Discover Wheeling’s Hidden Culinary Gems at Oglebay Institute’s Secret Kitchens Tour and Gourmet Market

Area residents have an opportunity to get a rare peek at some of the most exquisite kitchens in Wheeling during Oglebay Institute’s Secret Kitchens of Wheeling Tour and Gourmet Market Saturday, June 8.

Presented by the Committee of the Museums of Oglebay Institute, this biennial event raises money for the Mansion and Glass Museums and ushers in summer with a self-guided tour of Wheeling’s grandest kitchens and an opportunity to shop a lovely vendor market.

Maps for the kitchen tour will be available outside the Mansion Museum in Oglebay, where the brick pathways will be transformed into an outdoor marketplace.

There is a fee to tour the kitchens. The cost is $22 in advance or $25 on the day of the event. The vendor market is free. Even those not going on the home tour are invited to stop by and see how products from these vendors can spice up their own homes. Dozens of merchants and artisans will sell items such as home décor, garden items, artwork, textiles, pottery, baskets, candles, jewelry, kitchen accessories, plants and herbs, gourmet foods, and more.

The Secret Kitchens Committee carefully selects the tour homes, looking for unique features, interesting décor, and varied locations around town. This year promises to showcase design and architectural gems. Six homes are featured on the tour and vary in style, size, and design.

“Kitchens are both professionally designed and owner-inspired. There are complete remodels that required total gutting of the former space along with less major updates. All kitchen re-dos were driven by the homeowner’s desire for up-to-date cooking, comfortable movement, and traffic flow, plus memorable dining,” said event co-chair Jane Mahlke. “The homes themselves include everything from historic houses to recent builds. There really is something for every decorating buff and hopeful homeowner who is planning their own update.”

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The Secret Kitchen Gourmet Market will be open from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. outside the Mansion Museum on June 8.

She added that the 2024 Secret Kitchens represent the contemporary look of clean, functional spaces that invite family and friends to enjoy cooking and entertaining in style. Tourgoers will see decorating trends that are popular today, such as white kitchens, open shelving, rustic kitchens, copper details, flooring choices, major appliance trends, and seating options.

Guests will also get ideas to take back to their own homes, whether they are interested in a total kitchen re-do or simple ways to transform their existing kitchen into a more beautiful and inviting space.

“Guests will have a chance to view many ideas and learn about the latest options for their own kitchens. Everything from backsplashes to lighting choices are included with many surprises. Questions are welcome,” Mahlke said.

To discover whose kitchens are being featured, arrive at the Mansion Museum between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., June 8. Guests will purchase a ticket and receive a detailed map to find each of the secret kitchens. Names will be revealed then – and only then. The last tickets are sold at 2 p.m., and guests have until 4 p.m. to take the self-guided tour. The market is open from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. outside the Mansion Museum.

To register in advance for the Secret Kitchens Tour, call the Mansion Museum at 304-242-7272 or visit