Tell me about Clarksburg, WV!

I might have an interesting job opportunity in Clarksburg, but have no idea what to expect. What’s the feel of the town? What is there to do? Is it safe? Is there any form of nightlife? Are there affordable apartments?

I know the FBI has a large office there. Does that bring in any professional types? Any information would be greatly appreciated.

Any dopers living there?

Thanks in advance!


I live about twenty miles north of Clarksburg. It’s one of West Virginia’s larger “metropolitan areas”, but in a lot of ways, it’s more like a town than a city, I find.

Safety : West Virginia as a whole has a very low crime rate, people who leave their doors unlocked, et cetera. Most of the state compares favorably to Mayberry. I’m not aware of any specific crime figures for Clarksburg, but I’ve never heard anything to indicate that they’re markedly higher than anywhere else.

There’s the FBI Center, and I believe NASA has an IV&V facility down that way. These are big employers in the area. Clarksburg is at the south end of WV’s “High Tech Corridor” which basically is Clarksburg/Bridgeport, Fairmont, and Morgantown, where tech jobs have bloomed due to tax incentives.

Real estate and apartment prices vary - I can’t speak to Clarksburg’s specific market, but I am lead to believe that it’s cheaper than Morgantown’s (which I consider expensive) and more expensive than Fairmont’s (Which I consider about par for the state.) It’s worth mentioning that WV has a very low cost of living, though.

And I’m not much of a nightlife guy, so I can’t really help at all there - I do know that Morgantown and Fairmont have a lot of bars and Morgantown as a lot of clubs, if that’s your bag.

I mention all three places because they’re all close enough for easy driving. Clarksburg is exits 117-121 on Interstate 79, Fairmont is 132-139, and Morgantown is 148-155. Morgantown is West Virginia University, our largest school in the state, and it’s one of the country’s top party schools. A lot of people live in Fairmont and commute to Clarksburg or Morgantown, because the real estate is about 20% cheaper.

Happy to answer any other questions I can.

Back in the early 1990s, I lived about 30 miles west of there. I haven’t been back for almost 15 years. When I lived there, the crime rate was very low and real estate was remarkably cheap. When I moved back to New England, the economy in Clarksburg was just starting to pick up after several bad years. I wouldn’t know about the nightlife, but I wouldn’t expect too much. I seem to remember driving past a “Gentlemen’s club” of the sort that no gentleman would ever be seen inside.

You don’t say where you’re moving from. The thing that bothered me most was the warm and very humid summers. It’s not too bad by WV or national standards, but I came from up north and wasn’t prepared for it. I never did get used to it. In July the average high is 85 and the low is 62. Similar to New York City or Philadelphia. Dense fog is common in the valleys on summer mornings. Spring and Fall are pleasant. I probably shouldn’t talk about winter because the winters I experienced there apparently were very much colder and snowier than normal. Just keep in mind that winters can be bad, but usually aren’t.

The people are super friendly, excepting some transplants like me. People tend to take their religion more seriously than other places I’ve lived.

Be sure to taste the tapwater before you rent an apartment or house. There are a lot of natural gas wells in the area, and supposedly they are the cause of the funky groundwater you find in some areas. I don’t think I ever tasted the city water in Clarksburg, so I don’t know if it applies.

Fifteen years ago, the nearest airport with regularly scheduled flights was Morgantown (a 40 minute drive), but they were rather expensive. Flights out of Pittsburgh were cheaper but the airport is an hour and 45 minutes away.

I like for general information about towns and cities. Here is Clarksburg’s page: You’ll find information about housing, economy, crime, climate, etc.

Thanks for the info so far. I lived most of my life in Michigan, but the past couple of years have been in Knoxville.

I guess by nightlife, I mean bars…anything worthwhile in the area? I might take a drive up there, but for the most part, this is going to be a cold move.

Thanks again!

It is the birthplace of noted SDMB poster spoke-. Be sure to look for the marker.

Couldn’t tell you much more about the place, though, as I was just passing through.

So, is that like the main attraction in town?

I … assume Clarksburg has bars. Fairmont has a few. Morgantown has a lot. This is not an area where I know a lot, since I don’t really drink. :wink:

Well, first of all, Clarksburg has the nearby town of Bridgeport, WV, so you’ll want to look there as well (as sort of twin cities).

There generally is a large community of professional types in North Central WV, with West Virginia University, and the Technology Park in Fairmont, which includes the NASA IV&V (software engineering) institute, and of course Clarksburg itself has the NCIC (National Crime Information Center).

As far as entertainment, well, most of it will be in Morgantown (where I live), but I’m not sure what people do in Clarksburg for fun. The Wonder Bar is supposed to be a really good steakhouse, but I haven’t heard of too many other places. If you’re a skier or outdoors person, you’re about 60 miles from Davis, WV and the Canaan Valley, (said round these parts as ka-nane, incidentally), which has skiing as good as anywhere in the country, though there’s outdoor actitivies just about anywhere you go.

Ohh, before I forget, if you’re Italian, there’s a HUGE Italian-American community in Clarksburg…not sure of other ethnicities in the area.

I’m originally from Fairmont, myself. Since there’s nothing worthwhile to do in Fairmont, I spent the first 20 years of my life shuttling between Clarksburg/Bridgeport and Morgantown for shopping and dining.

North Central WV as a whole is a safe and quiet place. People there are socially conservative, but have historically voted Democratic in local and national elections for mostly economic reasons. (The typical WV’n has always been a blue-collar, unionized worker like a coal miner). But that social conservatism doesn’t necessarily mean that folks are intolerant. I can’t say you’ll never run into the occasional redneck, but I can say that it’s nothing like I’ve seen in various places around the deep South. For the most part, the things that are associated with sterotypical West Virginia (hillbillies and other forms of extreme backwardness) aren’t found so much in the northern part of the state…southern WV, on the other hand, can be a different story.

If you like Italian food, you’re in luck. As beergeek279 said, there is a big Italian community around Clarksburg. And that means there’s no shortage of good family-owned restaurants. And of course the local delicacy—the pepperoni roll—is ubiquitous. (The pepperoni roll was actually invented about 1/4 mile from my childhood home in Fairmont).

Man…now I really want a 'roni roll. :frowning: