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Earl Ray Tomblin, Governor
Frank Jezioro, Director

News Release: June 16, 2014

Facebook: WV Commerce - State Parks

Hoy Murphy, Public Information Officer (304) 957-9365 hoy.r.murphy@wv.gov


Sissie Summers, Parks and Recreation Section 304-558-2764 Sissie.A.Summers@wv.gov

Pre-West Virginia Day weekend events plentiful at State Parks June 12-15

SOUTH CHARLESTON, West Virginia –West Virginia Day, June 20, is on a Friday this year. However, the weekend prior to the state holiday, June 12-15, boasts a wide variety of things to do with family and friends at West Virginia state parks. For example, Cass Scenic Railroad is hoping for clear skies for a full moon trip to Bald Knob, and Beech Fork State Park has the Birds of Prey Program with Three Rivers Avian Center. And of course, Sunday, June 15, is Father's Day, when families gather at state parks for celebrations and activities.

"There are many fun things to do when visiting a state park in summer months," said Sissie Summers, West Virginia state parks programming coordinator. "Most parks also offer daily activities that include softball games, stream searches, guided hikes, campfire programs and other outdoor recreation and interests."
For a list of West Virginia state parks activities, visit www.wvstateparks.com or call 800-225-5982.

Special programs and activities in the state park system June 12-15, 2014, include:
June 12 – Brunch with Margaret at Blennerhassett State Park

Have brunch with Margaret June 12 at Blennerhassett Island State Park. A morning sternwheeler ride aboard the Island Belle arrives at the island where Margaret Blennerhassett will greet you and take you on a tour through her island home. Afrerward, enjoy a light brunch and program at the island's picnic pavilion. Margaret provides a glimpse into the 18th-century frontier life she and Harman experienced while living on the island. Your ticket includes admission to the Blennerhassett museum, the round-trip boat ride, the mansion tour, the wagon ride and visit to Maple Shade. 304-420-4800

June 13-14 – Cacapon Resort Guided Discoveries at Cacapon Resort State Park

Father's Day Weekend at Cacapon offers hikes, snake craft, reptile information, Irish Road Bowling, bingo and Cacapon Campfire Friday, June 13. Saturday includes a tree hike, turtle hurdles and photography scavenger hunt. Sunday's programs include slithering snakes, pelt identification and family games at the Nature Center, featuring cornhole, hillbilly golf and Murbles. The park restaurant features a Father's Day Sunday buffet.

The Potomac Audubon Society sponsors "explorer packs" available at the park nature center. The packs are available for youth 7-12 years of age for one to three days use at no charge. Cacapon State Park and the Potomac Audubon Society encourage youth to be active in the outdoors. 304-258-1022 www.cacaponresort.com

June 13 – Full Moon Train to Bald Knob at Cass Scenic Railroad State Park

Full Moon Train to Bald Knob June 13 at Cass Scenic Railroad State Park departs at 6:30 p.m. from the depot for Bald Knob. Clear night skies can yield an extraordinary full moon in an area void of artificial light. Full Moon at Bald Knob can be an awesome night sky and train experience. All aboard the full moon train! 304-456-4300 www.cassrailroad.com

June 13 – Fluid Drive at North Bend State Park

The Fluid Drive Band, a rock and blues trio, formerly was known as "Except for That." Their hometown is Parkersburg, West Virginia, with ties throughout the state. Influenced by The Eagles, The Beatles and Elton John, this band gets an audience moving, dancing and asking for more. Fluid Drive will be performing at the North Bend State Park Amphitheatre at 7 p.m. and there is no charge to attend. Other events at North Bend on Father's Day weekend include Irish Road Bowling, bird walk, kickball, plant pounding and Nature Center tours. 304-643-2931 www.northbendsp.com

June 14 – 23rd Annual Fishing Derby at Little Beaver State Park

Little Beaver State Park is the place for a fun-filled day of fishing June 14 for the 23rd annual Fishing Derby. Bait and a free lunch will be provided and prizes and t-shirts will be given out after the derby, while supplies last. Event is sponsored by the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources, Wildlife Section in cooperation with Little Beaver State Park. 304-256-6945 www.littlebeaverstatepark.com

June 14 – GPS and Geocaching at North Bend State Park

Learn the basics of using a GPS device for the newest way to treasure hunt, geocaching. Participants may bring personal GPS devices or use units that North Bend State Park has on loan from NASA. The activity includes searching for some of North Bend State Park's hidden caches. Meet at the Nature Center at 6 p.m. This program is made possible through a loan of GPS units from the NASA Education Center in Fairmont, West Virginia. Basic instruction and information is best for geocachers ages 12 and above. North Bend State Park daily activities are posted on the website at www.northbendsp.com or call 304-643-2931.

