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Frequently Asked Questions


A collection of questions and answers


Q:  Where do I look for information about hotels, accommodations, real estate, shopping, churches, schools and maps?

A:  Information on most of these topics is available from the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce.  The chamber site has a searchable lodging feature and a handy map, along with information about relocation, real estate, churches and businesses. The "site map" link is especially helpful.  For information about local schools, visit the Horry County School System.  For hospitals, colleges and other local sites, visit our Local Links page.

Q:  We want to get married while we're in Myrtle Beach.  What do we need to do?

A:  Conway is the county seat, and that's where you'll need to apply for and then receive your marriage license.  Marriage licenses are issued at the Probate Court Office (843-915-5370).  It's in the County Courthouse at 1301 Second Avenue, Conway.  Marriage licenses are issued between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, but the office is open until 5:00 p.m.

To receive a marriage license from the Probate Court, you'll need to:  1) file a marriage application; 2) file a statement, under oath or affirmation, that the persons seeking the contract of matrimony are legally entitled to marry, together with the full names of the persons, their ages and their places of residence; 3) pay the appropriate fee; and 4) observe the 24-hour waiting period.

Only ministers of the gospel, accepted Jewish rabbis, officers authorized to administer oaths in South Carolina and the chief or spiritual leader of a Native American Indian entity recognized by the South Carolina Commission for Minority Affairs are authorized to administer a marriage ceremony in this state.  Marriage licenses are public records and are open to the public during regular business hours.  Here are the fees:

Marriage License Fees (includes Criminal Domestic Fund):

  • County residents                    $50.00

  • State residents                      $75.00

  • Out of state and all others     $100.00

Other Fees:

  • Ceremony                              $50.00

  • Certified Copy (1994 - present)  $5.00

  • Pre-1994 research fee             $10.00

  • Marriage Record Correction       $6.75

Visit the Horry County Probate Court site for more marriage details.   .

If you're thinking about a wedding on public property within the City of Myrtle Beach, here are some helpful details. 

The public beach...  Commercially-produced weddings are not permitted on the public beach.  Non-commercial weddings are allowed on the public beach.

Private portions of the beach...  Only a handful of oceanfront lots extend to the high tide line, and the city has no jurisdiction for either commercially-produced or non-commercial weddings on those few lot extensions. 

Public parks in commercial areas, by reservation...  Commercially-produced and non-commercial weddings are permitted in public parks in the commercial areas of the city, with an approved Facility Use Permit.  Contact the Parks Division at 843-918-2332.  Shelter rental is required if a shelter exists at the park. 

Public parks in commercial areas, without reservation...  Commercially-produced and non-commercial weddings are permitted without a Facility Use Permit.  Other park users cannot be required to leave the park.

Parks in residential areas, by reservation...  Commercially-produced weddings are prohibited.  Non-commercial weddings are permitted with an approved Facility Use Permit.  No insurance certificate is required.  The city may deny a Facility Use Permit based on any factor, including traffic and neighborhood impact.  Shelter rental is required if a shelter exists.

Parks in residential areas, without reservation...  Commercially-produced weddings are prohibited.  Non-commercial weddings are permitted with an approved Facility Use Permit.  No insurance certificate is required.  Other park users cannot be required to leave the park.

Here's a list of city parks in commercial areas:

  • Hurl Rock Park, Ocean Boulevard at 20th Avenue South

  • Nance Plaza, Kings Highway at Ninth Avenue North

  • Justin W. Plyler Boardwalk Park, Ocean Boulevard at Mr. Joe White Avenue (11th Avenue North)

  • Chapin Park, Kings Highway at 16th Avenue North

  • Anderson Family Park, Ocean Boulevard at 20th Avenue North

  • Cameron Park, Ocean Boulevard at 27th Avenue North

  • Gardens by the Sea, Ocean Boulevard at Haskell Circle

  • Futrell Park, Mr. Joe White Avenue and Dunbar Street

  • Grand Park at The Market Common, Farrow Parkway

Q:  How did Myrtle Beach get its name?

A:  Earlier names for Myrtle Beach included Long Bay, Withers and New Town. The area was called Long Bay when a hurricane swept through in 1822. It was later known as Withers for the Withers family, which had owned property in the area since the late 1700s. A Withers post office even opened in 1888. The Burroughs and Collins Company of Conway purchased much of the Withersí family land in 1881, and the growing community was called New Town at the turn of the century. In 1900, a contest was held to give the area an official name, and Addie Burroughs, widow of Franklin G. Burroughs, suggested Myrtle Beach because of the wax myrtle bushes growing abundantly here. That's when Myrtle Beach became Myrtle Beach. The Withers post office then was replaced by the first Myrtle Beach post office in the early 1900s. Myrtle Beach became an official town in 1938, when it incorporated, and a city in 1957.

Q:  Are dogs permitted on the beach?  If so, when?

