CHARLESTON, W. Va. – The schedule for one of the most anticipated events in the Kanawha Valley this year, the Charleston Sternwheel Regatta, has been released.
Mayor Amy Shuler Goodwin, alongside members of the Charleston Regatta Commission, unveiled the packed schedule Thursday morning at Haddad Riverfront Park, for the five-day event scheduled for Thursday, June 30 through Monday, July 4. The schedule brings a mix of nostalgic favorites and new events as authorities predict a quarter of a million people will visit the capital.
Major entertainment will be offered throughout the event, including:
Thursday Night – Everclear with early acts Fastball and The Nixons
Friday Night – The Four Tops & The Temptations with opening act The Unit
Saturday Night – Martina McBride featuring opening act Chucky Ray Lilly featuring The Grip
Sunday Brunch – Landau Eugene Murphy, Jr. & Bob Thompson
Sunday Night – Rick Springfield with Hair Supply opening act
Monday Night – West Virginia Symphony Orchestra
VIEW: Full 2022 Charleston Sternwheel Regatta Schedule
The event was a staple in Charleston from 1971 to 2009. The 2022 regatta will be back from the break.
“It makes me so excited. It’s an emotional day for many of us, especially our wheelie families who remember it’s a time for people to be in Charleston, connect and show off,” said Goodwin. to the media after the presser.
Charleston officials said they expect about 250,000 people to come to Charleston over the five days of the regatta and the event will total a return on investment of $10 million.
Tim Brady, CEO of the Charleston Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB), told MetroNews there was buzz everywhere for the event, including outside the West Virginia border.
Brady said the CVB will be doing outreach with businesses in the coming months to make sure businesses are ready for the crowds.
“You are talking about tens of thousands of people who descended on the city in five days. These are people who stay in hotels, eat in restaurants, shop in stores, buy gas. It’s the revenue they generate and the taxes we generate,” Brady said.
Other major events taking place throughout the event include:
Wheelwash Craft Beer Festival – Thursday at 5 p.m.
Battle of the Bands – Friday at 1 p.m.
Firecracker 5K (presented with the Childhood Language Center) – Saturday at 8am
Motorcycle Show (presented with Biker Mafia) – Saturday at 10 a.m.
All Fired Up Youth BBQ Challenge (featured with Capitol Market) – Saturday at 11 a.m.
BMX/Skate Expo – Saturday & Sunday at 11 a.m.
Anything that Floats Race (featured with United Way of Central WV) – Saturday at 1 p.m.
Weiner Dog Races (presented with Fix’Em Clinic & KCHA) – Saturday at 2 p.m.
· Funeral Parade – Saturday at 3 p.m.
All That Floats Youth Race – Sunday at 10 a.m.
Car Show (featured with Hot Diggity Dog) – Sunday at 10 a.m.
Paddlewheel Races – Sunday at 1 p.m.
Regatta and city officials are determined to make the event as family friendly as possible. Youth events include a children’s zone filled with inflatables, art projects, games, face painting and the return of the fan-favorite carnival over the five days of the regatta.
Other youth events include:
· The 3 on 3 basketball tournament will take place on Thursday, Friday and Saturday
Educational opportunities, courtesy of the Sewell Mountain Sailing Association and Kanawha County Public Library
The Regatta Movie Night will take place on Friday evening
For a full schedule of events, visit the Charleston Sternwheel Regatta Facebook page.
Goodwin noted that before, during and a few days after the event, there will be traffic issues in the downtown area. Details on closures will be announced closer to the event.
“Kanawha Boulevard is going to be closed for more than these five days. We are considering a 10 day closure at Haddad and Kanawha Boulevard. it’s going to be very difficult to get to the surrounding side streets,” Goodwin said.