Oglebayfest: A Family Favorite
By CHRISTINA FISANICK
It’s almost here! Although Wheeling hosts dozens of festivals throughout the year, my absolute favorite is Oglebayfest, and it kicks off its 41st year this weekend, Oct. 5-7. This year marks my 10th consecutive pilgrimage to the rolling hills and rollicking fun of Oglebayfest.
I generally begin Oglebayfest weekend with lunch on Friday at Glassworks Grill at Wilson Lodge with my friend Laura. We have sandwiches, a cold beer or two, and then head over to the Phil Maxwell Artists and Gourmet Markets, which open at noon. Located next to the Oglebay Mansion Museum in Mansion Woods, the artist’s market draws us in each year with custom-made jewelry, original paintings, hand-made pottery, and unique autumnal treats, including local wines and ciders.
The next day is family day, and my son, husband and I visit the cows and sheep at the Ohio County Fair. The livestock tent is always our first stop. After we take the time to meet all of the critters, we amble over to the 4-H tent to see the prize-winning fruits and vegetables. Oglebay Park has been hosting 4-H events since Earl Oglebay’s era, so we take the time to recognize this nearly 100-year tradition.
After leaving the Country Fair, we head over to Rathskeller at Hess Shelter for German goodies and to listen to live music. We love to watch the German dancers, too. We then take our energy over to the bouncy houses by Schenk Lake.
Of course, we have to come back to Oglebayfest on Sunday to see the Rocky Ridge Belgian Horses at Levinson Shelter. We marvel at their size and love learning their names. We tend to wander over to the antique tractor display after we get enough of the Belgians and generally end our Oglebayfest weekend with a trip to the Good Zoo for one more train ride before the weather gets cold.
There is so much to do during Oglebayfest weekend that we never get to do it all. Without question, Oglebayfest is my favorite Wheeling tradition. Most events are free or at reduced cost. I can’t imagine a better way to usher in the treasures of fall.
For a complete Oglebayfest schedule visit their website athttps://oglebay.com/events/oglebayfest/.