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Greenwood is a city in and the county seat of Greenwood County, South Carolina, United States. The population was 23,222 at the 2010 census. The city is home to Lander University.
Greenwood is located slightly northwest of the center of Greenwood County. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 16.3 square miles (42.3 km2), of which 16.2 square miles (42.0 km2) are land and 0.1 square miles (0.3 km2), or 0.72%, are water.
U.S. Routes 25, 178 and 221 pass through the eastern side of the city, bypassing the downtown area. US 25 leads north 51 miles (82 km) to Greenville and south 63 miles (101 km) to Augusta, Georgia, US 178 leads northwest 42 miles (68 km) to Anderson and southeast 29 miles (47 km) to Saluda, and US 221 leads northeast 26 miles (42 km) to Laurens and southwest 23 miles (37 km) to McCormick.
Lake Greenwood, a reservoir on the Saluda River, is 8 miles (13 km) northeast of the city at its nearest point. The lake has 212 miles (341 km) of shoreline, covers 11,000 acres (4,500 ha), and is almost 20 miles (32 km) long. Lake Greenwood State Park, built in the 1930s by the Civilian Conservation Corps, is 14 miles (23 km) east of the city on the south shore of Lake Greenwood and includes two boat ramps, a campground, trail and playgrounds, and many picnic areas. The area around Greenwood is locally billed as the "Lakelands", due to several lakes for recreational fishing and diverse terrain for hiking trails.
As of the census 2000, there were 22,071 people, 8,496 households, and 5,174 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,612.1 people per square mile (622.5/km2). There were 9,373 housing units at an average density of 684.6 per square mile (264.3/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 50.10% White, 45.51% African American, 0.19% Native American, 0.87% Asian, 0.07% Pacific Islander, 2.41% from other races, and 0.85% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 6.52% of the population.
There were 8,496 households out of which 28.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 34.5% were married couples living together, 21.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 39.1% were non-families. 32.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.41 and the average family size was 3.05.
In the city, the population was spread out with 24.7% under the age of 18, 15.2% from 18 to 24, 27.3% from 25 to 44, 17.6% from 45 to 64, and 15.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 32 years. For every 100 females there were 86.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 82.5 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $26,284, and the median income for a family was $32,573. Males had a median income of $26,477 versus $21,476 for females. The per capita income for the city was $14,347. About 22.2% of families and 40.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 34.4% of those under age 18 and 18.0% of those age 65 or over.
Greenwood County experienced the sharpest economic decline in 2007, according to the poverty rates, of any county in the United States. One of the contributing factors to this decline was the de-industrialization of the textile mills which were supporting the economy of Greenwood. According to the Greenwood School District, the workforce in the city was reduced 47%, which impacted programs and supports. Median household income plunged by 28 percent over the same period.
Following nearly 5 years of public and private investment totaling over $20 million (2011-2016), Uptown Greenwood is ripe with new businesses, artisans, retail shops, and locally owned restaurants. Uptown offers a rich history, appealing architecture, beautiful landscape, progressive business climate, and high traffic count. Numerous award winning festivals and outdoor events are held throughout the year that attract large crowds.
Households in Greenwood, SC have a median annual income of $24,593, which is less than the median annual income in the United States.
The most common employment sectors for those who live in Greenwood, SC, are Manufacturing, Retail trade, and Healthcare & Social Assistance. In 2015, the Greenwood, SC institution with the largest number of graduating students was Lander University with 494 graduates. In 2015, the median property value in Greenwood, SC grew to $87,800 from the previous year's value of $86,800.
67.4% of the city population over 16 is in the civilian labor force.
Unemployment rate in Greenwood County, SC was 4.0% as of Sept 2017.
Greenwood's first South Carolina Festival of Flowers was held in the summer of 1968 to coincide with the 100th anniversary celebration of George W. Park Seed Company. The festival was the brainchild of what was known then as the Tourist and Conventions Committee of the Greenwood Chamber of Commerce. Chamber Director Al Parker and committee members recognized that Park Seed Company hosted "grower days" each year and that hundreds of professional flower growers would come to Greenwood to meander through Park Seed's famous trial gardens. The committee thought it would be a good idea to capitalize on having those visitors see other venues in Greenwood.
Since that year, the festival has been built around Park Seed Company's annual Flower Day. Dick Stowe, chair of the Tourist and Conventions Committee, served as the first Festival Chairman, and Judy Funderburk of Bennettsville was crowned Princess of Flowers. During the festival's early years, admission was free to most events, including the Park Seed gardens and open house, arts and craft show, photo exhibit, military band concerts and other popular attractions.
