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If you go, you should call and reserve a spot for you and your party. If just one or two people are going, you might not need to do this. But in Spetember I highly recommend doing so. Especially if you are driving a great distance to get there. Nothing would be worst than getting there and not being able to go rafting!!!
I use Appalachian Wildwaters. See link.
Updated Aug 14, 2006
Tamarack exists to showcase the best in arts & crafts from West Virginia. All of the more than 2,500 artists/craftsmen who sell there must be selected by going through a jury process. They submit samples of their work which are judged by a team of experts & evaluated as to whether or not the work is of a quality to be sold/exhibited at Tamarack (which is a world-class arts and crafts center).
You can shop, dine, watch craft demonstations, attend theatre performances & look at exhibits in the gallery. You will see stunning items for sale, including textiles, agricultural products, glass, pottery, wood, metal, jewelry, quilts, & wearable art. There are things available in a wide variety of price ranges. For example, Tamarack has coffee tables for sale which ring up at a mere $18,000--I've seen some of them--they are truly works of art! But there are more reasonably priced items too. There are six artisan studios at which resident artists pursue their craft. Currently they have a blacksmith, potter, woodworking husband/wife team who make musical instruments, a glassblower and a texile artisan in residence.
If you are hungry, the food court is called "A taste of West Virginia." This is no fast-food type food court--it's managed by the world famous Greenbrier Resort & is staffed with true chefs. The menu features regional specialties. A sample of the menu offerings and prices: "Appalachian Mountain Burger with Red Eye Country Ham, Fried Green Tomatoes, Swiss Cheese, and Real McCoy Mustard Sauce. Served with Golden French Fries and Dill Pickle Spear.....$7.95 Sandwich Only.....$6.95" Or how about "Pan-Fried Fillet of West Virginia Rainbow Trout with Your Choice of Two Side Dishes.....One Fillet $8.95..Two Fillets $13.95" You can get less expensive meals than these--the two fillets of rainbow trout are the only thing I've seen on the menu priced over $10.
This is a wonderful place to buy souvenirs of West Virginia. Check out the website listed below for current exhibits and events and further information.
Updated Apr 4, 2011
Address: One Tamarack Park, Beckley, WV 25801
There's so much to do and see in Parkersburg, I have a separate travel page for it. Check out my Parkersburg pages for tips on where to eat, things to do, etc. No matter what your interests, you can find something to enjoy in Parkersburg & the surrounding areas.
Have daughters? They will probably enjoy a tour of the Middleton Doll Factory, just across the river in Belpre, Ohio. Sons? They might enjoy a visit to the People's Mortuary Museum in Marietta, Ohio or a visit to the Oil and Gas Museum in Parkersburg. Interested in glass? Fenton Glass Factory is 10 miles north of Parkersburg--and 2007 is their 100th anniversary year so they will be having special events and sales. Into woodworking? Woodcrafters has a shop in Parkersburg. Like to cycle? North Bend rail trail begins/ends in Parkersburg.
If you like history--tour the Blennerhassett Island, mansion & museum. If you are into architecture, Parkersburg has several historic districts, and one of them, Julia-Ann Square, has the largest concentrated grouping of Italianate, Second Empire, and Queen Anne mansions in the entire state of West Virginia. Interested in ghost hunting? Parkersburg has active ghost hunting groups and a large number of haunted buildings/locales.
I've just scratched the surface...I could keep going but you have probably already quit reading! There are festivals galore: the Mid-Ohio Cultural Festival in June; West Virginia Interstate Fair & Exposition in July; the Parkersburg Homecoming Festival August 16-17, 2007; West Virginia Honey Festival on August 25-26, 2007; Harvest Moon Arts & Crafts Festival in September; and, of course, Holiday In The Park, Parkersburg's holiday season light display in City Park.
Then there's the shopping: Grand Central Mall with over 100 stores, theatre and food court; Coldwater Creek's clearance outlet, near the Mineral Wells area; the Middleton Doll factory outlet, Fenton glass factory outlet...and so on. There are lots of local merchants with boutiques and specialty shops that will well repay a visit too.
Updated Apr 4, 2011
Address: Parkersburg, WV I-77 and US 50
Blackwater falls is one of the signature landmarks in the state of West Virginia, and for good reason. It is one of the most beautiful waterfalls you will find anywhere. The Blackwater River and Falls gets its name from the dark amber-colored water which is the result of staining from fallen spruce and hemlock trees. At the falls the river plunges and cascades about 50 feet, before twisting and winding its way for eight miles through a picturesque canyon.
The falls is surrounded by a State Park with a modern 54 room lodge, rental cabins, a campground, restaurant, indoor swimming pool, two gift shops, and picnic shelters. Hiking trails lead to two other waterfalls, Pendleton Falls and Elakala Falls, both within a half mile of the lodge. There are also several scenic overlooks along the gorge of the Blackwater River.
