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South Carolina State Dance

Carolina shag dance club on the beach; photo © Melissa J. Gilpin (MJG1984) on Flickr (all rights reserved; used by permission).


South Carolina designated the shag as the official state dance in 1984. The Shag is a type of swing dance that developed during the 1930's and 40's combining nimble footwork with upbeat rhythm and blues (known as beach music, which is recognized separately as a symbol of South Carolina).

Shagging originated at open-air beach parties on the North and South Carolina coasts (North Carolina also recognized the shag as a state symbol in 2005). South Carolina also adopted an official state folk dance (the square dance).