Cayce owes its existence to mosquitos of all things. In the 18th century, it was part of the thriving town of Granby, once slated to be the Capital of the state. But malaria-carrying insects, encouraged by frequent flooding, eventually felled the townsfolk, leaving Cayce to fend for itself - which ultimately led it to become the thriving city it is today. How's that for a town legend?
The town was in actuality incorporated in 1914 and named after local bigwig, William J. Cayce. The metropolis dubs itself "a new kind of city." Cayce is attractive as a welcome respite from the urban trials of Columbia, within commuting distance through several interstates and highways. The Congaree River has dominated life here for centuries and access to that waterway can be one of the perks of your rental housing.
Moving to Cayce
Here's what's convenient about moving to Cayce, especially if you're coming from northern climes. No snow! Come on down anytime, even in the winter, when temps rarely get below freezing. Summer can be humid and rainy, so try to schedule your move during the more pleasant fall and spring months.
If you've rented before, then you know the drill. Have good credit and make enough money to cover the rent at least three time over. To get electricity or gas, sign up online at the website of South Carolina Electric and Gas. For water and sewer service, show up in person at City Hall with a valid driver's license, Social Security card, a copy of your lease agreement, and enough money to cover the setup fee.
While you'll probably want a car to run errands in Cayce, you'll find neighborhoods clustered in the following manner:
City Center: Your apartment search in Cayce starts with this neighborhood because of the commuting convenience of Interstate 26 on the western boundary and the Charleston Highway running through its center. Stores and restaurants line
Airport Boulevard and the Highway: Property rentals here consist of small apartment buildings and single-family homes. Abbot Arms Apartments is one example with 100 units ranging from 1-3 bedrooms. However, you'll need to meet income limits to rent here.
Northern Cayce (Knox Abbot Dr / State St): The most desirable part of the city boasts the thick foliage of the Three Rivers Greenway and the Congaree River on the west and is the closest to downtown Columbia. It's primarily residential although retail and restaurants line its northern boundary, Knox / Abbot Drive. Across that Drive, you can shop 'til you drop at the Parkland Shopping Center, a traditional outdoor mall. Pointe West is one example of a rental apartment complex in this neighborhood. It backs into the Greenway and features a pool, hot tub, basketball court, computer lab with printer, and fitness center, among other amenities.
Eastern (Frink St / Sunnyside Dr): The most affordable part of the city hugs the Congaree River but you'll find no apartment complexes here, just single-family homes. Except for a small development in the north, none of these residences view the water. Fortunately, you have public access to the river for fishing, jogging or nature watching through the Cayce Riverwalk, about 2.5 miles of lighted paved path through 46 acres of parkland.
Kinsler: Another desirable part of Cayce has two east-west creeks running through it and is nearly half green space. Interstate 77 and the Charleston Highway connect it with the rest of the city and the county. One of the places to live in, the Fountains of Edenwood, has 1-3 bedrooms, a pool, sundeck, and a patio or balcony for each unit.
Western (Old Barnwell Rd / Emanuel Church Rd): Your eyes aren't deceiving you when you look at the map. That splotch over five miles east of Cayce's contiguous borders is an annexed part. It's a land of a thousand ponds and assorted bodies of waters. Interstate 20 forms its northwestern border, making for fast commutes to the southwest and northeast. Alas, there are no complexes here - just single-family houses and mobile homes, mostly from 1970 to the 21st century.
Living in Cayce
When the tourism website of a city starts listing the attractions of other nearby locations, they're probably implying that there isn't much to do in the smaller city - but not so in Cayce. In the city itself, you'll find a Historical Museum that tells you about the area's past and includes a replica trading post from 1765.
There are always the half-dozen or so parks and recreational areas to enjoy as well. Guignard Park offers outdoor fun with a stream for fishin' in and woods for exploring and spotting nature. Granby Pavilion, under cover at city hall, offers picnic tables, barbeque pits, and a stage. Newman Boat Landing is a pier for fishing from the river.
The annual events add another layer of spice to Cayce life. The Plant Exchange in the spring and fall lets bring your favorite trees, potted house plants, bulbs and seed, and trade them in for something new. Another fall favorite is the free Bluegrass Festival which includes foods and crafts among the sounds of music. Tartan Day South in April honors Celtic traditions with Highland Games and cultural exhibits. And Christmas in Cayce re-enacts life from the Civil War era, culminating in a Tree Lighting Ceremony.