Family Photographer in Hilton Head Island, SC

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We've all heard the expression "a picture is worth a thousand words". And photos really are a special way to help tell the story of our lives - who we are and what's important to us.

And, of course, some images speak to us more strongly than others. More often than not we love a photo not so much because it shows us how we look but because it captures a very human element that is hard to express in words an authentic connection with those we love or with ourselves and how we show up or want to be seen in the world.

Whether you're looking to capture someone's attention with a professional headshot or want to commemorate the beautiful connection with your partner or family, I can help.

My name is Adam Chandler, and as a professional photographer in Hilton Head Island, SC. I truly find joy and fulfillment in the work I do. I love the adventure of photography and I continually immerse myself in learning and exploring how to improve my craft which includes learning new ways to connect with and capture my subjects. I truly understand that, for many people (if not most), even the idea of having your picture taken can cause a good bit of discomfort and anxiety. That's why I place so much importance on putting my subjects at ease while also really listening to any concerns or wants they have for their session.

I draw upon my technical knowledge of photography, my ability to connect with people, and my creativity to produce beautifully memorable photos for my clients. I believe that my unique creative vision and many years of experience combined with the way I strive to give my clients the most enjoyable experience possible sets me apart from some of the other great photographers in Hilton Head Island.

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Family Photography Hilton Head Island, SC  Photographer Hilton Head Island, SC

Testimonials

Now that you know a little about my background, let's take a look at some of
my most popular photography services in Hilton Head Island: My mission is to beautifully capture the joy and connection of each unique family while also creating a fun experience for my clients.

 Portrait Photographer Hilton Head Island, SC

The importance of family is hard to overstate. From children to grandparents to nieces and nephews, families and the family dynamic can grow and change before you know it, with many beautiful milestones taking place along the way.

I think that one of the best ways to remember some of these important moments of togetherness is with a fun family photo session.

I absolutely love photographing families and, while no two families are the same, I always strive to give each session my all in order to best connect with and capture the uniqueness of each family. Even though each session is somewhat different, I approach each one with the same goal: to capture the distinct personality, affection, and energy of each family in order to provide authentic, engaging pictures and a joyful experience.

Whether you have a toddler that you want to celebrate or have grandparents in town for a visit, Hilton Head Island is an amazing city for family photography. There are so many locations in the Lowcountry that make for great family photography backdrops:

  • Beaches - Folly Beach, Sullivan's Island, Kiawah, Seabrook, Isle of Palms, Hilton Head, Edisto Beach
  • Popular Places - Washington Square, Broad Street, Hampton Park, Waterfront Park, Shem Creek, The Cistern at College of Hilton Head Island
  • Historical Sites - Hilton Head Island Battery, Fort Sumter, Magnolia Plantation and Gardens, Rainbow Row

Whatever location you choose for family photography in Hilton Head Island, the Holy City is a wonderful place to explore and enjoy with friends and family.

As a family photographer in Hilton Head Island, one of the reasons why I love working with families so much (in addition to getting to meet some really awesome people) is the opportunity to combine my creativity with my ever-evolving technical skill. I also gladly accommodate the style preferences my clients are looking for - be it more traditional, posed images, or candid, playful pictures.

I use a clear yet relaxed style of direction to get you and your family engaged in our photography session, to help get authentic expressions that really show the unique dynamic and relationships of each family.

Here are just a few reasons why families choose Adam Chandler Photography for their family portraits:

Document Family Growth

Change, of course, is part of life and with each passing year families, too, change and often grow. Each stage is beautiful in its own way and having annual family photographs is a fun way to document the different seasons of family life. Be it a new baby, a birthday or anniversary or simply wanting to capture your kids at each special age, I'd be honored to be chosen to help tell the story of your family over the years.

Remember Milestones

With each year that passes, new milestones are reached. From a child's first steps to a sibling getting married, there is no better way to remember these wonderful occasions than with quality photographs. Whether you're welcoming a new puppy into your life, are celebrating an anniversary or finally have gathered your extended family together in one place, capturing these special times in your life is a great way to ensure you'll be able to enjoy and relive these moments years from now.

