Sumter museum offers free admission, Zoom event with 2 best-selling authors


Everyone knows you get what you pay for, right? Not in this case.

The Sumter County Museum has plenty to offer, and yet it is offering free admission until further notice. According to a news release from the museum, the decision was made out of service to the community's educational and financial concerns. Also offered is free Wi-Fi for museum guests. Guests are asked to bring mobile devices when visiting to scan QR codes located throughout the Williams-Brice House sending guests to curated supplemental information in exhibits.

The museum's facilities at 122 N. Washington St. include the Williams-Brice House, Heritage Education Center and Carolina Backcountry Homestead. Hours remain the same for these buildings: Thursday-Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Groups of 10 or more must call for tour reservations to ensure social distancing. All visitors must adhere to guidelines posted on the museum's website,

Temple Sinai Jewish History Center will be open by appointment only through Aug. 6. To make an appointment, call Annie Rivers at the museum at (803) 775-0908 or Diana Roof at (803) 468-8630.

If you are a book lover looking to interact with others without leaving the house, consider the museum's free live Zoom event featuring award-winning novelists Kristy Woodson Harvey and Mary Alice Monroe at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, July 30.

Harvey's "Feels Like Falling" has been named to: 2020 Spring Okra Pick; Parade's 20 Most Anticipated Books of Early 2020; SheKnows' 10 of the Most Anticipated Books Coming in 2020; Mary Kay Andrews' Reading Challenge Women's Fiction Pick; and Working Mother's 20 Most Anticipated Books of 2020 for Working Moms.

Mary Kay Andrews, New York Times bestselling author, gave "Feels Like Falling" a definite thumbs-up: "Two women in turmoil, two lives at a crossroads. Only Kristy Woodson Harvey can make sense of the sometimes devastating, oftentimes delicious dilemmas faced by the protagonists of her newest perfect beach read 'Feels Like Falling.' Readers will fall in love with entrepreneur Gray, whose husband's betrayal leaves her feeling adrift and looking for something beyond career success, while plucky down-and-out Diana will win the hearts of those of us who always root for the underdog. Buckle up, buttercups, because 'Feels Like Falling' feels like your next summer sizzler!"

Monroe's latest novel, "On Ocean Boulevard," returns its characters to Charleston, South Carolina. It is a New York Times Bestseller, USA Today Bestseller, Southern Indie Bestseller, Publishers Weekly Bestseller and Amazon #1 New Release/Bestseller.

Booklist had this to say about the bestseller: "This is a heartwarming story of Lowcountry love, loyalty and longstanding friendships. Proving that life's unexpected curve balls can end up launching its greatest successes, the resilience of the Rutledge family is stronger than ever. Infusing her story with respect for the local flora and fauna, Monroe continues her focus on environmental conservation in her latest multigenerational story of the Rutledge women."

Reading enthusiasts are required to register for the virtual event. Only 100 spots are available. You must be registered and in the Zoom meeting to participate in the question-and-answer sessions. To register, visit A link, password and other information will be emailed to you before the event.

A link will be posted after the event for those interested in purchasing a book with a signed bookplate from the author. Purchased books will be available for pickup at Sumter Books-A-Million at Sumter Mall.

For more information, call (803) 775-0908 or email