‘Southern Charm:’ What Is Carolina Day?

The cast of Southern Charm manages to throw quite the gala, especially on Carolina Day. The Charleston-based cast dons tuxedoes and ballgowns, which provides the perfect backdrop for smackdowns and drama.

Shepard Rose, Kathryn Dennis |Photo by Paul Cheney/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

Of course, the celebration is meant to be an elegant affair. The surroundings are typically filled with large tables covered by white linen table cloths, fine china, crystal, and silver. But despite the elegance and beauty, the Southern Charm cast gatherings usually end up in fights.

So what exactly is Carolina Day? Plus, how do most folks in Lowcountry celebrate?

What is the history of Carolina Day?

On June 28, 1776, the British opened fire on a small fort on Sullivan’s Island in South Carolina, according to the South Carolina Historical Society. The British planned to take ultimately over Charleston, which was the largest and wealthiest ports in the country at the time.

Although the American Patriots were unprepared for battle, they constructed a fort using local palmetto trees. The trees ended up acting as a barrier to the British attack. The Patriots performed a “laser strike” on the British fleet, which crippled the foreign invasion.

Ultimately the British retreated to New York. One year later, Charlestonians marked the day of battle, which “officially celebrates the victory at the Battle of Sullivan’s Island.” Residents continue to celebrate Carolina Day to this day.

Celebrating isn’t all galas and ballgowns

Although the cast of Southern Charm seems to add pomp and circumstance to their Carolina Day celebrations, the rest of the residents celebrate in a different way.

Several of the celebrations this year took place long before 5 pm and often outdoors. The town of Sullivan Island, the site of the battle, marked the day with a ceremony at the town hall, The Post and Courier report. Other local societies marked the day as well with their own morning ceremonies. Kids were welcome to celebrate at Fort Moultrie with a kid-friendly musket drill.

While Carolina Day is celebrated state-wide the residents of Sullivan Island are truly proud of the day. “I’m very proud of what this island has done as a whole. I mean, it’s just a little thing. It’s three-miles long. It’s a half a mile wide. And to think it played such a major role in all the engagements of our country. It’s an amazing fact. It’s something,” Mark Howard, a member of the Battery Gaston Cultural Center told ABC 4 News.

But the ‘Southern Charm’ cast certainly knows how to party

The Carolina Day party shown on Southern Charm was quite the shindig. But the cast doesn’t need Carolina Day to party. Whether it was one of Thomas Ravenel’s infamous dinner parties (from hell) or a random gala, the cast parties in style.

Some of the parties that rival Carolina Day gala included Patricia Altschul’s Winter Wonderland Ball last year. Altschul shared a picture of the ornate invitation on Instagram and the entire cast was invited. The gala marked the first time Altschul and Kathryn Dennis finally reconnected (and are now friends).

In Southern Charm style, the gala was also the playing field for one of the most epic smackdowns in the history of the series. Ravenel’s (then) girlfriend Ashley Jacobs and Dennis tangled with Jacobs calling Dennis an egg donor–all while wearing couture.