Town Guide: Point Pleasant

Mothman Statue, Point Pleasant, West Virginia

 

Situated at the confluence of the Kanawha and Ohio rivers, Point Pleasant has long been an important transportation hub, dating back to colonial times. Many of us know of Point Pleasant as the home of the Mothman — an eerie mythical monster, but there’s much more to this city than just spooky urban legends.

Today, it’s got more than enough local flavor for visitors, with great festivals, museums, restaurants, and more. Here’s your comprehensive guide for this very pleasant point in the Mountain State.

Dining

You won’t go hungry in Point Pleasant. For no-frills southern barbecue and juicy burgers, check out Cornfed’s Smokehouse & Grill. Locals also love the authentic Mexican food and generous portions at Rio Bravo 2. There’s great local pizza at the Village Pizza Inn. For a nice country steak, look no further than the Harris Steakhouse; they’ve even got a Mothman Burger!

Festivals and entertainment

For a small little river town, Point Pleasant knows how to put on great festivals. The big one is the Mothman Festival, a celebration of the paranormal that takes place every September. Autumn also sees the annual Tribute to the River, a fun and free event celebrating the town’s heritage as a 2-river hub. And don’t forget the Sternwheel Regatta, which happens every July. It includes not just classic riverboats, but beauty pageants and outdoor concerts at a beautiful amphitheater overlooking the river.

Shopping

Like many historic towns, Point Pleasant has great antiquing. The Mason Jar is a local institution that is a true step into the past for browsers and shoppers alike. Be prepared to spend at least an hour there. Although their hours can be sporadic, June’s Country Charm has very unique rural home decor, gifts, and primitives. For upscale “Deep South” style antiques and furniture, the new Galleria Designs is a gem. Don’t forget to buy some of their fudge, too!

Recreation

It may be more of a river town than a mountain town, but there’s still White-tail buck and doe in meadow, WVplenty of outdoor recreation in Point Pleasant. There’s a short, 5-mile bike loop that winds through downtown from the local high school to Tu-Endie-Wei State Park. At Tu-Endie-Wei, definitely take a few minutes to walk around the monuments and beautiful scenery at the junction of the Ohio and Kanawha rivers.

Out of town just a few miles, sportsmen will be interested in the wetlands of the McClintic Wildlife Management Area, or the more hilly terrain of the Chief Cornstalk Wildlife Management Area.

History

Point Pleasant has long been situated at an important junction — geographically Antique spears, WVand historically. Fun fact: some historians consider the Battle of Point Pleasant in 1774 to have been one of the first conflicts of the American Revolution.

There are plenty of museums and attractions in town where you can take in all facets of the region’s history. Fort Randolph is a recreated Revolution-era frontier stockade. The Mansion House Museum is a small historic house museum in Tu-Endie-Wei Park that was originally a tavern. Just across the street is the town’s river history museum, with great exhibits of boat replicas and equipment through the years. And, of course, there’s the famous Mothman Museum.

Places to stay

After you’ve worn yourself out eating, shopping and learning all about Point Pleasant, you may be looking for a warm bed to fall asleep in. The Lowe Hotel in downtown dates back to 1901, with charming historic decor and furniture. Further out of town, there are plenty of campgrounds, or if you want real solitude in a stunning mountain cabin, check out the Wilderness Ridge Farm about 30 minutes south of town.

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