40th Annual Oglebayfest
By: Jennifer Materkoski, MA
The changing leaves and start of October signifies that Oglebayfest is just around the corner. This year is extra special, as the resort will celebrate the 40th anniversary of the event.
The three-day festival, which begins Friday, Oct. 6, originally began in 1978 as a show of gratitude to the community on Oglebay’s 50th anniversary. Oglebayfest offers a variety of activities for the whole family, plus tons of live entertainment.
Many of the resort’s attractions will have free or reduced admissions during the weekend. The Good Zoo will offer complimentary access on Saturday and Sunday, while the Schrader Environmental Center will be open at no cost all weekend. There is also no charge for the live entertainment all weekend at the Rathskellar at Hess Shelter.
Live music begins at 4:30 p.m. on Friday with a performance by The Road Hogs. Later, The Marsh Wheeling String Band takes the stage at 6:30 p.m., followed by Two Bridges at 9 p.m. Eli Lambie will perform in the Hickman Lounge at Wilson Lodge at 5:15 p.m., and The Cabin Fever String Band will lead a square dance at Levenson Shelter from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m.
On Saturday, Steve Grkman plays his “Button Box Accordion” at the Rathskellar from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Also, the Alpen Glow German Band will play from 11 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Local favorite Hit Play will close out the night at the Rathskellar, taking the stage from 8:30 to 11:30 p.m. Marcus and James will play in the Hickman Lounge from 7 to 9 p.m. Steve Grkman is back again on Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., along with Alpen Glow from 12 to 5 p.m.
The annual Ohio County Country Fair runs all weekend in conjunction with Oglebayfest. The fair is located at Oglebay’s Site 1, and it opens at noon on Friday. In addition to the square dance, the 4-H Pet Show will be a major event for Friday, beginning at 6:15 p.m. On Saturday, the fair runs from 10 a.m. to dusk. Events include a quilting demonstration, horse show, hog calling contest, baked goods auction, and pedal power contest. The quilting demonstrations and baked goods auction continues on Sunday, and there will also be butter making, a rock throwing contest and a baby crawling contest. Sunday’s hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Food options will be plentiful throughout the weekend. Oglebay’s Ihlenfeld Dining Room, Glassworks Grill and Garden Bistro will be serving regular menus all weekend. Tons of food, beer and wine options will be available at the Rathskellar at Hess Shelter. Traditional favorites include beef on weck, bratwurst, German chocolate cake and black forest cake. Other food options will be available at Levenson Shelter, Site 1 at the Country Fair and at the Phil Maxwell Artists and Gourmet Markets. Concessions will also be available at Schenk Lake and the Good Zoo.
Oglebayfest offers many opportunities for shopping. The Phil Maxwell Artists and Gourmet Markets will host an abundance of vendors, offering everything from arts and crafts to natural products and jewelry. Plenty of crafts and food products will be available for sale at the Country Fair. All of Oglebay’s shops will also be open during the weekend. Candy and unique items are available at Farmhouse Sweets and Treats Shoppe, plus mums and seasonal décor at The Palm Room. The Carriage House Glass Shop will be open and offering glass items made in the United States, as well as items made by local artists.
For more information on Oglebayfest and lodging specials, please call 304-243-4000.