Create Memories

Many families tell me before their sessions that it's not often that they are all able to be together and they emphasize how special and important this session is. Or, perhaps, a mom or dad will talk about how fleetingly special a certain age of their child is and how they really want to capture their children's personalities. Even if you capture lots of great moments of your family throughout the year it's likely not very often that all of you are in the pictures at once (other than maybe having a stranger tell you to "say cheese" after you hand them your phone. Having a time that's dedicated to capturing the special bonds between family members - parents and their children, grandparents and their grandchildren, siblings and maybe extended family as well - is so important. We all know just how special these people and moments are and how we tend to treasure these memories more with each passing year.

Portraits And Headshots In Hilton Head Island, SC

A great headshot shows you at your best - whether you want to impress a prospective employer or need professional photography for your website. In today's digitally-intensive society, having a professional headshot or portrait of you or your team that stands out for all the right reasons is becoming a necessity. It's no surprise, then, that headshots and portraits are among the most popular genres of photography.

Headshots can be tricky, mostly because many (if not most) people don't like being in front of the camera (trust me, I totally get that). I know that for some clients, it can be hard to know what to do, what to wear or how to relax enough to let their authentic selves come through so that they can end up with a professional photo or headshot that inspires authenticity and confidence.

Fortunately, I have years of experience taking professional headshots of all types of people. No matter what your comfort level is with having your picture taken, I pride myself on being able to create the conditions necessary to help capture my clients as you want to be seen. Through lighting, posing and direct yet relaxed interaction I'll help guide you to great photos that you’ll be proud to showcase and share with others.

A professional headshot or portrait is an investment into your personal brand, and here is why:

 Portrait Photographer Hilton Head Island, SC
 Best Photographer Hilton Head Island, SC

Show Your Personality

Not all headshots should be approached the same way. Depending on your industry or how you'll be using the photos, there are certain things to consider. A great headshot reflects not just how you look but also how you show up in the world. It can help give people an idea of the kind of person you are before you sit down to meet them. Oftentimes, too, people may want a variety of "looks" to suit different needs and uses. My goal is to listen to your expectations and then deliver results that will serve you will in your professional and/or personal life.

 Beach Photography Hilton Head Island, SC

Show Your Professionalism

Clients, collaborators, investors, and employers are typically much more likely to interview you or to contact you or your business if you look professional. If you've taken the time to invest in your brand, in part by making the effort to arrange a professional headshot, people notice that. And who doesn't want to make a great first (or second or third) impression?

 Family Portrait Photographer Hilton Head Island, SC

Stand Out on Social Media

Many of my clients make appointments for headshots and portraits when they want to stand out from the crowd on social media. Whether you own a business and need to create new social media pages or you're looking to network with recruiters on LinkedIn or, perhaps, update your website, a professional headshot can definitely set you apart in the modern sea of selfies and snapshots that you often see out there.

 Wedding Photographer Hilton Head Island, SC

Show Off Your Current Look

None of us look the same as we did 10 or 15 years ago yet some of us keep the same photo up for decades. Having outdated headshots can send a message of inauthenticity. When you have up-to-date, professional headshots, you're showing clients and employers that you are confident, committed, and authentic.

 Headshots Hilton Head Island, SC

Qualities Of A Great Photographer In Hilton Head Island, SC

Being a great photographer means more than owning fancy equipment. While having expensive gear can be quite helpful, the real test of a professional, for me, has a lot more to do with being able to draw upon my deep understanding of the craft of photography so that I can focus more on connecting with and beautifully capturing my subjects without getting bogged down in figuring out the technical side of things. It's taken me many years to get where I am and I'm always striving to improve in order to continue to deliver the best pictures and most enjoyable experience possible for my clients.

Clients choose Adam Chandler Photography because my experience shows and they trust me to always give them the results and experience that they're looking for. Here are just a few qualities that my clients appreciate:

 Engagement Photography Hilton Head Island, SC

Imagination

I wholeheartedly consider photography to be an artform - one that requires lots of curiosity and imagination along with a good bit of technique. A great photographer knows how to get beautiful results no matter what the conditions or circumstances are and this only comes with experience and preparation.