A:  From May 1 through Labor Day, dogs are allowed on the beach only before 10:00 a.m. and after 5:00 p.m.  From the day after Labor Day to April 30 each year, dogs are allowed on the beach at any time of day.  At all times when dogs are allowed on the beach, they must be on a leash that's seven feet or shorter, and you must pick up and properly dispose of the droppings. 

Q:  Are fireworks allowed in the city?

A:  No.  It is illegal for any person to use, fire, shoot, discharge, sell or offer for sale, store, exchange, give away or possess any fireworks within the city.  This prohibition includes the beach.  (Fireworks displays by pyrotechnic professionals may be approved if properly permitted and supervised.)

Q:  Where do I pay my utility bill?

A:  If you're not going to mail it in, you may pay it at the City Services Building, 10th Avenue North and Oak Street.  There's even a handy drive-through window which is open during building hours, 8:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m., as well as day and night drop boxes for after-hours payments.  You also may call 918-1212 to pay your bill with either Visa or MasterCard.  And, you can pay your bill on-line by visiting our Utility Billing E-Services page.  Finally, you may have your payment drafted from your checking account.  Call 918-1212 for details. 

Q:  Where do I get a business license?

A:  For business license information, contact Mary McDowell, Assistant Finance Director, in the City Services Building, 10th Avenue North and Oak Street.  Her number is 843-918-1175.  Also, check out our Guide to Starting or Relocating Businesses and our Business License Information page for more information .  A downloadable Business License Application, in PDF, is available on the On-Line Forms page.

Q:  Who do I notify if a street light is out?

A:  Call the Public Works Department at 918-2000 or Santee Cooper at 448-2411 to report street light outages.

Q:  Where and when are the parking meters active?

A:  For details on the city's parking meters and paystations, in effect from March 1 through October 31 each year, please visit our parking meter page. 

Q:  Where do I pay a parking ticket?

A:  If it's a parking meter ticket, you may pay at the Myrtle Beach Parking office, on the ground floor of the Pavilion Parking Garage.  Follow the signs to the Complaint Desk.  You also may pay parking tickets on line.  Visit our Frequently Asked Court Questions page for more information about citations and tickets. If it's other than a parking meter ticket, you may pay it In the Law Enforcement Center at 1101 Oak Street.  

Q:  Where is the police station?

A:  The police station is the Ted C. Collins Law Enforcement Center.  It's at 1101 Oak Street.  Myrtle Beach also operates a detention facility (jail) at the Law Enforcement Center.  Call the police information desk at 918-1382 for more.

Q:  Do I need a license for my dog or cat?

A:  Yes, dogs and cats need yearly licenses.  The fee is $5.00 for altered (spayed or neutered) pets and $20 for unaltered pets, whether male or female.  Proceeds go to the Grand Strand Humane Society for operation of the animal shelter.  Proof of current rabies inoculation is required, and the license (tag) issued must be worn on a collar or harness securely affixed to the dog or cat.  Licenses are available at the City Services Building, 921 North Oak Street.  New licenses are available beginning on June 1 of each year, and licenses expire on June 30 of each year. 

Q:  Who do I talk to about a drainage problem in my area?

A:  Call the Public Works Department at 918-2000 to report drainage problems.

Q:  Where do I find a Myrtle Beach map?  Is there an on-line city map?

A:  This site has a PDF map of the city limits, as well as a PDF map of the zoning districts.  The city limits are shown in yellow, surrounded by a red line.  The Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce has printed maps available.  Call the Chamber at 800-356-3016 or 843-626-7444 or visit  Or, visit for access to an on-line map of Myrtle Beach.

Q:  Where can I get a copy of a city study, plan, etc.?

A:  Contact the Planning Department on the first floor of City Hall, at the intersection of 10th Avenue North and Broadway.  You may call 843-918-1050.  Fees are charged for some documents.  City zoning maps and zoning ordinances are available for a fee from Construction Services in the City Services Building, 10th Avenue North and Oak Street, or call 918-1111.

Q:  What is Myrtle Beach's population and area (in square miles)?

A:  The Myrtle Beach city limits cover approximately 23.56 square miles, or 15,078 acres (as of July 2014).  Our shoreline is about 10 miles long.  Myrtle Beach's current permanent population is 27,109, according to the 2010 Census, although the average daily population is estimated at 105,000.  Of course, during peak tourism season, it's not unusual to have 300,000 or more people in town!  Here are the official U.S. Census figures, by decade, for the City of Myrtle Beach:

1940 1,597
1950 3,345
1960 7,834
1970 9,035
1980 18,737
1990 24,848
2000 22,759
2010 27,109

According to the 2010 Census, Horry County's population was 269,291, up 37 percent from 2000.    

Q:  How do I find demographic information for the area?

A:  The Myrtle Beach Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) includes all of Horry County.  For information about City of Myrtle Beach demographics, please visit this statistical page.

Q:  What are the longitude and latitude for Myrtle Beach?

A:  The city's coordinates are 78.9 degrees west and 33.7 degrees north.

