A monthly review of our team & the Greenville Real Estate Market
Spring has sprung with TONS of events, festivals and activities.
Many activities have started up, as we reviewed in lost months blog, so this month we will continue our overview of Travelers Rest by reviewing some of the restaurants that have flourished in the past few years - after some local news.
Farmers Markets ARE HERE. In Travelers Rest the states LARGEST farmers market opened it's doors for the 2019 season. Many local farmer's markets have started up this month including the downtown Greenville farmer's market, Simpsonville, Mauldin, Fountain Inn, Greer, Hub City (Spartanburg), Easley and Anderson's farmer's markets to name a few! Google local Greenville farmers markets to see the extensive list and more information. It's a great way to start your weekend.
What is the Golden Strip? and are they getting the Swamp Rabbit Trail. The Golden Strip in Greenville County, SC is a reference to Mauldin, Simpsonville and Fountain Inn, the towns that stretch along I-385 south towards Columbia. Concerning the Swamp Rabbit Trail, Fountain Inn is ahead of the curve and has already built a section of the Swamp Rabbit Trail in their city, but unless the other towns in the Golden Strip build a connection Fountain Inn's trail won't connect to the rest of the county. Simpsonville is voting on moving forward with funding for the trail they hope will connect through Mauldin. The trail is planned out and runs along an old railroad, connecting to Fountain Inn, but can't plan for Mauldin yet. Mauldin is further behind in building a trail partly because they are involved in re-developing their whole downtown "scene" as they don't have a traditional one. Their downtown has 4 lane highways running through it and their county buildings sit on "super blocks".
Photo: LAUREN PETRACCA
Mauldin officials are considering an alternative route that uses exiting green-way trails on a branch of Gilbert Creek. The great growth Travelers Rest has had is a great boon and encouragement for the Golden Strip town to connect as well because all this development takes significant amounts of money. Before any of these sections can be connected to downtown the much anticipated extension from Cleveland Park thru the Laurens Road corridor to Clemson's International Center for Automotive Research - ICAR needs to be completed, and is close to acquiring all needed land to finish their section of the trail. Sources: Greenville News
Artisphere. This past weekend saw Mothers Day falling on the same weekend as Artisphere. The festival has evolved a great deal since it's beginnings - in a good way. There are now more performances and vendors that "perform" rather then just stalls for art purchases. It was a fun and interesting way to spend some time this weekend and the art on display was AMAZING.
Real Estate Sales HIGH Sales for April were about 150 units over what the real estate market sold last year and have doubled in volume from a low in January. Prices are continuing to rise and are up $15,000 over average and median home prices just a year ago. Looking at our historical graph (see graph below) of average home prices it shows a growth of about $50,000 in average home prices since 2007. Of course homes in the downtown and along the swamp rabbit trail have sometimes risen by 200% over prices in 2013. Inventory is higher then the past few years giving home buyers more choice and negotiation leverage.
Thinking of listing? Talk to us about your home's value and our 3D interactive home tour. It's like having an open house 24-7 without the inconvenience! 864-67-0707.
Sources: GGAR MLS
Eating Well on the Swamp Rabbit Trail in Travelers Rest, SC
Eating well, whatever your definition of that happens to be, is easy on the Swamp Rabbit Trail in Travelers Rest, SC! Whether you like barbecue, bar food, tacos, sushi, vegetarian, vegan, American classics, or a combination, you can find it all on this less than one mile stretch of Main Street in Travelers Rest.
And if you have a thirst you need to slake, water, sodas, tea, coffee - craft beers and crafted cocktails - are also available. The opening of the Swamp Rabbit Trail (SRT), a 22-mile long paved trail through Greenville County, in 2009 has been a boon for the small town of Travelers Rest (TR), SC.
Once known simply as a place to pass through on the way from the mountains to Greenville, TR has become a destination for foodies and lovers of all things outdoors. TR’s Main Street and the SRT run right next to each other through downtown TR with walkers, bikers, and runners making frequent use of them both. The restaurants on Main Street have done their best to provide a welcoming atmosphere for the folks who find themselves thirsty and or hungry. Bike racks abound. Animals are welcome on the outdoor patios. Some of the restaurants right on the trail even provide back door service for drinks and treats.
