There’s something so charming about Fayetteville, West Virginia, the small town that sits on the rim of the New River Gorge. Sure, the forest that surrounds Fayetteville is enchanting (so enchanting that the National Park Service purchased 70,000 acres in the 1980s to create a National River), but the small town itself has a lot to offer.
At its center is the historic Fayette County Courthouse, which is surrounded by great public art, shops, music venues, a yoga studio, pubs, breweries, restaurants and of course, Lafayette Flats Boutique Vacation Rentals.
In every one of these places, you’ll find the smiling faces of the people that are lucky enough to call this place home. And that is precisely why we love this town – its charm radiates from its people.
The people of Fayetteville have created a fantastic place to live and a fun place for you to visit. We hope you’ll use this list of things to do in Fayetteville, WV to plan your getaway!
Public Art in the Heart of Fayetteville
The art-loving folks of the Fayetteville Arts Coalition have been busy for several years filling Fayetteville with public art, and few things create a more charming downtown environment than bright, meaningful art.
While you explore the quaint and compact downtown you will find these gems all within walking distance of the Fayette County Courthouse and Lafayette Flats.
Fayetteville Visitors Center Mural, 310 N. Court St.
While serving as an AmeriCorps VISTA at the Fayetteville Visitors Center in 2009, Greenbrier County-based artist, Mary Hurst painted a beautiful mural of West Virginia wildflowers in the restroom. It’s a hidden treasure!
Stained Glass Inside United Bank, 145 W. Maple Ave.
Elizabeth Grafton, an influential stained-glass artist who made her home in Fayetteville, died several years ago at the age of 99, but she left a legacy of influence far and wide; seemingly more well-known elsewhere than in her hometown. You can find a beautiful piece of Grafton’s work in the lobby of United Bank. Her tree of life is so beautiful that we would gladly sign up for a checking account just to see it… but don’t worry, you don’t have too.
Wrought Iron Sculpture, Intersection of Wiseman Ave. and Court St.
World-renowned metalsmith, Jeff Fetty created the sculpture entitled, “New Directions: A Sculpture for our Community.” The directional sign points to other locations known for whitewater rafting (Zambezi), rock climbing (Yosemite), and mountain biking (Moab). In 2012, when asked about the meaning of his sculpture, Fetty told the Register-Herald that it was meant to communicate that, “you have arrived at a world-class destination. You live in a world-class destination.”
Mural on Fayetteville Physical Therapy Building, 233 N. Court St.
Rob Cleland painted Fayetteville’s first outdoor mural on the Fayetteville Physical Therapy building in 2012. Cleland included many of the components of the New River Gorge that make it so special and Fayetteville’s namesake, the Marquis de Lafayette.
Fayetteville Post Office Mural, 120 W. Maple Ave.
“The Miners” is an oil on canvas in Fayetteville Post Office painted by Nixford Baldwin. It was commissioned in 1939 by the U.S. Treasury Section of Fine Arts and is a great example of New Deal artwork. Coal mining brought thousands of people to this isolated area from the 1870s to the 1960s, and this mural depicts their daily life in and out of the mines.
Murals on Rt. 16 Old Overpass, Intersection of US Rt. 19 and WV Rt. 16
Both murals were painted by Jeff Pierson, an artist known throughout the state for his caricature-esque style. The first mural celebrates traditional Appalachian music and instruments and the second mural showcases the many types of outdoor adventure available in the New River Gorge. The murals, which cover the abutments of the old Second Street bridge crossing Rt. 16, were commissioned to brighten the area after the deck of the bridge was removed; an upsetting change for so many in town. To safely view these murals, cross Rt. 19 using the pedestrian walkway accessible from Daniels St. near Tudor’s Biscuit World.
Local Art for Show and Sale in Fayetteville
Lewis, the owner of Fayetteville’s famous Secret Sandwich Society, proudly displays and sells original artwork in rotating shows throughout the year at The Grove – the eclectic taproom, lounge and music venue located above Secret Sandwich Society.
Jeffrey (a.k.a. Cheffrey) and his wife Lori, the owners of Wood Iron Eatery, also show and sell artwork by local artists in their full-service espresso bar where you can also enjoy breakfast, lunch and delicious baked goods.
Experience more great local art by visiting these shops:
Wild Art Wonderful Things
This artsy boutique has a great selection of work including local topographic maps by Synergy Aerial and Laster Cutting, stained-glass jewelry and kaleidoscopes by Stephanie Danz, and adorable needle felting by the owner, Brannon.
Conveniently located in the same building as Maggie’s Pub, this wine, beer and art shop has a great selection of local jewelry, too.
This charming restaurant (run by Wendy, the mother) with a juice bar (run by Cassidy, the daughter) has a nice little assortment of local goodies to browse before, after or while you dine.
Fayetteville’s Shops and Boutiques
Scattered around town and within walking distance of each other, you will find several unique locally-owned shops and boutiques to browse during your time in Fayetteville.
A couple of these shops are one-person operations, which means you usually have the pleasure of meeting the owner while shopping. Running a one-person operation also means the owners occasionally deviate from their posted hours, so you may want to check the shop’s Facebook page before making a special visit.
ACE Adventure Gear
From kayaks to fishhooks, ACE Adventure Gear has what you need for your outdoor adventures.
Great Googly Moogly
You’ll find an impressive collection of gems, minerals and crystals in this unusual shop. Occasionally, you will also find Elevate Elixirs Kombucha which is made right here in West Virginia.
New River Bikes
If you are into mountain biking, you are going to love this place! But even if you are not, it’s worth a look. The owner, Andy has cleverly repurposed many items to create displays and fixtures for his shop.
D and K Collectibles
The owners specialize in vintage West Virginia blown glass.
