Turtle Tide Art Project

2023 Turtle Tide Art Project Reveal Event: Saturday, June 3

About the Turtle Tide Art Project

Starting in 2022, the Edisto Chamber of Commerce created the Turtle Tide Art Project as a way to benefit local businesses, artists, and non-profit organizations. The Turtle Tide Art Project will help raise funding for a variety of local non-profits. In addition to supporting non-profits, the turtles will offer residents and visitors a glimpse into Edisto’s creative art community, as well as provide informational facts about the loggerhead turtles that call the Island home.

2023’s turtle proceeds will go to support the following organizations:

  • Animal Lovers of Edisto (ALOE)
  • Edisto Beach Loggerhead Turtle Project
  • Edisto Belles
  • Edisto Island Youth Recreation
  • Edisto Seniors
  • Good Samaritan Clinic
  • Lowcounty Food Bank
  • #WhoYouWhitBenefit

The turtles arrive as blank slates before local artists transform each one into their own unique artistic creations. After the “Reveal” event in May/June, the turtles then take up residence in Edisto over Turtle Season (May-October). During Edisto’s Fall Fest in October, they will be put up for auction to find their “forever home”. Proceeds from the auction will go to the designated non-profits associated with each turtle.

Read more about our local non-profits that are doing great work within the community here!

How do they find their forever home?

A Turtle Auction (in conjunction with our Fall Festival) is held in October where all 10 turtles will be auctioned off! All of the money raised for each turtle will be donated to their designated non-profit. Join the fun and you might even take home your favorite turtle! For more information on this event, please visit the Chamber Events page.

The first-ever auction in 2022 raised over $60,000!

Read all about it!

2023 Partners & Support

A huge thank-you to some important partners for the first year of the Turtle Tide Art Project:

Additional support provided from Town of Edisto Beach – thank you!

Turtle Tide Guide

We have created an interactive Turtle Tide Guide to accompany the project! Once the turtles are in place, the guide will help you discover all ten of the turtles around Edisto, learn more about the project and why protecting Edisto’s turtles is so important. You will be able to click on each turtle to open their locations on Google Maps or download your very own copy for reference.

You can find physical copies of the guides at the Edisto Chamber of Commerce or at each sponsor location for the turtles.

Here is the 2022 Turtle Tide Guide for reference:

If you find all 10 turtles and take a picture with each one, tagging it #EdistoTurtleTide, you will have a chance to win a prize! You can also email your photos to chamber@edistochamber.com or message us through our Facebook or Instagram pages.

Here are the 2022 Turtles!

Why Loggerhead Turtles are Important to Edisto

Long before anyone had settled on Edisto, loggerhead turtles called the beach their home. On Edisto, turtle season is from May to October, when turtles will come ashore to lay their eggs and eventually return back to the ocean. If you’ve ever visited the Island during turtle season, you know we take this time seriously and have several rules in place to ensure the hatchlings make it out of their shells and into the ocean safely.

Fun facts about Loggerhead turtles:

  • Female Loggerhead Turtles nest every 2 to 3 years.
  • Nesting turtles will lay 3 to 5 clutches (the number of eggs in a nest) in a single season. 
  • Once the nest is laid, the female never visits her nest again.
  • Mature turtles weigh between 250 and 400 pounds!
  • Only adult females come ashore, males spend their entire life in the ocean.
  • Sea turtles cannot retract their heads or flippers as land turtles do.
  • Adult Loggerheads are reddish brown above and creamy yellow below.
  • Between 50 and 150 nests are found on Edisto each year! We are thankful to have the Edisto Beach Loggerhead Turtle Project and Edisto Beach State Park helping protect these nests and educating the public on the turtles.
  • Nesting females are skittish and avoid lighted beaches. One of our rules during turtle season is no flashlights at night on the beach or around the beach front area. Another reason for our “no lights” rule is that hatching turtles are attracted to the light and will often follow it and go the wrong way!
  • Though other species visit, only Loggerheads nest here.