Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Local News

December 9, 2013

Bluefield city projects near completion in time for ‘Blue Holly Day’ event

BLUEFIELD — Several projects in the city of Bluefield are nearing completion in time for the community to put its best foot forward for the “Blue Holly Day” celebration on Saturday, Dec. 14.

Of course, the annual Bluefield Christmas Parade at 1 p.m. is the centerpiece of activities planned for the day, but it won’t be the kick-off moment. The start of the celebration will be at 11 a.m., with the opening of an ice rink in a vacant lot on Raleigh Street.

“All children under the age of 18 will be admitted to the skating rink at no charge, and students, 18 years old or older will be admitted to skate for half price. Adults can skate for 30 minutes at a cost of $10,” Jim Ferguson, Bluefield city manager said. “All skates will be provided free of charge.

“The skating rink is just one aspect of the fun that the Bluefield Preservation Society has planned for Blue Holly Day,” Ferguson said. “From noon to 5 p.m. there will be a ‘Craft Beer Crawl,’ a holiday photo village, ‘Pinch the Grinch,’ milk and cookies with Santa Claus and more.

“The Downtown Merchants Association is sponsoring the parade again this year,” Ferguson said. “It will start at 1 p.m. and everything will culminate on Raleigh Street where the skating and other activities will be happening. I think it should be a very enjoyable day for everyone.

“I think Saturday will be a great day for people to look around and see some of the improvements that have been taking place in Bluefield that are nearing completion,” Ferguson said. “The Depot District project on Commerce Street is really starting to take shape. The look of that part of the downtown has really changed.

“The street lights are up in the historic district and it all looks beautiful with the holiday lights,” Ferguson said. “The sidewalk project on Bland Street is done with some minor touch-up work left to do. A lot of things are coming together right now.”

Ferguson said that the year’s work represents $20 million in building permits as well as projects that do not require building permits in the city. “That’s a record year for the past quarter of a century, according to our building inspector, Gerald Steele,” Ferguson said.

— Contact Bill Archer at barcher@bdtonline.com

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