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Annual Swordfest the SC Confederate Relic Room & Military Museum

Saturday, February 10 @ 10:00 am - 3:00 pm

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Just when you thought it was safe to go out without your sword and shield, SwordFest is back, yet again, at the South Carolina Confederate Relic Room and Military Museum.
Come on out – admission is free. SwordFest 2024 starts at 10 a.m. and runs until at least 3 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 10.
The peace of our city will again be disturbed by clanging and swishing of every kind imaginable – and for the sixth time! And if you’ve been to SwordFest before, you know this isn’t your average historical uprising of swordfighters. It’s more like every kind of bladed weaponry all coming at you at once.

9:55 a.m. – The action opens with the formation of a Sword Arch by members of the Columbia High Junior ROTC.

10:00 – Welcome and introduction.

10:15 – McAuley Broadsword Youth Demonstration Team: South Carolina’s own historic style, as practiced by 19th century militia.

10:30 – Carolina Historical Fencing: CHF recreates the fighting techniques of past centuries with a variety of blades!

11:00 – Iaido, the Art of Sword-Drawing. Dan Bernardo of WellWithin Martial Arts will demonstrate a traditional Japanese sword art with a live cutting demonstration with a samurai sword.

11:30 – Columbia Fencing Club: the fast-moving modern sport of fencing, as seen in Olympic competitions, also thrives locally! See how the champions train!

12:15 p.m. – Swords of the Jedi. The Aiken Saber Club will put on a display of a recreational form of swordplay, inspired by the Star Wars universe. This includes demonstrations of choreographed lightsaber dueling.

1:00 – Cavalry Saber Historian Neil Rose will demonstrate how Wade Hampton’s cavalry employed the saber at Gettysburg.

1:30 – Pirates! Theatrical dueling in the classic style, by members of the Charles Towne Few!

2:00 – Palmetto Knights Steel Combat Team: armored knights and their fighting techniques.

All sorts of associated items will be on display. Oh, and don’t forget – the museum itself has a huge array of swords, from those used in combat in the Revolutionary and Civil Wars, to a 400-year-old samurai sword captured by an American soldier at Iwo Jima! During this event, you can check out the museum for free.