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West Virginia Irish Road Bowling Association
2019 WVIRBA Tour Events


♣ March 16, 17 Irish Spring Festival, Ireland, WV


West Virginia’s Irish road bowling “homeplace,” the origin and heart of WV Irish road bowling. Site of 2009 national finals. Wildcat Road to Duffy Bridge, at 2.2 miles our longest course. All events family friendly. Don't miss Saturday parade, harp concert, duck race. 

Saturday 2:30 p.m.

Sunday 1:30 p.m.

Road Master Denton King (304) 452-8962.

♣ April 13, 14 Pipestem Resort State Park, Pipestem, WV

www.pipestemresort.com, pipestemsp@wv.gov, (304) 466-1800, Kim Hawkins

A magnificent view into the Bluestone River Gorge, Appalachian Spring colors in southern West Virginia, and one of the state's very best road bowling roads, combine for an unforgettable weekend. Pipestem Resort call Kim Hawkins 304 466 1800, www.pipestemresort.com. Ask for Irish Road Bowlers discount. For WVIRBA Kevin Smith 304-228-7928. Also 2011 Women's State Champion Samantha Mann, 2014 North American Region Novice 1 Finalist Rich Meece.

Women's Singles Qualifier, Men's Singles Qualifier, Team Bowling and Fun Bowling.

April 13 Team Registration begins at Noon, team bowling starts at 1:30 p.m.
April 14  Fun Bowl (no registration) bowling begins at 11:00 a.m.
April 14 Men's and Women's singles qualifiers. Registration starts at 9:30 a.m.. Qualifiers start at 10:30 a.m.

A second qualifier will be held at the Strawberry Festival near Buckhannon, May 18, 19. Top men and top women scorers from each qualifier - Pipestem and Strawberry - advance to the West Virginia IRBA Men's and Women’s Singles State Championship, June 29, 30, 2019, location TBD.  

Saturday, April 13

12 noon Registration for Team Bowling.
1:30 p.m. Team Bowling starts at Park Gate House.

Sunday, April 14

11a.m. Team Fun Bowl meet at Park Gate House.
12 Noon Registration at Campground.
1p.m. Women's and Men's Qualifiers meet at Campground.

Road Master: Kevin Smith (304) 228-7928

Don’t forget - Qualifiers for the 2019 WV State Championship are April 13, 14 at Pipestem Resort State Park and May 18, 19 at the Strawberry Festival, Buckhannon. Novice I, II, III, IV. Beginners are welcome. Novice IV is for beginners.

Irish Road Bowling

♣ May 4 Cooper's Rock State Forest, Morgantown, WV

Bowling begins at 1:00 p.m.

Located near Cheat Lake, Lakeview Golf Resort and with an overlook into Cheat River Gorge, this 12,713 acre forest with cliffs and 11 rustic picnic shelters is ideal for Irish Road Bowling.

See www.coopersrockstateforest.com.

Contact Coopers Rock (304) 594-9024, for the WVIRBA


♣ May 11 Kanawha State Forest, Charleston, WV

Saturday 1:30 pm. (Team Registration, 12:30 p.m.)

Located just seven miles south of Charleston, West Virginia, Kanawha State Forest is in close proximity to the heavily populated Kanawha Valley and is a recreational haven. The 9,300-acre forest is noted among naturalists for its diverse wildflower and bird populations. Rich cove forest sites provide nesting habitat for 19 species of wood warblers, a feature which draws birders from as far away as Canada. The forest offers some of West Virginia’s best special hikes in winter, spring and fall.

Kanawha State Forest | (304) 558-3500 | kanawhasf@wv.gov 

Road Master Stephen Wallington (304) 638-3224.

Qualifiers for the 2019 WV State Championship:

April 13, 14 at Pipestem Resort State Park
May 18, 19 at the Strawberry Festival, Buckhannon.
Novice I, II, III, IV, beginners are welcome.
Novice IV is for beginners.

Irish Road Bowling

♣ May 18, 19 Strawberry Festival, Buckhannon, WV


Turkey Run Road, two miles north of Buckhannon, site of the 2006 and the 2015 Irish Road Bowling North American Region Championship Finals, Bol~Chumann na hEireann. Winners advanced to the All Irelands, in Ireland (the country).

Saturday May 18

4:00 p.m. Team Bowling

Sunday May 19

1:00 p.m. Men's and Women's Singles Qualifier and Team Bowling

The second Men's and Women's Qualifier will be held at the Pipestem Resort State Park, April 13, 1422. Top men and top women scorers from each qualifier, Pipestem and Strawberry Festival, advance to the West Virginia IRB Singles State Championship, June 29, 30, location TBD. Novice I, II, III, IV. Beginners are welcome. Novice IV is for beginners.

