BECKLEY, W.Va. -- The story of how West Virginia was created 150 years ago during the Civil War will once again be told in the Theatre West Virginia production of "Honey in the Rock."
Written in 1961 as a prelude to the state's 100th birthday in 1963, the musical has played every summer at Grandview State Park -- except for 1970; that's when award-winning songwriter and playwright Billy Edd Wheeler breathed new life into the story of the bloody feud between the Hatfield family of West Virginia and the McCoy clan from Kentucky.
"Honey in the Rock" opens June 11 at Cliffside Amphitheater, and the season's first performance of "Hatfields & McCoys" is on June 12.
As is the tradition, both premiere nights are free to the public, with the donation of a canned food item by each person attending. The food will be distributed locally by the Salvation Army. Reservations are still required for both performances.
"Honey in the Rock" runs through Aug. 8, alternating during June with "Hatfields and McCoys," which runs through Aug. 4.
In July 12, the musical "The Wizard of Oz" joins the lineup of shows, and will be performed on 10 show dates.
Rounding out the summer season is Homer Hickam's "Rocket Boys: The Musical," based on Hickam's best-selling memoir about growing up in the McDowell County mining community of Coalwood in the 1950s.
The Broadway-bound show runs Aug. 15-25.
In addition, two concerts are part of the summer schedule. On June 28, The Embers perform its mix of rhythm and blues and heart and soul. And Phil Dirt and the Dozers play vintage rock 'n' roll on Aug. 30.
All shows begin at 8:15 p.m., except for the two concerts, which begin at 8 p.m.
Show tickets are $19 for adults; $17 for seniors, AAA members and military members; $9 for children age 12 and younger; and $7 for children of AAA and military members. Concert tickets are $22.
Tickets for any of the performances can be reserved online at www.theatrewestvirginia.com or by calling 304-256-6800 or 800-666-9142. Inclement-weather insurance policies are available for the first time this year for $2. Backstage tours that begin at 6 p.m. are $5. Complete schedule information is available on the website.