When summer begins to sizzle, it’s time to seek out the cool and refreshing. Here are some of our favorite ways to beat the heat.


PADDLE ON A LAKE
You can explore Cheat Lake via rented pontoon, canoe, kayak, waterskis, wakeboard, and tube. Rentals available at Deep Creek Lake State Park include kayaks and pontoons. sunsetbeachmarina. com, wispresort. com/deep-creek-lakestate-park

BIG BEAR LAKE CAMPLANDS
It’s almost like camping in your backyard. Big Bear Lake Camplands, which offers mini-golf, live music, cabin rentals, and the coolness of Big Bear Lake, is a hop, skip, and a jump away outside Bruceton Mills. Property owners and campers can also take advantage of Bearfoot Springs Waterpark. bigbearwv.com

TUTTO GELATO
Try a smooth and creamy cup of gelato from Tutto Gelato—and check out the seasonal s’mores flavor in July. Other flavors such as blood orange, lemon, pistachio, and the signature stracciatella will also do the trick. tuttogelato. com

TRY STANDING UP ON A PADDLEBOARD 
Explore Cheat Lake or Deep Creek Lake on a stand-up paddleboard—you can rent one at Sunset Marina or at Deep Creek Lake State Park. sunsetbeachmarina. com, wispresort. com/deep-creek-lakestate-park

COOL JUMPING
You might work up a sweat jumping up and down or even taking a workout class at Launch Pad Trampoline Park, but it will be a good sweat with air conditioning to cool you down. launchpadtrampolinepark.com

FLOAT DOWN THE RIVER
Rent a pontoon boat from Wood’s Boat House in Fairmont and have a party on the Tygart Valley River. If lakes are more your style, pontoons are also available to rent at Tygart Lake State Park in Grafton and at Deep Creek Lake in Maryland. woodsboathouse.com, tygartlake.com

FLY-FISHING 
Looking for a great spot for fly-fishing? Garrett County, Maryland, gives anglers the opportunity to cast their lines in the Casselman and Savage rivers in the Grantsville area. If you need equipment—or a guide—Maryland Mountain Fly Fishing can help. 304.303.0564

COLD LOCAL BREWS 
Drink a flight of beers on the patio of Mountain State Brewing Co. right next to the rail-trail and the Monongahela River; or on the deck of the Morgantown Brewing Company. Or go with seasonal options: the pale ale Devil’s Gulch at Mountain State Brewing Co. or the Jesco’s White IPA, Brookside Saison, or Bergsteiger Hefeweizen at Morgantown Brewing Company. mountainstatebrewing.com, morgantownbrewing.com

SPLASH BY A RIVER 
Get sprayed with water while playing on the banks of the Monongahela River at the Splash Park at Palatine Park in Fairmont. mcparc.com

HIKING AND BOULDERING IN THE SHADE 
Coopers Rock State Forest has a network of trails that will keep you shaded while you hike, from the Clay Furnace Trail to the Virgin Hemlock Trail. You also can go bouldering while you are there. coopersrockstateforest.com

KREPPS POOL
If you are a kid, splash around the children’s aquatic area at Krepps Pool. If you’re an adult, watch the kids play in the aquatic area from the comfort of a lounge chair. boparc.org

EPIC ICE CREAM TREATS 
Get together with friends and share a nine-scoop banana split at The Poky Dot in Fairmont. Or try the iconic restaurant’s latest popular ice cream treat, milkshakes in a Mason jar—dipped in chocolate, no less. The concoctions feature sprinkles on the rim and come in four regular flavors: cookies and cream, doughnut, candy bar, and s’mores. thepokydot.com

SCUBA DIVING CLASSES
Scuba diving classes start up in June through My Dive Shop in Westover. Students begin in a pool and graduate to exploring the depths of Summersville Lake. You can be certified in two weekends. mydiveshopwv.com

MADE IN THE SHADE 
Does anything sound cooler than an ancient hemlock forest with 90-foot-tall trees that are 21 feet in circumference? Cathedral State Park, located on U.S. Route 50 in Preston County, is a mere 75-minute drive from Morgantown. cathedralstatepark.com

CROSS BLADING
It’s like cross country skiing but on roller blades, with a cool breeze blowing through your hair. Make this the summer you try cross blading on the rail-trail.

