Early Events | May 11th – May 14th
Official Dates | May 15th – May 19th
Now in the 78th year, the West Virginia Strawberry Festival has proven itself worthy of recognition year after year. For people who have grown up in Buckhannon, and grown up going downtown for the Festival, they’ve never gotten tired of the events & exhibits, even if some of them are 78 years old! We dug around some articles to see just what the early Strawberry Festival was like, and compare it to what the Festival has transitioned to in 2019.
What hasn’t changed….
…is a desire for fresh, local West Virginia strawberries. If you’re a local, you’ve heard the debate that the annual event is too early (the 3rd week of May) for strawberries to be ripe. And to a point, that’s true…. But West Virginia farmers are utilizing high tunnels to start the Strawberry Season early. Be sure to stop by the Chamber & Visitors Center at 14 East Main Street on May 17th & 18th to get a pint of REAL West Virginia berries.
…is the crowning of the Strawberry Queen. The Coronation is a ceremonial event for all Strawberry Festival royalty.
…is the dedication of volunteers to make it all happen. We might overlook the minor (and major) details that is required to coordinate an event that spans from May 11th – May 19th, but it’s a tremendous time commitment from local folks who want to be part of continuing the Strawberry tradition in Buckhannon.
What has changed…
…are the entertainers brought to town each year for Friday & Saturday night’s Party Gras! Main Street clears the vehicles and opens for multiple stages of musical performances, entertainment and vendors.
…are horses. Lots of horses. The 2013 premiere of the Horse & Carriage Parade became an immediately favorite for Strawberry Festival enthusiasts. This year will boast nearly 100 horses trotting down Strawberry Lane on May 11th.
… is BBQ and Beer! Turn up the heat at the inaugural Strawberry BBQ Cook-Off! A new Beer Garden will be located across from the food vendors, too.
That’s not everything – be sure to see the Full Schedule of Events for this exciting family tradition!