Bluefield and Baseball
Last updated: May 16, 2023
Take a trip to Bluefield to explore antiques and art with a bit of adventure then discover the hidden history of baseball in Mercer County!
Tuck in at the Historic Bluefield Inn. Built in 1904, this ornate, southern-style mansion radiates sophistication. With it’s in-room fireplaces, this charming boutique hotel will help you relax in elegance. A complimentary breakfast is served every morning!
Or, cozy up at Baker’s Hill Inn, a historic brick home with a mix of old-world charm and modern conveniences. The bed and breakfast hosts are known for their hospitality and will make sure you feel right at home here.
Bluefield’s historic downtown is dotted with great little shops, their shelves brimming with local collectibles and rare antiques alike. Walk the aisles of The Ugly Duckling Antique Shop to find unique collectible items, books, art, pottery, and more. And if you’re looking for just the right gift, don’t skip out on Downtown Merchants, a large vendor boutique filled with local artists’ work, clothing and unique finds from across the Mercer County.
Make a pit stop for a late lunch at a local hotspot, The RailYard, located in the heart of downtown Bluefield’s Historic Depot District. The RailYard serves up classic American food including fresh and juicy burgers, sandwiches, and wraps. A local favorite? The chicken and waffle nachos!
For an unforgettable view, pack into the car and catch a sunset at East River Mountain. This breathtaking sight is only a short, scenic drive off the beaten path. Perched 3,500 feet above sea level, the East River Mountain overlook will give you an airplane’s perspective of the rolling green fields and tiny towns below – and the best photo opportunity in this part of the state.
Grab breakfast and cup of joe at your chosen B&B before heading out for a day filled with America’s pastime at Bluefield’s Bowen Field! Take a relaxing walk at the city park – the family friendly Trail is great for people of all ages.
Afternoon: Baseball in Bluefield
Mercer County has a storied history featuring a rather unique mash-up: baseball and coal mining.
It’s not as random as it seems. When the mine wars ended in 1921, the coal mining industry was left rattled, and company loyalty was at an all-time low. Coal mine owners desperately encouraged baseball games to boost morale and bring the miners and their communities together.
If you know anything about Southern West Virginia, you know the terrain isn’t all that flat. Early games were unpolished with rickety stands, makeshift equipment, and uneven dirt fields. Bluefield erected an official stadium in 1939, Bowen Field. Today, you can still catch a game at the old-timey park, known for its simple concessions and family atmosphere.
If you’re lucky, you might just catch a game between these hometown rivalries – Bluefield Ridge Runners vs. Princeton Whistlepigs. At the end of the season, the Mercer Cup is bragging rights for the county as they see which team pulls out the wins. If not, catch a game at Hunnicutt Stadium in Princeton next time!