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A Myrtle Beach Favorite, The Sun Fun Festival, is Back!

  By  Ashley Daniels
A Myrtle Beach Favorite, The Sun Fun Festival, is Back!

It’s back for the 66th time this year! The annual Sun Fun Festival is set to kick off summer at the beach. And, this year, the dates have been bumped up from its June tradition to May 6-8.

What hasn’t changed is the jam-packed schedule of events hosted in Plyler Park on Ocean Boulevard for those three days – something for the whole family to enjoy.

The Events

Friday, May 6, at 7 p.m.

The Tonez

This eight-piece band will return to Plyler Park to play crowd favorites, from oldies and Motown to rock, country, funk, R&B, and beach music, a locals tradition. You’ll be on your feet dancing and singing along to these well-known tunes.

May 6, at 9 p.m. & Saturday, May 7, at noon and 4 p.m.

US Army Golden Knights

Don’t miss the US Army Golden Knights Parachute Team, as they make a perfect landing on the beach in front of Plyer Park three times during Sun Fun: a Friday night pyro jump, and two sky-high performances on Saturday.

Saturday, May 7, 10 a.m.

The Sun Fun Parade

Who doesn’t love a parade? Sun Fun’s summertime tradition will start off on 8th Avenue North and Ocean Boulevard, and travel north to 16th Avenue North. Pick a spot with your family along the route and cheer on the floats, bands, and more!

May 7, at 7 p.m.

Too Much Sylvia

You’ll find out why this live band has been a Sun Fun staple on the live stage for more than 30 years. Too Much Sylvia plays such a wide variety of music that audience members of all ages will enjoy – just like the crowd at their more than 3,000 shows up and down the East Coast.

Sunday, May 8, at 7 p.m.

The Swingin’ Medallions

Based out of Greenwood, South Carolina, the Swingin’ Medallions have been playing beach/shag music, rock, and R&B since the early 1960s. Some of you may even recognize their hit song “Double Shot (of My Baby’s Love),” which became a million-seller in 1966 – and may even bring down the house tonight, too!

The History

This longest-running event in Myrtle Beach has quite a history in our beach town, with the inaugural Sun Fun Festival held in the summer of 1951 to welcome tourists back to Myrtle Beach for the summer season. (Today, visitors flock to our beaches nearly year-round!)

The early festivals featured family-friendly activities in and around the Myrtle Beach Pavilion, like parades and human checkerboard games. The first Miss SC pageant was held here in 1952, judged by bestselling author Mickey Spillane, who called Murrells Inlet home, followed by the Miss Sun Fun and Miss Bikini Wahine pageants sponsored by Hawaiian Tropic. Back then, it’s said that there was even a “local law” enacted just during the festival that required everyone to wear shorts or a bathing suit. If not, they would be fined, which served as a fundraiser to help build the area’s first hospital, Ocean View Memorial Hospital.

The Sun Fun Festival, consistently named one of the Southeast Tourism Society’s Top 20 Events, would continue to thrive through 2011, with parades, live music, sandcastle contests, and more. The event took a sabbatical for a few years, returned to the beach in 2016, and today survives once again after being canceled because of the pandemic.

Ashley Daniels

Ashley Daniels of Myrtle Beach is a full-time freelance writer, editor, wife, and mother of three sons (not necessarily in that order), and two fur babies. A native of Eastern PA, Ashley received her bachelor’s in English Writing from the University of Pittsburgh and her MA in Writing from Coastal Carolina University. Today, her folio boasts nearly 25 years of regional and nationally published printed magazine features, blogs, and web copy for a lineup of clients on the East Coast, and ADDY award-winning copywriting. For more info, visit