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Free activities in West Virginia

Whitney Coy is a freelance writer and editor based in Columbus, OH, where she lives with her husband and two daughters. She writes frequently for SheKnows, as well as several other websites. She writes on topics including parenting, trav...

Having fun for less

No need to spend big bucks keeping busy in West Virginia. This state is packed full of activities that won’t cost you a dime! Here are our top picks for free activities in West Virginia.

family at outdoor festival

West Virginia Department of Culture and History

The West Virginia Department of Culture and History operates six museums, all of which are free to the public. They offer information and exhibits relating to the history of the state, as well as its culture and predictions for its future. Some museums are primarily indoors, while others are outside, like the Grave Creek Mound Archeological Complex and the Museum in the Park. Check the websites before you go -- most museums are closed at least one day of the week.

Locations: Charleston, Wheeling, Moundsville, Clifftop, Lesage, Logan
Phone: 304-558-0220
Rates: Free
Website: http://www.wvculture.org/museum/index-museumhome.aspx

Carnifex Ferry Battlefield State Park

Carnifex Ferry Battlefield is one of many important Civil War battlefield sites throughout the state. This one has been made into a state park, and is complete with a museum -- the Patterson House -- located next to the battlefield. Entry to the park is free, and if you call ahead there's a good chance you'll get a guided tour for no charge.

Location: 1194 Carnifex Ferry Road, Summersville, West Virginia, 26651
Phone: 304-872-0825
Rates: Free
Website: http://www.carnifexferrybattlefieldstatepark.com/

Blenko Glass Company

Blenko Glass Company does make functional glassware, but they're famous for their hand-blown creations. Stop by on almost any day of the week for a free glass-making demonstration, and then stop by the gift shop to check out the beauties available for purchase. Check the website or call before you go, because their demonstration hours vary by season.

Location: 9 Bill Blenko Drive, Milton, West Virginia, 25541
Phone: 877-425-3656
Rates: Free
Website: http://www.blenko.com/Home_Page.html

White Sulphur Springs National Fish Hatchery

This fish hatchery ships healthy trout eggs to hatcheries all over the United States. They also raise mussels, a species that is threatened due to pollution, and release them in the wild after improving their habitats. They offer free tours to the public, so you can see what they do and how you can help. The tours are usually through the week during business hours, and you have to call at least a week ahead of time to ensure someone is available to show you around.

Location: 400 E. Main St., White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia, 24986
Phone: 304-536-1361
Rates: Free
Website: http://www.fws.gov/northeast/wssnfh/index.html

Ritter Park

You'll never find another playground like Ritter Park. While you're here, your kids can dig for dinosaurs, explore a castle, ride a mini zip line, play a bongo and watch a water show. You can easily spend a whole afternoon here, or pack a picnic lunch and stay the whole day!

Location: 13th Ave., Huntington, West Virginia, 25701
Phone: 304-696-5954
Rates: Free
Website: http://www.ghprd.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=18&Itemid=2&lang=en

Huntington Museum of Art -- Saturday KidsArt

The Huntington Museum of Art does normally charge a small admission fee, but it's free for kids from kindergarten through fifth grade every Saturday, from 1-3 p.m. Drop your child off or stick around and watch as they have fun creating a new art and craft project every week. This program takes place all year long.

Location: 2033 McCoy Road, Huntington, West Virginia, 25701
Phone: 304-529-2701
Rates: Free
Website: http://www.hmoa.org/education/saturday-kidsart/

International Mother's Day Shrine

Moms, this place is for you. The International Mother's Day Shrine is an entire museum dedicated to honoring mothers everywhere. The spot was chosen because the founders of Mother's Day were raised just down the road from the shrine. That history is told through exhibits in the museum. The museum is only open on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.

Location: 11 E. Main St., Grafton, West Virginia, 26354
Phone: 304-265-1589
Rates: Free
Website: http://www.mothersdayshrine.com/index.php

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