Irish Road Bowling

♣ June 7-9 Jerod Putnam Amateur Open

Coopers Rock State Forest,

Morgantown, WV 

June 7 Irish Road Bowling Benefit for Lewis County Youth

The Jerod Putnam Amateur Open is named in memorium for one of the original founders of Irish Road Bowling in West Virginia and in the USA in 1995.

 Jerod’s love and passion for the ancient game led many people to follow him into the country roads.

From those beginnings in 1995, Irish road bowling has spread all across the Mountain State. In 2019, 22 events will be held in all regions of the state.

 The JPAO will benefit the Jerod Putnam Scholarship Fund which will award scholarships to Lewis County youth pursuing studies in agriculture/forestry and sports/physical education.   

 The Jerod Putnam Amateur Open is for new players or complete beginners. The best players in West Virginia, New York and Boston, (Grade 2 or above by Bol~Chumann) are not eligible.

Coopers Rock State Forest, www.coopersrockstateforest.com, and nearby Lakeview Golf Resort, www.lakeviewresort.com, provide a beautiful setting for this ancient sport.  

Cash prizes, including $1000.00 for the winner, will be awarded. Everyone will have an equal chance. Draws will be made at the Friday evening reception at Lakeview. 

We invite everyone to experience the thrill of Irish long bullets road bowling down Iron Furnace Road, in our ideal setting, Coopers Rock State Forest along Cheat Lake, in the West Virginia hills.

For information and details on registering, Cris Putnam 304 692 6669, or David Powell 202 387 1680.     




♣ June 22 Blackwater Falls State Park West Virginia Day Celebration, Davis, WV


Saturday 1:30 p.m.

One of the closer events to Pittsburgh and Washington D.C., Blackwater Falls is WV's best known landmark in a state famous for its scenery. The Washington Post described the Falls as “so perfectly set in its narrow canyon and so beautiful as to be almost surreal.” Rhododendron blossoms and a circle road.

Blackwater Falls State Park (304) 259-5216

♣ June 23 Canaan Valley State Park, Davis, WV


Sunday 1:30 p.m.

In the highest-elevation valley east of the Mississippi, this open road with sweeping curves is an ideal contrast to the boulders and rhododendron thickets at nearby Blackwater Falls. Enjoy a two-day two-event road bowling weekend at Blackwater and Canaan.

Contact David Vance, 1 (800) 622-4121, Ext 2788

♣ June 29, 30 West Virginia State Championship Singles Finals, lcation TBD. 


The top bowlers, men and women, from each of the two qualifiers, Pipestem Resort April 21 and 22, and Strawberry Festival May 19 and 20, meet at Location TBD.  . Winners advance to the North American Region Finals, in New York State, August 2,3,4, 2019.

For information David Powell (202) 387-1680, Cell: (202) 905-1959

Saturday, June 29

Semifinals - Novice 1, Novice 2, Novice 3, Novice 4

Sunday, June 30

Finals - Novice 1, Novice 2, Novice 3, Novice 4

♣ July  20 Cacapon State Park, Berkeley Springs, WV

Saturday 11:00 a.m

"Gravity is your friend" on this mostly downhill roll through the woods with rocky cliffs alongside. This shaded 1.2 mile course will be cool in the hot summer time and great for beginners. Afterward, lake swim, tennis, golf, hiking trails, horseback rides.

Lodge reservations (304) 258-1022.

Road Master Mary Wolfe (304) 258-4958 or mwolfe4@frontier.comRoad Master Mary Wolfe (304) 258-4958 or mwolfe4@frontier.com

♣ August 24 Barbour County Fair, historic Philippi, WV


Saturday 1:30 p.m.

First land battle of the Civil War, largest covered bridge in WV, Point Pleasant Road starts high on the ridge-top, great views, then a long downhill curve to the fairgrounds. 

♣ August 25 Doddridge County Fair, West Union, WV 

Doddridge County Park - www.doddridgecountyfair.com

Sunday 1:30 p.m.

Bowl at the Doddridge County Park, family fun for young and old.

Road Master Eric Bee (304) 299-2104

♣ September 8 Pack Horse Ford Cannonball Run, Shepherdstown, WV


Sunday 1:30 p.m.

Come join the fun of this annual competition for a weekend rich in history and plenty of entertainment all situated amidst the enchanting natural surroundings of Shepherdstown, WV. Throw cannonballs on historic Trough Road, where in 1862 Confederate and Union troops fought, as the Confederate army retreated from Antietam.

To be a part of history contact Road Master Mary Wolfe at (304) 258-4958, e-mail mwolfe4@frontier.com

Irish Road Bowling

September 21 Wheeling Hibernians Ohio Valley Championship, Wheeling, WV


Saturday 1:00 p.m.

The Wheeling Hibernians IRB Tournament benefits local charities and is the northern-most event on the WVIRBA Tour circuit. Centrally located in the Ohio River Valley, this tournament will be an easy drive from Pittsburgh or Columbus, Boggs Hill Road.

