Hilton Head Island recently received more high praise from the travel magazine Travel + Leisure. The publication ranked Hilton Head No. 2 out of 15 on its list of “America’s Favorite Beach Towns.” It stated, “Repeat visitors have been championing this South Carolina golf and beach resort for decades.

The online travel site Expedia recently published a list of its favorite destinations to celebrate life’s biggest moments. For expecting mothers, the site said there’s no place like Hilton Head Island, ranking it the No.1 destination for a “babymoon.”

Best Places to RetireSouthern Living recently included Bluffton on its list of 15 “Best Places to Retire.” The magazine focused on towns that have unique amenities, a low cost of living, opportunities for volunteering, part-time work and continued learning. Other important factors were a stable housing market, access to medical care, and an airport or train station close by.

Elizabeth MacMurrayAn English teacher with more than 30 years of classroom experience was named the 2016-17 Beaufort County School District Teacher of the Year. The selection of Elizabeth MacMurray, who teaches ninth-grade English at Hilton Head Island High School, was announced during a recent breakfast celebration to honor teachers of the year from all of the district’s schools.

solarprogramMore South Carolinians will soon be able to harness the power of the sun, thanks to a new solar energy initiative by South Carolina Electric & Gas Company. The company recently announced plans to launch a community solar partnership with Clean Energy Collective. An alternative to rooftop solar, CEC’s RooflessSolar will give SCE&G residential electric customers, schools, churches and municipalities the opportunity to subscribe to or purchase panels in solar farms and receive credit for solar generation on their energy bills each month.

libraryhoursBeginning Oct. 1, operating hours will expand at southern Beaufort County’s two library branches. The Hilton Head Island library will be open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mondays, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesdays, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesdays, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Thursdays, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The Town of Hilton Head Island issued $27.885 million GO Refunding Bonds on Sept. 1 to achieve savings through lower interest rates. The new bonds replaced 2005, 2008 and 2010 bonds totaling $28.440 million. The town will realize $3,000,322 in savings over the life of the bonds. Recently, the town underwent a rigorous bond ratings process; all three municipal bond rating agencies affirmed the town's strong ratings citing strong financial practices leading to ample financial reserves and high liquidity as well as a very strong economy.

Open enrollment is the period each year when you’re allowed to start, stop or change your health insurance plan. Normally, you sign up around the end of one calendar year for coverage that lasts the full next year. The open enrollment window for private, individual health plans will last three months for 2017 coverage: Nov. 1 to Jan. 31.

To those of you on the island who appreciate when Hilton Head turns to fall, slows down and relaxes a bit, will want to attend the Coligny Outdoor Market on September 16th. 

From 4-7pm, the popular Coligny Outdoor Market, now a year old will return to Hilton Head's Downtown. With food trucks, street-style vendors, artists and craftsmen and music by Whitley Deputy and the B Town Project, plus TONS of kids activities, this is a simple return to the beach after a very popular summer! 

Want to find the friendliest city in the world? Here in South Carolina, you won't have to go far. Charleston has topped Conde Nast Traveler’s list of the  "Friendliest Cities" in the world. In justifying the ranking, the magazine quoted one reader who said, "it has the charm of the South, the sophistication of the city, and a warmth and friendliest that is unmatched."

Uber, the on-demand car-hailing service, operates in more than 450 cities around the world, including the Town of Hilton Head Island. Monthly “Ubered” for a week, interviewing local drivers. Here’s what we learned.

The next time you Uber, don’t be surprised if your neighbor rolls up to the curb in a polished Lexus or Mercedes with leather seats.

We all know that the United States was built on the notion of the American dream. This concept has fundamentally impacted not only our way of life, but who we are as a people. We all strive for it. It’s like apple pie and baseball. It is the core principle that has driven us as Americans. And it is the American dream that attracts people from around the world to our way of life — they are attracted to our country by the limitless possibilities that the American dream represents.

The town of Bluffton and its Historic Preservation Commission recently congratulated the partners involved in completing the first phase of renovating the historic Graves House. Located at 85 Calhoun St., this century-old house has been moved 16 feet and stabilized by placing it on a new foundation, making way for further rehabilitations and future uses.

bluftonbudayBluffton Buddy, an app for smartphones and tablets that portrays the people, places and traditions that make Bluffton the heart of the Lowcountry, is now available for free download in the App Store for Apple iOS devices and Google Play for Androids.

The town of Bluffton’s Strategic Plan for fiscal years 2017-18 is now available via the town’s website, townofbluffton.sc.gov. The 34-page, two-year strategic plan establishes the framework for guiding policy and financial decisions. The plan is also a flexible tool, helping Blufton Town Council align town resources with strategic priorities to best benefit the residents and business owners of Bluffton. The action plan is divided into six strategic focus areas: May River and surrounding rivers and watersheds, town organization, economic growth, fiscal sustainability, community quality of life and infrastructure.

Bluffton has been recognized by the Municipal Association of South Carolina for outstanding management of growth while implementing plans to keep the historic Old Town area a charming community center. The municipal association credited the town’s long-term strategic planning as an example of successful planning.