Travelers enjoy mild conditions

WILLIAMSTOWN – Travelers heading north and south were keeping the West Virginia Welcome Center busy over the weekend as they headed home from family gatherings or to favorite southern winter locales.

“Actually it has been busy since the day after Christmas,” Helen Groves, a tourist guide at the Williamstown Welcome Center, located just off Interstate 77 at the Williamstown exit, said Saturday. “We’ve been running about 130 (visitors) an hour since Thursday.”

However, Groves added the Christmas to New Year’s volume is not the busiest time at the center and it leads to a nice winter’s break.

“Our busiest time is from April to September,” she said. “It will slow down now until the spring break travelers stop here on their way to Florida.”

Groves said most of the travelers stopping at the center this past weekend were from Ohio and Michigan.

Richard Parker said he left his northern Ohio home around noon and he found the travel conditions to be great for December.

“It’s been beautiful,” he said Saturday afternoon. “We bought a house there and we’ve made this trip for a couple of years,” he said, adding he has seen worse weather on his way to Florida.

“Oh, heavens yes it has been worse,” he said. “It’s wonderful today, about 20 to 30 degrees warmer than it should be.”

One traveler from Virginia who would give her name only as Nancy said travel conditions from Chicago to West Virginia were pleasant as she headed home to Virginia.

“The roads have been easy,” she said. “There has been very little traffic and the weather has cooperated.”

She said this was her first time to make the trek to and from Chicago. However, she said there have been other holiday travel with less than desirable conditions.

“I’ve been on Interstate 64 and Interstate 77 at times when it was not fun with bad weather,” she said.

Doreen Dubsky said she and her daughter were on their way to Florida to go on a cruise. She said the trip from her home in the Cleveland area was uneventful.

“We just took off today since this was our first break in the weather,” she said. “It was gorgeous today but it had been really bad. It was in the teens.”

Dubsky said the weekend traffic was light.

“It has been perfect,” she said. “The traffic has been light and I’ve been able to use the cruise control without making a lot of adjustments – it has been nice.”

Her daughter Amanda Dubsky, said the trip has allowed her to get a lot of sleep.

“I’ve been sleeping so I could take the second shift in driving,” she said. “I’m waiting for palm trees but I woke up and I saw bare trees, so I knew we weren’t there yet. We didn’t get too far.”