Updated Jun 29, 2006
Address: P. O. Drawer 490, Davis, WV 26260
Located about 13 miles (21 kilometers) east of Morgantown, Coopers Rock State Forest is one of the most popular attractions in the northern part of West Virginia. The 12,713-acre (5,145-hectare) park is bisected by Interstate 68, making for easy access. The area north of the interstate is leased by the West Virginia University Division of Forestry for research and teaching. South of the interstate is the main recreation area.
Legend has it that the park got its name from a cooper (barrel maker) who was a fugitive from the law and hid out near the Cheat River Gorge. There, he continued to make barrels and sell them to people in the local communities.
Coopers Rock State Forest offers many outdoor activities for visitors. Most people come to visit the several overlooks above the spectacular Cheat River Gorge. Other activities include picnicking, camping, hiking on the 50 miles (80 kilometers) of trails, cross-country skiing, and fishing in a six-acre (two-hectare) pond that is frequently stocked with trout.
During the Great Depression, between 1936 and 1942, the Civilian Conservation Corps constructed numerous structures in the park, such as a lodge, overlooks, and picnic shelters. Eleven of those structures are now listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Updated Apr 10, 2009
This year is the 100th anniversary of Fenton glass in Williamstown, WV (10 miles north of Parkersburg). To mark their centennial, Fenton is having a festival, August 3-5, 2007. They are also having a glassmaking school. Call or email for details; reservations will be available beginning April 1st. There will be a fee, of course, and you will need to register in advance for the glassmaking school.
Fenton Art glass is one of the last family owned glass factories and the largest handmade glass factory in the United States. They make handblown and pressed glass both. Fenton offers free factory tours (highly rated) and has a gift shop and glass museum on site at their Williamsburg factory. Even if you aren't interested in actually learning to make glass yourself, Fenton is still a fascinating place to visit.
Contact Jena L Blair at 1-800-319-7793 extension 311 or email@example.com for details on the Festival or on the glassmaking school. Visit my homepage and view my personal photo album on Fenton glass for more details on this delightful place.
Updated Feb 19, 2007
Address: 700 Elizabeth Street, Williamstown, WV
Phone: 1-800-319-7793 ext. 311
West Virginia is unique among all of the states of the United States in that it was the only one to be formed by Presidential proclamation and it was the only state to be born out of the Civil War. And the President who issued that proclamation and thereby made West Virginia a state was none other than Abraham Lincoln. Francis H. Pierpoint, the first governor of West Virginia and a prime mover and shaker behind the severing of western Virginia from Old Dominion, is usually called the Father of West Virginia. So perhaps it might be more accurate to think of Abe as the Godfather of West Virginia. ;)
A statue honoring Abraham Lincoln and telling of his role in the making of the state is placed outside the West Entrance to the Capitol in Charleston. Titled "Abraham Lincoln Walks at Midnight" it portrays Lincoln in his bathrobe, pacing the floor (No, I am NOT making this up!) and is based on a poem written by Vachell Lindsay. Go see the statue...you get a real sense of him as human being and not such as sense of him being a giant magisterial presence (such as you feel after seeing the statue of him at the Lincoln Memorial).
Updated Feb 21, 2007
Address: 1900 Kanawha Boulevard East, Charleston, WV 25305
The New River Gorge bridge is the second highest in the U.S. I very much dislike driving over some bridges, and I was sort of afraid of this one, but it is really no big deal when you are driving over it. Why? You can't SEE how high you are from the top! We didn't realize how high up it is until we went to the Canyon Rim visitor center on the north side of the bridge. It looked really large from there . But it didn' t stop us from driving down to the bottom to look at the river! The road is a one-way road that has some very sharp turns. I am used to driving mountain roads, but I was worried about making the turns at a few places. We did make it down, went over the old bridge on the bottom , back up, and over the bridge again a second time to keep going .
Updated Aug 10, 2009
We added another U.S. Highpoint to our list of mountains we have been to. This one, as many in the Eastern U.S. you can drive to the top. The road is narrow , has lots of curves and takes a while, but is not too bad. The view from on top was awesome. There were several other groups of people on the top even as isolated as this mountain was!
Updated Aug 10, 2009
Climbing the steps up to St. Peter's Church in Harper's Ferry was not really what I wanted to do, but I did and was glad for making the effort. It was a lovely church and the view more breathtaking than the climb!
This was not the first location of this church. Seems it was originally the first parish of Jefferson County and was a log cabin type building that washed away by flood, before even being used,
That's when the decision was made to rebuild on top of the hill. It was the only church to survive, not only John Brown, but also the Civil War. In 1896 it was again rebuilt and has since become a mission of the parish of St. James the Greater.
Tourist Mass is said on Sundays at 11:00 am and the church is open Saturdays and Sundays for doecent lead tours.
Updated Oct 28, 2011
Address: Church Street, Harpers Ferry, WV 25425
Sleep Inn Charleston Charleston
1 Review and 111 Opinions This was a gem of a motel but it was a bit tough to locate. The motel was off the I-79 exit but...
Blennerhassett Hotel Parkersburg
1 Review and 213 Opinions Text coming