Aquarium and Reptile Center Renovation, Riverbanks Zoo
The Aquarium and Reptile Conservation Center (“ARC”, formerly the Aquarium and Reptile Center) opened at Riverbanks Zoo and Garden in November of 1989. Since then it has become the most popular attraction at the Zoo. With its popularity, the ARC has suffered from wear and tear over the past 30 years. In 2020 the Foundation began discussions with Tommy Stringfellow (Executive Director) and Lochlan Wooten (COO) and other staff at the Zoo about a project to renovate the ARC. GLMV Zoos, architects for the project, presented the Zoo and Foundation with two alternatives: a “Return to Glory” plan, that would repair and upgrade the existing facility of a “Wicked Cool” plan that would completely reimagine the facility for an extraordinary guest experience that highlights the conservation work going on behind the scenes. Although the “Wicked Cool” plan was projected to cost more than twice the “Return to Glory” plan, the Foundation decided the Zoo and Columbia should have something truly outstanding. Some conceptual plans are included below.
Hampton-Preston Mansion Greenhouse and Gatehouse
The Hampton-Preston Mansion, built in 1818, is owned by Richland County and operated by Historic Columbia as an historic house museum. The building and its grounds occupy an entire city block, bounded by Blanding, Pickens, Laurel and Henderson streets. The property’s extensive gardens were renowned throughout the United States from 1840 through the 1970s.
In 2020, the Foundation began its final project at the Hampton-Preston site, the reconstruction of a greenhouse at the Northern end of the property and a gatehouse. Unfortunately, there are very few pictures of the original greenhouse, but the Foundation, Historic Columbia and Lambert Architecture + Construction Services have worked together to create something historically accurate as well as functional in today’s world. The gatehouse will be an interesting addition to the west (Pickens Street) wall. Originally the gatehouse was used as a point of ingress and egress for the public to enjoy the beautiful gardens, without disturbing the family by coming through the main gate on Blanding Street. Again, historical data on the design of the original gatehouse is scant, but every effort has been made to replicate the original.
Boyd Building at Sandhills School
Originally established in 1975, Sandhills School is an independent, nonprofit school serving students in first through twelfth grades with dyslexia and other related language based learning differences. Uniquely positioned as one of only eighteen accredited Orton-Gillingham schools in the world, Sandhills is home to students from twenty-five zip codes across South Carolina and includes families that have moved from eight states so that their children can attend. The school has been so successful in its mission in fact, that it has outgrown its facilities. The Foundation is proud to have funded the reconfiguration of existing classroom space, as well as construction of an additional building with six new classrooms, tutoring spaces, a multi-purpose room and science lab. This new building will allow Sandhills to provide its special services to even more members of our community, changing the lives of countless future innovators and entrepreneurs of our State.
Boyd Dining Hall at Camp Woodie
The South Carolina Waterfowl Association conducts summer and school year camping programs for children. Camp Woodie is a traditional summer camp where the campers learn about wildlife conservation, hunting, fishing, outdoor skills, and the environment. During the 2021 camping season, Camp Woodie is expecting over 1,100 campers registered for one of the ten one-week sessions it offers.
During the school year the SCWA facilities are utilized to conduct Camp Leopold. The Camp Leopold campers are secondary school students who come the Camp for one, two or three day camp sessions designed to teach students from public and private schools about natural resource conservation, ecology and how mankind can live in harmony with Mother Nature. SCWA expects to have over 9,000 students attend Camp Leopold during the 2021/2022 school year. Camp Leopold attracts students from both public and private schools. The program boasts over $250,000 in annual scholarship funding for title 1 school students to attend Camp Leopold.
On the weekends, SCWA also operates its Outdoor Heritage Events program. Heritage events include parent child shooting sports clinics, duck, dove, and deer hunts, retriever trials, bass fishing tournaments, archery tournaments and wildlife management and hunting skills weekends.
During the winter waterfowl season the SCWA facilities are utilized by waterfowl hunters.
The use of SCWA property and facilities is efficiently maximized with four different uses, which do not overlap with one another. With the growth in the number of campers at Camp Woodie from 100 in 1995 to over 1,100 in 2021, and the growth in the number of Camp Leopold attendees from 300 in 2013 to a projected attendance of over 9,000 in the 2021/2022 school year, the existing dining facilities were overwhelmed. In 2020 ground was broken for the Boyd Dining Hall which was completed in April of 2021, just in time for the Camp Woodie 2021 campers. The Darnall W. and Susan F. Boyd Foundation was proud to provide the funding for the construction of the Boyd Dining Hall.
Hampton-Preston Mansion Improvements and Gardens
The Hampton-Preston Mansion, built in 1818, is owned by Richland County and operated by Historic Columbia (HC) as an historic house museum. The building and its grounds occupy an entire city block, bounded by Blanding, Pickens, Laurel and Henderson streets. The property’s extensive gardens were renowned throughout the United States from 1840 through the 1870’s.
The relationship between the Foundation and HC began in 2012 when the Foundation funded the restoration of the main entrance gate to the Hampton Preston Mansion on Blanding Street and the surrounding wall. In 2017, given Susan Boyd’s interest in gardening, the Foundation funded the restoration of the gardens on the north side of the house – at the time, the largest single non-governmental gift ever received by HC
In 2019, the Foundation funded the renovation of the basement of the Hampton-Preston Mansion to create classrooms and bathrooms that could be used, not only by visitors to the building, but more importantly, by those enjoying the grounds during public and private special events. At the same time, a sunken patio was created at the north entrance to the house, also to facilitate and encourage special events at the site. Historically significant, the sunken patio outlines the perimeter walls of a circa-1850 addition to the mansion that was torn down in 1969.
Boyd Camp, South Carolina Waterfowl Association
To promote the tradition of hunting and provide a quality parent-child outdoors experience, in 2017 the Foundation purchased 127 acres in Rimini, South Carolina for the South Carolina Waterfowl Association (“SCWA”). The Foundation also funded the purchase of deer stands and the construction of a sporting clays course, a 35-acre duck pond with five blinds and a campground with 5 cabins. The Camp, operated by the SCWA, provides shooting sports, duck and deer hunting opportunities for children age 10 through 17 and their parent(s), as well as camping. All parents must be accompanied by a child!
During the 2020-2021 season 24 parent/child teams enjoyed deer hunting at Boyd Camp and 95 enjoyed duck hunting.
For information about how you and your child can enjoy deer hunting at Boyd Camp contact TJ Morgan, SCWA Outdoor Heritage Events coordinator, email firstname.lastname@example.org, 803-825-7970.
NOTE: The facilities at Boyd Camp are available on a reservation basis only. Parents must be accompanied by a child (hunter) under the age of 18 and each child must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.
Boyd Plaza Renovation
Boyd Plaza, which is adjacent to the Columbia Museum of Art in Columbia, South Carolina, was originally created through a gift from Darnall and Susan Boyd in 1998 in honor of their son, Darnall W. Boyd, Jr. Through the years other generous donors funded additions to the Plaza. The Plaza began to look “tired” so in 2018 the Foundation hired Columbia architectural firm Quakenbush Architects + Planners to plan its complete renovation. The renovation of Boyd Plaza was completed in 2019. In 2020 Boyd Plaza received the People’s Choice Award from the Columbia Chapter of the American Institute of Architects.