Family Photography Hilton Head Island, SC

Passion

This quality might seem obvious but I can't tell you how many times I've seen photography that may be technically good but is missing something. My passion for photography largely comes from my passion for connecting with people in a way that helps them feel comfortable letting their guard down so they can enjoy the process. And this almost always leads to exceptional, authentic images.

 Photographer Hilton Head Island, SC

Patience

Patience can also be essential for great photos. As in life, there are many things that we just can't control. Sometimes the best photos come from patiently going with the flow and not trying to force something to happen. I find that when I'm patient yet prepared - ready to capture the right moment or expression when the time is right - that's often the best approach. As a professional with many years of experience, I understand the importance of having the patience to deal with whatever comes my way as well as the flexibility and preparedness to make the most out of any situation.

 Portrait Photographer Hilton Head Island, SC

People Skills

If ever there was a business where people skills were important I think portrait photography is definitely one of them. Knowing how uncomfortable many people can be when getting their pictures taken, I put every effort into helping ensure the best possible experience for my clients and communication is such a big part of that. I love interacting with my clients to build trust and rapport as well as a deep understanding of your expectations including any concerns you may have. As I've said, for me my job is not just about delivering beautiful images but also a wonderful client experience. That's why I focus so much on each and every interaction with my clients. Yes, people skills are a must in this business. Luckily for me, it's one of my favorite parts of the job!

Eye for Detail

As a professional photographer in Hilton Head Island, SC I am meticulous when it comes to details. Through my many years of photographing many different types of subjects under many different circumstances I've come to learn just how important details are. Whether it's finding or creating the best quality of light for my clients, eliciting a great expression or
adjusting the background or, perhaps, a piece of clothing, all of these things impact the overall look and feel of a photo. Whether I'm photographing a family, a business professional or a couple in love I always look for all the ways I can create the best image possible.

 Portrait Photographer Hilton Head Island, SC
 Best Photographer Hilton Head Island, SC

"As I hope you can tell by looking at my work, I really love my job. And most of all I love the people I get to meet and work with. I'd be honored and delighted to be chosen for your photography needs."

Adam Chandler

Ready to Get Started?

One of my favorite things to do is to talk to clients about what they're looking for and how I can serve them. If you are in need of professional photography, let's talk today about what you have in mind. Whether you're looking for family or couples' photography in Hilton Head Island or want great new headshots for you or your team, I'm here to help every step of the way!  

Latest News in Hilton Head Island, SC

One tank trip: By ferry or horse, Daufuskie and Hilton Head Island are ample lands to explore

For Savannah Morning NewsIf you’re a local living in Coastal Georgia or South Carolina Lowcountry, when Hilton Head Island comes to mind, likely you think of retired snowbirds, beach lounging, cocktails, fine dining, and of course, golf.Lots of golf.Chances are nature and outdoor adventuring aren’t among the first things you inherently associate with the popular island getaway. But outdoor adventures abound on the island, nearby as well — it’s just a matter of knowing where to find ...

For Savannah Morning News

If you’re a local living in Coastal Georgia or South Carolina Lowcountry, when Hilton Head Island comes to mind, likely you think of retired snowbirds, beach lounging, cocktails, fine dining, and of course, golf.

Lots of golf.

Chances are nature and outdoor adventuring aren’t among the first things you inherently associate with the popular island getaway. But outdoor adventures abound on the island, nearby as well — it’s just a matter of knowing where to find them.

Recent one tank trip:Put 'sibling rivalries' to bed — there's a variety of fun to have in Charleston

Other trip ideas:Augusta Canal provides amazing views, camping and kayaking. Just not in summer.

The Westin Hilton Head Island Resort and Spa offers a couple of unique room packages perfect for locals looking for an early or mid-week break from the nine-to-five grind.

