Charleston is the capital and largest city of the U.S. state of West Virginia. It is located at the confluence of the Elk and Kanawha Rivers in Kanawha County. The 2009 Census Estimate has Charleston with a population of 50,267.
The city contains public parks, such as Cato Park and Coonskin Park, and the Kanawha State Forest, a large public state park that sustains a pool, camping sites, several biking/walking trails, picnic areas, as well as several shelters provided for recreational use.
In 1956, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed the Federal Aid Highway Act. Charleston became part of that system in the 1960s when three major interstate systems—I-64, I-77 and I-79 were constructed, all converging in the heart of Charleston. These roads provide convenient access to Midwestern, Northeastern and Southern cities. Charleston is within a day's drive of 60 percent of the U.S. population.
In 1983, the Charleston Town Center opened its doors downtown. It was the largest urban-based mall east of the Mississippi River, featuring three stories of shops and eateries. Downtown revitalization began in earnest in the late 1980s as well. For a time, the opening of the Charleston Town Center Mall had a somewhat negative impact on the main streets of downtown Charleston, as many businesses closed and relocated into the mall. For a while, the downtown business district (outside of the mall) had a "ghost town" feel to it which took several years to turn around. Today, Capitol Street, Hale Street, and other bordering streets are an eclectic mixture of restaurants, shops, businesses and services that many call the centerpiece of downtown.
Many festivals and events were also incorporated into the calendar, including Multifest, Vandalia Festival, a 4 July celebration with fireworks at Haddad Riverfront Park, and the already popular Sternwheel Regatta, which was founded in 1970, provided a festive atmosphere for residents to enjoy.
Annual events and fairs
Charleston is home to numerous annual events and fairs that take place throughout the city, from the banks of the Kanawha River to the capitol grounds. The West Virginia Dance Festival, held between April 25 and 30, features dance students from across the state that attend classes and workshops in ballet, jazz and modern dance. At the finale, the students perform in the West Virginia State Theatre; these are free to the public.
Since 2005 FestivALL has provided the Charleston area with cultural and artistic events beginning on June 20 (West Virginia Day) and including dance, theater, and music. FestivALL provides local artists a valuable chance to display their works and help get others interested in, and involved with, the local artistic community. Highlights include an art fair on Capitol Street and local bands playing live music at stages set up throughout downtown, as well as a wine and jazz festival on the campus of the University of Charleston featuring local and nationally known jazz artists and showcasing the products of West Virginia vineyards.
Charleston has a four-season climate lying within the northern fringes of a humid subtropical climate, which is primarily based on differences in elevation. Spring is the most unpredictable season, and spring-like weather usually arrives in late March or early April. From the beginning of March through early May, temperatures can vary considerably and it is not unusual at this time for day-to-day temperature fluctuations to exceed 20 °F. Temperatures warm up considerably in late May, with warm summer-like days. Summer is hot and humid, with daytime highs rising to 90 °F on 20 days, sometimes reaching 95 °F, often accompanied by high humidity. Autumn features crisp evenings that warm quickly to mild to warm afternoons. Winters usually differ from other winters in West Virginia. Along with Huntington, the city is usually the last place in the state to receive any amount of snowfall.
W205CG (WKVW) 88.9 FM Charleston, WV Christian Contemporary
WWLA 89.3 FM South Charleston, WV Christian Contemporary
WXAF 90.9 FM Charleston, WV Gospel Music
WAXS 94.1 FM Oak Hill, WV Classic Hits
WRVZ 98.7 FM Pocatalico, WV Hip Hop
WKEE 100.5 FM Huntington, WV Top-40
WMXE 100.9 FM South Charleston, WV Classic Hits
WVSR 102.7 FM Charleston, WV Top-40
WCIR 103.7 FM Beckley, WV Top-40
W283AQ (WSWW) 104.5 FM Cross Lanes, WV Sports
WEMM 107.9 FM Huntington, WV Gospel Music
WCHS 580 AM Charleston, WV News/Talk
WKAZ 680 AM Charleston, WV Oldies
WIHY 1110 AM Hurricane, WV Oldies
WVTS 1240 AM Dunbar, WV News/Talk
WSWW 1490 AM Charleston, WV Sports
WZZW 1600 AM Milton, WV News/Talk
A small percentage of the businesses listed on BlackCityInfo.com may not necessarily be black owned and operated but have received favorable reviews from users who have visited the establishment, or from the owners themselves who warmly seek out African American patronage.
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Multifest (August) Venue - State Capitol Complex - Charleston, West Virginia
- (visit website)
Multifest is a free, three-day festival that always begins the first friday in August.
West Virginia Book Festival This is a free event. (October)
- (visit website)
The West Virginia Book Festival brings people and books together in a two-day event that celebrates the Mountain State’s writers and brings authors from across the nation to Charleston.
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