A very cute “junktique” right next door to D and K Collectibles.
New River Antique Mall
25 booths of antique treasures for you to explore.
The most well-respected and poplar shop in Fayetteville (maybe West Virginia) is owned by local legends, Kenny, Maura and Gene. This outdoor outfitting shop has high-quality merchandise and SUPER helpful and knowledgeable staff. Water Stone is a destination for climbers specifically, but everyone should stop in to check out their selection of clothes and the stairwell photo gallery (a tribute to the craziness of climbers). Now you can have a cup of Joe while you shop: Rangefinder Coffee just opened inside Water Stone on the first floor.
Ben Franklin and Ben Franklin Crafts
In the first building, which is clearly marked Ben Franklin, you will find everything you could ever need and more; coolers of food, dollar store type items, a full fabric shop, hot nuts, fresh popcorn and slush puppies (yes, you can order an “around the world”). In the separate building across the parking lot, you will find a huge selection of primitive décor and a reasonably priced frame shop.
A unique women’s boutique with bohemian clothes, accessories, gifts and more.
The Hobbit Hole
This little hidden gem of a shop is in the basement of Twisted Gypsy’s but is accessed from Court St. It’s full of vintage goodies from dresses to trinkets.
Nostalgia for the toys of your youth will get the better of you in this adorable little ice cream shop.
A true gift show with all the popular brands including Vera Bradley, Ginger Snap and Brighton.
Dove’s Village Shops
A bit farther south on Rt. 19, you’ll find a whole village of shops. Dove’s Home Furnishings (quilts, braided rugs, country and primitive decor), Dove’s Variety (gifts, souvenirs and collectibles), Dove’s YOUnique Boutique (ladies apparel), Pear Tree Arts & Garden (specializing in on-site painting of ceramics, garden items and locally made wares), and Wild Mountain Soap Company (handmade soaps, lotions and more made on-site).
The Music Scene is Strong in Fayetteville
Most of the establishments listed below offer live music on weekend nights from May – October. Checking their Facebook pages is the best way to see current hours of operations and performance schedules.
This cozy space above Secret Sandwich Society on Wiseman Ave. has a great reputation among bands and therefore gets many great acts. They have a big selection of beer (on tap and in bottles) and a few wines. You can also place your order for Secret Sandwich Society food to-go.
Southside Junction Taphouse
On the corner of S. Court St. and Maple Ave., you will find a lively tap house with a big selection of brews and yummy food. In addition to live music on Tuesday evenings, they almost always have something going on like Beer Bingo or trivia.
From time to time, The Station on N. Court St. has live music, and when they do it is quite a treat. Their farm-to-table menu and carefully crafted cocktails are even more delicious set to music.
The Freefolk Brewery
This brewery is a treat for the eyes, ears and taste buds. The owners have filled their space with art, they offer live music on the weekends and they serve up some yummy food too. You can even call ahead to schedule a tour of the brewery.
The following live music venues aren’t in Fayetteville, but they are only 5 minutes away across the New River Gorge Bridge in Lansing.
- Chetty’s Pub at Adventures on the Gorge – We love sitting on Chetty’s big deck that overlooks the New River. On the weekends you can enjoy solid pub fare in a super fun environment. This is where all the AOTG rafters come when they get off the river to see their trip video projected on all the televisions.
- Rendezvous River Lounge at Adventures on the Gorge – Live music on Fridays and Saturdays at this lively open-air lounge.
- Burrito Bar at Breeze Hill – Outdoor seating with beautiful sunsets, tacos, burritos, beer and live music. What more could you ask for? It can be a little hard to find but follow our directions and you’ll be fine: head north on Rt. 19 and take the second right after crossing the New River Gorge Bridge. Take the second left onto Oscar White Rd. Just look for the sign by the old white house.
More Local Fayetteville Flavor
The population of Fayetteville is only 3,000 but you’d never know it! These folks like to keep busy. Here are a few of the other local establishments that make Fayetteville so cool.
The Historic Fayette Theater on S. Court St. is widely used by the community for plays and performances. The theater also hosts many of the town’s annual events including the Big Fun Family Talent Show, Appalachian Outdoor Film Festival, and the Video Boaters Challenge (the wildly popular event that showcases the talents of local videographers working in the whitewater industry).
Of course, there’s a yoga studio in Fayetteville. New River Yoga offers regular classes and special workshops in their S. Court St. studio. They also offer yoga on the rim of the New River Gorge at the Adventures on the Gorge pool patio every Sunday morning from May to October.
Right next door to Lafayette Flats is Escape-A-Torium which offers three different escape room games. You must find clues, solve puzzles and escape in less than one hour.
Arrowhead Bike Farm is located just a few miles from downtown on Gatewood Road and offers campsites, trails, mountain bike rentals and equipment, but our favorite thing about Arrowhead is their Biergarten where they serve up fresh craft beer and a delicious variety of brats.
The guys of Bridge Brew Works just added a beautiful outdoor patio and tasting room to their brewery which is on Nick Rahall Greenway inside the industrial park just a few minutes from downtown. Their award-winning beers are worth tasting, and we suspect you’ll want to fill up your growler while you visit.
Fayetteville’s Real Claim to Fame – The Food!
Even more than its art, shops and music venues, Fayetteville is known for its food. This small town has some of the best restaurants in West Virginia offering everything from out-of-this-world sandwiches to locally sourced steak.
Get our Fayetteville Food Guide to help decide which restaurant is the perfect pick for your palate. We’ve compiled all the restaurants’ info into one helpful flier: location, contact info and hours, special diet offerings, alcohol availability, and special insider information.
Now you have all the info you need to plan a getaway to charming Fayetteville, WV. When can we expect you?