Discover Randolph County
Few areas in America, with such beautiful mountain scenery and prime outdoor recreation, can also boast the rich culture and heritage you’ll find in the Heart of West Virginia. Perfectly positioned at the crossroads of all major roads in the region, it’s easy to see why Elkins has earned the reputation of being a good “base camp” from which to enjoy everything in the area.
The Heart of Adventure
Nestled between the Continental Divide and the shadows of Seneca Rocks, the unique mountain landscape found in the Randolph County region, are home to a wealth of natural wonders like the Monongahela National Forest, Dolly Sods Scenic Area, Spruce Knob and Blackwater Falls State Park.
Skiers looking for thrills race down thousand-foot vertical slopes on three of the finest ski resorts in the country. Specially constructed trails let mountain bikers have “epic rides.” Hikers not intimidated by great mountain landscapes can get out into the backcountry as far as they like. Tons of outdoor recreational activities are just a short drive from Elkins. Few places offer a better way to experience nature firsthand and revel in the solitude of the ancient Appalachian mountains.
The Heart of Heritage
While in the Randolph County region, you can trace heritage all the way from the first battle of the Civil War and the mansions of a lumber baron to an authentic small Swiss village settled in 1869 and an excursion train that travels the same tracks as the trains carrying lumber down the mountain once did. On July 11, 1861, Union troops routed the Confederates holding the pass over Rich Mountain, giving the Union control over all the territory known as northwestern Virginia. Graceland, completed in 1893 by Henry Gassaway, was the summer home of the lumber baron who owned thousands of acres of hardwoods in what is now Tucker County. The village of Helvetia still works hard at maintaining the traditions and customs of the people who settled. It was, in fact, one of the first districts in the state to be placed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Tygart Flyer now takes a scenic journey through the reforested wild Heart of West Virginia and some of the most rugged territory in the state.
Stepping back in time to visit these places and other historic buildings and shop, you’ll experience the best in West Virginia’s heritage. It’s a dynamic of the state that not everyone is familiar with.
The Heart of Arts and Culture
Elkins has the distinction of being one of the 100 Best Art Towns in America. Enjoying arts and culture in Elkins and the Randolph County area can range from performances and exhibits at the Randolph County Community Arts Center to activities at the Augusta Heritage Center nationally known for activities related to traditional folklife and folk arts. The Center is best known for its week long workshops that attract more than 2,000 participants from all over the US.
Elkins is a Certified Arts Community, only the third town in the state to receive this prestigious designation.
“The spirit of cooperation among the arts organizations and individual artists as well as the support of the arts by both our city and county government reflects the treasured place the arts hold within our community,” RCCAC Executive Director Beth King
And, of course, as in any small historic town in West Virginia, there’s antique shopping and exploring the beautiful work of local artisans who handcraft exceptional creative works of art on display at both Artists at Work and Mountain Made, as well as sprinkled through the other great shops in town.
Whatever your pleasures and diversions when you visit us, enjoy it all!
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