One package includes an alligator wildlife voyage to Sea Pines Forest Preserve with boat captain and naturalist, Anthony Savarese. You’ll take an hour-long narrated tour through the preserve’s lakes and canals, learning about Hilton Head’s natural history as well as getting ample opportunity to see alligators and a range of coastal bird species.

You’ll also get acquainted with the preserve’s walking trails. Be sure to bring binoculars, a field guide or two and pack a picnic lunch because you can easily spend the better part of a day exploring the swamps and pine-shaded paths after the boat tour.

One tank trip:Share an apple with a donkey on the prehistoric grounds of Stallings Island

And if you’ve always wanted to ride a horse on the beach, the Westin has a great partnership with private island community, Haig Point, where you can hop on a ferry, and after a 40-minute boat ride, arrive at Daufuskie Island. There, you just might meet the steed of your dreams.

Twice a day, six days a week, the staff at Daufuskie Trail Rides leads groups of no more than five people to experience the mostly untouched beaches of the island. It’s a lot like summer camp but better because you’ll always be in a small group, easily able to speak to the riders around you, and the pine and palmetto-lined trails lead to some of the most pristine coastline you may ever see.

The only way on or off Daufuskie Island is by boat or helicopter. And so, on a bright, cooler than usual mid-August morning, I arrived at the Haig Point ferry dock to embark on the first leg of my equestrian adventure. But an emergency medical evacuation a few hours earlier had left the regular ferry schedule more than an hour behind.

Not a problem for me and the family I was joining on the day’s horseback ride but a major inconvenience for the collection of 70 women also assembled on the dock scheduled to compete in a golf tournament on Daufuskie.

90 minutes and two boats later, our horse riding crew finally hopped on a ferry along with a slew of workers also headed out. Among them I noted construction guys, a couple school employees, and a chef with a clutch of knives. All of them, like us, now running two hours behind.

But it occurred to me that when it’s all going smoothly, a 40-minute ferry commute is a pretty humane way to start the workday. As we pulled away, an osprey floated in the warming sunlight as a wedge of egrets flew above the pines along the shore. Easing through the No Wake zone, I glimpsed some of the construction workers tucking their chins, arms folded to catch a few extra moments of shuteye. Meanwhile, as we glided forward, dolphins intermittently jumped alongside us.

Once we arrived on Daufuskie, we were quickly ushered into an air-conditioned shuttle and taken about three miles to the horse barn. There, our guides and horses were patiently waiting, and soon enough we were atop them and venturing through the maritime forest.

I was riding with a family of four. The mother, who that day was celebrating her 51st birthday, had recently taken up riding near their home in New Jersey. Her two sons and niece who’d agreed to join, had never ridden before, and it was a treat to watch them quickly gain confidence directing their mounts. By ride’s end the newbie trio had no problem stopping their horses from eating grass along the path and urging them forward.

Unfortunately, we couldn’t ride on the sand because March 15 to October 15 is considered high season with many people wanting to ride, and this time span also overlaps in part with sea turtle nesting season.

So, locals take note: If you want to ride on the beach, book it between October 16 and March 14.

But we got close enough to take in some grand ocean views, and as we rode along, a volunteer turtle patrol happened to find a newly hatched clutch of 12 little loggerheads. They placed them in a bucket for us to have a look before releasing the cute critters into the Atlantic.

Back at the Westin, I snagged a quick nap then headed to View 32, the resort’s outdoor restaurant overlooking the pool and surrounded by levels of wooden terraces appointed with small tables, chaise lounges, umbrellas and covered nooks for two.

The light evening breeze made everything especially lovely. And I was happy to see on the menu a Beyond Meat burger, that, along with salad and small plate of eggplant hummus and pimento cheese dip made for a filling yet light enough dinner to cap off a perfect day of outdoor adventure on Hilton Head Island.

300 residents of Hilton Head apartment complex getting evicted

HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. (WSAV) — They are an important part of the tourism industry on Hilton Head Island.Now some of the people who work in local hotels, restaurants, landscaping, and more are about to lose their homes.Residents of Chimney Cove got eviction notices earlier this month.More than 300 people living there, including 76 kids who attend Beaufort County Schools, and even more younger children, were told they had to leave.The reason? The owner, Sam Johal is selling the property to Debartolo Develop...

HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. (WSAV) — They are an important part of the tourism industry on Hilton Head Island.

Now some of the people who work in local hotels, restaurants, landscaping, and more are about to lose their homes.

Residents of Chimney Cove got eviction notices earlier this month.

More than 300 people living there, including 76 kids who attend Beaufort County Schools, and even more younger children, were told they had to leave.

The reason? The owner, Sam Johal is selling the property to Debartolo Development from Florida. The property, which has been home to dozens of lower-income, mostly Spanish-speaking families over the years, will apparently be turned into higher-end condos or townhouses on the multi-acre property.

“These are the people who do the work for the Island in so many ways. We want them to remain here with us,” said Reverend June Wilkins of Christ Lutheran Church.

Christ Lutheran Church is next door to the apartments, and the church does its part to try and help the families whenever it can.

Reverend June Wilkins is upset for all the families, because they work hard every day, only to have the rug pulled out from under them, and left out in the cold.

“If you are evicting them from those apartments you are basically evicting them from Hilton Head,” said Wilkins.

Many of the men and women who live in the mid-Island complex have been able to walk or bike to work and able to send their children to Hilton Head Schools.

But with limited to no affordable housing on the Island, now many have no idea where they may live next.

Sandy Gillis, Executive Director of non-profit Deep Well Project believes the owner took advantage of the language barrier in his rental contracts.

“Many of the rental renewals were made month to month, or people were only given 30 days to leave in the paperwork if the landlord told them they were getting evicted, no matter what the reason,” explained Gillis.

Gillis said she thought everyone would get a few months, as many as six, to be able to find a new place and move out. But when one of the tenants came into Deep Well looking for help, she realized there was an issue.

“The woman came in on a Monday to speak to our Spanish-speaking volunteer,” remembers Gillis. “She said can you please tell me what this says, pointing at her eviction notice. I think they are telling me I can’t keep living there.”

“When our volunteer translated for her and told her what it says she promptly burst into tears.”

Those notices and the rental contracts that the resident signed were in English. Gillis wonders if that was intentional to take advantage of the language barrier for the future.

Their rents already raised from $700-$800 four years ago to $1,400-$1,500 now.

“Based on $1,500 a month and 52 units. He’s been banking about $75,000 a month from these families,” said Wilkins.

“Most of these people are current with their payments,” explains Gillis. “They are self-sufficient carrying a $1,500 a month rent, these people are having their lease terminated through no fault of their own.”

“There are 52 units there and there are not 52 units available for people in that income range to rent on Hilton Head,” explains Rev. Wilkins.

This means most of these people will be a forced to leave not just the apartment they call home, but the Island they love.

“If you are going to do it, there is a humane way to do it,” said Reverend Wilkins.

The process will happen fast. Many of the eviction notices have a date of Sept. 12 on them. Others in October, November, or December.

The eviction notice itself even threatens to “initiate an action of ejectment” and the Sheriff of Beaufort County will be called to “evict you from the property immediately.”

Wilkins says she spoke to Sheriff PJ Tanner who says his staff has no plans to forcibly evict anyone from the property. But if the owner requests it themselves then they may have to act.

The Town of Hilton Head says it has been briefed on what’s happening at Chimney Cove and is discussing what if anything it can do to help.

The transaction is on private property, and seemingly not illegal in any way. If the new owner does abide by the rules and zoning restrictions, the Town’s hands may be tied.

News 3 did ask for comment from the Town of Hilton Head about what’s next or what they may do but has not heard back.

News 3 also attempted to contact Sam Johal through his company he is named as a Vice President of on Linkedin, Hilton Head Hospitality.

The numbers available either did not work, or no one answered.

Johal, who also owns Hilton Head’s Best Western Ocean Breeze Inn, and his brother previously forced out nearly 40 low-income Hispanic families in 2016. This came after the pair renovated the complex and wanted to place seasonal workers inside instead, according to a 2016 article from the Island Packet.