Q:  What airlines serve the Myrtle Beach area?

A:  Visit Myrtle Beach International Airport (MYR) for more information about the airport and the airlines that serve the Grand Strand.  You may call the airport at 843-448-1589.

Q:  Can I fish on the beach, and do I need a license?

A:  Yes, you may fish on the beach, but South Carolina requires a license to fish from the surf.  No license is needed to fish from a public fishing pier.  Here are the rules:

(1)    a resident shall purchase an annual recreational saltwater fishing license for ten dollars, of which one dollar may be retained by the issuing agent;

(2)    in lieu of obtaining an annual recreational saltwater fishing license, a resident may purchase a temporary recreational saltwater fishing license valid for fourteen specified consecutive days for five dollars, of which one dollar may be retained by the issuing agent;

(3)    a nonresident shall purchase an annual recreational saltwater fishing license for thirty-five dollars, of which one dollar may be retained by the issuing agent; and

(4)    in lieu of obtaining an annual recreational saltwater fishing license, a nonresident may purchase a temporary recreational saltwater fishing license valid for fourteen specified consecutive days for eleven dollars, of which one dollar may be retained by the issuing agent.

We do urge you to use caution when surf fishing, especially when swimmers or surfers are in the vicinity.  Several piers are available for fishing, too.  For more information about fishing regulations in South Carolina, visit the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources.

Q:  Where do I get a Special Events Application or Facility Use Permit?

A:  Click on the links above to access these forms as PDFs.  Or, contact Construction Services at 918-1111 for Special Events permits.  For Facility Use permits, call 918-1008 or 918-1808.

Q:  Where can I register to vote?

A:  In the City of Myrtle Beach, you may register to vote at Chapin Memorial Library on 14th Avenue North at Kings Highway, at the Horry County Office Building on 21st Avenue North, at the Department of Motor Vehicles on 21st Avenue North, and at the Chamber of Commerce on Oak Street at 12th Avenue North.  You also may register at any county library branch.

Q:  Where is the Myrtle Beach Convention Center?

A:  The Convention Center is located at 21st Avenue North and Oak Street.  From Highway 17 Bypass, take 21st Avenue North to Oak Street, and the Convention Center will be on your left.  Call the Convention Center at 918-1225.

Q:  What's the average weather for a specific time during the year?  water temperature

Winter Air Water
December 60 55
January 56 50
February 60 51
Spring Air Water
March 68 56
April 76 68
May 83 72
Summer Air Water
June 88 80
July 91 85
August 89 85
Autumn Air Water
September 85 78
October 77 72
November 69 62

Q:  How do I get information about golf courses in the Myrtle Beach area?

A:  The city operates Whispering Pines Golf Course, one of more than a hundred courses along the Grand Strand.  Call Whispering Pines at 918-2305.  You may contact the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce at 800-356-3016 or Myrtle Beach Golf Holiday at 843-477-8833 for additional information about the many golf courses available here.

Q:  Do you offer swimming lessons?

A:  Yes, we offer swimming lessons taught by American Red Cross certified swim instructors.  Classes are offered for youth starting at six months and for adults of all ages.  We also offer classes in Water Exercise, Water Exercise for Arthritis Patients, and Lifeguard Training.  For more information, call the Pepper Geddings Recreation Center at 918-2280 or the Canal Street Recreation Center at 918-1465.

Q:  When are horses allowed on the beach?

A.  Horseback riding on the beach is allowed from the third Saturday in November until the end of February each year, subject to the rules listed below.  No permit is required.

1.  Not more than six horses and riders are to be in a single group at one time.

2.  Riding across or on any sand dune is prohibited.

3.  Access to the beach will be from Myrtle Beach State Park.

4.  There will be no parking of horse trailers or staging on the public rights-of-way.

5.  All riders will be required to clean up after their horses in all areas landward of the mean high tide line.

Q:  Where do I obtain a passport?

A:  Passport applications are handled by the Horry County Clerk of Court's Office on the first floor of the Government and Justice Center, 1301 Second Avenue, Conway.  Call the Clerk of Court at 915-5080.

Q:  What are the rules about metal detecting on the beach?

A:  Metal detecting is allowed on the beach, but it is illegal to climb or walk on the sand dunes or to break or damage any beach grass.  Violations may be subject to penalties of up to $500 and/or 30 days in jail.  Metal detecting is NOT allowed in city parks or on other city property.

Q:  Where can I submit a bid or register to become a vendor for the city ?

A:  Visit the Purchasing Division pages to learn more about the purchasing process and see what on-line bids are posted at this time.  For more information, contact the Purchasing Division at 843-918-2170.

Q:  What if I have a question that's not answered here?  

A:  E-mail us and we'll be glad to help!

See Frequently Asked Court Questions and

Did you know...??? pages, too.


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City Hall
937 Broadway Street
P.O. Box 2468, Myrtle Beach, SC 29578
(843) 918-1000   Fax: (843) 918-1028
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