Want to know what Greenville has to offer during the spring? Here I’ve broken down my favorite events, festivals, activities for the months of March, April, & May. It may seem like a slow time period, but oh-ho, you’d be surprised.
Spring in Greenville means warmer weather and plenty of things to do. Whether you want to hit up one of the city events, go biking, or attend one of the beer festivals, I got you covered.
I’ve broken these events and activities into categories (as best as I can), so just jump to the topic that interests you to see my suggestions.
Without further adieu, here are 20+ things to do in Greenville in Spring.
NOTE: If there is any impact due to the pandemic, I’ve tried to call this out in red.
Updated for 2021!
Table of Contents
Below are some of my favorite events & festivals hosted by the city this spring!
2021 Start Date TBD
These two staples of Downtown Greenville kick off in March (19th & 20th). Expect live music, food vendors, and drinks (alcoholic and non-alcoholic). And remember that even though it’s free to attend these events, you’ll need money to purchase any beverages and munchies.
The parties are centered around Noma Square on the northern end of downtown.
St. Patrick’s Day Events
March 13, 2021: 11am-8pm
This is Greenville’s St. Paddy’s Day party. It starts off with a parade and then ends with a celebration complete with music, food, dancing, and, of course, green beer. The main party happens in Noma Square and they block off the whole block.
March 13, 2021: 6pm
13 Stripes always has some amazing events. Plus if you’ve never been to there Taylor’s Mill brewery you are missing out. I love the industrial feel (plus, you know, all the delicious beer). And they’ve got a celtic rock band to really get you in the mood. Tickets are just $5.
2021 Date TBD
Want even more St. Patrick’s Day fun? This 5K run/walk based around Fluor Field would be a great kickoff to your Saturday morning. Besides the 5K itself, there will be a post-race party complete with food, drinks, a silent auction, and a kid’s run and fun zone.
Arts, Crafts, & Music
Every Wednesday from April 7 – September 29
Live music is coming back downtown. Greenville Heritage Sound check will be hosting concerts out of the Peace Center starting April 7th. Space though will be limited as this is a socially distanced event. You’ll need to reserve your pod in advance ($10 for up to 4 people). Though tickets only go on sale the week before the concert. So be sure to take a look at the lineup and set up some reminders.
April 17: 8:30am-12:00pm
The first market of the year for Traveler’s Rest happens in April. I love TR’s Farmers Market and I usually go to the summer and fall ones a few times a year. But if you got into the garden trend in 2020, then this is the market for you.
April 17-18, 2021
Want to get your geek on? Then head to Greenville’s Comicon at the TD Convention Center. You’ll find some amazing artists, cartoonists, writers, celebrity guests, collectibles, and cosplayers.
And after Day 1, head to Brewery 85 for the annual SC Comicon Drink and Draw. (This event has not been scheduled yet. Check Brewery 85’s events as the dates get closer.) Donated pieces are put up for purchase to raise money for charity.
2021 Dates are TBD
Two Saturdays in April
Each spring and fall, Swamp Rabbit Cafe & Grocery hosts a small arts & crafts fair in their back lot. Tons of artisans from around the region come to the flea market. Peruse among painters, jewelry makers, florists, sculptors, designers, craft dog biscuit makers, and more! And then afterward, kickback with a some craft pizza or a pint in their outdoor patio.
Festival is tentative
May 13-15, 2021
With a description like “the best music festival in South Carolina” you know right off the bat what you’ll find here. This tri-annual event features some of the best Americana, Folk, Roots, and Bluegrass artists, plus a whole lot more. And you can camp there for just $35. Ticket prices are a lot more (~$50-~$150), but I love that you can stay there all weekend for a very low price.
Attendance will be limited this year. The event will be gated, and entry will be timed and ticketed. Reservations are strongly encouraged.
May 7-9, 2021
This is Greenville’s best art festival all year. And it’s one of my favorite events. Artists from around the region come to showcase their work. And while you can buy, it’s perfectly ok to just look and admire. I’m always drawn to the photographers, painters, and sketch artists. And they’re usually open to any conversations you may want to have.
