ELKINS - This weekend the area will be filled with an aroma familiar to most West Virginians, thanks to an annual festival celebrating that Appalachian treat, the ramp.
The sixth annual Ramps & Rail Festival will take place from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday in the Town Square, located behind the Elkins Railroad Depot Welcome Center in downtown Elkins.
The festival will feature 34 craft vendors and 20 food vendors specializing in ramp-based menu items. Popular food items will include Kiwanis International ramp burgers, ramp-a-roni rolls prepared by Davis & Elkins College Dining Services Executive Chef Melanie Campbell and her students, and soup and barbecue options.
From noon to 3 p.m., festival patrons will be given the opportunity to vote for their favorite vendors, and a plaque presentation will be made to the winning vendor(s) at 4:30 p.m.
The event will feature a wide variety of entertainment from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., including music from Appalachian Spirit, Seth Maynard & Osmosis and the Ginsangers.
This year's event will include activities for all ages to ensure fun for the whole family. Numerous free children's activities will be available for youngsters throughout the day.
"I think it is a good thing for people to come out to because it is a different kind of festival," Elkins Depot Center Director Jessica Kittle said. "It will also be good because this year we will feature activities for kids. We want to make it family friendly."
The festival will also feature a corn-hole tournament open to older youth and adults that are interested in participating.
"The festival will be amazing," said Sian Dowis, an AmeriCorps member associated with the Depot Welcome Center. "We are offering new features, including free children's activities and an epic corn-hole toss for older children and adults. We are trying to feature something for everyone."
The festival will feature two one-hour long train rides on the New Tygart Flyer, taking passengers toward Bowden and back. The train will depart the depot at 12:30 p.m. and 3 p.m.
Tickets for the train are still available but reservations are highly recommended. Tickets can be purchased by contacting the Durbin and Greenbrier Valley Railroad at 1-877-686-7245.
Those interested in becoming a vendor for the event may contact Harold Elbon at 304-637-4667.