Summer Festivals

Summer Festivals You Don’t Want to Miss in Marion County

Here it comes, summer 2013 in Marion County, West Virginia! Not only does this time of year bring gorgeous weather and the reopening of some of your favorite attractions, but we also have some great festivals to look forward to.

Marion County is home to five annually awesome summer festivals:

  • WV Three Rivers Festival, May 23-25
  • The Johnnie Johnson Blues & Jazz Festival, July 5-7
  • Heston Arts & Music Festival, July 13-14
  • Paw Paw District Fair, July 23-27
  • Mannington District Fair, August 5-10

WV Three Rivers Festival

To begin the summer, the Three Rivers Festival at Palatine Park has remained a part of Marion County summers for thirty-three years.  The festival is the platform for various pageants kicked off by a county-involved parade.  The wild and wonderful attraction (emphasis on wild) is the annual carnival and rides.

True to its West Virginian roots, the festival will host an amateur and a professional pepperoni roll bake-off.  This year will see the third annual professional pepperoni roll eating contest. This will decide the new pepperoni roll eating champion of the world!

Johnnie Johnson Blues & Jazz Festival

A much younger and contemporary festival in Marion County is the Johnnie Johnson Blues & Jazz Festival in Palatine Park.  Although it is only eleven years old, it has a strong tradition for those who come to participate.

Considered the Father of Rock ‘n Roll, Johnnie Johnson is the most fitting namesake for this festival as he was born in Fairmont in 1924. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2001.

The festival honors this Marion County native and what he devoted his life to: jazz, blues, and rock n’ roll.  In past festivals, various bands from the area, as well as New York, Texas, and Illinois, have come to pay tribute to the legend and his homeland.  Artists such as Paul Geremia, Roddy Barnes, and Gypsy Davies have shared their take on Johnson’s favorite genres.

Find out who comes to show their respect for the original rock n’ roll idol!  We’ll see you there!

Heston Arts & Music Festival

An even younger festival, in just its second year in Marion County, is the Heston Arts & Music (HAM) Festival at Heston Farm.

This festival showcases artists and bands from West Virginia and the surrounding states.  The performances are not restricted to one genre, but cross over many kinds of music in various ages.

Saturday and Sunday performances include, but are in no way limited to:

  • The Masons, classic rock
  • Larry Rogers, classic country
  • Intent, rock n’ roll
  • Matt Thomas, country

Vendors are also a part of this now annual festival, and they come from all over to present their original products.  This means that any product you see at the festival is not imported, but is made by the very seller. These products are not mass-produced, but are individually made for you!

Paw Paw Fair

Right in the middle of summer is the Paw Paw District Fair in Rivesville, WV. It has been a tough, muddy extra to Marion County summers since 1946.  The fair traditionally hosts all kinds of mudboggin, automotive pullins, and Paw Paw pageants. And of course, what’s a fair without rides and music? This year the fair will feature The New Silver Eagle Band.

Mannington District Fair

Ending the summer is the Mannington District Fair.  It started in 1932 and will make its eighty-first appearance in Marion County this summer.  The fair has thrilling shows (like the Fearless Flores Thrill show), totally able musical groups (such as The Hubcaps, Ryan Cain and the Ables and Tanne Lynne and the Total Package), go-carts, demo-derbies, and competitions (like trick pony riding and poultry judging).

If you can handle it, see if you can make it to all five events!  Take as many pictures as you can, and share them with us on the Marion County CVB Facebook page.

Which fair or festival are you most excited to attend?