CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Labor Day means a long weekend, and venues and groups across the state are taking advantage of that for some last minute fun before the unofficial end of summer. Whether you travel far or stay close to home, you won't be left wanting for something to do in the next several days.
Lincoln County Fall Festival
The Lincoln County Fall Festival runs Thursday through Sunday at the fairgrounds in Hamlin. Highlights include a 5 p.m. cruze in and 7:30 p.m. demolition derby Thursday, 7:30 p.m. truck and tractor pull Friday, a noon mud run and 9 p.m. fireworks display Saturday and 2 p.m. ATV mud racing Sunday. There is music by Idletymes at 7 p.m. Saturday and The Gracemen, Jimmie McKnight and The Heritage Brothers at 2 p.m. Sunday.
Admission is $10 for adults and children, $7 for seniors and free for children under 6 ($5 for a carnival wristband). Passes are good for the entire weekend. Call 304-549-7301 or visit www.lcfairsandfestivals.com.
Jane Lew Firemen's Arts & Crafts Festival
More than 200 artisans will display works during this free festival, which is open 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday at the Jane Lew fire station. Items include glass, wood, leather, dolls, dried and silk flowers, baskets, ceramics, soaps, candles, paintings, candy, honey, jams and jellies. Call 304-457-3097.
Jackson's Mill Jubilee
The annual Jackson's Mill Jubilee takes place noon to 9 p.m. Friday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday at the venue near Weston. It features more than 100 arts and crafts vendors, a vintage car show, antique and book sales, fireworks on Saturday and numerous exhibits and demonstrations. There will also be old-time, gospel, country and Christian music.
In the historic area, watch wheat and corn grinding demonstrations, tour the Old Jackson's Mill Museum and the buckskinner encampment and take in Civil War reenactments. In the children's area, dig for goodies on Treasure Island, ride a fire truck, get your face painted and draw with sidewalk chalk.
West Virginia Games
Athletic activities of all kinds take over Magic Island and Kanawha Boulevard as part of the West Virginia Games on Saturday. Events on tap this year are the Charleston Distance Run, West Virginia state Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and submission wrestling championships, distance skateboarding competition, strength challenge with Phil Pfister and a zumbathon. There are also tournaments for beach wrestling, beach volleyball, five-on-five basketball and cornhole as well as a children's play area with inflatables.
Opening ceremonies are in conjunction with Live on the Levee, beginning at 6:30 p.m. Friday at Haddad Riverfront Park, and MMA champion Jeff Monson hosts a seminar (admission $40 and $50) at Butch Hiles BJJ & MMA at 7 p.m. that day. An after party runs 7:30 p.m. to midnight Saturday at Haddad.
Events are free to watch; for information on how to participate, visit www.thewvgames.com. Call 304-340-3544.
Gospel singing convention
The 62nd annual West Virginia Gospel Singers Convention takes place Friday through Sunday in Mt. Nebo. The event has sings at 7 p.m. nightly with 24 performers scheduled, though all singers and groups are welcome.
An invitation-only sing at 2 p.m. Saturday features West Virginia groups The Cross Bearers, Glorymen Trio, The Hale Family, Heavens Harmony, Laborers, New Prophets and Pathfinders as well as South Carolina's Soldiers of Faith. A worship service begins at 10 a.m. Sunday.
Admission is by donation. Camping is available. Call 304-622-0546 or 304-872-1977or visit www.wvgospelsing.com.
Tribute to the River
Tribute to the River, an annual free event, will take place Friday and Saturday at Point Pleasant Riverfront Park. It features a sternwheel boat parade at 2 p.m. Saturday, towboat tours and exhibits at the River Museum.
Friday's live entertainment comes from bluegrass group Smith & Company at 8 p.m. Saturday's entertainment is Myron "King of the Calliope Players" Duffield at 1 p.m., a sing-along with the stars at 4 p.m., the All of the Above band at 6 p.m., storytelling from Donna Wilson at 7:30 p.m. and gospel music by The Elsons at 8:30 p.m.
Other Saturday events are kids' games and inflatables beginning at noon, cornhole and line throw competitions at noon (registration at 11 a.m.), a captain's dinner at 5 p.m. and a memorial service for deceased rivermen at 7 p.m.