? DID YOU KNOW ?
Clay tiles have been used by nearly every civilization as a roofing material, but the idea can actually be traced back to as far as 10,000 B.C. to those in China and the Middle East.
The Greenville Health System (now Prisma Health) developed a guide, called “The Carrot”, to help find THE restaurant to satisfy your hunger on the SRT. In it you will find a map of food, drinks, and beer within a short “hop” of the Swamp Rabbit Trail. Available in hard copy and on-line, the Trail map is divided into logical geographic sections. Travelers Rest, South Carolina has its own page. Restaurants, bars, farmers markets, grocery stores, ice cream shops, and bakeries all have their own color code. The page facing each map lists all the businesses, with their color code and number, located in that particular section. Website addresses and phone numbers are also included in the listing. The guides are available at TR’s town hall as well as other locations.
Go to greenvillerec.com/thecarrot
Travelers Rest’s Main Street had a few restaurants prior to 2009. But the majority of the options now in existence have come into being since the opening of the SRT. The revitalization of downtown, spearheaded by local leaders and visionaries, has also led to more growth in the downtown area.
Starting from the southern end of the trail, Swamp Rabbit Brewery and Taproom (#21 on “The Carrot” map ) offers SRT users a chance to wet their whistle with a brew crafted with care and years of experience. Ben and Teresa Pierson opened the brewery in Travelers Rest in 2014, although their interest in brewing started in the early 80s. Ben Pierson trained with many well-known brewers and served as brewmaster at breweries around the country before starting Swamp Rabbit Brewery and Taproom in Travelers Rest.
Farmhouse Tacos (#17 on “The Carrot” map) and Hare and Field (#19) are located almost directly across the street from each other. Both are owned and operated by Chris and Katie Williamson. Farmhouse Tacos was opened at the beginning of 2017 and Hare and Field followed in the spring of 2018. The owners are passionate about providing a local farm to table experience for their diners. They encourage creativity and passion in their employees too. Most of their food is prepared from scratch, and it’s not unusual for an unexpected basket of fresh produce to come in the door in the morning. Chris and his staff don their chef hats and consider how best to use this bounty in the specials that day. Farmhouse Tacos specializes in southern inspired food, such as their buttermilk fried chicken, creatively combined with Mexican flavors. They also serve sides, like grilled corn, which bring people back to their restaurant.
Chris Williamson says that Hare and Field makes a “really good burger”, served on Swamp Rabbit Café buns, and is also known for their fish and chips. Hare and Field backs up to the Swamp Rabbit Trail. The Williamsons’ vision was to open a gastro-pub with beer, good food, and good cocktails in a fun, casual environment.
? DID YOU KNOW ?
When straw was used to cover slate and stone floors in order to keep them cold, homeowners had to find a way to keep the straw inside when the front door was opened. To do so, they built a wooden floorboard in the doorway in order to “thresh” (or separate) the straw from the outside. This became known as a threshold.
Andy O’Mara and Loran Frant continue the trend of owning multiple restaurants in Travelers Rest. Sidewall Pizza (#13), Monkey Wrench Smokehouse (#12), and Rocket Surgery (#16) are all owned and operated by these two entrepreneurs. These restaurants reflect the owners’ love for fresh, innovative food in three different types of cuisines. Sidewall Pizza is set in an old tire store (the bay doors still work!) right on the SRT and serves house-made thin crust pizza and sauce, homemade ice cream and fresh salads. Vegan and gluten-free options are available. Rocket Surgery is across the street and features “contemporary Italian-inspired cuisine, fresh, house-made pasta and chef-driven dishes, select wine, beer, and cocktails.
Monkey Wrench Smokehouse is also on the SRT side of the street and serves up amazing aromas to all the people walking the trail. Their menu includes “wood smoked BBQ, awesome sides (like smoked cauliflower), craft beer and barrel-aged cocktails”. The restaurant provides live music and outdoor seating options too. Moving north along Main Street, we come to Upcountry Provisions (#14). If you are in the mood for a delicious sandwich, fresh baked goods (like bread, muffins, croissants) or a peanut butter cookie (their signature), this is the place for you. Upcountry Provisions is not directly on the SRT, but is located on State Park Road, just behind the My Sister store.
