CHRISTY AND TIFFANY,
(AUGUST 9, 2010) When I was about 8 or 9 years old, my mom, dad and sister went to Lake Shawnee, near Princeton, W.Va. (in a small community called Spanishburg). It was a winding old road (highway 19 and 21) and took about 45 minutes to an hour to get about 40 miles from Beckley (it always seemed longer).
The park, as I recall, had some shelters for picnicking, a large lake for swimming, and a small amusement park. I always enjoyed our family outings there. Mom would make fried chicken and potato salad and other sides and take desserts (a pie or a cake). There was a small snack shack there for drinks. I remember, especially, riding the large swings that went around in circles allowing the riders to get higher and higher as the swings went around. There was also a merry-go-round.
It was at this park that I got attacked by a black bear. It was a ferocious attack that I escaped with the brute force of my small strong muscles overcoming the bear that had already drawn blood. OK....maybe it wasn't "ferocious" and maybe it didn't have "brute force" and maybe I didn't use my "small strong muscles" to overcome the bear.
The bear was a cub which was part of the lake wildlife "zoo," and one of the park workers had taken the small bear (a little larger than Sadie) out and let the children get near it.
I was wearing shorts, and for some reason the bear started to climb my leg. It was at that time I realized how sharp the claws of a bear (even a small bear) are. I looked down, and there was blood coming down my leg in 4 straight lines from the incisions the bear had made with four claws. The park management took me to the First Aid station, put iodine on the cut, bandaged my leg, and we enjoyed the rest of our outing at Lake Shawnee.
It has been a long time since I have thought about Lake Shawnee. When I Googled it, I learned some interesting things about its history. It is now considered one of the "scariest places in America." If you want to read the history about Indians, settlers and the park, click here. It's an interesting story.