Bluffton artists has formed the Bluffton Creative Initiative. The group would like for all of Old Town Bluffton and a few surrounding neighborhoods to be designated a cultural district by the South Carolina Arts Commission. The group feels the designation will attract artists and creative entrepreneurs, encourage economic and cultural development, attract more tourists, preserve historic buildings and create a supportive environment for arts and culture.

mosscreaktenniscenterThe Moss Creek Tennis Center was the only tennis center in South Carolina to be honored by the United States Tennis Association in its annual Facility Awards Program. Each year, the USTA recognizes facilities throughout the country for meeting increasingly high standards in construction and renovation.

bollardsbluftonThe town of Bluffton recently installed retractable bollards to divert traffic on Calhoun Street during Old Town events. The bollards are located at the corners of Lawton and Lawrence streets to block vehicles during festivals and provide for a more pedestrian-friendly, walkable environment.

The town of Bluffton recently installed retractable bollards to divert traffic on Calhoun Street during Old Town events. The bollards are located at the corners of Lawton and Lawrence streets to block vehicles during festivals and provide for a more pedestrian-friendly, walkable environment.

A 98,500-square-foot shopping center featuring luxury shops and a grocery store has been proposed to replace the Grayco Building Center at the corner of Fording Island Road and Trimblestone Road in Bluffton. Grayco plans to relocate its business to Simmonsville Road, making way for the proposed development.

The Hilton Head Island-Bluffton Chamber of Commerce Leadership Program recently installed 10 bronze crab statues along the Calhoun Street corridor in Old Town Bluffton. The project is meant to capture the imagination and inspire awareness of children and adults, as well as educate them on local marine life and the importance of preserving the May River. The 8-inch statues are attached to signs, poles and plaques along the historic street in hide-and-seek fashion. Each year, the leadership class develops a project to benefit the community.

The Beaufort County Library system's board of trustees recently voted to keep its Hilton Head Island and Bluffton branches open 50 hours a week. In the spring, the library announced a lack of funding would result in hours being cut to 40 hours a week. Newly hired library director Ray McBride asked the board to postpone its vote so he could take a closer look at the budget.

Hilton Head Tanger Outlet Centers recently added eight electric vehicle charging stations to its two Bluffton locations. At Tanger 1, four EV stations are located in front of the Polo store. At Tanger 2, four EV stations have been placed near the Gap outlet store. All eight units run on the ChargePoint network, which is the nation’s largest and most open EV charging network. To use the stations, drivers need to sign up for a free ChargePoint membership and can initiate a charging session with their ChargePoint card, the ChargePoint mobile app or calling the phone number on the station.