Columbia Star

City Snippets

Spearman urges in-person classes

Superintendent of Education Molly Spearman is urging superintendents throughout the state to resume in-person classes for students “who need it the most,” including all students in kindergarten through fifth grade.

Absentee ballots approved

All South Carolina voters—no matter age, disability status, or work conflict— can cast an absentee ballot for the November general election. Visit for deadlines to return absentee applications.

Lidl moving in on The Pig

The Columbia Planning Commission approved a request for Lidl grocery signage over the two, free-standing Piggly Wiggly signs on Devine and Kilbourne Streets. Lidl representatives also have submitted proposals for interior and exterior renovations to the Piggly Wiggly building.

Testing program continuing

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is continuing a COVID-19 testing campaign at the USC baseball stadium and at Martin Luther King Park in Five Points in Columbia that will continue through October 3. The testing will be offered through a self-administered nasal swab, which is simple and pain-free.

Canal repairs approved

The City of Columbia and the Federal Emergency Management Agency have identified $42 million in damages to the Columbia Canal to be repaired because of the 2015 historic floods.

Forbes cites S.C. insurer

Forbes magazine has named BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina to its 2020 list of America’s Best Employers for New Graduates.

Jobless claims decrease

For claim week ending September 12, the number of South Carolinians who filed their initial claim for unemployment insurance benefits is 4,283, a decrease of 830 initial claims from the week prior. This brings the initial claims total to 739,643 received since mid-March.

Openings, Closings, Cancellations

• Good Feet, a store specializing in custom arch support for athletes and pain relief, is now open in the Cross Hill Market, at 702 Cross Hill Rd.

• A new full-service drug store, True Pharmacy, has opened at 3217 Devine Street.

• Blythewood’s second annual Oktoberfest is set for Saturday, October. 17 at Doko Meadows Park.

• Village Idiot Pizza has reopened its Five Points location.

• Dunkin’ has opened a new, state-of-the-art restaurant at 2871 Sunset Boulevard in West Columbia.

• Columbia’s yearly “Spooktactular Halloween Party” has been canceled this year to protect citizens and stop the spread of COVID-19. No Halloween events will be held at city parks either since facilities are closed.

• Representatives from the Town of Lexington say Trader Joe’s representatives are interested in opening a store at 5336 Sunset Boulevard.

• Crabby’s Cajun, a new seafood boil restaurant, is open in the former Takosushi spot at 1115 Assembly Street.

• The Virtual 30th Walk for Life and Famously Hot Pink Half Marathon will be held starting October 3 with a virtual walk, 5K, 10K, and half marathon. Registration is open at

• Deceased Farm’s haunted attraction and the Clinton Sease Farm corn maze are open for guests to visit at 382 Olde Farm Road in Lexington.

• Civil and criminal jury trials and other court hearings across South Carolina have resumed by order of Supreme Court Chief Justice Donald Beatty.

• The Space, a new office co-working concept geared toward students and young professionals, is now open at the Hub, 1426 Main Street.

• The Spotted Salamander at 1531 Richland Street, is reopening the cottage dining room and porch seating with reservations only.

• The Midlands Business Leadership Group has launched Innovate Columbia, a digital hub for entrepreneurial resources in the Columbia region. • Palmetto Cafe at 1070 South Lake Drive in Lexington has reopened with a menu that includes sandwiches, wraps, salads, paninis, and gourmet cupcakes.

• Florida-based fried chicken chain Huey Magoo’s is planning eight South Carolina locations, including Columbia. Potential locations have not been decided yet.

• The South Carolina State Museum has opened a new art exhibition, The Graphic Eye: South Carolina and the Intersection of Art and Design, exploring the state’s strong and diverse connection to the graphic arts.

Library opens Census hotline

Richland Library is hosting a dedicated phone line to enable residents to participate in the 2020 Census. Call 803-569-3565 Monday – Friday from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. or complete the Census online at

Library extending hours

Richland Library is extending the hours of operation for locations with pick-up windows and the library’s phone system to 9 a.m.-1 p.m. and 2-6 p.m., Monday – Saturday.

Homes planned near airport

Atlanta based developer Stratus Property Group wants to build 90 single-family residences on 6.4 acres of land about 900 yards from the northwest end of the Jim Hamilton-L.B. Owens Airport’s runway. Some area residents object to the project.

Mount Pleasant, S.C.’s most livable

Mount Pleasant, pop. 84,000, ranks as the most livable city in South Carolina, according to the 24/7 Wall Street.

Dist. 5 sets in-class policy

The Lexington-Richland 5 school board says students might return to five days of in-class learning on October 8 “or when the superintendent deems it safe to do so.”

McCrae to lead law group

The S.C. Association for Justice has elected Rock Hill attorney Richards McCrae as president of the state’s largest association of lawyers.

USC freshman program lauded

The University of South Carolina is once again recognized for offering the best first-year experience of any public college in the nation by U. S. News and World Report’s annual undergraduate rankings.

Dental group helps Midland Tech

Delta Dental of South Carolina awarded $22,400 to the Midlands Technical College Foundation to purchase equipment for the dental clinic providing care to those without insurance in the Midlands.

Women builders recognized

The Building Industry Association of Central South Carolina is recognizing the 2020 Influential Women in Construction of the Midlands. They include Pam Crane, Phase One Design; Sally Rymer Hoard, Stanley Martin Homes; Tammy Jur, Vesta Builders; Mickey Layden, LCK; Sena Long, Apex Electric; Judi McLeod, Dominion Energy Gas Operations; Jenny Nettles, Epic Homes; Kim O’Quinn, Mungo Homes; and Lisa Smith, Saluda River Club.

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