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Sullivan’s Island Mayor’s Message: December 2018

Dear Island Neighbors,

 I hope your holiday season is proving to be happy, enjoyable and at some point, restful.


Those of us who live on the Western (harbor) half of the island have been the beneficiaries of a very devoted mail carrier for 25 years. Kathy McDuffie has served the part of the island from the Causeway to the harbor with dedication, resilience and a very personal touch since 1993, five years after she entered the Postal Service. She will end her 30-year career with the close of this year.

 Kathy has really earned this break from rain, heat, cold and gloom of night, not to mention dogs, flooding… and all of us who have ever complained about the Post Office. During the 2015 floods I was astonished to see her out making her rounds, and tried to snap a picture of her driving through water nearly up to the floor of her truck. She shooed me out of the way, saying she couldn’t slow down for fear of swamping her engine. But she got the mail delivered.

 I ask all of you who have been served by her, to wish her well in whatever way you think best. With luck, perhaps a few of us will be able to greet her in person out on the street on her last day.


Remembering that Christmas and New Year’s Day are on Tuesdays, please note that garbage, trash and recycling pickups will be delayed by one day each in those weeks:

  • Household garbage pickup will be on Wednesdays, Dec. 26 and Jan. 2
  • Bulk trash pickup will be on Thursdays, Dec. 27 and Jan. 3
  • Charleston County Recycling curbside pickup will be Thursday, Jan. 3

Town Hall hours will also reflect the seasonal holidays:

  • Closed Mon-Wed, Dec. 24-26
  • Closed Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2019

More information is available at


As we have noted previously, while enjoying the season, please remember some simple steps you can take to keep you and yours (and your stuff) safe and secure:

  • While out and about, keep your valuables in your car out of sight, and the vehicle locked
  • Don’t leave valuables in your car once you are back home, if possible, and be sure to keep car and home locked
  • Keep the Christmas tree well-hydrated to reduce fire risk. Also we wouldn’t want it to get kidney stones
  • If you will be away for a time, ask our Police Department to put your home on a watch list for a little more attention.

For more information contact Town Hall at 843.883.3198


 For many, many New Year’s Days, we’ve had a great tradition of supporting a fine charity, enjoying some good food and drink, and joining a few thousand of our closest friends in going off our medications to take a New Year’s Day dip in the ocean.

I refer, of course, to the annual Polar Bear Plunge.

 The event is held in support of the Special Olympics. There will be numerous volunteers and athletes collecting donations, so please bring some cash (or checks) for them and give generously. Even wet bills are happily accepted. Keep the checks dry.

The ribbon-busting run to the water will be at 1 p.m. (between tides), but you should head to the beach by 12:30 at the latest. It takes a surprisingly long time for the crowd to squeeze down the paths at Stations 22 and 22 1/2. Please stay off of the dunes.

Even though the plunge is midtide, you may still encounter lots of hard sand that is painful to bare, cold feet, so I suggest you wear some old tennies you don’t care about.

Traffic-wise, Station 22 1/2 between Middle St. and I’On Ave. (end of Causeway, alongside Dunleavy’s) will be closed to motor vehicles. Middle St. will remain open to vehicular traffic, but please drive it very carefully and slowly. Coming on to the island from the Causeway, when you get to Middle St. you will have to turn right; if you need to head eastbound toward IOP, you should turn left at Jasper Blvd. Wherever you are driving on the island, please allow extra time and be careful as many of our streets will be more like sidewalks…for many pedestrians in interesting attire.

All of our restaurants will be open prior to the plunge. Jamie Maher of the founding sponsor, Dunleavy’s Pub, invites you to come out for this 25th annual Polar Bear Plunge: “Have a great time, give to a good cause. Please respect our beautiful beaches while you enjoy the festivities.”

I agree on all counts, and further, for your own well-being, urge you to avert your gaze if you encounter an islander named Tom with a creative costume.

Tom, I’m telling you again: The event is not spelled “Polar Bare”…


 I hope you and yours have a Merry Christmas and a happy and healthy 2019.

See you around the Island!

Pat O’Neil, Mayor

843 670 9266


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