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Last-minute setup underway for return of Spoleto Festival

Updated: May. 27, 2021 at 4:58 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Just hours before the Spoleto Festival is set to kick off, workers across the city were busy putting the finishing touches on venues to ensure the event goes off without a hitch.

At Marion Square Thursday afternoon, vendors braved the heat to set up tents and hang artwork ahead of visitors’ arrivals.

The event – and the city of Charleston’s version, the Piccolo Spoleto – are back this year after missing last year for the first time ever due to COVID-19. Organizers said they’re ready to go and bring back a sense of normalcy.

There will be some changes this year, mainly that events will be scaled back a little to make sure they’re able to be held safely.

Piccolo Spoleto is moving away from paid ticketed events, and something else they’re trying is having events where people will walk from one performance to another.

“In the interest of not wanting to overload anything, this wasn’t the time to say, ‘Hey, we can have 5,000 people out for a finale event that’s going to last four hours.’ We’ll get back to that. Hopefully we’ll be seeing hints of that with some of the things we’re doing,” Scott Watson, the director of the city’s Office of Cultural Affairs, said.

The official Spoleto season kickoff is set for noon Friday. The festival runs through June 13.

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