SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Families and friends will find a nice variety of special programs and evening entertainment at North Bend State Park
this summer. “The lineup is free to attend, open to the public, sometimes educational, and most of all, fun,” according to Ken Zebo, activities coordinator and naturalist at one of West Virginia’s favorite vacation parks, North Bend.
In addition to daily activities that include hikes, nature study and outdoor recreation that Zebo leads, these special events are scheduled for the summer of 2012:
Memorial Day Weekend - May 26
“Pullman Road” is a three-piece local band that mixes folk with soft rock for a sound that is truly unique. In addition to covering some of your favorite tunes, this group also has several original songs that are especially entertaining and amusing. Members of Pullman Road include: Jonathan Summers - vocals, mandolin, octave mandolin; Bruce Kahler - vocals, guitar; and Gwen Kahler - vocals, bass drum. The performance is held at the amphitheater at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 26.
National Trails Day – June 2
National Trails Day is a nationwide outdoor activity promoted by the American Hiking Society. North Bend will have guided hikes scheduled this Saturday. Evening entertainment will be at Cairo Community Center with Todd Berge performing live at 7 p.m. Other West Virginia state parks will be participating in National Trails Day. Information is posted on the website www.wvstateparks.com
Renowned Story-teller, Bil Lepp – June 23
Attendees will have to figure out what is truth and what is fiction as Bil spins his yarns and tells his tales. A multiple champion at West Virginia’s liars contest and a national recognized story teller, Lepp’s one hour show is hilarious and filled with insightful stories for the whole family. Bil Lepp is onstage at the amphitheater on June 23 at 7:30 p.m.
Geology Rocks! – For Two Days! – June 29 and 30
Meet Ken Ashton, a geologist with the West Virginia Geologic and Economic Survey, and find out what rocks make up the Mountain State. On June 29 at 7:30 p.m., Ashton presents an indoor program in the conference room that covers “Why West Virginia is West Virginia with her mountains, valleys, lakes and rivers.” June 30 at 10 a.m., an outdoor session beginning at the Overlook Trail by the cabins is a hands-on look at rocks, sand, gravel and terrain. There is no charge to attend one or both sessions of Geology! Rocks.
Stepping Stone Band will help celebrate Independence Weekend – July 6
Celebrate our country’s independence with this Harrison county trio of talented musicians: Ron Poole, Todd Poole and grandson Colton. Listen to top-40 hits, country, and soft rock favorites under the stars at North Bend’s Amphitheater on Friday, July 6 at 7:30 p.m. There is no charge to attend. If the feet feel the beat, dancing is permitted.
Snakes Alive! - July 13
Join Jim Fregonara of the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources and take a closer look into the amazing world of snakes. Fregonara brings several West Virginia snakes to look at and learn about! Discussion about the importance of snakes in the ecosystem and why every snake is a good snake is part of the learning fun. Get an up-close look! The program is scheduled in the lodge conference room at 7:30 p.m., July 13.
Mountain Dancer and Caller, Lou Maiuri - July 14
Learn the tradition of Appalachian Mountain Dance with Lou Maiuri. Square and line dancing is fun, entertaining, and easy to learn. Mountain dancing is similar to the square dancing style. Participation is encouraged! Join Lou Maiuri at the amphitheater at 7:30 p.m. on July 14.
Three Rivers Avian Center – Aug. 11
Live raptors and birds of prey are part of this impressive and educational program. “Wings of Wonder – Birds of Prey” program is conducted at many of West Virginia’s state parks during the summer. Learn about habitats, diets, and behaviors of several birds of prey including owls, hawks, and eagles! Three Rivers Avian Center is at North Bend State Park on August 11 at 7 p.m. in the conference room. To find other dates for this program, visit, www.wvstateparks.com/summerperf.html
Monarch Butterfly Festival – Aug. 31 through Sept. 3
Discover Monarch butterflies and learn about butterfly conservation with educational programs, guest speakers, arts and crafts, and even live butterflies and caterpillars. This event spans the Labor Day Weekend and is held in the lodge lawn area from August 31 – September 3.
Mountain State Bluegrass Express Band – Sept. 1
Seasoned veterans of bluegrass music, Mountain State Bluegrass Express will entertain and delight attendees on Sept. 1 at 7:30 p.m. Join them for an evening of pickin’ and grinnin’ as they perform traditional mountain music at the amphitheater. The evening is open to the public and there is no charge.
North Bend State Park is located between Cairo and Harrisville in Ritchie County. Open year-round, the park features a 29-room lodge, nine vacation cabins, 77-camping sites, North Bend Lake, access to the North Bend Rail Trail, hiking trails, full-service restaurant, picnicking, swimming pool and other outdoor opportunities. North Bend is known as a family-friendly park. “If you overhear someone talking about North Bend, you’ll hear ‘everyone there is just so nice,’” said Carol Stewart with the state park VIPP (Very Important Parks Person) program. For more information and to learn more about activities at the park, visit, www.northbendsp.com
or call 304-643-2931.
Ken Zebo, North Bend State Park