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Rock Hill showcases past and present

Courtesy Rock Hill/York County CVB

Faith-based travel planners may know Rock Hill, South Carolina, as a youth sports destination. But delegates to the 2012 Going On Faith Conference in August will get to see other sides of the city as well, as a trio of sightseeing tours will highlight a variety of the area’s attributes.

“We are definitely well known for our youth athletics events due to the foresight and planning our community has done over the years in that area,” said Rebekah Ardis, meeting and convention sales manager for the Rock Hill/York County Convention and Visitors Bureau. “But we’re so much more. We see the Going On Faith Conference as an opportunity to showcase our other strengths as well, to some very influential guests.”

The CVB is well into its planning for the afternoon of sightseeing tours, and Ardis said delegates would have a choice of three distinctly different ways to spend their free afternoon at the conference.

“We’ll be offering a tour of Historic Brattonsville in York County, where Revolutionary War history is well preserved and where much of the film ‘The Patriot’ was shot,” said Ardis.

The battle of Williamson’s Plantation, also called Huck’s Defeat, took place in Brattonsville. A group of Patriots led by Col. William Bratton surrounded a group of about 100 loyalists to Britain led by Capt. Christian Huck of Philadelphia and defeated them there. The ambush at dawn is credited with starting a chain of events that eventually led to the Patriots’ victory at Yorktown, Virginia.

“Our second tour will be to the very popular Billy Graham Library in Charlotte,” said Ardis.

This well-known Christian landmark is situated on 20 beautifully landscaped acres and features an iconic barn structure with a distinguishing cross as its entry. Delegates on this tour will enjoy visits to Ruth’s Attic Bookstore and Graham Brothers Dairy Bar, in addition to the beloved evangelist’s library.

“Our third option for faith-based planners to enjoy is our historic walking tour,” said Ardis. “In a beautiful area known as Old Town, our guests will be able to visit several civil rights sites, historic churches and local sites for our unique Southern culture. This is a hands-on tour of Rock Hill that planners who want to enjoy our local way of life should not miss.”

Ardis said those planners who are interested in this area’s outdoor recreation activities should be able to meet with representatives who run those complexes during the conference. National softball, soccer and lacrosse tournaments and other youth sports events are routinely held in the city.

“A wonderful opening dinner and evening of entertainment is being planned at nearby Narroway Productions,” said Ardis. “This is the Broadway of Christian entertainment.” The Narroway complex has a huge national following with church groups and has performed at past conferences to very appreciative audiences.

The following evening will be a dine-around that features local Rock Hill restaurants.

And for ice cream buffs, nearby Cabarrus County Convention and Visitors Bureau will sponsor the opening afternoon’s ice cream social, a longstanding Going On Faith tradition. In North Carolina, just outside Charlotte, Cabarrus County is the epicenter for NASCAR racing and is home to many of the sport’s best-known drivers.

Planners and travel industry delegates arriving by air will fly to Charlotte Douglas International Airport, only 15 minutes or so from Rock Hill via Interstate I-77.

To get a head start on learning all about Rock Hill and York County, South Carolina, before attending this year’s conference on Aug. 21-23, visit the CVB’s website at

Faith-based travel planners may register for the 2012 Going On Faith Conference by visiting or by calling Teresa Burton at 330-337-1027.