If you’re ready to roll up your sleeves, there’s a bounty of farms, orchards and prime Greenbrier Valley grazing land that’s reconnecting us with our “roots” and the food we eat.
YOU PICK FARMS. Like to have your “pick” of things to do? No, really! We’re talking about you-pick farms. Sunset Berry Farm specializes in West Virginia’s sweetest strawberries, with a festival in their honor every Memorial Day weekend. It’s all hands on deck when making a jaunt up to the White Oak Blueberry Farm. There are rows and rows of these tiny purple orbs—it’s hard to stop with one bucket! During fall harvest season, The Hanna Farmstead embraces the season with you-pick pumpkin patches, corn mazes, wagon rides and other “down on the farm” fun.
FLOWER PATCHES. Tiptoe through the tulips… oops, we mean blooming sunflower fields, button-shaped dahlias and vibrant zinnias. The Hanna Farmstead has an extensive array of these floral fields, making the perfect outdoor photo booth. The Sunset Berry Farm West Virginia Sunflower Festival on Labor Day pays homage to the cheeriest of flowers. From the petite to the towering, you can catch the best smiles in this field of autumn posies.
West Farm. For dazzling flowers meant to be plucked, the West family grows 120 varieties on their farm. Their specialty is crafting wedding floral experiences (DIY options also available), but they do so much more... seasonal bouquets, fruits and produce for the farmers' marketing, holiday wreaths and wreath-making workshops, and raising sheep!
BARNYARD EXPERIENCES. How about a close encounter with the local farm animals? Caring Acres Farm has extended an open invitation to visit its barn, feed a calf and enjoy the fresh mountain air. Perhaps horsing around is more to your liking. Hollow Hills Farm has draft horses, dames, sires and foals, along with goats and other animals to meet. Or learn about the Peruvian llamas that reside at Lost World Caverns. Hidalgo and Android are long-time residents of the property and have shared their stories with kids of all ages.
Keep in mind, our local farms are open seasonally. When planning an outing, please call ahead.
LOCAL SPIRITS AND BREWS. Mountaineers take pride in handcrafting high-quality products, and artisanal beverage-making is no exception. Hawk Knob Hard Cider & Mead embraces traditional methods of old-time cider-making, harvesting regional heirloom apples and aging in old whiskey and bourbon barrels. Stop by the tasting room to enjoy a crisp hard cider or one of their signature cyser meads. Visit the Smooth Ambler Spirits' distillery to sample their fine selection of whiskey, bourbon and rye. If your curiosity is piqued, take the production tour from fermentation to barrel aging. The Greenbrier Valley Brewing Company maintains six flagship brews and rolls out several small batches that pair just right with the flavors of each season. See what's on tap from the test batch "kitchen"—the team reserves their creative experimentations for the taproom bar. And new to the hops scene, the Big Draft Brewing taproom features easy-drinking beer as well as more complex flavor profiles. Stop in for a drink and a bite—Big Draft's dining menu is as inventive as its beer!
FARMERS MARKETS. Greenbrier Valley farm and community markets are ripe for the picking with seasonal, fresh vegetables and fruit, plants, meats and eggs, honey, fresh baked goods and more.
Swift Level Fine Meats. Located near the fairgrounds, this “butcher shop” partners with more than 40 local and national producers of meats, produce, cheeses and aquaculture. Each producer is hand-selected to meet owner Tootie Jones’ high-quality standards of animal health, diet, processing and welfare. Stop by for great griller options, charcuterie meats, seasonal soups and other prepared foods.
Other Local Shops:
Edith’s Health and Specialty Store carries a wide array of health and bulk foods, local meats and eggs, soaps, honey and handmade goods.
Bella The Corner Gourmet is well stocked with wines, cheeses, snacks and kitchen items that include national brands as well as regional goodies.
WEST VIRGINIA "ROOTED" EVENTS.
West Virginia Renaissance Festival. A celebration of winter’s end and nature’s reawakening, make your way through a 16th-century English village replete with jousting knights, fair maidens, local craftspeople and fine food and drink. Go, and thou will be well met indeed! weekends in June
State Fair of West Virginia. It’s a 10-day showcase of West Virginia agriculture along with all sorts of family entertainment, from live musical performances to a midway of carnival rides. 10 days in August