West Virginia - Wild and Wonderful

About West Virginia

West Virginia is noted for its mountains and diverse topography, its historically significant logging and coal mining industries, and its political and labor history. It is one of the most densely karstic areas in the world, making it a choice area for recreational caving and scientific research.

Business

West Virginia is full of opportunity for any business with a growing economy and a highly dedicated workforce. Whether you are running an existing business or thinking of starting a new business you can find all of the information you need throughout this business section.

Education

West Virginia is fortunate to have a tremendous education system with a high standard of excellence. Please use the information provided here to learn more about the wealth of educational opportunities in our great state.

Employment

West Virginia is home to one of the finest workforces in the country based on our hard work and commitment to quality. Whether you are looking for new job opportunities, enhancing your job skills or researching future employment trends you can find all of the information you need throughout this employment section.

Family

West Virginia offers the perfect balance of a rural and urban setting that suits a variety of lifestyles. This is a state where you can go whitewater rafting in the morning, go to an art exhibit in the afternoon and attend a concert in the evening. Whether you just moved to the Mountain State or your family has been here since it was founded, you are part of our community.

Health

Maintaining proper health is vital to ensuring the highest quality of life possible. West Virginia strives to provide one of the best health care systems in the country that is affordable and available to all residents of the state. This section contains numerous resources to assist you in accessing the health care services provided in the state.

Tourism

Exhilarate in the lasting beauty and natural wonder scattered throughout West Virginia. From unmatched outdoor recreation to world-class resorts, breathtaking scenery and a variety of cultural and historic attractions, West Virginia is an ideal spot to plan your next adventure. Discover for yourself what makes West Virginia wild and wonderful.

 Tourism Adventure Media Advisory Oct. 15-28

10/3/2012
Maze at Cooper Farms, LLC: now until Oct. 28, Milton
Please join us this year for some good old-fashioned fun that’s close to home. While at Cooper Farm, enjoy hayrides, campfires, s’mores, seven-acre corn maze, pumpkin patch, a box maze, cow train and more. Mondays through Thursdays are by reservation only. Hours are from 5 to 10 p.m. on Fridays, noon to 10 p.m. on Saturdays and 1 to 5 p.m. on Sundays. In addition to the daily schedule, special evening hauntings are scheduled for Oct. 19, 20, 26 and 27. For more information, call 304-634-6293 or visit http://www.cooperfamilyfarms.net/corn-maze.html.

Ridgefield Farm and Orchard: now until Oct. 28, Harpers Ferry
Rollicking hayrides, a confusing corn maze, pumpkin-picking, apple-picking, petting zoo, live music, the famous Pirate Ship and play area, our Country Store and fresh cider – all have made Ridgefield Farm a favorite farm experience for generations. Grab a wagon and head off to the Pumpkin Patch to pick the perfect pumpkin or a buy a bag of fresh apples. Take in the Magic Show or enjoy some food and listen to great music. There’s plenty to do at Ridgefield Farm by day, but there’s more at night. Be prepared for a chilling evening with Haunting Season Friday and Saturday nights on Oct. 19, 20, 26 and 27. Visit http://www.ridgefieldfarm.com/ or contact 304-876-3647 or email info@ridgefieldfarm.com for more information.

Gritt’s Farm Corn Maze and Pumpkin Patch: now until Oct. 31, Buffalo
Enjoy our pick-your-own pumpkin patch, corn maze, wagon rides, concessions, hay maze and corn bin. We have wagons to take to the patch, but if you would like to bring your own it may be helpful on busy days. Admission to the pumpkin patch is free – you only pay for your pumpkins. Group rates are available. Admission is $7 per person ages 8 and up; under age 8 is $5. Rates include all activities. Hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. We are closed Monday and Wednesday. In addition to our regular daytime hours, special flashlight hours will take place on Oct. 6, 13, and 27 from 8 to 11 p.m. and Haunted Night will take place on Oct. 20 from 8 to 11 p.m. If you have questions or would like to make reservations, call Lois at 304-389-7240 or Bob at 304-546-3087.

