25 Ways to Beat the Heat During a Marion Summer

West Virginia summers are known for beautiful mountainscapes and river time swimming. They’re also known for high heat, high humidity, and random rain showers.

In what might be the most informative blog ever, I’ll tell you where to find those mountainscapes and rivers while mitigating the less pleasant effects of nature.

Before you head out into the beauty of Marion, you’ll need to make a few stops.

stocked shelves at a health food store

Health Naturally

Health Naturally has plenty of options for chemical-free sunscreens for humans of all kinds (babies, active, ghostly, etc.). Other summer essentials – and by ‘essentials,’ I mean ‘absolute necessities’ – chemical-free deodorants, restoring hair dyes and treatments and skin serum.

This is also a great place to stock up on healthy snacks. Healthy snacks are essential for great hikes, swimming, exploring, playing and picnicking. Supplement quinoa chips, protein bars, and Bragg’s ACV drinks from Health Naturally with fruits, veggies, vegetarian treats and West Virginia spring water from Speedway Market.

Rider Pharmacy is the best place to collect any and all first aid basics and beyond. From band-aids to aloe vera, they’ve got you covered – metaphorically speaking. You can also get your super-strong standard American sunscreen here, too.

Savvy Consignment has got you covered in the most literal of senses. This is the most practical of places for inexpensive sun shirts, shorts, skirts, and sandals. Don’t forget a cute cover-up for those poolside days!

pontoon boat on the river

Boating on the Mon River

Wood’s Boathouse will have all you need to enjoy and survive the water. Rent boats, buy life jackets and discover the wonders of the Monongahela!

Now that you’re prepared to get outside, let me tell you where to go.

Valley Falls is the perfect place for a picnic and a shaded hike. Once you’ve got your healthy picnic ready, stop by Dairy Creme Corner for almost any kind of Avalanche you can imagine! Then after exploring the wooded trails, refuel and relax down by the water. (Enjoy the sounds of the streams or jump in a kayak!)

For a more controlled environment, the Wave Pool is great for tiny tots, swimmers, floaters, and tanners. The tiny tots can splash in the shallow end with the spray fountains; the swimmers can fight the waves while the floaters enjoy them. And the tanners can listen to the sounds of the waves and everyone else having fun.

4 people riding bicycles

Biking on the rail trail

Hit the rail trails for more West Virginia hiking fun! Start your hike or rent a bike at Pricketts Fort; or head to Mary Lou Retton Park’s rail trail for a more vertical version.

Options abound at Palatine Park. Let the kids play at the splash pad, have a picnic and listen to live music or watch some great films.

Mannington also has plenty of the summertime opportunities! Hit the pool at Hough Park, the rail trail or the back porch. More specifically? Our Back Porch has the variety, the flavor and the perfect amounts of ice cream decadence!

For a Fairmont version of Mannington’s summertime fun, head to 12th Street Pool before getting a massive banana split or three-pound ice cream sundae at The Poky Dot.

man disc golfing

Disc Golfing at Morris Park

Discover a new sport at Morris Park where you can either hike or walk while beating all your friends at disc golf (or losing to them. Either way, it’s still fun!)

For when it’s just too hot:

Get some locomotive ice cream at Pufferbelly’s, like a S’mores Shake and a Tropical Polar Express. Then, take a beautiful drive to Tygart Valley Cinemas, a wonderfully air-conditioned space with cold drinks – perfection!

Equal parts fun and air-conditioned is Mountain Creative. Paint just about anything your heart desires: a fairy house, gnomes, practical things and decorative things.

For those days that it might rain or it might not, Valley Worlds of Fun can help with that. Arcade games, bowling, spinning teacups, archery tag – what more could you want on a rainy summer day?

May I suggest that adults 21 and over have even more options of how to beat the heat:

Backwoods at the Belmont makes the summeriest mixed drinks: mimosas, sangrias.

Colasessano’s has craft beer, mixed drinks and gelato (for fancy ice cream lovers)!

woman pouring beer from a tap

Short Story Brewing

Get cold craft beer made right here in Marion at Short Story Brewing.

The Rambling Root has cold West Virginia craft beer, fruit beer and the refreshing (and healthy) kombucha.

The Joe n Throw has cold brews all around, whether that’s beer, coffee or tea. Pick from craft beer, cold brew, nitro or iced lavender chais.

Where else do you go to beat the West Virginia heat?

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