Another Stunning Cunningham Team Home LISTING
12 Hoptree Drive, Greer, SC 29650
List Price $309,900 | 5 BD x 2.5 BA | 2,800-2,999 s.f.
Continuing our culinary tour, we come to Shortfields (#11). The name is a combination of the owners’ names-John and Marvin Short and Cory Satterfield. According to Mr. Satterfield, the name was suggested by his son. Shortfields is also located across the street from the SRT, but directly on Main Street. The partners started as a catering company in 2010. By 2013, they decided it was time to open a physical location, and, so, Shortfields was born. The specialties of the house are shrimp and grits, chicken cordon bleu, and fruit nachos. All dishes are prepared fresh when ordered. Mr. Satterfield said the only thing frozen is their French fries! The vibe is family friendly, although alcohol is served. Pet friendly seating is available on the breezy patio.
The Café at Williams Hardware (#10) was one of the first businesses to open after the SRT came to town in 2009. Sisters Nancy and Joyce saw a need for a place for the SRT travelers to rest, grab a drink and something to eat, and use the restroom. The Café at Williams Hardware was their answer to that need. Sadly, the café is now closed because the sisters have retired. But…their adventures continue on YouTube and Facebook as “Sisters on the Loose”.
Number 9 on the map is Tandem Creperie, which opened its doors in August of 2014. Brad and Kristen Hartman are dedicated to the idea that “together is best”. The vision of this emporium of deliciousness is to provide a caring, hospitable atmosphere in which families and friends can spend meaningful time together. The specialty of the house is crepes, both savory and sweet. They also serve whole wheat waffles and homemade granola. And don’t forget the coffee-delicious Counter Culture coffee. Also available are hand crafted sodas, kombucha, fresh squeezed orange juice, and a selection of teas.
One of the older restaurants, The Whistle Stop at the American Café (#15) and located directly on the trail, was started in 1932. The original restaurant began in a different building but moved to The American Café in the 1970s. Vickie Hawkins’ grandfather owned the restaurant from 1945 to the mid 60s. She remembers spending time in the restaurant with her grandfather, sitting at the bar as he supervised his business. The second stool from the left at the bar was hers. Her grandfather claimed the first stool. The café was a whistle stop during the steam train era. While that era had passed, Ms. Hawkins remembers hearing the whistle as the train would approach from the south side of the restaurant. Her grandfather would fix a couple of hot dogs and pour an RC Cola and Ms. Hawkins would run it out to the train as it passed the rear of the restaurant.
The train didn’t stop but was moving at a crawl so she could safely hand her bounty to the train operator. Ms. Hawkins, a 3rd generation owner, has worked hard to provide a comfortable place for visitors, including adding rooftop dining, expanding the main dining area, and adding a “caboose” at the back of the restaurant to serve refreshments and treats to the people on the SRT. The restaurant is open for lunch and dinner and the menu is extensive - everything from appetizers to salads, pizza to full entrees, drinks to dessert.
The tour we’ve taken today did not cover all the goodies available along the Swamp Rabbit Trail. Other restaurants along the Trail include Petee’s Good Foods (#8), Northwest Grill (#7), TReats Smoothie and Juice Bar (#6), Leopard Forest Coffee Company (#5), the TReeHouse Café and Studio (#4), and Pink Mama’s Ice Cream Shop (#3). (The capitalized TRs in the above sentence are not typos but are a tribute to the town of Travelers Rest-TR as it is known among the locals.) And the culinary scene in Travelers Rest, South Carolina continues to grow.
“The Carrot” will need updating before long! The growth in Travelers Rest, South Carolina is a tribute to the county planners who started the Swamp Rabbit Trail and saw the potential of having a pedestrian friendly mode of transportation. Greenville & TR's leaders continue to make great choices which brings tremendous value to Greenville's real estate market and Greenville's quality of life.
Have a great month and enjoy the spring/summer weather!
Cunningham Team - Home UNDER CONTRACT
111 Golf View Lane, Greenville, SC 29609
Listing Price: $314,900 | 3BR x 2BA | 2,400-2,599 S.F.
( YES, Just Listed and Just Closed. THAT FAST )
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