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Marble Fest Will Fill Sistersville Streets

By Staff | Sep 21, 2010

A child checks out some of the specialty marbles for sale at Sistersville’s Marble Fest.

Once a year, Sistersville plays host to a three-day extravaganza dedicated to the history of glass toys.

The 11th annual Sistersville Marble Festival will be held in Sistersville this weekend, Friday through Sunday.

Marblers from far and wide will gather in the streets to buy, sell, and trade the glass toys, watch marbles being made, participate in marble tournaments, attend a marble auction, take a cruise down the river, and play Bingo courtesy of the Lions Club.

Food vendors will also be on-hand to add to the enjoyment.

The event celebrates the history of ‘marble mania’ that swept the country in the early to mid-1900s. One interesting fact is that most of the marbles enjoyed by children were made in this area.

At one time, there were over 25 marble factories within a 60-mile radius of Sistersville. Today, only two remain – Jabo Vitro Marble Factory located 25 miles south of Sistersville in Lower Newport and Marble King located four miles north of Sistersville in Paden City.

Beautiful marbles will be made on location during the festival and a large marble furnace will be placed on Charles Street, allowing world famous contemporary marble artists to display their talents. A silent auction will take place on Friday and Saturday at 6 p.m.

This year’s musical entertainment will include performances by Slim Chance at 6:30 p.m. on Friday. Michael Parsons and Friends will perform Saturday at 6:30 p.m.

Visitors may also inquire about limited edition 2010 Marble Festival marbles. This year’s marble will feature the Sistersville Post Office.

This year, mugs were donated to the festival. In turn, the coordinators of the Marble Festival donated the mugs to the senior citizens to be sold during the festival. Proceeds will benefit the senior center.

Additional activities include safety demonstrations courtesy of the Tyler County Office of Emergency Management in celebration of “National Preparedness Month.” Family Safety Day will be held on Saturday from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m.

Community Emergency Response Team volunteers will be on hand to assist families in establishing a ‘Family Emergency Plan’. Tyler County Search and Rescue will have a Search and Rescue K-9 unit on hand for the public to view, as well as the Emergency Management Communication Van and the Mobile Field Office.

The Tyler County Sheriff’s Office will be handing out 250 ‘Child DNA Sample Kits’.

The Sistersville Police Department will be conducting a Bicycle Rodeo. The Sistersville Volunteer Fire Department will demonstrate the “DuPont Seat Belt Convincer”. Family Safety Day has been partially funded by “Volunteer West Virginia”.

Admission to the Sistersville Marble Festival is free.For more information about Marble Fest contact Jim King at 304-652-4030.