Sporting Life // 4 min Read

Local Character / Bart Chandler

Written by Palmetto Bluff

Jan 09, 2020

After what felt like a longer-than-usual winter, the sun was shining at Palmetto Bluff, and I had to get outside. I loaded up and headed for 38 Laurel Oak Bay Road, one of my favorite spots at the Bluff. Among these 40 acres of hardwood bottom, the people are down-to-earth, and the place feels like it’s been there forever. Which makes sense—the heritage of sporting life at Palmetto Bluff runs deep. As I arrived, a youth archery clinic was underway. “That looks like fun,” I thought to myself. I hopped in a golf cart and headed out on the course to find Bart Chandler, Palmetto Bluff Shooting Club manager. Raised on a farm in Arkansas, I sat down with Bart to learn more about him and life at the Shooting Club. Bart first came to South Carolina to attend Clemson University. He later transferred to Southeastern Illinois College, where he graduated with a degree in wildlife and shooting club management. Soon, he made his way back to South Carolina, where his knowledge of the outdoors and his passion for the sporting life combine to encourage even the most apprehensive shooter to start in on the fun.

What goes through your mind on your drive into Palmetto Bluff?

How beautiful the drive is. When the sun rises through the Spanish moss, I just think, “How lucky are we?”

What about on your way home?

I think the opposite and the thought of having to leave it all again until tomorrow. I reflect on the day and the fun of people learning how to shoot and picking up a new hobby.

What is your greatest accomplishment?

I would have to say having a career that I genuinely enjoy. Every day, I get to be in the outdoors, shooting or hunting.

What got you interested in the sporting life?

I was born in Arkansas, where my family was large row crop farmers, so I was outdoors all the time. Everyone in my family was a big outdoorsman on both my mother’s and father’s side. We took huge trips every Thanksgiving and Christmas holiday to a hunting camp that almost everyone in my family was a member of. This is where my passion for hunting and shooting began. There were probably 30+ family members on every trip, so I grew up in the woods and outdoors hunting and shooting.

When did your interest in clay shooting begin?

After high school, I attended Clemson University, majoring in wildlife biology. In the summers, I worked at a marina on the lake and also at Mill Creek Sporting Clays Club in Columbia, South Carolina, where I really got into clay shooting. After achieving my Level 1 NSCA shooting instructor certification, I shot competitively as a hobby and earned “Master Class” level by shooting and placing in all the big shoots across the nation in about two years. Work duties soon took all of my free time, and I stopped competing.

What is your most marked characteristic?

I am very transparent in the way that I don’t know a stranger and I treat everyone the same.

What was the last book your read?

I don’t know. It was in college when I had to read it.

If you could have one super power, what would it be? And how would you use it in your job?

I want to be able to read minds. In an instructional sense, being able to read minds would let me know what someone was thinking so that I could know exactly how to fix it. With colleagues, reading minds would allow me to know how they are feeling and how we can get the job done.

What are you doing when you aren’t at Palmetto Bluff?

I’m still in the outdoors—either fishing, hunting, golfing, or shooting.

What word or phrase do you use the most?


What makes you laugh?

A good joke about me. If you can’t laugh at yourself, you’ll live unhappy.

Where is your favorite spot at the Bluff?

I’m not sure there’s only one.

What is your favorite animal?

Waterfowl but specifically ducks. Well, it could be dogs. That’s a tough question. Due to the career I chose, dogs were a big part of the daily activities, and I learned how to train dogs early and have been training dogs for over 20 years. I traveled the retriever circuit for five years across the Southeast, entering dogs in competitions. I currently own a black Labrador and co-own five pointing dogs (three English pointers and two German shorthair pointers that I try to hunt with as much as time allows.

What is your number one advice to new shooters?

Do not look at the gun. You have to look at the target or your vision will point you in the wrong direction.