Since then, the festival has grown to include a wide array of activities, many added under the leadership of Frank Cuda, who was Festival Director from 1992 to 2006. In 2007, the festival celebrated its 40th anniversary and welcomed Kay Self as the new Executive Director.
In 2008, the South Carolina Festival of Flowers introduced a new logo celebrating its Carolina roots. The logo features yellow jessamine (the state flower) encircling the words "Festival of Flowers" with two Carolina wrens (the state bird) perched below.
Also in 2008, the Topiary Project was launched, which has become the signature event. Presently, there are 42 topiaries on the square in Greenwood.
Then in 2009, the festival gained regional recognition by winning four Excellence Awards at the Carolina Showfest Convention. The awards were for "Best Merchandise", "Best Website", and "Overall Event of the Year" for South and North Carolina, and Executive Director Kay Self was recognized as "South Carolina Director of the Year".
Ellesor G. Holder took the helm in 2011 for the 44th Festival of Flowers. She rebranded the festival with a more distinctive and contemporary logo which symbolized the diversity and floral history of the festival. Under Holder's leadership, the festival received the SC Festival & Event Association's Excellence Award, 2013 Event of the Year. She also garnered two Silver Awards for the festival's 2013 TV ad and mobile application/website at the International Festival and Events Association Conference.
The South Carolina Festival of Flowers continues to be named one of the Southeast Tourism Society's "Top Twenty Events".
Attendance at the festival has steadily grown, reaching a record of over 80,000 visitors in the past few years. In 2016, the economic impact of the Festival of Flowers was $3,300,000.
The South Carolina Festival of Flowers is a division of the Greenwood Chamber of Commerce and shares the same board of directors.
The South Carolina Festival of Discovery is the premier event of the year sponsored by the Uptown Greenwood Development Corporation. The event started in 2000, celebrating the history, culture, food, arts, crafts, music and people of South Carolina and Greenwood County.
The Festival of Discovery's "Blues Cruise" celebrates the sound of the blues, with numerous musical artists performing at Uptown Greenwood restaurants and venues, while the Kansas City Barbeque Society (KCBS) BBQ and Hash Cook-Off focuses on the rich tradition of Carolina barbecue.
The Barratt House, J. Wesley Brooks House, Lander College Old Main Building, Magnolia Cemetery, Mt. Pisgah A.M.E. Church, Old Greenwood Cemetery, Old Greenwood High School, James C. Self House, Stony Point, Sunnyside, Tabernacle Cemetery, and the Vance-Maxwell House are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Greenwood is governed via a council-manager system. The mayor is elected at-large. The city council consists of six nonpartisan members who are each elected from one of six single-member district wards. The current mayor of Greenwood is Welborn Adams.
Leath Correctional Institution, a South Carolina Department of Corrections prison for women, is located in unincorporated Greenwood County 5 miles (8 km) north of the center of Greenwood.
The city of Greenwood is a part of Greenwood County School District 50, and offers public schooling up to the secondary level, including career and technology education.
Greenwood District 50 consists of the following schools:
Secondary (with enrollment):
The city is served by Greenwood County Airport.
Greenwood contains Self Regional Hospital, one of the largest in the area. Self is known for its high-quality vascular surgery system, cancer center, heart center, and neurosurgery among many other things. They offer a Level III Emergency Care Center, that is open 24 hours per day.
Self Regional Healthcare has a family medicine residency program, located at the Montgomery Center for Family Medicine. The program has 30 residents and is considered one of the top family medicine residency programs in the United States. It is an unopposed residency that is also involved in extensive medical missions projects. Graduates of the program practice all over the country. In recent years, several graduates have gone on to do fellowships in obstetrics and sports medicine. The residency program physicians serve as team physicians for several local colleges and high schools.
Another notable medical establishment in Greenwood is the Greenwood Genetic Center, a nonprofit institute, organized to provide clinical genetic services and laboratory testing, to develop educational programs and materials, and to conduct research in the field of medical genetics.
Designed solely for the provision of specialized rehabilitative care, Greenwood Regional Rehabilitation Hospital is the only freestanding acute rehabilitation hospital in Greenwood. The facility’s unique design fosters a comfortable and responsive environment for patients. The hospital provides rehabilitative services for patients with functional deficits as a result of debilitating illnesses, or injuries. Through inpatient rehabilitation programs, patients recover quickly and return home with a renewed sense of self-sufficiency.
The city of Greenwood is home to the main branch of the Greenwood County Library.
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