Christ Lutheran Church and Deep Well have each set up a fund to help out the residents who are looking for homes.

They estimate close to half have no place to go or will experience financial issues connected to deposits and rental agreements.

Each fund will be designed not as much to pay their rent but to help with moving costs and the deposits so they can find someplace to live.

Christ Lutheran Church Chimney Cove Fund:https://clchhi.org/#

Gillis says along with the fund, she would like to see some of our Hilton Head neighbors step up and offer their short-term rental on the Island to these families for a longer-term rental. Even a few months Gillis says will give the families time to find a more permanent solution.

There is a resident-only meeting for Chimney Cove set for Sunday at Christ Lutheran Church where residents can get more information in various languages about what is happening, and what resources are available to them.

The Beaufort County School District released the following statement on its commitment to allowing the affected students to stay enrolled at their schools.

The BCSD superintendent and student services officer have reached out to the HHI principals to ensure these families and students receive support from school social workers and school counselors. Because these students will be transitioning from their residence, they will be able to remain enrolled at their current school as per the Federal McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act.

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Hilton Head, community organizations help Chimney Cove residents facing eviction

The Town of Hilton Head will host a special meeting next week with the island’s community leaders to assist the 300 tenants being evicted from the Chimney Cove apartment complex.The town Council called a special meeting set for 9 a.m. Sept. 6 in response to the evictions. Community leaders and organizations that have assisted Chimney Cove residents will brainstorm short- and long-term solutions to finding homes for the evicted tenants, many of whom are low-income and only speak Spanish.And the Beaufort County School Distr...

The Town of Hilton Head will host a special meeting next week with the island’s community leaders to assist the 300 tenants being evicted from the Chimney Cove apartment complex.

The town Council called a special meeting set for 9 a.m. Sept. 6 in response to the evictions. Community leaders and organizations that have assisted Chimney Cove residents will brainstorm short- and long-term solutions to finding homes for the evicted tenants, many of whom are low-income and only speak Spanish.

And the Beaufort County School District announced it will parents to keep their children enrolled in Hilton Head schools and provide transportation even if they move off the island.

Town officials have been monitoring the situation, according to an Aug. 26 statement from Mayor John McCann.

Chimney Cove, located at 839 William Hilton Parkway, was one of the few remaining affordable housing options on Hilton Head. With the change of ownership, many of the mostly Hispanic residents are faced with having to move off the island entirely, quit their jobs on Hilton Head or switch their kids’ schools just three weeks into the start of the school year.

Several organizations have already started arranging relief, according to the statement from McCann. Lowcountry Legal Volunteers, a nonprofit that provides legal advice to those who otherwise couldn’t afford it, is helping residents understand their options.

The Beaufort County School District is offering counseling for the 76 children affected by the evictions, according to the statement, and an unnamed person is allowing one of the families to live in his short-term rental for the same $1,400 monthly rate they paid at Chimney Cove.

Since the residents of Chimney Cove received eviction notices on Aug. 12, following the sale of the property, many have scrambled to find new housing on the island. Some were told to leave as early as Sept. 12, threatened with sheriff’s department involvement if they were not out by then.

Christ Lutheran Church, located next door to the apartment complex, and the Deep Well Project have partnered to accept monetary donations for relocation costs, storage rentals and deposits for new apartments.

“We are trying to find temporary housing for as many people as possible,” said Sandy Gilles of the Deep Well Project.

About 90 adults and children attended a meeting at the church Sunday night to give their information to representatives from Deep Well Project and Lowcountry Legal Volunteers as well as several other local community organizations.

Residents and their families, including children in pajama pants who were ready for bedtime, listened closely to the services being offered, first in English, then in Spanish.

“We know it’s such a stressful time for all of you and we are praying and wish the best of all of you,” Christ Lutheran Church Pastor June Wilkins said.

Wilkins said she has been in touch with the owner of the property, Sam Johal, and announced at the meeting that residents with a Sept. 12 move-out date would be getting their deposits back. Johal declined a request for comment from the Island Packet and Beaufort Gazette.