Store – May 7-9: 11am-5pm
Outdoor Market – May 8: 10am-4pm
Want to give your mom something special for mother’s day? Stop by the Indie Craft Parade’s shop and outdoor market Mother’s Day Weekend and pick her up something special! With handcrafted goods from 30+ artists, you’ll be sure to find something to suit your mom.
Friday Nights starting at 6pm
The planetarium at the Roper Mountain Science Center hold two shows every Friday at 6pm & 8pm. One focuses on the earth, sun, & moon. The later one will teach you about the stars (plus it’s narrated by Mark Hamill for fellow Star Wars nerds). They last about 1.5 hours each. Personally I can’t wait to listen to Luke Skywalker.
First 2 Saturdays in March: 11am-2pm
Through the winter and March, Brewery 85 hosts a winter farmer’s market featuring up to 50 vendors bringing in everything from artisan cheeses to baked goods to jewelry. And of course there’s the beer at Brewery 85 to enjoy as well. (Food trucks in attendance as well!)
2021 Start Date TBD
Wednesdays in May
Every Wednesday evening in May the city hosts a free movie right in Falls Park. They bring out a huge screen and then start the movie once it gets dark out. The range of movies also varies quite a bit from more modern-ish flicks to classics. You’ll want to bring your own chairs and it’s BYOB (if you buy a $1 wristband).
April 2, 2021 – October 2021
Greenville will be the first city on the East Coast to host Jorge Marín’s Wings of the City exhibition. The bronze sculptures will be on display throughout Falls Park and the grounds of the Peace Center for about 6 months starting in April. The exhibit promotes art as a universal language that bonds people and their countries together. Visit Wings of the City to learn more about the collection and where each statue will be located.
Catch a Comedy Show
Okay so the spring isn’t all about the outdoor lifestyle. Sometimes it’s rainy. And one of the best things to do in town when it’s pouring outside is to hit up a comedy show. Luckily we have several places around town to get your fix.
Food + Drink
May 2, 2021: 1-4pm; 5-8pm
If you love tacos (who doesn’t??), especially creative ones and you have a hankering for some craft cocktails, do I have the festival for you! Hosted in the beautiful Old Cigar Warehouse, this event always sells out early. Book asap for one of the best food + drink festivals all year.
2021 Dates TBD
In 2020 this was held in August, not sure if they’re moving it back to spring yet.
One thing I love about Greenville is how diverse the town is. We have a Greek community and once a year in the spring, they put on one of the best festivals in town. There’s food and dancing and music, but I go for the food. All the food. (The pastry room inside is where it’s at!)
And many people I know around town will go through their “drive-thru” during the festival. It’s that good.
May 14, 2021: 6:00pm-10:00pm
(Ticket Sales start in April)
I love our local zoo. And twice a year they put on two adult events. This one is for the beer lovers. Tickets are around ~$50 and they usually sell out early. But trust me, strolling the zoo after hours (when the animals are more active), drinking great craft beer, and listening to some music is pretty wonderful.
Scout Out Some Barbeque
Sometimes it’s food that reminds me of warmer weather. And as it gets hotter, I start to crave some barbecue. And though I can make it myself…I love going to get some barbecue because damn smoking a brisket takes HOURS!
- Smokin’ Pig
- Mike & Jeffs BBQ
- Moe’s Original Bar B Que (a chain but still oh so good)
- Monkey Wrench Smokehouse
And if you want more options, download the Trail Map for lots more options.
This category is a bit of a mish-mash of different things, but they all involve you being active!
2021 Date TBD
Want to stroll down Main Street with your best friend while benefiting the Greenville Humane Society? Welcome to the Mutt Strut, a 2-mile walk/run through downtown with your dog! Afterward, you can find live music, free pizza, and more at the Mutt Market festival. Make sure to grab your tickets early because you can’t register the day of!
May 8, 2021
Ready for another 5K? This race include a loop through the Greenville Zoo. So if you’ve ever wanted to run by a giraffe (and pretend you’re sprinting through the grasslands of Africa), then this is the face for you. Just be aware that the zoo is on a pretty big hill. Prepare yourself!
