7 most endearing, old-fashioned dates in WV

While the technology of our day and age is sometimes helpful, who doesn’t love the dating tactics from an old-school romance movie? Luckily, West Virginia still has plenty of locales give us a glimpse of yesteryear.

These 7 destinations are a great way to step back into simpler times with your sweetie:

1. Get a hand-mixed soda at Griffith and Feil Soda Fountain

Cuddle up in a booth with your cutie and a Coke float at Griffith and Feil Soda Fountain in Kenova. The soda fountain has gone through many changes since it started as a pharmacy in 1892, but it still remains in the hands of the Griffith family. The authentic atmosphere even includes a neon jukebox.

The antique soda fountain boasts a variety of old-fashioned hand-mixed sodas called “phosphates.” They also serve up tasty sandwiches, salads and burgers, as well as classic ice cream sodas, milkshakes, malts, sundaes and floats.

2. Trade the drive-thru for a drive-in

Don’t take your date through another drive-thru— try a drive-in instead! Frostop Drive-In in Huntington offers diners a trip to the past with classic curbside service, frosty root beers and All-American favorites like hot dogs and burgers.

Frostop was built in Huntington in 1959 and is now a rare glimpse into yesterday’s American dining experience: it is one of only 15 left in the country. Park your car under the restaurant’s iconic rotating mug, crank up some Beach Boys and fade into the 1950s.

3. Pick some sweet fruit with your sweetie

Visit a pick-your-own farm, like Morgan Orchard in the rolling hills of Sinks Grove. The orchard allows visitors to pick their own raspberries, blackberries, plums, peaches and more than 20 varieties of apples. Take a break and enjoy a view of the sprawling country vistas from one of the farm’s picnic tables.

4. Take a stroll through the past in Bramwell

Enjoy an evening out in historic Bramwell, which had the highest number of millionaires per capita in the entire United States in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Stop into the Corner Shop, a charming old-fashioned soda fountain, for a sundae or banana split. On Fridays, you can even enjoy dinner while watching a live band. In Bramwell’s heyday, the shop, formerly known as Bryant Pharmacy, was one of only 3 stores in the nation that sold Chanel No. 5 perfume.

Don’t forget to take a stroll down Millionaire Row, a line of houses formerly occupied by coal barons. As you stroll down the brick-cobbled street, keep in mind that homeowners are known to invite curious guests in for a closer look.

5. Ride vintage attractions at Camden Park

Spend a thrilling evening at Camden Park, West Virginia’s only amusement park. Ride the antique carousel, which was one of the park’s first rides in 1903, and then take a ride through the vintage haunted house, one of only a handful like it still in existence. In all, there are more than 30 rides to enjoy, including The Big Dipper, a 1950s wooden coaster featuring original Century Flyer cars.

Hop into swan-shaped paddleboats for a romantic ride around the lake, and don’t forget to play a couple of the classic games lining the midway. Be sure to also grab a Pronto Pup, a hand-dipped and golden-fried corn dog, which is a longtime Camden Park staple.

6. Watch a movie on the (really) big screen

Less than 10 drive-ins remain in West Virginia. One of those is the Pipestem Drive-In in Speedway, which opened in 1972 and is one of the youngest remaining in the state.

It is open May through October, screening double features every weekend for up to 280 cars.  Sound is provided by traditional pole speakers in addition to radio, and there’s even a snack bar. Fill up a bucket of popcorn and hop in the truck bed for an old-fashioned viewing experience.

7. Pack a picnic for this historic hike

Harpers Ferry is packed with history. Stroll around town hand-in-hand, taking in notable Civil War sites, including St. Peter’s Roman Catholic Church, the only church in town that survived the war. The Appalachian Trail Conservancy headquarters, often a halfway point for hikers planning to traverse the entire 2,100-mile trail, is also located in town.

For lunch, pack a picnic basket and hike to Jefferson Rock via the Appalachian Trail. Large masses of shale rock piled upon one another offer a wonderful view of the confluence of the Shenandoah and Potomac Rivers. The spot is named after Thomas Jefferson, who stood there in 1783.  

What’s your favorite old-fashioned date in West Virginia?

Explore more old-time fun >

This post was last updated on July 20, 2020