CAIRO, W.Va. - Dark skies and wintry weather is the perfect blend for the annual Winter Wonder Weekend at North Bend State Park. "Outer Space" is this year's theme with related activities, games and programs that will create a fun family winter weekend Jan. 20-22. Sled riding is part of the fun if there is snow. "We don't do warp speeds at our sledding hill," said Ken Zebo, activities coordinator at the Ritchie county destination, "but we sure feel like a rocket taking off and hope for a smooth slide." Zebo will be involved with the planned NASA activities during the weekend.

The weekend package is $135 per person and includes two nights lodging, five delicious full meals, a craft, door prizes and all weekend activities. Lodging for children under age 12 is free. Cabins are available and the rates are according to cabin size and occupancy. Cabins make a great family weekend option with multiple bedrooms, kitchens and fireplace to enjoy.

To participate in Nature Wonder Weekend and to register, call 304-558-2754 or visit   www.northbendsp.com  and click events/deals to download a reservation form and to learn more about events and activities at North Bend State Park.

Special programs planned for the weekend include:

Bill Beatty, author, educator and naturalist, will present "Spaced Out" on Friday evening at 7:30 p.m. Beatty is a well-known botanist and natural history interpreter from Wellsburg, W.Va. Friday activities also include "space ship" crafts, North Bend State Park tour, dinner, a Winter Evening Frolic and a winter hike - "Our Space: A Nighttime View from the Third Rock."

Saturday activities include winter hikes, scrapbooking classes, and tours to area shops: Berdine's Clif's Car Museum, Colonial Retrospectives, and Arlo's. A special treat, the StarLab Planetarium, is part of the afternoon activities. StarLab is part of the NASA educational services. Stepping Stone band is the evening entertainment after a dinner buffet. Stepping Stone is a Bridgeport based group featuring father, son and grandson playing classic rock and contemporary music.

Sunday, following an 8:30 a.m. devotional presented by Jonathan, Sara and Sam Summers of Harrisville, is a featured NASA program focusing on astronomy, constellations and our solar system.

North Bend State Park is located in the northwestern West Virginia and is easily accessible from four-lane U.S. 50, which stretches from Parkersburg to Clarksburg. Driving east, take U.S. 50 to the junction of WV 31 (21 miles). Take WV 31 to Cairo and follow signs to the park. Driving west, take WV 16 to Harrisville and follow signs to the park.

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