TASTE A NINE-SWIRL ARCHITECTURAL FEAT 
Drive down the interstate and enjoy a nine-swirl black raspberry ice cream cone— or chocolate or vanilla, or order from the extensive menu of custom treats—at Dairy Creme Corner in Fairmont.

RIDE THE RAPIDS COURSE 
You don’t have to be an expert whitewater rafter to navigate tough rapids. The Adventure Sports Center International, at the top of Wisp Mountain, helps novices gain skill and find their way through the whitewater on a controlled course. adventuresportscenter.com

SUP YOGA
Take stand-up paddleboard to a new level with yoga classes on top of paddleboards. If your tree pose is wobbly, you’ll just fall into the water. At Suncrest Yoga, you can schedule your own SUP yoga class on Cheat Lake for up to six people. suncrestyoga.com

SPARK!
Put your engineering skills to work and test the air conditioning at Spark! Imagination and Science Center, as you learn about science through interactive displays and events. sparkwv.org

MARGARITAVILLE 
Pitchers of frozen margaritas at Los Mariachis—or the Mexican restaurant of your choice. Mountain State Brewing Co. also has a flight of three margaritas—choose from flavors of traditional lime, jalapeño-lime, berry, caramel apple, hibiscus peach, strawberry, and jalapeño-strawberry. mountainstatebrewing.com

MOUNTAIN GETAWAY
You don’t have to go very far for a weekend retreat in the mountains, complete with a serene lake and boat rentals. Alpine Lake Resort in Terra Alta is just an hour away. alpinelake.com

JET SKI
Two words: Jet ski. It’s a popular sight on the Tygart Valley River in Fairmont. If you don’t have your own, the Aquatic Center in McHenry, Maryland, rents them to ride on Deep Creek Lake. aquatic-center.com

COOL EATS
Check out Heston Farm Winery’s new restaurant, the Mason Jar Grill, from inside the cool airconditioned establishment or, on a breezy evening, out in the courtyard. hestonfarm.com

COAST DOWN A MOUNTAIN 
It’s not just for skiing anymore. Wisp Resort’s mountains see action during the summer, too. Try out the Mountain Coaster that whooshes you down Marsh Mountain. You can also admire the view of Deep Creek Lake from the vantage of a chairlift. wispresort.com

EXPLORE DEEP CREEK LAKE
So many ways to motor or paddle around Deep Creek Lake in Maryland await, from pontoons and canoes to kayaks, stand-up paddleboards, and tubes. It’s only an hour away. wispresort.com/deep-creek-lake-state-park

EXPLORE BRUCETON MILLS LAKE
Just a half hour away, Bruceton Mills Lake offers many of the same water amenities to rent—canoes, kayaks, and stand-up paddleboards. padlz.com

SWIM & SLIDE
Slip down the twisty slide into the cool waters of Marilla Pool, which features two slides and a zerograde entry. boparc.org

COOL JAZZY SOUNDS
The Summer Jazz Stroll in Clarksburg is free and takes place at several venues in downtown Clarksburg on June 16. Jazz is always cool—especially with Reggie Watkins & the Cool Cats playing. wvjazzsociety.com

FEEL THE WIND IN YOUR FACE 
Zipline through the woods during a WVU Canopy Tour at Adventure WV in Coopers Rock State Forest. adventurechallenge.wvu.edu

RAFTING ON THE CHEAT
There’s no better way to explore the Cheat River Canyon than on a raft. You can do that through mid- June and also during the summer if there’s enough rain to keep the waters rushing over the rapids. cheatriveroutfitters.com

THE OLD SWIMMING HOLE
There’s nothing like an old-fashioned swimming hole—and two of the area’s best-known are Wonder Falls at Big Sandy Creek and Blue Hole in Jenkinsburg, both in Preston County.

LEARN TO SWIM
Don’t know how to swim? The folks at the Shack Neighborhood House have got you covered, with swimming lessons for all abilities throughout the summer. the-shack.org

DRINKS ON THE DECK
Enjoy frosty margaritas or piña coladas under an umbrella on the deck at Crab Shack Caribba or a freshly made mint-filled mojito at The Lakehouse on the Cheat, with a prime view of boats on Cheat Lake. crabshackcaribba.com, lakehousewv.com

DISCOVERY CENTER
The 6,000-square-foot Discovery Center at Deep Creek Lake State Park teaches visitors about the flora, fauna, and wildlife and the cultural and historical heritage of the area. discoverycenterdcl.com

SPEED DOWN CHEAT LAKE 
Tour Cheat Lake propelled by the power of a speedboat. Head toward Cheat Canyon to feel a big drop in temperature.