At the end of our chat, we made our way back to the Shooting Club and there they were—the bows and targets sitting in a perfect line. I just had to try it. Bart walked me through the stance, showed me how to pull the bow back properly, and reminded me to look at the target, not the end of the arrow. I was ready to go. “Well, your groupings are a little erratic, but you hit the bull’s-eye three times.” This was fair feedback, and “erratic” was a nice way of putting it. But I left the Shooting Club energized and wanting to learn more. Which I suspect is how everyone feels after an afternoon with Bart.

Conservation / Palmetto Bluff Conservancy 2024 Summer Camps

The Conservancy is looking forward to another summer of fun with our upcoming kid's programs!  Wild Child Camp and Junior Naturalist Camp will have dedicated weeks in June. Registration is $200 per child for the week. To participate, parents must fill out t...

Apr 2024

Culture / Palmetto Bluff Growing Outdoors

Photographs by Summer Pagatpatan Palmetto Bluff is a wilderness playground for families, a gateway to the outdoors, to living life close to nature. Palmetto Bluff Growing Outdoors, or PBGO, encompasses the ethos of this extraordinary place. CampGO is PBGO’...

Apr 2024

Sporting Life / A Comparison of the May River & Crossroads Golf Courses

Discover the May River and Crossroads Golf Courses at Palmetto Bluff Positioned within the enchanting Lowcountry landscape, Palmetto Bluff boasts an array of world-class amenities, with its golf courses standing as a testament to the community's commitment to...

Apr 2024
palmetto bluff

Culture / Behind the Bluff with Fitness and Wellness Director: Jeff Ford

Jeff’s Journey to the Palmetto Bluff Fitness and Wellness Team Palmetto Bluff is located amidst the serene landscapes of the Lowcountry, a tranquil haven where wellness intertwines seamlessly with nature's splendor. Jeff Ford, the Palmetto Bluff Club's Direct...

Apr 2024

Real Estate / Make the Move to the Lowcountry

5 Benefits of Living in South Carolina Known for its charming small towns, pristine coastline, and natural beauty, the South Carolina Lowcountry is one of the most popular places to live. The Lowcountry is a unique and desirable place to live, offering an arr...

Apr 2024

Sporting Life / Crossroads | A Shotmaker’s Playground

Photographs by Patrick O’Brien Words by Rob Collins Designer Rob Collins of King-Collins offers a first look at Crossroads, Palmetto Bluff’s new nine-hole reversible golf course. It is a feat of design. One routing, The Hammer, is a whirlwind of angles and u...

Apr 2024

Architecture & Design / Resurrecting Stones

Story by Katie Epps Photographs by Joel Caldwell Beneath Palmetto Bluff’s sprawling oaks lie twelve cemeteries that serve as the final resting places for hundreds of people and nine dogs. Five of these cemeteries were started as burial grounds for enslaved...

Mar 2024

Real Estate / Discover The Grove: A Premier Enclave for Nature-Inspired Living

Putting Down Strong Roots The Grove seamlessly combines curated style with courtyard living, welcoming the lush beauty of the Lowcountry at every doorstep. With twelve homesites meticulously designed to maximize outdoor living, Palmetto Bluff Builders offer...

Mar 2024

Culture / Meet Palmetto Bluff Club Members Shayne and Jason Hollander

How did you meet? Shayne: Jason and I both attended the University of Southern California. We met through our mutual friend Mike, a USC connection. I was always very captivated by Jason, his wit and charm.  Jason: Shayne’s first job in college was working ...

Mar 2024
palmetto bluff activities

Sporting Life / Sticking to Your New Year Resolutions: How to Stay Active at The Bluff

Create Lasting Habits With These 6 Palmetto Bluff Activities As the new year sets in, many of us find ourselves determined to stick to those resolutions we set just a few weeks ago. Whether it's getting fit, staying active, or embracing a healthier lifestyle,...

Mar 2024
Community Villages
Palmetto Bluff Club
On The Water
The Arts Initiative
About Us