Okes Family Farms—Pumpkins and Corn Maze: now until Oct. 31, Cool Ridge
We have over five acres of pumpkins to cut off the vine. Additional activities and attractions include a corn maze, tractor-pulled hay rides, cider mill (fresh apple cider made on the premises), snacks and refreshment stand, picnic area, farm animals, corn cannon and much more! As always your wagon ride is free with the purchase of any pumpkins. Open to groups by appointment and for parties Monday through Friday. Hours are 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Saturdays and noon to 5:30 p.m. Sundays. Visit http://www.okesfamilyfarms.com or contact 304-673-3268 or 304-673-3308 for additional information.

Orr’s Farm Market—Pumpkin Patch and Hayrides: now until Oct. 31, Martinsburg
Join in the fun and pick your own pumpkin, take a tractor-pulled hay ride, visit the corn maze or enjoy our fall festival. Pumpkin Patch Hayrides will be available during regular store hours and even throughout the week! The hay wagon will make trips on the hour and half-hour. During our busy season, wagon rides may be more frequent. Hours are Monday-Saturday 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. with the last ride to the patch departing at 5:30 p.m. Sunday’s hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. with the last ride to the patch departing at 3:30 p.m. Please call before coming and make sure to check the weather forecast. Visit http://www.orrsfarmmarket.com/pumpkins or call 304-263-1168 for more information.

Town and Country Nursery—Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze: now until Oct. 31, Kearneysville
Town and Country Nursery offers family fun with a pumpkin patch, popcorn patch, corn maze, straw maze, petting zoo with goats, and a great selection of winter squash. Nursery hours are Sunday to Saturday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. For more information, call 304-725-1252.

Old McDonald’s Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze: now until Nov. 1, Inwood
Bring the kids out to the pumpkin patch as autumn comes alive with family fun! Take a stroll to find the perfect pumpkin, find the way out of the corn maze and go for a hayride. Old McDonald’s Farm wouldn’t be complete without the petting zoo and farm animals. Other attractions include a corn castle, 60' Tube Slides, playground, and picnic areas. Hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and noon to 6 p.m. Sunday. For additional information, call 304-229-1723 or visit http://www.oldmcdonaldspumpkinpatch.com.

Byrnside Branch Farm’s Corn Maze and Pumpkin Patch: now until Nov. 3, Union
Visitors spend an evening on the farm where they can take a hayride through the pumpkin patch, pick a fresh pumpkin and try their skills at the 10-acre corn maze. For the more adventurous, try a twilight maze with glow sticks or flashlights. A two-acre corn maze is available for children. Also available are antique tractor train rides, campfires, miniature horse hitch, children’s hay maze, pre-picked produce, cornhole games, and a petting zoo. Hours are Friday from 4 to 10 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Sunday 1 to 10 p.m. For more information, call 304-772-3131 or visit http://www.byrnsidebranchfarm.com.

33rd Mountain State Apple Harvest Festival: Oct. 18-21, Martinsburg
The festival will feature a number of activities and attractions, all celebrating our rich agricultural heritage. Events and attractions include: Coronation of Queen Pomona XXXIII, Bob Elmer Celebrity Sports Breakfast, grand feature parade, Grand Ball, arts and crafts, pancake breakfast, Baby Apple Seed contest, apple pie baking contest, Apple Trample 5K, square dance, kids korner, apple growers contest, apple variety identification contest, antique and unique vehicle show, quilt raffle, food vendors and much more! Visit http://www.msahf.com or contact 304-263-5000 or email info@msahf.com for additional information.

