5 Reasons to Visit the Gorge During the Holiday Season

This December, the New River Gorge is alight with holiday cheer. "You Better Watch Out" on stage

If you're looking to jump start your holiday spirit, or to have a mini getaway in preparation for the holidays, the New River Gorge is your escape. Here are 5 reasons why:

1. Affordable, Unique Gifts

The New River Gorge is a perfect shopping spot, because the creative gifts are top quality, but prices are affordable. It seems like every street (that doesn't wind through the wilderness) is full of quirky shops, selling organic products, top-brand outdoor gear, fine art and everything in between.

And there are always the antique shop deals! Scour the shelves for hidden finds, and you can even snag some really valuable pieces, and once-cherished items that have been tucked away and forgotten.

The best places, though, are artisan showcases, where you can discover unique works and handcrafted gifts. Some upcoming events with great gifts:

2. Parades & Cheer Everywhere!

Expect decorations. Expect lights. Expect the faint sound of jingle bells randomly floating through the breeze. You can catch hints of the holidays all across town. You wouldn't think it possible, but West Virginians are even nicer this time of year as the holiday spirit overcomes them.

But the most visible cues of the holiday season will be flooding the streets. The New River Gorge parades will bring carols, Santa and and candy canes to every part of town. Here's the schedule:

  • Fayetteville Christmas Parade, Dec. 5, 5 p.m.
  • Ansted "Country Christmas" Parade, Dec. 6, 4 p.m.
  • Oak Hill "Candy Canes and Icicles" Christmas Parade. Dec. 11, 6 p.m.
  • Gauley Bridge Christmas Parade, Dec. 13, 6 p.m.

3. Tons of Christmas Fun

There's quite a bit to see and do this season! Some of our favorites:

  • Brunch with Santa, Dec. 6, 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. at Cathedral Cafe
  • The New River Youth Symphony and Chorus’ annual Christmas concert. Dec. 13, 7 p.m. at the Historic Fayette Theater
  • "You Better Watch Out," a heartwarming holiday mystery. Dec. 4-7 at the Historic Fayette Theater.

4. Lavish New Year's Eve Celebrations

Of course, the fun doesn't slow down after Christmas Day is done! On to New Years!

You can take your pick:

5. Discounted accommodations

In winter, cozy cabin rates drop. Just a few highlights:

Almost all cabins offer reduced rates this time of year, so call and see what specials you can find!

What do you want to do in the New River Gorge this holiday?