The Hatfield-McCoy Feud has been a staple of tourism in our area, and the city of Matewan chooses to celebrate this important part of area culture through their annual Hatfield-McCoy Festival.
On June 15th, this year’s event was in full swing, and attendees had a world full of activities to explore. Live music from local bands and performers such as EXIT 23 and Seth Furguson provided a great show for festival goers. Matewan Drama Group also performed. Inflatables, water slides, and games served as the perfect way to get kids out of the house for the weekend. For those looking for a bit of excitement, they also had a Mechanical Bull and Rock Wall. There were also vendors to provide festival-goers with sweet treats and meals as well as some beautiful artwork and clothing.
Downtown Matewan also offers visitors the opportunity to explore the towns rich history. The West Virginia Mine Wars Museum and the Matewan Depot Replica Historic Museum serve as a great resource for learning about the unique story of the area. Elijah Hooker, an honorary board member at the West Virginia Mine Wars Museum, talked about the importance of embracing our history here in the area, “This is a history that wasn’t taught in public schools, and what we’re trying to do at the West Virginia Mine Wars Museum is tell our story.”
Aside from downtown, the event also spreader area wide with numerous tours. One of the popular attractions was Hatfield-McCoy Air-boat rides that take riders on a beautiful scenic tour of the Tug River. For those more interested in longer tours, the owners of the Historic Matewan Bed and Breakfast Dave and Ellen Hatfield host a Hatfield-McCoy Feud Sites Tour. On the 80 mile tour, participants spend 5 to 7 hours exploring all the most notable feud sites.
With something for everyone, the festival hopes to continue growing through the coming years!