HARTSVILLE, S.C. -- Every day in Hartsville we are moving forward and progressing as a city. We are constantly growing, and people everywhere have taken note of just how amazing Hartsville is.

Our Business Navigator had a busy 2018, as residents and businesses built and improved their homes and workplaces. In total, 54 commercial building permits were issued with a total project valuation of $12,064,214.82. We are encouraged by the number of people seeking to stay in Hartsville and invest in their homes and businesses.

The revitalization of the old Hartsville Messenger building at 221 N. Fifth St. brought an event venue into downtown. The Edition at the Hartsville Museum is a modern, upscale event venue that offers space for meetings, parties and other events.

The city and other community sponsors worked together with EdVenture Children’s Museum to open its satellite location downtown. This museum will provide area families with exhibits and programs focused on literacy, art, math and science.

One of the biggest accomplishments for 2018 was the completion of the Neptune Island Waterpark. This new waterpark greeted more than 64,000 guests in its opening season. Guests came from a total of 25 states and 12 countries – a quite impressive feat for Hartsville. Neptune Island looks to welcome 80,000 guests for its first full season that opens on May 18. The introduction of incentives such as the Splashin’ Grades Program and Large Employer Discount encourages more people to bring their families out to the waterpark this summer. In 2018, Neptune Island Waterpark provided more than 120 job opportunities for its opening season.

The city also has added an incredible new playground at Byerly Park along with the addition of an outdoor basketball court. Byerly Park has something to offer for all age levels, interests and abilities.

In 2018, the Municipal Association of South Carolina presented Hartsville with an Achievement Award for the Hartsville Safe Communities initiative with the Hartsville Police Department. This initiative helps to close the gap between the Hartsville Police Department and the community by getting more involved with community events and hosting their own events, such as Coffee with a Cop and National Night Out movie night. We have been selected again in 2019 to receive another Achievement Award for our continued efforts.

While we have worked hard to make positive improvements in Hartsville, the work is far from over. This year Coker College will officially become Coker University, which most accurately describes what it is and what its future holds. We also look forward to several exciting business announcements in 2019 as well as a much-needed rehabilitation of an abandoned shopping center. We appreciate our citizens, business owners and visitors. As a community, together, we continue to define Hartsville as a premier small Southern city.

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