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Carolina Opry in Myrtle Beach is an entertaining escape for Island Vista Resort’s guests

You are at one of the finest hotels on the Grand Strand, the Island Vista Resort, where luxury greets you.

From the amenities to the food, good taste abounds.

This oceanfront resort escape features deluxe one, two, three and four bedroom suites beautifully decorated with Caribbean flair.

Kitchens are graced with all the necessities and showcase granite counter tops, Jacuzzi tubs help you relax and spacious bedrooms give you plenty of comfort to enjoy a good night’s sleep.

When you do wake up, be it for breakfast or dinner in the Cypress Room, you will most certainly be pleased, if not impressed, with the culinary talent of Mike McKinnon, the resort’s award-winning executive chef. He, along with his fine staff, will prepare you nearly everything from corned beef has to crispy fried oysters and more.

With your belly full and your body rested, you are now ready to experience more Myrtle Beach’s soul.

The Carolina Opry deftly represents part of Myrtle Beach’s heartbeat.

Founded by Calvin Gilmore, a country music czar who sings, produces and writes songs, it opened in 1986. There was nothing else like it then.

“We were the first theatre in Myrtle Beach for six or seven years,’’ said Jordan Watkins, marketing director of The Carolina Opry.

Now, in its 27th season, The Carolina Opry is still blazing trails with fresh shows delivered with fiery energy and polished grace.

The theatre features four productions – The Carolina Opry, Good Vibrations, The Carolina Opry Christmas Special and the LIGHT Laser Extravaganza.

The Carolina Opry has been lauded by a variety of national news outlets including The New York Times, CNN, USA Today and NBC Nightly News.

Its accolades are earned, in part, because the shows aren’t static. Instead, each production stays fresh.

The Carolina Opry mixes American music of every kind into the show. There is gospel, rock, Broadway show tunes and other types of music. Plus, comedy and dance are blended in effortlessly to capture the essence of Southern-fried entertainment with hearty servings of Las Vegas flair on the side.

A cast of about 35 musicians, singers, actors and dancers are featured in each theatrical production.

Good Vibrations embraces the music of the 60s, 70s and 80s while incorporating elements of comedy and dance, too.

The Carolina Opry Christmas Special, which starts in November and ends Jan. 5, 2013, celebrates the spirit of the season.

“Our theatre is transformed into a winter wonderland destination,” Watkins said. “We have a giant (Christmas) tree in the lobby. Our show has traditional Christmas music and religious music. The Grinch usually makes an appearance for the kids.”

And the LIGHT speaks for itself. The spectacular laser light show is paired with music, including song by The Beatles and Pink Floyd.

Each show has energy enough to make you move.

Undoubtedly, you will return to the Island Vista thoroughly entertained.

If you go:
What: The Carolina Opry
Where: 8901 N. Kings Highway, Myrtle Beach, S.C. 29572
When: Times vary year-around.
Cost: Prices for The Carolina Opry and Good Vibrations start at $32.50 for adults, $15.81 for children and $21.50 for students. Prices for The Carolina Opry Christmas Special start at $37.16 for adults and $24.19 for children and students. Prices for LIGHT are $13.95 for adults and $11.04 for children and students.
Information: Call (843) 913-4000 or (800)-843-6779. You can also visit
. Directions:  Start out going northeast on North Ocean Boulevard/S.C. 73 toward Highland Way. Take the first left onto Highland Way. Turn right onto North Highland Way. Make a U-turn onto U.S. 17 BR S. /North Kings Highway. The Carolina Opry will be on the right.

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