The Mid-Ohio Valley is plentiful with history, pride and a sense of community. One of the up-and-coming aspects of growth happens in Downtown Parkersburg.
There has been no shortage of gatherings and activities in Downtown Parkersburg this year. From trips to the historical museums to picnics on Blennerhassett Island, this summer has been packed with fun – and it doesn’t end there. The eclectic eateries, locally owned groomers, plays at the Actors Guild, the addition of The Coffee Bar and many other businesses and organizations are “making it happen” downtown.
The Taste of Parkersburg is easily the downtown area’s largest attraction, with a growing number of food and wine vendors each year. This year was the 10th anniversary of the event and with each year comes new premiere wineries and local restaurants. Entertainment is always a hit (pun intended), too. Sponsored by Downtown PKB, this festival is a community-inclusive event to give citizens a taste of what the Mid-Ohio Valley has to offer.
Downtown PKB is also working toward a brighter future for its furry friends. Last year, Downtown PKB held a Park Day event to give locals inspiration and a preview of what a future dog park could look like. In addition to Park Day, Downtown PKB works with The Blennerhassett Hotel to create funding for a future dog park. Downtown PKB receives 5% of all proceeds from pet donations at The Blennerhassett Hotel, to plan an ideal space for dogs and their owners to play and enjoy the outdoors.
Downtown Throwdown is the area’s second food and drink festival of the year, with 2015 being the second annual event. Beginning in September right before autumn, this is one last hurrah for outdoor summer fun. This festival is true BBQ style cuisine, beer and competition in which the attendees get to vote on their favorites.
The Annual Chili Cook Off is the spicy transition into fall. This event brings the best of the best to Point Park in October for a healthy competition in chili cooking. Entertainment and good food dominate the day and evening. Last year’s event held nearly 40 vendors, and the event grows with each new year.
What else happens as the valley begins to cool down? The Actors Guild has entertaining plays year-round. The Parkersburg Art Center has art exhibitions, entertainment and beautiful art displayed all year as well. Point Park Marketplace is now open year-round, so you can enjoy your favorite foods and items from local artisans all year long. The Blennerhassett Hotel has their yearly Gingerbread competition and Festival of Trees. Guests can come visit the hotel and enjoy all of the seasonal adornments that warm our hearts around the holidays each year.
Every town likes to have its own niche – something that sets it apart from other places and makes it attractive to locals and travelers alike. We would like to think that our downtown is charming to any age, any visitor and any resident. There is something to be said for a quaint yet thriving downtown – and Parkersburg’s downtown is just that, and constantly striving to be more.