Bike the Swamp Rabbit Trail
This is one of the things to do in Greenville. And if you haven’t hit it on 2 wheels, you’re missing out. Don’t know what the Swamp Rabbit Trail is? It’s basically a 22 mile, multi-use trail (think rails to trails) that connects Greenville to Travelers Rest.
Every day of the week you can find people out and about on it walking, running, biking, out with their dog, etc. It’s one of my favorite things to do. And there’s amazing restaurants, shops, and breweries right off the trail that make it a great way to spend your day.
Live to the west of Greenville? Then check out the Doodle Trail!
Want to do some yoga in a brewery? And not just any brewery…but one of my favorite breweries? Yep that’s right. Birds Fly South hosts a 1 hour long yoga session every Saturday at noon.
Just $10 covers the class AND a beer.
Okay this might seem like something just for the kiddies…and maybe it is. But I’ve seen groups of adults combine beer crawls with this. So what is it? Basically 9 little statues of mice are hidden around Greenville. And with just clues, you’ll have to find them all. Lots of fun for kids and adults (maybe also adults a few drinks in).
Pick Some Strawberries
Spring = the growing season for me. It’s when I want to go to the farmer’s market, plant some herbs, and eat all the fresh produce I’ve been dreaming of all winter.
So if you are a strawberry fiend (like me), you can pick your own strawberries at a couple of places from mid-April through June.
White Water Rafting
There are quite a few places around the upstate and in nearby North Carolina to go white water rafting. And the spring (as the winter waters are released) is one of the best times to head out. I’ve been out rafting on the Chattooga River with Natahala Outdoor Center. They offer several trips on different rivers and have some runs with rapids up to class IV/V.
March 3 – 7, 2021
In recent years, our Bon Secours Wellness Arena has hosted a few of the NCAA basketball games. This year you can watch the College Division 1 Women’s SEC Championship right downtown.
Okay so you know Greenville has a very popular minor league baseball team, but what about hockey? Meet the Swamp Rabbits. Though the name has changed over time, I still love to go and watch a game. (Hockey being one of my favorite sports to watch in person.) Their games run all the way through spring, so it’s a great activity on a cold rainy spring day.
The race will be virtual for 2021.
May 1, 2021: 2:30pm
Want to see 10,000 rubber duckies race through Falls Park and down the waterfall? Yea, I thought you would. The Reedy River Duck Derby is an all-day event centered around the race. All proceeds go to helping local charities. Adopting a duck is only $10 and allows you to have stake in the race.
Games start May 4 – new protocols in place for the 2021 season
You might think a minor league baseball game might not be all the rage. But going to the games is a major thing to do. There are always a lot of people in attendance any day of the week. And it all starts in May.
Saturday, May 29, 2021
Need a Memorial Day Weekend activity? Then head on over to Furman for the Scottish Games. There will be loads of events and competitions (think men hurling huge things), food, drinks, music and more. And if parades are your thing, you can catch their Scottish parade the night before (Friday night) in downtown Greenville!
Spring Road Trips
Chimney Rock Day Trip
I sometimes forget how many amazing things are within driving distance of Greenville. Chimney Rock State Park is one of these beauties. Located just about 1 hour and 15 minutes north of us in North Carolina, this is definitely worth the drive.
The main draw of course is the view. But you’ll need to work for it! The climb up to the rock is intense (so…many…stairs) and though there is an elevator, it was out of order when we went. But that view is worth it!
Did you know that the Great Smoky Mountains, the most visited national park in America, is reachable in just 2-3 hours from Greenville? Okay so this may not be a day trip, but weekend getaway anyone?
There’s lots of different campgrounds around the park that could bring the cost of a weekend trip way down. (Remember that the park is huge so make sure to look up the location of the campground first before you go.)
And with lots of different hikes, viewpoints, and auto-tours, there’s no reason not to take advantage of this national park. Plus going in the spring will help you avoid the summer (high) season and lots of crowds.