Usually on the second weekend of August, the Heritage Port on the banks of the Ohio River is jam-packed with blues fans, enjoying the music and camaraderie at Heritage Music BluesFest. This year, however, the coronavirus has put an end to wall-to-wall people crushed up against the stage watching live blues. But, instead, beginning at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 8, fans can soak up the blues from the comfort of their air-conditioned living rooms while the temperatures climb to 90 degrees outside. Visit the HMBF Facebook page or tune into YouTube for a virtual festival, featuring historic video footage as well as performances from some of the artists who were scheduled for this weekend and will be returning in 2021. Festival producer Bruce Wheeler will be live, sharing some favorite anecdotes from the last 19 years. Create your own watch party with fellow music lovers! And, next year, come to the port to see Carolyn Wonderland, JP Soars Gypsy Blues Revue, Ronnie Baker Brooks, Coco Montoya, Jason Ricci and Walter Trout — just to name a few — at the 2021 Heritage Music BluesFest. Visit the festival Facebook page or website for more information.

  • Montoya
    Coco Montoya


Oglebay Institute will present a one-act play, “The Zoo Story,” at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 7, at the Wheeling Park Amphitheater. Written by by Edward Albee and starring Towngate Theatre actors Adam Marquart and Dailey Ward, this one-act play is the story of well-to-do conventional man (Peter) and undisciplined vagrant (Jerry) meeting at a Central Park bench. The play explores themes of isolation, loneliness and social disparity with provocative humor, unrelenting suspense and a shocking ending. The production is directed by Tim Thompson, Towngate’s director of performing arts. Tickets are $5 and can be purchased online, by calling 304-242-7700 or at the Amphitheater if available. Seating is limited to 25; advance tickets are strongly recommended. Mask wearing is also recommended to coincide with state and CDC guidelines.


The Wheeling Park Pool presents a Summer Dive-In movie, beginning at dusk on Saturday, Aug. 8. Stay tuned to the Wheeling Park Facebook page for the Dive-In Movie guessing game, where you’ll be challenged to guess which movie will be showing! Admission for kids (ages 4-12), $6.25; and for adults, (ages 13+), $7.25. Movie is free with cost of pool admission. It can also be enjoyed free of charge from the upper level of the Stone Building.


Get ready for some island atmosphere! Every Thursday night through Sept. 3, enjoy Caribbean Nights at Schenk Lake, from 7-9 p.m., at Oglebay Park. Hear the Caribbean sounds of Josh Garrett on the steel drums. Enjoy pedal boats, fishing, walking trails or grab some ice cream at The Boathouse as you kick back to the tropical sounds of the islands. And while you’re there, enjoy extended mini golf hours for Mini Golf Under the Lights from 8-10 p.m. every Thursday, with discounted admission. Check out this link for more Oglebay events.


Artworks Around Town is hosting two major shows this month. The Studio Gallery at the north end will feature the works of artists from The Associated Artists of Hancock and Brooke Counties (AAHB) also known as “The Rogues.” Organized in early 2019, the AAHB is composed of a group of artists and photographers from New Cumberland, Weirton, Follansbee and Wellsburg. In the Student Gallery, photographs of the late Robert Schramm of West Liberty, donated by his family, will be on display. Schramm’s works are for sale with proceeds benefiting the ongoing programs of the gallery. Included in the exhibit are two framed Daguerreotypes, cyanotypes, uranotypes and many matted prints. Schramm graduated with a degree in nuclear physics from West Virginia University in 1959 and joined the faculty of West Liberty State College that same year. Schramm was a historian and archivist at heart, creating the WLSC Archives and Museum and later co-founding The Linsly School Archives and Museum. He designed and constructed a women’s history museum that later was permanently installed in the National Women’s History Museum in Alexandria, Virginia. The gallery is open from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

