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Blennerhassett Island to celebrate West Virginia Day

PARKERSBURG — Blennerhassett Island Historical State Park will host its annual West Virginia Day Celebration on Thursday.

The first boat going to the island is 11 a.m. and park officials will begin the celebration by singing “The West Virginia Hills” on board the sternwheeler Island Belle as it journeys to Blennerhassett Island.

Lawn games will be set up for families to enjoy along with free bikes all day on a first-come, first-served basis. Local musician Scott Cain will play Appalachian music on the hammer dulcimer beginning at noon followed by cake and ice cream at 12:30 p.m.

A special guest will be visiting Blennerhassett Island for the day as living history re-enactor Doug Riley portrays Mark Twain. The “history alive” performance is sponsored by the West Virginia Humanities Council. Entitled, “The Early Years of Mark Twain,” it will be held at the brick shelter beginning at 1:30 p.m. for visitors to enjoy.

Boats depart hourly for Blennerhassett Island from Point Park in Parkersburg, beginning at 11 a.m., with the last boat from the island at 5:30 p.m. Other activities include the horse-drawn wagon ride tour, mansion tours, bike rentals, free tours of Maple Shade, another historic home on the island, gift shop and snack stand. There is a golf cart which is operated by volunteers to offer free assisted rides for folks with physical challenges from the boat dock to the various historical sites for tours.

For further information about West Virginia Day and other upcoming events and evening activities, call the park office at 304-420-4800 or online at www.blennerhassettislandstatepark.com.

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