Wednesday, October 15, 2014

'South of the Border'

Pedro says ...  what began as a beer stand in 1949 has grown into a 300-acre complex that includes a dozen gift shops, six restaurants, an amusement park, a motel and a campground.

South of the Border is located on Interstate 95 just across the North Carolina border in Dillon County, S.C. Just follow the signs!

'Billboard along I-95 near the N.C./S.C border.'
1989. Don Sturkey/Staff

April 1978. Staff

'South of the Border is a mammoth, sprawling tourist-trap empire built in 1949 by a legendary South Carolina entrepreneur and politician, Alan Schafer. The 350-acre tourists stop along I-95 features arcades, motels, gas stations and fireworks stands. A 200-foot tall, neon-edged sombrero is on the top of Pedro, one of the six theme restaurants there. Employing nearly 600 at peak season, the Border is the largest employer and property taxpayer in Dillon County, a rural community near the state border.'
2003. Takaaki Iwabu/Staff

  2010. Robert Willett/Staff (News & Observer) 

'Motel room.' (Yikes!)
1989. Staff.

'Hot dog shop and the Sombrero Tower in the background. The tower is 200 ft. high and ride to the top costs 50 cents.'
1989. Don Sturkey/Staff

'View from the Sombrero Tower shows a portion of the South of the Border complex with I-95 at upper left. U.S. 301 runs right through the middle of the complex.'
1989. Don Sturkey/Staff

'More than 2 million visitors stopped at Alan Schafer's South of the Border in 1980.'
Washington Post photo.

'Water tank at South of the Border has SOB on it.'
1989 Don Sturkey/Staff


Anonymous said...

Haven't been in quite a while but have fond memories of going here with my family growing up! Glad it's still open! Will never forget the scandalous velvet pics of Mexican nude girls in the gift shop LOL

Maria David said...

Anon- wow wee! I have never been... Must go! Maria

Anonymous said...

As kids, we always begged dad to stop on the way to the beach so we could get Mexican Jumping Beans.

Anonymous said...

Grew up near there and loved that place. Yes, it started as a beer stand and place for snowbirds to stop half between NYC and FLA to get deli sandwiches...But it didn't hurt that the founder, Alan Schafer, also owned the distributorship for Miller beer for Dade County, FL.

Maria David said...

Anon 9:12 - oh, didn't know all that! Nice!