Other local organizations at the meeting offered what they could to try and help

Lowcountry Gullah is offering to connect residents with Hilton Head Gullah families who own land for rent so that residents who are in a position to buy a trailer may park them there, said representative Luana Graves Sellers. Volunteers in Medicine will have medical services available Monday and Wednesday afternoons for residents who are not already patients at the free clinic, Executive Director Dr. John Newman said.

Yanina Sarli Rotti, a student services specialist with the school district, announced that Superintendent Frank Rodriguez would allow parents to keep their children enrolled in Hilton Head schools and provide transportation even if they move off the island via the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act, a federal law that ensures equal access to education and resources for students experiencing homelessness.

By keeping students at their schools, the school district hopes to create some sort of “stability.”

“We want you to know we are here for you,” Sarli Rotti said. “We are trying to make this less painful and stressful when it comes to the children’s education. We’re here to help.”

This story was originally published August 29, 2022 1:22 PM.

Looking for a bicycle on the beach? Here are 5 of the top-rated rental shops on Hilton Head

With summer coming to an end and school starting back up, families are opting for the simplest ways to make their end-of-summer vacations as stress-free as possible.Not wanting to ship or drag your bicycle across the country or state lines? Bringing your bicycle on vacation can be expensive, a hassle and sometimes even dangerous.Renting a bicycle for your family members following your arrival to the island can be much more stress-free than the alternative. With so many options for rental companies on the island, it can be diffi...

With summer coming to an end and school starting back up, families are opting for the simplest ways to make their end-of-summer vacations as stress-free as possible.

Not wanting to ship or drag your bicycle across the country or state lines? Bringing your bicycle on vacation can be expensive, a hassle and sometimes even dangerous.

Renting a bicycle for your family members following your arrival to the island can be much more stress-free than the alternative. With so many options for rental companies on the island, it can be difficult to make a decision when deciding which company to choose. Whether your selection is based on vicinity, word-of-mouth or affordability, it’s important to know your options.

Here are the five top-rated bicycle rental companies on Hilton Head Island based on Google reviews, each with more than a 4.5 ranking and hundreds of reviews.

Rating: 5.0 out of 5.0 (364 reviews)

Cross Island Bike Rental is a family run business on Hilton Head Island that promises a relaxing rental process, great equipment and around-the-clock customer service. Located toward the island’s southern end, this rental company has a variety of bicycle and attachment options to choose from in addition to beach chairs and umbrella rentals. Cross Island Bike Rental can be found at 13 Executive Park Road, Hilton Head Island, SC 29928 and reached at 843-384-7371.

Rating: 5.0 out of 5.0 (254 reviews)

Hilton Head E-Bike Rental is an E-bike rental company on the south end of the island that caters to the rising popularity of E-bikes. Prioritizing safety, the company has capped the maximum speed of their electric bicycles at under 20 mph. The speed was chosen as it can be attained by pedaling a bicycle, yet is generally not reached by renters on their leisurely rides throughout any of Hilton Head’s numerous bike trails. The company can be found at 115 Arrow Road # 15, Hilton Head Island, SC 29928 and reached at (843) 603-5657.

Rating: 4.9 out of 5.0 (341 reviews)

Island Life Bike Rentals is a rental company on the island that specializes in pedal bikes, electric bikes, beach chairs and umbrella rentals for anyone on Hilton Head Island. According to the business, bicycle deliveries from the company are available to the island communities of Sea Pines, Palmetto Dunes, Shipyard, North Forest Beach, South Forest Beach, the Coligny Beach area, and areas between the south end and Folly Field. Island Life Bike Rentals is located on the south end of the island at 36 South Forest Beach Drive, Hilton Head Island, SC 29928 between Coligny Beach and Alder Lane beach access points. They can be reached at 843-384-1430.

