The Southeastern Wildlife Exposition (SEWE) is a celebration of the great outdoors through fine art, live entertainment and special events. It's where artists, craftsmen, collectors and sporting enthusiasts come together to enjoy the outdoor lifestyle and connect through a shared passion for wildlife.
A Celebration To Preserve A Way Of Life
As a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, our mission is to...
- Showcase the nation's finest wildlife art
- Create awareness for the conservation of wildlife and the environment
- Positively influence wildlife and nature education
- Impact the local and statewide economies through increased tourism
The culmination of our work happens every February in Charleston, South Carolina. The largest event of its kind in the U.S., SEWE promises attendees unforgettable experiences as we gather to share our collective love for wildlife and nature and recognize our role in protecting them for future generations.
Our mission to preserve the wild inspires everything we do at SEWE. It is the foundation of our event, the integrity of our conservation promise and the creativity behind our wildlife art.
So together, let's keep the world wild. Now and forever.
The Story of SEWE
Since the inaugural SEWE was held in February 1983, we have become an important and highly-anticipated event in Charleston, kicking off the city's tourism season and becoming synonymous with Presidents' Day weekend celebrations. The original show hosted 100 artist and exhibitors and 5,000 attendees. Now SEWE welcomes approximately 500 artists, exhibitors and wildlife experts and 40,000 attendees annually, generating an estimated $50 million in economic impact every year.
We are proud of the legacy we have built in our community and the conservation world, and we are thankful to those who make SEWE a tradition every February.
While we continue to grow, evolve our vision and diversify our show to entertain our loyal attendees, one thing has not changed — we have and always will remain a celebration of wildlife art and the sporting lifestyle.
SEWE is as important today as it has ever been. Our organization's multifaceted mission is imperative on many fronts. Each event brings us closer to reaching the goals we set when SEWE was founded in 1983 — to make positive contributions, through entertainment, to the genre of wildlife art, conservation, education and the local, regional and state economies.
The first Southeastern Wildlife Exposition took place in February of 1983, with approximately 100 exhibitors and 5,000 attendees. The Exposition now brings in an estimated 40,000+ attendees each year.
SEWE receives the Governor's Cup for Outstanding Tourist Event.
Board of Directors Formed
The first Board of Directors was formed in 1987.
New SEWE Headquarters
The Omni Hotel opens as SEWE Headquarters.
Top Twenty Events in the Southeast
SEWE is named one of the "Top Twenty Events in the Southeast".
New Executive Director
James A. Huggins is named Executive Director of SEWE.
SEWE attendance hits a record 42,000.
501 c3 Status
Formed not-for-profit and SEWE gained its 501 c.3 status.
Omni Hotel Becomes Charleston Place
The Omni Hotel becomes Charleston Place.
First Annual Ducks Unlimited Oyster Roast
The first year of the Ducks Unlimited annual oyster roast during SEWE weekend - one of the biggest DU fundraising events in the country.
Kids for Conservation
SEWE started the Kids for Conservation (KFC) youth art program.
The first year Busch Wildlife presented at SEWE.
SEWE’s Economic Impact: $63.8 Million
Center for Business Research announces $63.8 million total economic impact from SEWE according to a Visitor Profile Survey.
First Ever Fall Soiree
SEWE hosts the first Fall Soiree in October.
Jack Hanna Comes to SEWE
Jack Hanna made his SEWE debut.
Taking Over Charleston
SEWE expanded to Brittlebank Park and the Charleston Riverview Hotel.
First year DockDogs® came to SEWE at Brittlebank Park.
Junior Duck Stamp
SEWE took over the role as administrator of the South Carolina Junior Duck Stamp Program, a federal youth art contest.
SEWE 2021 Cancellation
The first time in SEWE history the event had to be cancelled due to a global pandemic.