The Beach

Funny (and Stupid) Myrtle Beach and SC Laws

By MyrtleBeach.com
August 25, 2015

Living in America, we are aware of the laws of our states and country for the most part, and a majority of these laws are praised for helping protect our rights and safety. Without laws, things would be a lot different, and chaos would most likely ensue on a widespread scale.


However, there are also some laws that have been on the books for years that have not been recognized for a long time, but are still technically laws. And, while some of these laws may have been relevant back-in-the-day, nowadays they just seem downright stupid. Some of these laws are pretty dumb no matter what the situation, and mostly every state has had a handful of rules that have been laughed at throughout the years.


Cities in South Carolina such as Myrtle Beach are no stranger to these strange written laws. For your entertainment we have compiled a list of fun and silly laws from Myrtle Beach and the state of South Carolina. Check it out:

Persons may not change clothes in a gas station without the permission of the owner.

Persons may not change clothes in a gas station without the permission of the owner.

Really, people, this is an actual law. Could you imagine leaving the beach and, with plans to go shopping or go out to eat, you nonchalantly stop at a gas station to change clothes. I’ve done this before, and never have I ever asked the owner for permission to use their bathroom as a changing room. Because, for one, who would ever think to do that?  Well, Myrtle Beach legislators apparently thought this was a big deal a while back, and instated this law:

Sec. 5-13. Changing clothes in public lavatories, etc. It shall be unlawful for any person to undress or to put on a bathing suit, change from a bathing suit to normal clothes or change from normal clothes to a bathing suit in any public lavatory or toilet room in the city without obtaining permission or consent from the owner or proprietor. (Code 1980, § 7-10-13)
 

It is illegal to urinate in the waters of any park.

It is illegal to urinate in the waters of any park.

Okay, so this law makes a little more sense, but what really bugs me about this one is that it should go without saying. Any person capable of understanding hygiene and manners should be able to grasp this concept on their own, so it is a little scary that this had to be made a rule. Of course, it is a little difficult to stop small children from controlling their tinkle habits at the waterpark, but that’s also what potty training is for. You don’t want little Charlie to be taken to the pen for forgetting to use the bathroom before hanging out in the wave pool, do you?

Sec. 14-139. Prohibited acts in parks and other public facilities. It shall be unlawful for any person using the public parks, recreation areas, grounds or facilities of the city (referred to in this article as parks), specifically to include Chapin Memorial Library, to either perform or allow the performances of any of the following actions or conduct, unless such action or conduct is authorized, permitted or supervised by the cultural and leisure services department director or his designee. (2) Unlawful to pollute waters. Pollute waters means to willfully or negligently throw, discharge or otherwise place or cause to be placed in the waters of any fountain, pond, lake, stream, bay or other body of water in or adjacent to any park or tributary, stream, storm sewer or drain flowing into such waters any substance, matter or things, liquid or solid, which will or may result in the pollution of such waters. (Ord. No. 2000-42, 8-22-00)
 

Don’t bring Fido to the beach during the day from May-September.

Don’t bring Fido to the beach during the day from May-September.

According to this Myrtle Beach law, if you bring your dog with you to the beach or boardwalk between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. from May 15 through September 15, then you can be arrested and your poor little fur baby can be impounded. As much as we know your doggy loves the beach, it’s probably best to avoid having you and your pup sent to the can.

Sec. 4-8. Dogs on beaches prohibited certain times; animals restricted on Ocean Boulevard. (a) It shall be unlawful to allow any dog to be on the public beaches or boardwalks of the municipality from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. during the period from May 15 through September 15 of each year, except for assistance animals and law enforcement dogs. Owners shall be subject to arrest and the dogs may be impounded. (b) It shall be unlawful for an owner or keeper of any animal to take or permit the animal onto the right of way of Ocean Boulevard between 21st Ave. North and 13th Ave. South during the period from March 1st to September 30th of each year, except for the purpose of direct and expeditious crossing of the right of way. Owners shall be subject to arrest and the animal may be impounded. (Ord. No. 2001-17, 7-10-01)

It is unlawful to sleep on the beach at night.

It is unlawful to sleep on the beach at night.

Myrtle Beach really doesn’t like it if you went on a bender at one of the bars on Ocean Boulevard and wanted to nap on the soft sand of the beach at 2 a.m.  In fact, sleeping on the beach from 9 p.m. to sunrise is illegal and can land you in some trouble. I mean, think about it; what if you fell asleep and high tide washed you away, got robbed, or you got run over by a beach policing vehicle? That would not be worth the cozy slumber you took next to great Atlantic.

Sec. 5-4. Sleeping on public beach after 9:00 p.m. prohibited. It shall be unlawful for any person to sleep on the beach within the city between the hours of 9:00 p.m. and sunrise. (Code 1980, § 7-10-4)

While those are probably the weirdest laws in Myrtle Beach, here is a list of various other laws in South Carolina that are sure to make you chuckle. In the state of South Carolina:

  • If a man promises to marry an unmarried woman, then the marriage must take place.
  • You must be 18 years old to play a pinball machine.
  • It is considered an offense if you get a tattoo.
  • It is illegal to keep a horse in a bathtub.
  • Railroad companies may be held liable for scaring horses.
  • When approaching a four way or blind intersection in a non-horse driven vehicle you must stop 100 ft from the intersection and discharge a firearm into the air to warn horse traffic.
  • Musical instruments may not be sold on Sunday.
  • It is illegal to own an alligator as a pet in South Carolina.


Well, folks, there you have it! While there are many more weird, dumb, and funny laws within our state, I think these are more than enough to entertain you for now. Remember, next time you’re in Myrtle Beach be sure not to pee in the water at Myrtle Waves or Brookgreen Gardens, and definitely have your ID ready when playing a pinball machine.