Spoleto holding annual finale picnic featuring the Carolina Chocolate Drops

On Sunday afternoon, the 17 days of Spoleto Festival USA will come to a close with the exciting finale, a beloved tradition among Festival patrons.

Held annually at Middleton Place, gates will open at 3:30 p.m. for guests to set up their picnics and explore the Middleton Place gardens. This year's featured artist at the Festival Finale are the Carolina Chocolate Drops, who are widely credited with reviving the rich tradition of fiddle and banjo music from the Piedmont region of the Carolinas. The Drops will take the stage at 8:30 p.m. and be followed by an impressive fireworks display.

For those of you with a competitive spirit, consider entering the Finale Picnic Contest - a friendly and fun competition to show Festival pride. Here's more on the competition from the official press release:

Picnickers compete for the Golden Fork, Silver Spoon, and Bronze Knife, winning fabulous prizes and, more importantly, bragging rights for the year. Participants are asked to prepare tastings for eight celebrity judges who will critique entries based on taste, creativity, and overall presentation.Multiple dishes and signature cocktails are traditional guidelines. Themes are not required, but are highly encouraged. To enter, visit the Spoleto Festival USA press area at the picnic for a judging number. The judging will begin at approximately 6 p.m. with winners being announced before the Finale concert at 8:30 p.m.

Tickets to the Finale are $30 each and can be purchased either online, by phone at (843) 579-3100, or in person at the Spoleto Festival USA box office at Gaillard Municipal Auditorium, located at 77 Calhoun Street.

Seating is unreserved, with lawn chairs permitted. Blankets and picnics are recommended. Middleton Place will be offering a variety of reasonably priced beer, wine, cocktails, non-alcoholic beverages and light fare to enjoy during the Finale event. However, if you're of age, feel free to bring your own alcohol and enjoy!

Middle Place is located at 4300 Ashley River Road.