For the month of October, the Robert Mills House
has some new residents – an array of scarecrows lining the garden of the historic home.
All of the scarecrows are handmade by local organizations, families, groups or artists, and there is a wide variety lining the garden paths. Although some of the scarecrows are traditional, like the one you’ll find at the end of a tiny yellow-brick road, others make use of a looser definition, like the multi-colored dinosaur from the S.C. State Museum
Visitors are encouraged to drop in all month long and vote for their favorite scarecrow. Will top honors go to Rosewood Florist’s Pumpkin Gump? Susan Blackwell’s Madhatter? Judy Shackelford’s fanciful Molly and Bolly? Hopefully you’ll get a chance to stop by and vote for your favorite.
There also will be some special Halloween-month events centered on the scarecrows. On Oct. 19 from 11 a.m. to noon toddlers are invited to view the exhibit, decorate pumpkins, and participate in flying broom relay races and scavenger hunts. Admission is $6 ($4 for Historic Columbia Foundation
members) and includes one adult and one child. Each additional child is $1.
On Saturday, Oct. 23, the foundation will offer “Family Day: Scarecrows and Goblins,” from noon to 2 p.m. Children will be invited to learn about the history of Halloween and the traditions of the fall harvest. The day will be full of arts and crafts, and the winners of the “Scarecrows in the Garden” contest will be announced. Admission is $6 for the first child, $3 for each additional child and free for members.
Finally, adults might consider visiting the Robert Mills House for “Historic Hauntings” on Oct. 26-27 from 5:30-9:30 p.m. This special combination tour will offer a chance to visit the Scarecrows in the Garden exhibit, as well as transportation to the historic Elmwood cemetery for a special guided tour. Admission to this event is $15 for non-members, $7 for children of non-members, $10 for members and $5 for children of members.
These special exhibits are a great chance to have some family fun in historic Columbia, however you can visit the Scarecrows in the Garden exhibit any time Monday-Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sundays from 1 to 5 p.m. The exhibit itself is free.
While you’re taking a gander at the scarecrows, think about touring the lovely Robert Mills House as well. You can read what I had to say about the Robert Mills House here