Rating: 4.7 out of 5.0 (291 reviews)

Hilton Head Outfitters & Bike Rentals is a company on the island that covers a plethora of outdoor activities. In addition to bike and electric bike rentals, they offer beach chairs and beach umbrella rentals, jogging and wagon stroller rentals, beach wheelchair rentals, surfboard rentals and cornhole board rentals. Hilton Head Outfitters & Bike Rentals can be found at 80 Queens Folly Road, Hilton Head Island, SC 29928 and can be reached at 866-380-1783.

Rating: 4.7 out of 5.0 (126 reviews)

Hilton Head Bicycle Company has been providing locals and the island’s visitors with rental bicycles, new bicycles, accessories, parts, and services since 1993. The company offers free delivery and pick-up on the island for any 3-day and weekly rentals, free bike locks and free baskets for renters. Hilton Head Bicycle company offers rentals for bikes, electric bikes, trailers and baby seats for inquiring families. In addition to rentals, the company offers a variety of repairs and maintenance for bikes as well. The rental is located at 112 Arrow Road, Hilton Head Island, SC 29928 and can be reached at (843) 686-6888.

This story was originally published August 5, 2022 5:00 AM.

Yes, SC has an official state amphibian and it’s a bit weird. Here’s what to know about it

Many may know that South Carolina has an official state bird (Carolina Wren), or that the official state animal is the white-tailed deer. But did you know that the Palmetto State also has a state amphibian?That’s right.South Carolina has an official amphibian that represents the state.That amphibian is none other than the spotted salamander.“The spotted salamander (Ambystoma maculatum) was des...

Many may know that South Carolina has an official state bird (Carolina Wren), or that the official state animal is the white-tailed deer. But did you know that the Palmetto State also has a state amphibian?

That’s right.

South Carolina has an official amphibian that represents the state.

That amphibian is none other than the spotted salamander.

“The spotted salamander (Ambystoma maculatum) was designated the official state amphibian of South Carolina in 1999 after a campaign by the third grade class at Woodlands Heights Elementary School in Spartanburg,” according to State Symbols USA.

The state of South Carolina adopted the amphibian as its official representative 23 years ago.

All this time. Who knew?

The Palmetto State shares the state amphibian with one other state: Ohio.

The spotted salamander can be hard to initially spot and can be recognized at first glance by its dark-colored exterior and the bright yellow or orange spots along its back. These creatures have two bright-yellow rows of spots beginning at their heads and continuing down the length of their bodies. Occasionally, it is possible that orange or yellow-orange spots may appear on the head, but this is more unlikely. The darker hues of the body generally range from a very dark blue to black, a dark gray or occasionally, brown. They can vary in size ranging from 5.5 to 9 inches in length, according to Sciway.

Regardless of reaching a fair size for a salamander and having brightly-colored spots, these amphibians can be quite difficult to spot.

Spotted salamanders generally spend a majority of their adult lives underground in burrows or can also be found beneath rotting logs or various fauna. For this reason, they aren’t frequently seen by people unless vegetation is being overturned. They tend to prefer deciduous forests with ponds containing a limited fish population.

These salamanders eat a variety of things which include insects, insect larvae, spiders, beetles, millipedes, snails, slugs, mollusks and large quantities of earthworms.

“They emerge from their subterranean hiding spots only at night to feed and during spring mating. They will actually travel long distances over land after a heavy rain to mate and lay their eggs in vernal pools and ponds,” according to National Geographic.

Spotted salamanders do produce poisonous skin secretions, which allow them to taste bad to predators. For a human, these skin secretions are more irritating and would not kill an adult or even a child, even if ingested. However, these secretions can kill a mouse, or other small rodent and can potentially make other small animals sick, according to Amphibian Planet.

However, while technically not poisonous to people, they have been known to carry Salmonella, which can be detrimental to any person to come in contact with one. Handling these creatures should be kept at a minimum. If handling is necessary, be sure to wash your hands promptly and practice good personal hygiene following the encounter.

While these small creatures may be docile toward people, humans can pose a danger to them.

While exciting to see, the spotted salamander should not be handled by humans if at all possible. The amphibian’s skin has a sensitive, slimy coating, which, if removed through handling, could seriously harm it.

This story was originally published August 31, 2022 5:00 AM.

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