June 14 and June 15 – Heisler #6 Featured on Whittaker Trips at Cass Scenic Railroad State Park

The Heisler is the featured locomotive on Whittaker Trips June 14 at Cass Scenic Railroad State Park. Departures are at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Heisler #6 was built in 1929 for the Bostonia Coal and Clay Products Company of New Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Cass Scenic Railroad bought Heisler #6 from the Meadow River Lumber Company of Rainelle, West Virginia, in 1968. Today #6 lives in harmony with its Shay cousins and has operated on the Whittaker Station Train. It also has been used on off-line trips because of its greater speed. 304-456-4300 www.cassrailroad.com

June 14 and June 15 – Irish Road Bowling at Blackwater Falls and Canaan Valley Resort

Irish Road Bowling returns to Blackwater Falls State Park June 14 and Canaan Valley Resort State Park June 15. The sport can be traced back to the 1600s. One story is that Dutch soldiers brought it when William of Orange came to Ireland in 1689. Another legend says that Irish patriots robbed English cannonballs and rolled them down a country lane by the light of a full moon. Faugh a Ballach! Games begin at 1:30 p.m. 304-259-5216 www.blackwaterfalls.com and 304-866-4121 www.canaanresort.com

June 14 – Maurice Ulmer Group at Pipestem Resort State Park

The Maurice Ulmer Group will perform at Pipestem Resort amphitheater at 8 p.m. This group has entertained the two Virginias for years with classic rock and roll, blues and rockabilly as well as original music composed by Maurice Ulmer. The cost is $6 for adults and $4 for youth. 304-466-1800 www.pipestemresort.com

June 14 – Sunrise Breakfast Cruise at Blennerhassett Island State Park

An early morning sternwheeler ride on the Island Belle includes breakfast and a bird walk on the island. Breakfast menu includes bacon, home fries, scrambled eggs, sausage gravy and biscuits, fresh fruit and beverage. Adult $22; children ages 3-12 $18. 304-420-4800 www.blennerhassettislandstatepark.com

June 14 – Wings of Wonder / WV Birds of Prey at Beech Fork State Park

Join the Three Rivers Avian Center for their presentation of live birds and the history behind them! This is our most popular program for both kids and adults and includes owls, hawks and eagles as part of the learning experience. The program will start at 7 p.m. in the Activity Room. 304-528-5794 www.beechforksp.com

June 15 – Art in the Park at Berkeley Springs State Park

In its eighth year, Art in the Park at Berkeley Springs State Park provides access to fine artists located in the Berkeley Springs region. Nationally known artists exhibit at this event and the best part is – they are local. Shows are rain or shine 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. across the street from the Farmers Market. 304-258-6419 www.berkeleyspringssp.com

June 15 – Father's Day at Prickett's Fort State Park

It's Father's Day, and Prickett's Fort State Park is celebrating! The fort is open from noon until 4 p.m. with half-price admission for all fathers. 304-363-3030 www.prickettsfortstatepark.com

June 15 – West Virginia's Birthday Celebration and Band Concert at Kanawha State Forest

Strike up the Band! West Virginia's Birthday Celebration and Band Concert June 15 at Kanawha State Forest features the Kanawha Valley Community Band. Birthday cake and soft drinks provided. Free admission. The concert is near the swimming pool area with ample parking. Bring a lawn chair. 304-558-3500 www.kanawhastateforest.com


Photo Courtesy of the West Virginia Department of Commerce. West Virginia state parks visitors can enjoy wildflower and nature hikes as part of many activities scheduled during the spring and summer.
Photo Courtesy of the West Virginia Department of Commerce. West Virginia state parks visitors can enjoy wildflower and nature hikes as part of many activities scheduled during the spring and summer.