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New bed and breakfast opens in Preston County

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For The State Journal

Tathams has grown again.

The longtime Preston County garden center has opened a bed and breakfast called The Homestead Inn across the street from its retail location in Reedsville, 12 miles from Morgantown.

“In all it will be four rooms right now,” said manager Trellis Smith. “We have two of them ready and we’re actually receiving guests now. The other two will be ready at the end of the summer.”

Two units have private bathrooms and kitchenettes, Smith said. The two rooms upstairs that will open in late summer share a bath and kitchenette and can be rented individually or as a two-bedroom suite.

“That falls more into the traditional bed-and-breakfast concept where there’s shared spaces,” he said.

Rates start at $65 nightly. Weekly and monthly rates are available for longer-term stays.

The Homestead Inn is close to area attractions such as West Virginia University’s Coliseum and Milan Puskar Stadium, Arthurdale Heritage, river rafting, the rail-trail and Kingwood, home of the annual Preston County Buckwheat Festival, which begins the last Thursday of September.

“The main reason we started the inn is we saw there’s a need for additional accommodations for people visiting the area and also professionals who need a space they can live or work from to have the comforts of a small apartment,” Smith said. “There are some places available in the area but just not enough to meet the demand. That’s why we moved to open up the guest house.”

The Homestead Inn will be open year-round.

“As we go into the season we’ll put together special weekend packages when things are happening in town such as the New Deal Festival in Arthurdale or the Buckwheat Festival,” Smith said. “We may schedule weekend stays with dinner included for people who want to use the guest house as more of a weekend escape or special events for people who really like plants.”

The guest house sits on W.Va. 92 in front of the Tathams greenhouses. Plants are where Tathams started.

Lucas Tatham, son of the founders, now owns the business that originally had retail locations in Kingwood and Sabraton.

“They consolidated both locations and opened in Reedsville about eight years ago,” Smith said, explaining the location near the busy intersection of W.Va. 7 and 92 is a middle ground between the two former locations. “We thought it would be convenient for our customers to come from either direction, which it has been.”

Tathams Garden Center and The Homestead Inn are located in houses built in the early 1900s.

“Every year we try to do our part in offering a service to the community and also help preserve the older buildings because we feel like that helps preserve a community,” Smith said.

Within the last five years, the Division of Highways, with input from Friends of Decker’s Creek and Northern W.Va. Brownfields Assistance Center, removed some dilapidated buildings and made-over the intersection by adding turning lanes.

“We’re supportive of any developments that will help enrich the Valley District, whether it’s cleaning up a brownfield or rehabbing an old structure and bringing it back into use,” Smith said.

The need for overnight accommodations for visitors was mentioned in those revitalization talks. Now the Homestead Inn fills that void.

Tathams has been evolving throughout the years.

“The focus of the business now is our retail greenhouses,” Smith said. “We sell a select nursery stock, but we specialize in blooming hanging baskets, patio containers, annual flowers, perennials, ornamental trees and shrubs.”

Smith also is the chef at the Trellis Café in the garden center. The café sells coffee and pastries through the week and serves brunch on the weekends. It also carries some food products and gifts.

“We do have a nice selection of books ranging from gardening to fiction novels by local authors,” Smith said. “We have specialty foods. We carry Stonewall Kitchen (gourmet products such as gluten-free mixes and jams and mustards) and Belvoir, a new drink we started carrying this spring. During the season we will carry goat cheese and local farm fresh eggs.

“For the home, we have a large selection of Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day, an organic line of cleaning products.”

A spring open house took place May 3 to feature a preview of the inn, café tastings, a vintage trunk show of jewelry and home decor, a local art show, an herb container workshop and plenty of plants already in bloom.