The third Saturday of October marks that special time of year when an estimated 100,000 people watch thrill seekers jump off of a bridge. This is not your everyday bridge, they are jumping of the fourth longest single span arch bridge in the world. Sitting 876 feet above the new river it is the third highest vehicular bridge in the United States. I am speaking of West Virginia’s favorite bridge, The New River Gorge Bridge. So famous the bridge has its own money, and its own Bridge Day Celebration.
The History Of Bridge Day
The New River Gorge Bridge was dedicated and officially opened on Oct. 22, 1977. The first New River Gorge Bridge Day was held on November 8, 1980. There were two parachutists that jumped from a plane onto the bridge. There were five parachutists that jumped from the bridge into the gorge. 5,500 certificates were given out to people taking the 3,000-foot walk across the bridge. In 1981 28 rappellers and 10 parachutists participated in Bridge Day. In 1984 three hundred BASE Jumpers jumped from the bridge.
Bridge Day, one of the largest extreme sports event in the world, is held annually on the third Saturday in October in Fayette County, West Virginia. Hundreds of BASE jumpers and repellers are expected to attend the event. Bridge Day is the only day a year to allow predestine traffic on the bridge. Watching people jump off a perfectly good bridge is not the only entertainment. There are many different food and craft vendors set up. You can also purchase a bus pass that will transport you to river level and back up. Personally watching the landings is one of my favorite activities.
This weekend there will be many other activities planned such as Taste of Bridge Day and Bridge Jam. For more info on Bridge Day or related events check out The Official Site.
And if you heading to the Gorge for Bridge day you may want to show up in my unofficial Bridge Day attire.