Inaugural Sumter Springfest to bring music, food Lewis Brice to downtown, benefit tri-county United Way


Looking for good Southern comfort music and down-home hospitality? Look no further as the Inaugural Sumter Springfest strums into downtown Sumter on March 23.

If there are two things Sumter loves, it's a good cause and a good time; Danielle Thompson and her family are well aware of this.

"My husband, my daughter and I are very involved in doing things to enhance downtown and create fun things to do downtown. So, my husband said, 'Why don't we just start doing a musical festival downtown and see what happens?'"

A couple of phone calls here and a plethora of generous sponsors there, and the Inaugural Sumter Springfest came to be. For eight hours on Saturday, March 23, Main Street will be filled with entertainment, food and fun for Sumterites of all ages to enjoy, all for a good cause.

Ticket sales will benefit United Way of Sumter, Clarendon and Lee counties, allowing the nonprofit to continue its mission to fight for the health, education and financial stability of residents across the tri-county.

"Anything that's going to help get their cause on the front runner and raise more money for them is a direction everybody wanted to take," Thompson said. "The other thing that we really like about this event is that we are wanting not only to draw people from Sumter, but people from the surrounding areas [and] throughout the state."

Presented by Quixote Hospitality, the "premier hospitality company in Sumter," the festival will feature local food that residents know, crave and love. Whether it's a mouthwatering burger, fire-roasted pizza or fine dining, attendees can walk Main Street and find a meal they can enjoy -- and the kids will, too!

While you enjoy a good grub, don't forget to make room for the tunes.

Throughout the eight-hour shindig, local and out-of-town bands will unite to soak the streets with Southern tunes, making for an epic concert experience. The lineup includes Sumterite Eddie Rogers and the Sun Down Band, The Jake Bartley Band, Honey & The New Era Band, 20 Ride and Sumter native Lewis Brice. All these bands are excited to put on performances that are sure to have Sumter on their feet in musical merriment -- Brice in particular as he comes back bearing a gift to his hometown.

The last time he graced a Sumter stage was in 2022, relishing in the lights and love his hometown shared with him. He teased a few songs on his last visit, gauging the crowd's reaction. Now, he returns to share the finish product in the form of a 2023 album he proudly titled "Product Of."

The title track, which bears the same name as the album and features his brother, Lee Brice, musically conveys the brothers' pride in being products of Sumter, South Carolina; the music video puts visuals to their sentiment as it features sweet moments between the Brice parents, elements of Sumter -- from Bryson Road signs to quaint country roads to Oswego water tanks -- and stunning clips of the Brice brothers sharing the stage; all things that makes the Brice family who they are.

"I always love coming home and seeing my family, my friends, my roots," Brice said. "It always fun coming up, especially when playing downtown."

Every time he crosses those county lines, he wants to be able to show his growth, going from where he started and where he ended up, paying homage to Sumter along the way. Honored to be invited back to headline alongside other talented artists for a good cause, Brice is "elated" and assured it will be "a full day of great music."

He teased that after his performance, folks should stick around as he'll pop into Sumter Original Brewery to jam a little bit more.

"I want to make this festival so big. I want to make this one of the biggest turnouts that Sumter has ever had. I want to fill those streets. It's always been a dream of mine," Brice said. "Let's pack it out. Let's have a good time."