One Tank Trip: Appalachian Festival

BECKLEY, WV (WOAY) – This week’s One Tank Trip is staying local right here in Beckley.

It’s the 25th annual Appalachian Festival, the city’s week-long signature event celebrating Appalachian culture and heritage in a number of unique ways. Although the event is organized by the Beckley-Raleigh County Chamber of Commerce, individuals, groups, and businesses around the region pitch in to contribute their own version of that culture.

“Our Appalachian heritage is what makes us unique, it is the unique fabric of our community,” President and CEO of BRCCC Michelle Rotellini says.

“Being able to kind of share that and spread that, and attract people from all over to the events, to have them experience our culture here is incredible,” says Tamarack Marketplace Marketing Director, A.J Dennison.

From scavenger hunts and other kids’ activities at the Raleigh County Library, coal mine tours at the Beckley Exhibition Coal Mine, to even yoga at Lake Stephens, there is a little something for everyone to take part in during the week-long event.

One of the newest events for the festival, Restaurant Week, will be serving up some sweet and savory dishes from restaurants around the community.

Tamarack Marketplace is just one of those local restaurants participating, and Dennison says these specials help to compliment the culture.

“That’s something that we take a lot of pride in here at Tamarack Marketplace, you know everything we got here is West Virginia made, it’s meant to highlight all of the talents of individuals in West Virginia, and our restaurant is no different,” he says.

Another organization involved, the Beckley Art Center has been host to activities highlighting Appalachian culture all week long, from exhibitions displaying regional artists’ work to an outdoor art party.

Now they plan to take part in the 57th annual Appalachian Makers’ Market. Five area artists’ work from the art center will be on display at the event, along with additional work from their gift shop.

BAC is happy to be a part of the festivities, as displaying Appalachian artists’ work is what they do best.

“This is such a great event that they put on each year, it’s a chance for us to go and meet new artists that we may not know yet and see some familiar faces, and it’s also a great chance to showcase some of our member’s work here at Beckley Art Center,” Executive Director at BAC Robby Moore says.

The Makers’ Market will be held this Friday, August 26, and Saturday, August 27 at the Beckley-Raleigh County Convention Center from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Following that is the new Chili, Brews, and Bands event going on Saturday at Tamarack Marketplace from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., and the Appalachian Street Fair in downtown Beckley from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

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