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Things to do in downtown Parkersburg

With online school work completed, temperatures rising outside and the kids anxious for “something to do,” I’d like to share some opportunities for the whole family to take advantage of in downtown, some at little to no cost.

* Get Out Your Walking Shoes — When is the last time you parked your car and went exploring? Downtown has some beautiful buildings with unique architecture. It is also an opportunity to locate our selfie stations and snap a picture by the trolley at 6th and Market Street, real in the big catfish at the Point Park Marketplace building or stand by the gazebo by the mural on the Greater Parkersburg CVB building. If you’re looking for a guided exercise workout, check out the map of walking tours, provided by Highmark near Bicentennial Park. Or if you’re really looking for a cardio workout, check out the view at the top of Quincey Hill steps.

* Take a Stroll Back in Time — Take a day to explore the beauty of the many historic homes in the Julia-Ann Square Historic District of the Avery Street Historic District. Many of us drive by these homes in our travels without noticing the unique architecture that each of the homes displays.

* Enjoy a Picnic in the Park — Try packing up your favorite lunch or dinner options from home or from one of our many downtown eateries and enjoy the outdoors at a picnic table in Bicentennial Park or sit and enjoy the boats buzz by at Point Park. Either location would be a great place to enjoy a meal with your family.

* Explore Our Past — Make plans to take a relaxing Sternwheel ride over to historic Blennerhassett Island and take step back in time among the peaceful sycamore trees. Tours run to the island Tuesday through Sunday, departing from Point Park at 11 a.m. and continue every half hour until 4 p.m. Boats return on the half hour until 5:30 p.m. For more information or tickets, call (304)-420-4801.

* Experience the Arts — If you’ve never experience the Parkersburg Art Center, now is your chance. Their galleries and gift shop are open from Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and right now their first floor gallery is bursting with color from the Wood County Society’s Artbeat Studio. The PAC is also kicking off their summer camps with some openings in July for grades 4 through 6. The also offer high school and adult pottery classes, so if you’d like to try out your hands on the wheel this summer, give them a call. For more information call (304) 485-3859.

* Fun With Friends — If you’ve been missing your social time with friends, you’re in luck. Plan an evening with friends a downtown establishments. Perhaps drinks on the patio at the Blennerhassett Hotel or at Mango? For a complete list of places you can savor the many flavors of our family owned restaurants in downtown, visit our website at downtownpkb.com.

While you’re out and about downtown, don’t forget to save your receipts for our #ShopPKB local spending campaign. Check out our website for more information about places to visit and where to park while in downtown.

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Wendy L. Shriver is the executive director of Downtown PKB.

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