Joyce Bunton cuts a cake that she made for the 50th anniversary of Harold’s Country Club on Saturday, Feb. 11, in Yemassee. Photos by Delayna Earley/The Island News

Harold’s celebrates half century of bringing community together


By Delayna Earley
The Island News

YEMASSEE – A half century ago, Harold Peeples purchased an old-fashioned garage and gas station in Yemassee.

The filling station-turned-restaurant, which is completely family-run to this day, celebrated it’s 50th anniversary on Saturday, Feb. 11.

The event featured the establishment’s weekly steak dinner, which patrons must reserve, as well as live music in the bar area.

The building was built in the 1930s as a Chevrolet dealership, but in 1973 it became a gathering place where members of the community could come together for covered dish suppers.

Eventually, Peeples began cooking and serving food inside of the garage, and he charged a small fee to help cover the expenses.

Over the years, Peeples and his wife, Mary, grew the business to add Friday wings, Saturday steaks and a bar.

Harold ‘Red’ Peeples, Jr. asks trivia questions about the restaurant during Harold’s Country Club’s 50th anniversary celebration.

The restaurant was originally named Peeples Service Station, but it became known as Harold’s Country Club after a local sports announcer named Charles Jackson began encouraging people to, “… all go over to Harold’s Country Club for a cool one,” after games at the baseball field next door.

Peeples died in 2003 and Mary lived to the age of 95 before she died in 2022.

Joyce Bunton and Harold ‘Red’ Peeples, Jr., their children, now own the restaurant.

“Harold (Sr.) and Mary treated everyone the same – rich or poor. They went the ‘extra mile’ to help people, friends as well as strangers,” according to a printed program handed out during the anniversary event.

Delayna Earley lives in Beaufort with her husband, two children and Jack Russell. She spent six years  as a videographer and photographer for The Island Packet and The Beaufort Gazette before leaving the Lowcountry in 2018. After freelancing in Myrtle Beach and Virginia, she joined The Island News when she moved back to Beaufort in 2022. She can be reached at delayna.theislandnews@gmail.com.

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