Kimberly Lawless

“Concert For the Moon”: collage by Kimberly Lawless


The Ohio County Public Library’s 2020 Summer Reading Finale for adults will take place at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 6, when Dr. David Javersak hosts a World Geography Bee featuring questions inspired, in part, by the Around the World People’s University series. No pre-registration required. Just join online and participate by logging into your Facebook or YouTube account and having your keyboard ready to answer questions. Round One will feature questions based on readings, language and geography of the regions visited throughout the People’s University Summer Reading Program. The first person to type the correct answer in the comments on social media will earn one point. The top three scorers from Round One will move on to Round Two where they will play head to head in a virtual broadcast studio following a brief intermission. At the end of Round Two, the Geography Bee Queen or King will be announced, and top point winners will be awarded prizes in the form of gift certificates to local businesses. The Summer Reading Finale: Online Geography Bee will be broadcast live on the People’s University Facebook page and through the People’s University YouTube channel. Watch Javersak explain the details here.


Join Generation Wheeling, in partnership with Wheeling Parks & Recreation, for a free outdoor yoga series at Market Plaza at 7:30 p.m. on Thursdays through Aug. 27. Generation Wheeling’s own Betsy Sweeny will lead an all-level, beginner-friendly, slow-flow class. Because of COVID-19 restrictions, bring your own mat, blocks and any other materials for the practice. Safe social distancing guidelines will be followed throughout the series.



Mansion Lawn Gentle Yoga is set for 10 a.m. Sunday, Aug. 9, at the Oglebay Institute Mansion Museum and hosted by the West Spa at Oglebay. Join wellness instructor Zach for this fun and inviting vinyasa sequence designed to cultivate focus, stamina, strength and flexibility. This class is especially great for beginners or those searching for the therapeutic benefits of yoga. Session is free of charge. Guests are asked to bring their own mat, towel and water.


Join author Larry Tye for Lunch With Books Livestream at noon Tuesday, Aug. 11, when he discusses his book, Demagogue: The Life and Long Shadow of Senator Joe McCarthy. The definitive biography of the most dangerous demagogue in American history is based on first-ever review of his personal and professional papers, medical and military records, and recently unsealed transcripts of his closed-door Congressional hearings. In the long history of American demagogues, from Huey Long to Donald Trump, never has one man caused so much damage in such a short time as McCarthy. From 1950 to 1954, McCarthy destroyed many careers and even entire lives, whipping the nation into a frenzy of paranoia, accusation, loyalty oaths and terror. When the public finally turned on him, he came crashing down, dying of alcoholism in 1957. Tye was a longtime journalist — at the Boston Globe, Anniston (Alabama) Star and Louisville Courier-Journal — and a Nieman Fellow at Harvard. His books have ranged from biographies of PR pioneer Edward L. Bernays, Negro Leagues legend Satchel Paige and Superman, to explorations of the Jewish diaspora, the Pullman porters, and ECT, the most stigmatized treatment in medicine. Tye runs a Boston-based fellowship program for health reporters. Read Weelunk’s story about his book here.



Oglebay Institute Mansion Museum’s latest exhibit explores “Orchidelirium,” the fanatical Victorian-era obsession with collecting, cultivating and discovering orchids, through the work of Adelaide Flaccus Stifel. Born in Wheeling in 1884, Stifel took up the hobby in the late 1930s as part of an American and European craze that would make orchids the nexus of science, status and beauty. This exhibit explores her individual passion for orchids through paintings, cultivation and her own meticulous scientific records. “Orchidelirium” is on display through October. The Museums of Oglebay Institute are open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Single museum admission is $10, dual admission (Mansion and Glass Museums) is $15. Ages 17 and under are free and must be accompanied by an adult.


A staple of Oglebay Institute’s art exhibition season, Crosscurrents is open at OI’s Stifel Fine Arts Center through Aug 22. The multi-media exhibition features more than 90 pieces from dozens of artists and can be seen free of charge from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays. Patrons must practice social distancing, and wearing a mask is strongly encouraged when visiting the gallery. Call 304-242-7700 for more information. Many of the works on display can be purchased at the gallery online. Stifel Fine Arts Center is located at 1330 National Road in Wheeling.


Summer fun is not over yet! The Oglebay Institute Schrader Environmental Education Center has a myriad of nature events for families such as the Frog Frolic, Bird Walk, Salamander Search, Live Animal Show and Family Campfires.

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