Blue and Gray Days: Oct. 18-21, Downtown and St. Mary’s Marina, St. Mary’s
The event opens on Oct. 18 at 7 p.m. with a night firing of the cannons and refreshments at the Belmont Fire Department Training Center. On Friday, Oct. 19, a Living History event will be held at the St. Mary’s Marina from 9:30 a.m. until 2 p.m. Approximately 18 stations will incorporate a Robert E. Lee impersonator, surgeon’s tent, Women of the Civil War, artillery, cavalry, etc. Students will spend 15 minutes at each station learning about various aspects of the Civil War. Activities and attractions on Saturday include: touring of the Union and Confederate camps, Ladies Tea from 11:30 a.m. until 12:30 p.m., period dress, Confederate and Union troops battle on Main Street from 1:30 p.m. until 3 p.m., dinner with the troops from 5 to 6 p.m., dance from 8 to 9 p.m., and night firing of the cannons from 9 to 9:30 p.m. The dance will resume from 9:30 until 10:30 p.m. The camp closes at 11 p.m. and re-opens at 9 a.m. on Sunday. A period-style church service begins at 10 a.m. and the Battle by the River (St. Mary’s Marina) starts at 1 p.m. For more information, please call the West Virginia University Extension office at 304-684-2448.

2012 Bridge Day Festival: Oct. 19-20, New River Gorge Bridge and throughout Fayetteville
The New River Gorge is one of the world’s oldest places, and BASE jumping is one of the world’s cutting-edge sports. Above the famous whitewater rafting on the New River, BASE jumpers, rappelling and highlining enthusiasts, vendors, and thousands and thousands of onlookers gather for the state’s biggest party of the year. Additional activities and attractions include the Taste of Bridge Day on Friday, Oct. 19 and The Chili Cook-off in Fayetteville on Oct. 20, which includes live music, a farmer’s market and a car show .Visit http://www.officialbridgeday.com or contact 304-465-5617 for additional information.

Wagon Ride and Halloween Haunted Walk: Oct. 19-21 and 26-27, Tomlinson Run State Park, New Manchester
Enjoy a wagon ride to the Haunted Walk at the Group Camp. Activity cost is $3 per person. Hours are 7 p.m. – 9 p.m. Contact 304-564-3651 for more information.

Fall Foliage Hike at Kanawha State Forest: Oct. 20, Charleston
Participants will meet at Shelter 5 at 2 p.m. to enjoy the fall colors on this 3- to 5-mile hike. For additional information, contact 304-558-3500 or visit http://www.kanawhastateforest.com.

South Side Depot—Autumn Splendor Dinner Train: Oct. 20, Petersburg
Board the train at South Side Depot in Petersburg, see the beautiful array of fall leaves, hear soft music and smell the delicious scent of prime rib dinners – specially prepared by Gourmet Delights. The Dinner Train is casual and elegant – for adults only. It is round trip from Petersburg to Moorefield and a fabulous ending to a fall evening. Prior to departure, there will be a wine tasting and all the wines tasted will be available for purchase and may be taken on your train trip to enjoy with your dinner. Boarding starts at 4:30 p.m., train leaves promptly at 5 p.m. and returns around 7:30 p.m. Reservations are required. Contact 304-257-9264 for reservations or visit http://www.southsidedepot.com for additional information.

Hinton Railroad Days Festival: Oct. 20-21 and 27-28, Hinton
This two-weekend event is held in conjunction with the New River Train Fall Foliage Excursions. It offers a unique view of the fall foliage through the gorge and highlights the heritage of Hinton. You can visit the museum with a selection of antiques and railroad memorabilia, view model train displays, visit the John Henry exhibits and the Dodd farm display or take a carriage ride through Hinton Historic District. The streets are filled with vendors selling many different and unusual crafts such as rings made from coins, coal scrip and old coins; wooden furniture; hand-painted items; quilts; jewelry; driftwood creations; wooden oil lamps; live music in Town Square, Patio Foundations and many more interesting items. Food vendors offer hot dogs, hamburgers, barbecues, kielbasa sandwiches, chicken and dumplings, beans and cornbread, kettle corn, funnel cakes and baked potatoes. The event runs from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day. For additional information, contact 304-466-5420 or visit http://www.hintonwva.com/railroaddays.html.

Quilter's Get-A-Way: Oct. 25-28, North Bend State Park, Cairo
Spend a relaxing weekend working on unfinished projects or take a class and learn from skilled quilters, proficient in their field. Attend Marilyn Maher’s class, “The Favorite Lone Star Made Easy.” The class will cover a simpler way to piece the Lone Star pattern. Join Karen Harris in a “Needle – turn Applique” class and learn the basics of applique by completing a Sunbonnet Sue block, a simple and easy block for beginners. Class will cover how to embellish the block and, if time permits, the Eleanor Burns method for blocks. For room reservations, contact North Bend State Park at 304-643-2931 or visit http://www.northbendsp.com for more information.

