GRAFTON—With the help of the Adventure Club, an area park will be brought back to life and will become a place for family gatherings and community fun.
Many residents who have lived in Grafton for a long period of time recall the various events that were held at the Grafton City Park and, located near the foot of Tygart Dam.
Whether it was family cookouts or community gatherings like the Foot of the Dam Jam, the park was a once booming entity for residents and guests.
But after the site’s closure, time took hold of the park and structures deteriorated as weeds grew where children once played. However, now there is new hope for the recreational area and gathering spot.
After numerous years of discussions, the Taylor County Adventure Club has entered into an agreement with the City of Grafton to take over the operations of the park.
“We are very excited to announce that the Adventure Club has secured the lease for the Grafton City Park and Campground,” said Taylor County Adventure Club Executive Director Bryan Smith. “We look forward to working together with our community to rebuild the park and campground into something that we all can be proud of!”
He voiced that although the club had secured a three-year lease, he wanted residents to remember that the campground belongs to everyone in the community. And as such, they hope it will become the perfect spot for gatherings once more.
“We are currently completing work and will soon have the pavilion ready to rent for activities like parties, reunions, dances and more,” Smith shared. “Starting in 2023, it is our hope that we can add to the activities being held locally, with music events, movie nights, even more dances and luaus.”
The Adventure club will gladly accept any volunteers who would like to help get the park back in working order. Those wishing to help out may contact the club via Facebook.
Smith noted that one of the long-term goals the club has is to bring back to annual Foot of the Dam Jam.
“We would also like to build a pier that can be used for photos of the dam, wedding ceremonies and for fishing,” Smith disclosed.
Currently, the campground only offers RV camping, but at a competitive price. Campers can rent spots for a full month, during the weekends only for the entire month, a week at a time or daily.
With a facility that’s open year-round, featuring 31 campsites, guests can enjoy some time in the peaceful surroundings along the Tygart River.
“Unfortunately, we do not offer tent camping at this time, but as soon as we get a bathhouse built, we can open that option up as well,” Smith revealed. “Once tent camping is an option, we would love to invite groups and organizations to hold camp-outs here!”
And because the Adventure Club really wants the community to utilize the park in a positive way, they will work to hold annual events in the park. The first of hopefully many events is slated for Saturday, August 13, and will be a benefit for a local woman battling breast cancer.
“We are excited to do our part to help out Courtney McKinney and to do so will be hosting the Boobs and Tubes Jeep and Side by Side Benefit Ride,” revealed Smith.
During the event, guests showing their support will be able to take part in not only the ride and the club’s Lazy River floats, but also a Jeep show and the Taylor County Cornhole Championship, all in the name of supporting McKinney.
The benefit will also feature live music by Grafton native Chris Weaver, karaoke and dancing, along with raffle baskets, a 50/50 drawing and of course, food and drinks.
According to Smith, the Almost Heaven 304 Jeep Show judging begins at 7:00 p.m., and awards will be given for Best In Show, Veteran’s Choice, People’s Choice and Courtney’s Choice.
Those wishing to take part in the cornhole tournament will need to form a team. Competitors may enter the men’s, women’s or mixed division to see whose team reigns supreme.
There is a $20 entry fee for each person for the Boobs and Tubes Jeep and Side by Side Ride benefit, with proceeds going to McKinney, as she continues to kick cancer’s butt!
For more information about the benefit, please call 304-641-0748 or 304-694-5664.
“We are just really excited for this progressive step in a positive direction for the city and county,” said Smith. “This will be a community spot for everyone to enjoy for years to come!”