Do you enjoy kayaking, canoeing, or stand-up paddle boarding? How about craft beer, bbq, or live music? Well, I have just the events for you — the 2018 Paddlefest and Downtown Throwdown BBQ & Brewfest in Parkersburg, West Virginia!

I thoroughly enjoyed my time in Parkersburg earlier this summer, so I’m excited to share these two late-summer events with you on behalf of the Greater Parkersburg Convention & Visitors Bureau. I even have a promo code to get you $5 off your Paddlefest admission. Look for that at the end of this post!

What are Paddlefest and the Downtown Throwdown?

Point Park riverfront, Parkersburg, West Virginia #VisitPKB

The fifth annual Parkersburg Paddelfest is an event for those of us who love to be on the water. It’s three fun-filled days dedicated to people-powered watercraft. So, grab your kayak, canoe, or stand-up paddleboard — and don’t forget your paddle!

Day 1: Friday, Sept. 14

Kicking off Paddlefest is an evening paddle up the Little Kanawha River at 8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 14, from Point Park. Paddlers will be aglow with glow sticks and lights. It should be quite the sight to see!

Day 2: Saturday, Sept. 15

On Saturday is the main event — a three-mile paddle up the Ohio River to Blennerhassett Island. From 8 a.m. until 2 p.m., Paddlefest participants can paddle worry-free in barge- and wake-free water as safety watercraft will be on hand to slow any private motorized boats.

At Blennerhassett Island State Park, paddlers can tour the Blennerhassett mansion, go on horse-drawn wagon rides, and explore the island. These activities have an additional fee, so you’ll want to have cash on you. Additionally, there will be free yoga, disc golf, and a Temple Challenge on the island, too.

Blennerhassett Island State Park is a historic site in Parkersburg, West Virginia. #Parkersburg #VisitPKB #WestVirginia #AlmostHeaven #travel

On Saturday evening, the Downtown Throwdown BBQ & Brewfest takes place from 6 to 10 p.m. in downtown Parkersburg’s Bicentennial Park, located at 201 3rd Street. After a day of paddling, you deserve a frosty craft beer and a heaping serving of mouthwatering barbecue while listening to live music!

Day 3: Sunday, Sept. 16

Before heading home on Sunday, Paddlefest participants can take one last paddle at North Bend State Park Lake. Birding enthusiasts take note — standing trees in the lake have become a habitat for what could be the largest group of red-headed woodpeckers in the US. The lake should be a serene setting for your final paddle of the weekend!

Make a Weekend of it in Parkersburg!

The historic Blennerhassett Hotel is in Parkersburg, West Virginia, USA. #VisitPKB #Parkersburg #WestVirginia #AlmostHeaven #travel #historichotel #hotel #ustravel

Thinking of attending Paddlefest and/or the Downtown Throwdown? You can easily fill a weekend itinerary in Parkersburg. As I shared in my Parkersburg weekend getaway guide, there are even more historic sites beyond Blennerhassett Island to explore.

Lodging in Parkersburg

You can search here for available Parkersburg hotels. I previously stayed at the TownePlace Suites, which offers a complimentary breakfast, bike rentals, an indoor pool, fitness center, and comfortable suite-style rooms each with a full kitchenette. My other recommendation would be the Blennerhassett Hotel, a beautiful historic hotel located in the heart of downtown Parkersburg.

These hotel links are affiliate TripAdvisor links. If you click on one of these links and book your hotel room, I may earn a small commission that helps to sustain this blog. Thank you for your support!

Get Your Paddlefest Tickets Now — With $5 Off!

Click here to purchase your ticket to Paddlefest and enter promo code PKBpaddlefest5 to get $5 off and a FREE ticket to the Downtown Throwdown BBQ and Brewfest! There are a limited number of tickets, so they are available on a first come, first serve basis.

Paddling, beer, or bbq — which are you most excited to experience in Parkersburg?