Take in the beautiful blooms at Beckley’s May Rhododendron Festival

BECKLEY, WV (WOAY) – It’s a celebration of West Virginia’s state flower, the Rhododendron Festival kicks off in Beckley on May 11.

On the 19th take in the beautiful blooms with rhododendron walks at Grandview.

From May 11-27 (Memorial Day), there are more than 12 events within the festival — including exhibits, concerts, car show, scenic walks and recreation.

“Since the rhododendrons are so beautiful, we just tried to package a lot of things that go on during the month of May and tie in some rhododendron activities and create our spring festival,” said Beckley events director Jill Moorefield.

Catawba rhododendron blooms in late May, while the (state flower) rhododendron maximum, typically blooms in late June and early July.

“Grandview always has beautiful rhododendrons, so people always like to go out to the park during the month of May,” Moorefield said. “But a lot of people at their homes, they have them as well. There is a little bit of confusion, too, because the state flower is actually the one I think that blooms in June, not the ones that are in May, but because they are so beautiful in May that we just celebrate it in May.”

Spring in Beckley is full of light, color and love for the fragrant shrubs.

“The weather starts getting better and people can get out and enjoy the community,” said the Beckley Events director. “We like to celebrate the beauty of them. It’s something really cool around here.”

It’s the warmth and blossoming beauty of this time of year when highly anticipated rhododendrons take center stage.

“They are beautiful, kind of pinkish purplish blooms,” Moorefield said. ” I think everybody just looks forward to seeing them and showing ‘em off.”

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