GO CAVING
After a short 45-minute drive, you could be exploring the cool, dark cave at Laurel Caverns Park in Hopwood, Pennsylvania, the state’s largest cave with three miles of passages. laurelcaverns.com

NEMACOLIN WOODLANDS RESORT
Luxurious pools as well as an Adventure Center with ziplining, a canopy tour, and the Quickjump that allows you to safely free fall four stories—Nemacolin Woodlands Resort in Farmington, Pennsylvania, has a lot of ways to cool you down, even if you sweat a little working up your nerve. nemacolin.com

DRIVE-IN MOVIES
Check out the Sunset Drive-In in Shinnston and the Skyview Drive-In Theater in Carmichaels, Pennsylvania. The summer’s biggest blockbusters always have a special vibe when you watch them outdoors. sunsetdriveinmovies.com, skyviewdriveinpa.com

SWINGS
There is nothing quite like the freedom you feel soaring back and forth on a swingset. Morgantown is lucky to have a park system chock-full of playgrounds where you can take your kids—or feel like one yourself. boparc.org

PLAY INDOORS OR OUT 
At Valley Worlds of Fun in Fairmont, indoor activities like bowling, tactical laser tag, and bumper cars will keep you in air-conditioned comfort, while the outdoor attractions such as bumper boats and the Valley Free Fall drop ride will provide a splashing and breezy good time. valleyworldsoffun.com

WAVE POOL 
Sure, West Virginia is a landlocked state, but you can do some real surfing at the Wave Pool at East Marion Park in Fairmont. mcparc.com/wave-pool.html

A HIKE BY THE FALLS 
Few local river views are as spectacular as the one of water rushing over the rapids at Valley Falls State Park in Fairmont. Shady hiking trails are nearby. valleyfallsstatepark.com

ZUL’S FROZEN LEMONADE
A tall cup of Zul’s frozen lemonade will cool you down for nine innings— or more—during an evening of West Virginia Black Bears baseball at the Monongalia County Ballpark. westvirginiablackbears.com, zulswv.com

BUBBLE TEA
If you haven’t tried bubble tea—with chewy tapioca balls—this summer is a great time to start. You can find it at Lavender Cafe, Green Tea Asian Fusion, and, of course, T.K.’s Fruit, Produce, and Bubble Tea.

GREEN MACHINE
There’s nothing quite as refreshing as an apple-and-mintinfused Green Machine smoothie—and in the summer, you can enjoy it on the deck of Terra Cafe while watching the action on the railtrail and the Mon River. terracafewv.com

KAYAK ON THE MON 
If you want to try watersports on the Monongahela River but you find yourself up a creek without a paddle, you can rent it—and other watersports equipment—affordably from the WVU Outdoor Rec Center: $12 a day for stand-up paddleboards, $13 a day for kayaks, and $15 a day for canoes. Other gear such as wetsuits can also be rented. adventurerecreation.wvu.edu

BIKE THE RAIL-TRAIL
Having trouble getting your bike down to the rail-trail? Rent from Wamsley’s Cycles and zoom around the 19 miles of the Deckers Creek Trail and the 29 miles of the Caperton and Mon River Trails south to Prickett’s Fort State Park and north to the Pennsylvania line. wamsleycycles.com, montrails.org

WV BOTANIC GARDEN
Enjoy the shade— and the flowers, plants, and butterflies—while walking through the West Virginia Botanic Garden. wvbg.org

SIP WINE
Relax in the tasting room at Forks of Cheat Winery and check out the different varieties. The fruit wines— apple, blackberry, blueberry, peach, raspberry, and strawberry—are especially refreshing in the summer. wvwines.com

A ROUND OF DISC GOLF
Heat rises, but not when you climb mountains. Dorsey’s Knob Park stands at an elevation of 1,398 feet— about 600 feet above the river. Play some disc golf on the lightly wooded, 18-hole course while you’re there. boparc.org/dorseys-knobpark.html

IN-TOWN HIKING
Not only is the WVU Core Arboretum shady, beautiful, and criss-crossed with trails to explore, but it’s also conveniently located in town, next door to the Coliseum and across from the WVU Creative Arts Center. arboretum.wvu.edu

 

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