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Union (and Union County)

Union and Union County

Union is a county of over 28,000 people offering excellent outdoor recreation opportunities, historic sites and sports facilities. Inside the city limits, over 8,000 residents call the City of Union home. Historic downtown Union is filled with specialty shops and beautiful architecture, and is surrounded by historic sites from the Carnegie Library to the Rose Hill Plantation to the Union County Courthouse, designed by notable architect Robert Mills. For the outdoor enthusiast, Union offers considerable resources for hunting, boating, fishing, camping, and more. Nearly 62,000 acres of Union County have been reserved as part of the Sumter National Forest. Sports fans will revel in Union’s multiple motorsports facilities and state-of-the-art sports complex, complete with seven ball fields, a walking trail, two batting cages, and two playgrounds.

Facts + Figures

8,020

City Population

28,317

County Population

$38,093

Median Household Income

  • Food Scene
  • Arts + Culture
  • Outdoor Activities
  • Business Climate
  • Education

Food Scene

Known for its family-friendly environment and southern hospitality, Union County displays its unique charm in its culinary atmosphere. Union County offers everything from classic American diners like Dairi-O, to sweet coffee shops like Ellé Bell Café and restaurant’s with names that speak for themselves like Fresh Seafood on Main.

Integral to the community’s identity are family-owned local hotspots like Midway BBQ. This historical restaurant is one of that last “hash houses” left in Upstate South Carolina and was recognized by Southern Living as one of “The South’s Legendary Barbecue Joints” for its rich history and flavors. Regulars of Midway BBQ enjoy the restaurant’s three homemade sauces, savory beef hash and its signature chicken stew.

Arts + Culture

Since the seat of the county was organized in 1785, Union and Union County have continued to build on its already rich history and cultural atmosphere. History enthusiasts will find themselves at home in Union County, thanks to historical sites like Rose Hill Plantation, the Union County Courthouse, originally designed by Robert Mills, and the Union County Museum.  In addition, Union County boasts the first Carnegie Library built in South Carolina, which is also a past awardee of “Best Small Library in America” from the Library Journal and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

A testament to its family-friendly environment, Union County has hosted the Union County Agricultural Fair for one week out of the year, for more than 100 years. The fair is known to be a vibrant community event that features food, fun and entertainment unique to Union County. Union County’s Musgrove Mill State Historic Site is another historic site that offers visitors with a peaceful outdoor setting. Other attractions include:

Outdoor Activities

Union County offers the opportunity for outdoor enthusiasts to fish, hunt, canoe, kayak or simply relax. Nearly 62,000 acres of Union County have been reserved as part of the Sumter National Forest. The Enoree River, Broad River and Tyger River run through Union County and are each open to water recreation activities like fishing, canoeing, kayaking and tubing. The recently constructed Flat Stack Trail makes for a great day of exploration.

The Palmetto Trail is a scenic location that includes hiking and camping pathways, spanning from the mountains to the Atlantic Coast. Musgrove Mill State Historic Site is not only one of the Upstate’s prized historic sites, but also serves as a peaceful outdoor setting. The park is home to 397 acres of historically significant land and 2.5 miles of interpretive trails. Horseshoe Falls and the Enoree River are just two of the park’s most breathtaking features.

Union is also home to the Timken Sports Complex, a state-of-the-art sports complex with seven ball fields, two batting cages, two playgrounds, and more.

Business Climate

Once known as “The Textile Capital of The World,” Union County is a leader in the textile and manufacturing industries and is on its way to becoming a hub for international businesses, with global companies like Milliken, BMW and Fluor Daniel establishing major operations in the area. Union County’s close proximity to the Greenville-Spartanburg International Airport and major highways including I-77, I-85, and I-26 allows businesses to access major markets without dealing with the congestion of larger metropolitan areas. Union County’s major employers include:

Education

Union County’s School District is comprised of five elementary schools, two middle schools, a high school, and a Christian day school that each offer quality foundational learning for grades K-12. Union County’s close proximity to a variety of higher education institutions fuels businesses’ needs for a top-notch workforce. Spartanburg Community College is a two-year college that houses programs from the Union County Advanced Technology Center, which offers students a refined education and prepares them to embrace high-tech careers. The University of South Carolina Union is another valuable option for Union County students and is a satellite campus of the University of South Carolina. Other higher education institutions within close proximity of Union County include Greenville Technical College, Wofford College, Converse College, and Spartanburg Methodist College.

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