Blennerhassett Island

Blennerhassett Island

WOW, what a "New Tour"! Come join Gunther Tours and board the sternwheeler riverboat, "Island Belle" and discover Blennerhassett Island, a historic West Virginia state park with a museum, a mansion, and much more!

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WOW, what a "New Tour"! Come join Gunther Tours and board the sternwheeler riverboat, "Island Belle" and discover Blennerhassett Island, a historic West Virginia state park with a museum, a mansion, and much more!

Blennerhassett Island

“Memorial Day” Weekend Get-Away

Parkersburg, West Virginia

 

WOW, what a “New Tour”!  Come join Gunther Tours and board the sternwheeler riverboat, “Island Belle” and discover Blennerhassett Island, a historic West Virginia state park with a museum, a mansion, and much more!   

 

Included:

*  Basic amenities

*  2 nights at Comfort Inn 

*  2 deluxe continental breakfasts

*  2 dinners (including a dinner cruise)

*  Attractions and admissions per itinerary, including:

         -Ohio River Museum

         -Valley Gem Sternwheeler Dinner Cruise

         -Oil & Gas Museum

         -Blennerhassett Museum

         -Island Belle to Blennerhassett Island

         -Blennerhassett Island & Mansion Tour

         -Wagon Ride on Blennerhassett Island

         -Evening with “Margaret Blennerhassett”

         -Holl’s Swiss Chocolatier

         -Historic Henderson Hall Plantation

* Driver, Escort and Tour Guide Gratuities

 

 

Day 1

Welcome Aboard! Settle back, relax and enjoy a leisurely drive on the West Virginia Turnpike to the Ohio River Museum in Marietta, Ohio. The Museum consists of three exhibit buildings that explain the history of the Ohio River, its rich riverboat heritage, and celebrates the golden age of the steamboat. The first building, chronicling the origins and natural history of the Ohio River. The history of the steamboat on the Ohio River system is featured in the second building, along with a video presentation on river steamboats. The last building features displays about boat building, mussels in the Ohio River system, and tools and equipment from the steamboat era. Next we climb aboard the Valley Gem Sternwheeler for a delightful 2-hour dinner cruise on the Ohio River. Relax and enjoy a delicious meal while being entertained by the captain's stories of the river, both historic and recent. Also, as we cruise along the beautiful Ohio River the captain will hold a question and answer session. Following the dinner cruise, we travel to Parkersburg, West Virginia, where we spend two nights at the Comfort Inn.

D

Day 2

After a deluxe continental breakfast, we depart for a day of sightseeing in West Virginia, "The Mountain State". We begin at the Oil & Gas Museum in Parkersburg, West Virginia. Discover the history of the oil and gas industry in West Virginia and Ohio. The Museum features multiple floors and an outside exhibit area packed with documents, photos, displays, and historical objects from the 150 years of history about the oil and gas industry in Parkersburg and surrounding areas. From boom to bust, there is plenty of information for the history buff and lots of neat gizmos to satisfy the curious. Next we visit the Blennerhassett Museum. The Blennerhassett Museum became the first professionally operated, publicly funded museum of regional history in west/central West Virginia, and is a showcase of three floors of priceless history relics and objects of art from the Ohio Valley's past. Exhibits range from prehistoric Indian tools, jewelry, weapons and household items, to oil paintings, old clothing, guns and military paraphernalia, to furniture belonging to West Virginia's first Governor. Next we climb aboard the "Island Belle", a working replica of an authentic 19th-century sternwheeler riverboat for a 30-minute cruise to Blennerhassett Island, a small Island located in the Ohio River. In addition to its tranquil natural beauty, the Island, nicknamed "Eden", is the site of a European-style estate whose centerpiece is an enormous mansion surrounded by extravagantly landscaped lawns and gardens. The Palladian style mansion was constructed and occupied by a wealthy Anglo-Irish couple, Harman and Margaret Blennerhassett in 1800. For a brief period, the home became famous as the largest, most beautiful private residence in the American West frontier. Regrettably, Harman and Margaret became entangled with Aaron Burr and fled their Island home December 1806. The mansion burned to the ground in 1811, only to live on as a romantic legend. Then between 1984 - 1991 the State of West Virginia built a detailed replica on its original foundation. Once on the Island, a Costumed guide will lead you through the reconstructed Blennerhassett Mansion where the family lived like kings and queens. After our guided tour of the Mansion, enjoy some free time exploring the Island on your own and visiting the Friends of Blennerhassett Gift Shop. A 30-minute horse-drawn wagon ride showcases the Island. After exploring the Island and its history, we return to the "Island Belle" for the trip back to the mainland. Tonight, after dinner we will be entertained by Margaret Blennerhassett, as portrayed by a Costumed actor. An aristocrat, she entertained travelers to the Ohio Valley with dancing, music, and the readings of poetry at the Blennerhassett Mansion. Margaret Blennerhassett is acknowledged at West Virginia's first poet, and credited with bringing a high level of culture to the Mid-Ohio Valley.

B, D

Day 3

After a deluxe continental breakfast, we are off to continue our exploration of "The Mountain State" before departing for home. Our first stop is at the Holl's Swiss Chocolatier in Vienna, West Virginia. Built upon the talents of three generations of classically trained Swiss chocolatiers, Holl's uncompromising commitment to sourcing the finest ingredients and attention to detail in creating traditional Swiss chocolates will leave you wanting more. Browse, shop and enjoy delicious chocolate samples while learning the history of this small family-owned business. Next we visit Henderson Hall Plantation in Williamstown, West Virginia. Built in 1859 as the centerpiece of the 2,600-acre plantation, it's an impressive 17-room pre-Civil War mansion with all of its original furnishings. It survives today as a legacy of the Victorian and Edwardian eras. Henderson Hall is a living legacy to the pioneers and patriots who walked its halls through an unbroken chain of five generations. The house, grounds and Henderson family cemetery is designated the Henderson Hall Historic District and is listed on the National Registry of Historic Places. The house was built by George Washington Henderson the grandson of Scottish immigrants. His grandfather, Alexander, who settled in Fairfax, Virginia, was friend, neighbor and pew mate of George Washington. Following lunch on your own we depart for home with fond memories of regional history of West Virginia, steamboats on the Ohio River, a historic mansion and its scandalous owners on "Eden" Island, an imposing plantation, and irresistible melt-in-your-mouth chocolates!

B

B=Breakfast, D =Dinner

Below is a list of pick-up points available on this tour.

Below is a list of pick-up points available on this tour.

Name Address Contact Details
Carney Park & Ride Carney Park & Ride - 2980 Jomat Ave. Parkville, MD
Exit 31A (Harford Rd north) off Route 695
Gunther Charters Gunther's - 7443 Shipley Ave. Harmans, MD (GPS)
Lot C off of Shipley Ave.
Woodbine Woodbine Park & Ride 704 Lisbon Center Dr.
Woodbine, MD - I-70 West to Exit 73
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