C-K AutumnFest, Inc. Oct. 26-27, Ceredo and Kenova
The C-K AutumnFest takes place the last weekend in October in the two quaint communities of Ceredo and Kenova. The centerpiece of the festival is the famous Pumpkin House, which has become one of the favorite tourist attractions of West Virginia. Viewing of the Pumpkin House runs from Oct. 26-28, but may be available through Halloween, depending upon the weather. Additional activities and attractions include: crafts, food vendors, haunted trail, old-fashioned bake-off, scavenger hunt, pumpkin contest, cruise-in, door prizes, DJ, live musical entertainment and fresh baked pumpkin bread. Visit http://www.ckautumnfest.com or contact 304-453-5420 for the entire list of activities.

West Virginia Turkey Festival: Oct. 26-27, Mathias
This event has promoted the turkey industry in West Virginia since 1955. Activities and attractions include entertainment, ham and turkey dinner on Saturday from 4 to 7 p.m., shooting match, arts and crafts, car show, beauty contests, and food vendors. Hours are Friday 6 to 9 p.m. and Saturday 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. For more information, contact 304-897-5532 or email buddywebster@hardynet.com

11th Annual ACE New River Gorge-ous Trail Run: Oct. 27, Oak Hill
Come and enjoy the fall colors while running or walking on picturesque trails hovering above the New River Gorge. You have the option of a half marathon or 7.5-mile run or 4.5-mile walk. The entire course wanders through deep hardwood forests and offers spectacular views of the New River and the historic town of Thurmond. Prizes will be awarded. For additional information, contact 800-787-3982 or visit http://www.aceraft.com/trail.

The Asylum Ball: Oct. 27, Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum, Weston
Darkened by the shadows of the Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum is an event you won’t want to miss this Halloween—The Asylum Ball! This is a costume ball. You are not required to wear a costume in order to gain admission, although, due to local laws, clothing is required. We will be hosting live bands and prizes will be awarded for the various costume categories. Adult costume contest judging begins at 11 p.m. Hours are 6 p.m. to midnight. Tickets sold at the gate will be $15 or $10 with two canned food items (food items to be donated to a local food bank). Advance tickets are $10 and are available online at http://trans-alleghenylunaticasylum.com/ball/index.htm or over the phone at 304-269-5070.

Irish Road Bowling: Oct. 27, Chief Logan State Park, Logan
The West Virginia Irish Road Bowling Association adds a new sport, Irish Road Bowling, to the rich sports tradition of Logan, West Virginia's City of Champions. At the 4,000 acre Chief Logan State Park with its outdoor amphitheater and wildlife center, you can loft a bowl beneath the statue of Logan, famous Chief of the Cayuga -Mingo Tribe, or in the footsteps of Aracoma, legendary Princess of the Shawnees. Bowling begins at 1:30 p.m. For more information, contact Terry Mullins at 304-855-8591 or Chief Logan State Park at 304-792-7125, or email tmullins@chiefloganreccenter.org

With a Torch in Their Soul: Oct. 27, Central United Methodist Church, Fairmont
Beginning at 10 a.m., living-history artists Ilene Evans and Karen Vuranch will present the lives of Harriet Tubman and Clara Barton as part of the series, the Port Royal Experiment. The first part of the day will be a presentation of the life of Harriet Tubman by Evans with an opportunity for small group discussions. Following a lunch break, the afternoon will resume at 1 p.m. for a presentation of Clare Barton by Vuranch with an opportunity for questions and discussion. Lunch will be available to purchase for $8. This will include soup, sandwich, dessert and beverage. Brown bag lunches are also welcome. The event is free and open to the public. For more information, contact the Marion County Historical Society at 304-367-5398 or email marionhistorical@yahoo.com

Contact Information

Jacqueline Proctor
304-957-9312
Jacqueline.A.Proctor@wv.gov