2019 Oil and Gas Festival
The 51st annual West Virginia Oil and Gas Festival was held on September 12 through the 14 with various activities slated for attendees.
Thursday – Senior Citizen’s Day – saw the State Bluegrass Express band perform, and a gospel concert was also held.
On Friday evening, The Honky Tonk Sweethearts – a well-known classic country band – took the stage beginning at 6 p.m., followed by The Yankee Gray Band at 8 p.m. The Yankee Gray Band is also known for playing classic country as well as today’s country hits.
Saturday morning, the Oil and Gas Man of the Year Luncheon was held at the Sistersville First Presbyterian Church in honor of Rusty Hutson, Jr, the owner of Diversified Gas and Oil Cooperation. The Luncheon is sponsored by the Independent Oil and Gas Association of West Virginia, and was catered by Quinet’s Court Restaurant.
Several dignitaries and elected officials attended the lunch, including Roger Romine, Donna Boley, Charles Clements, and David Kelly. Also attending was the 2019 Oil and Gas Festival Queen, Ashton Rexroad.
Ben Sulliven, a co-worker of Hutson, introduced him as a fourth-generation oil and gas man.“The company was started by Rusty in 2001,” Sulliven reported. He went on to say that when the company began in 2001, it only ran roughly 50 wells. Today, the company boasts 60,000 wells throughout Appalachia and employs roughly 1,000 people.
“Rusty is known in the company as a nice man – as a driven man. He has a vision for the company. He has a vision for this industry in this state…He is someone I enjoy working with,” Sulliven expressed.
Following this introduction by Sulliven, Hutson took the stage saying that it is important for people to support the politicians that support the oil and gas industry. “This industry is under attack. There are people out there who would love to see this industry fall by the wayside…I don’t know how they think we are going to turn the lights on,” Hutson said. “I love the industry and I love what we do,”
Hutson was presented with a plaque to honor him being named the 2019 Oil and Gas Man of the Year.
Later Saturday was the Grand Oil and Gas Trophy Parade, and this event was greatly attended. Those eagerly anticipating the event were able to see participation from various school bands, fair and festival queens, government officials, sports teams, and organizations and businesses.
Bands marching in the parade included Tyler Consolidated High School, Paden City High School, Magnolia High School, Valley High School, St. Marys High School, Williamstown High School, and George Washington High School. Also appearing in the parade were Town and Country Days royalty and Tyler County Fair royalty.
Following the parade was the Oil and Gas Band-A-Rama, which the aforementioned bands as well as others participated in; the festival was also in full swing at the park where children’s games were held in addition to the chance to hear live music from various groups.
In addition to receiving candy during the parade and the games in the park, children were kept entertained by Danny Westfall “the Bubble Man” with balloon animals and creations.
This year’s festival was well received and well attended, and guests can’t wait to celebrate the 52nd annual West Virginia Oil and Gas Festival.