Craig O'Leary (304) 242-6196, oleary@redp.org

In September 2018, 851 bowlers made this WVIRBA event the largest Irish road bowling team tournament in the world. Entry fee includes a big barbeque afterwards, live music. Lets go for 1000!

♣ September 28 Mountain State Forest Festival, Elkins,WV


Saturday 1:30 p.m

One of West Virginia’s oldest and biggest festivals. Beautiful views from scenic Georgetown Road.

For more than 15 years the WVIRBA has had a tradition that WVIRBA Irish road bowling events are free and open to the public, except for the Wheeling Hibernians event benefitting charities all over Wheeling. We do this so any family can bring children and not incur big costs to play a healthy game outdoors with their children on a WV country road. In 2017, the Forest Festival imposed a $10.00 fee per team on the match, and this should be considered in planning to play there. The Irish Spring Festival, where our no-fee tradition started,  the Strawberry Festival, the Preston County Buckwheat Festival, the Barbour County Fair, the Doddridge County Fair, as well as 10 state parks or state forests, all charge no fee to play, with only a rental deposit on the bowl.         

John Morgan (304) 704-5094, jmorgan@forestfestival.com

♣ September 29, Preston County Buckwheat Festival, Kingwood, WV


Sunday 1:00 p.m.

The WVIRB Association “Northern Wing” sponsors a terrific tournament with the best prize anywhere, a Buckwheat Pancake Breakfast for the winners. Loft a corner on Pleasantdale and Greens Run Road, one of the best WVIRBA road courses in WV.

Road Master Mark Wilt Cell: (304) 698-6817

October 5 Holly River State Park Fall Challenge (& Pig Roast), Hacker Valley, WV


Saturday 1:30 p.m.

In a deep valley, one of the tour’s most beautiful roads, October colors, a trout stream, rhododendron thickets, a bridge to loft over, a massive stone pavilion for the medieval feast afterward.

For info, Holly River State Park  (304) 493-6353, hollyriversp@wv.gov

♣ October 26 Chief Logan State Park, Logan, WV


Saturday 11:30 a.m.

The WVIRBA adds an ancient sport, Irish Road Bowling, to the rich sports tradition of Logan, West Virginia's City of Champions. At 4,000-acre Chief Logan State Park with its outdoor amphitheater and wildlife center, you can loft a bowl beneath the statue of Logan, famous Chief of the Cuyoga -Mingos, or in the footsteps of Aracoma, legendary Princess of the Shawnees. Lodging at Chief Logan Lodge 304 855 6100. For info Terry Mullins 304 855 8591, tmullins@chiefloganreccenter.org, or Chief Logan State Park 304 792 7125.

♣ November 2 Tygart Lake State Park, Grafton, WV


Saturday 1:30 p.m.

At Tygart Lake State Park, we discovered a beautiful road course through the woods along 10-mile long, 1750-acre Tygart Lake. Close to the start line, in Tygart Lodge, dine overlooking the lake.

For lodge reservations, (304) 265-6144

Road bowling contact: Jacob Jackson

*In 2019 three new "unofficial" community events are starting, which if all goes well, can join the "official" WVIRBA tour in 2020.


March 3 Celtic Calling Festival, Charleston, WV * NEW - community event 


Sunday 2:00 p.m.

Road bowling comes to the Capital City with a course starting at the University of Charleston Football Stadium, Laidley Field, and running along Piedmont Road to Valley Gardens.

Teams of 3 or 4 bowlers, registration 1:30 p.m., event starts at 2:00 p.m.   

Sunday 2:00 p.m.

Chris Higgins 304 881 7037

July 13 Cass Scenic Railroad State Park, Cass, WV * NEW - community event - new road at Cass 

Saturday 1:30 p.m.

Set in Pocahontas County, source of seven rivers in the highest mountains in West Virginia, Cass Scenic Railroad operates a ride-on steam-powered logging train that climbs even higher above the town of Cass. Cass Scenic Railroad State Park is a great mid-summer destination in cool mountains. We have a new improved road at Cass for 2019, and have added the nearby Greenbank Observatory at Greenbank, as the Sunday bowling destination. Here is a two-day two-event bowling weekend at Cass Scenic Railroad State Park, and Greenbank Observatory at Greenbank.

Contact informationfor Cass: Marshall Markley 304-456-4300 ext. 102

July 14 Greenbank Observatory, Greenbank, WV *New  - community event


Sunday 1:30 p.m.

The Greenbank Observatory has hosted Irish Road Bowling for its staff for many years. Now their bowling road will be open to the public. Bowl under giant radio telescopes, and as a special treat, bowl in the peace and quiet of high mountin air since no electronic devices of any kind are permitted on this road. Good old disposble cameras are sold in the gift shop.  A two-day. two- event weekend at Cass and Greenbank.  

For the Greenbank Observatory:  Amanda White 304 456 2164.