WHEELING, W.Va (WTRF) – Wheeling Park Commission cut the ribbon to celebrate the grand re-opening of White Palace on Wednesday.

White Palace is an iconic place within the community, and it has been for generations. It’s been home to banquets, dances, wedding receptions and so many other events that have created lifelong memories for nearly a century.

After so many years, the historic building needed some major updates to bring it into the 21st century.  

For the past five months, $3.2 million worth of renovations went into the White Palace to create a space more in line with the times.  

Wheeling Park Commission presented the idea of updating the building to Wheeling City Council and requested the American Rescue Plan Act money granted to the city by the federal government.  

That money along with other contributions led to the new and improved structure.  

“From a city council perspective, it made a lot of sense. This building and this park has been considered the playground of the Ohio Valley for a minute, and many decades. And so, it was an opportunity for us really to give back to the community, make an investment in something that’s so cherished and really appreciated by the members of the community, old and young. So it’s a great partnership.” 

Glenn Elliot | Mayor of Wheeling

The White Palace now houses a new café, café deck and a new grand staircase that leads to a significantly improved ballroom area.  

“White Palace is the largest ballroom space in the community, and it’s actually not fully utilized because we don’t have groups that large typically. So, we broke it down a little bit and we have kind of a new veranda space, which is a light and bright, airy space where you can do receptions, you can do a wedding, that sort of thing. And then there’s a glass wall that takes you into the remaining ballroom, which has been completely renovated. We have new sound systems; we have a new stage and all the wallpaper and everything’s and it’s a beautiful space up there.” 

Bob Peckenpaugh | Wheeling Park Commission President & CEO

As mentioned before, the new café is called Café 1925, in honor of the year Wheeling Park opened. After seeing the new space, the reaction has been one of both shock and amazement.  

“It’s something that it’s just hard to describe. You have to come see it to believe it. And don’t forget the café. The Café 1925 is a new addition where we’re proudly serving Starbucks coffee and treats.” 

Herb Faulkenberry | VP Sales and Marketing, Oglebay

“I think once people see this beautiful new space, they’ll be thinking about this as a new place for events, something that maybe they didn’t consider before. But with these renovations, I think a lot of people will A) be attracted to come and see them and B), potentially hold events here in the future.” 

Laurie Conway | Director of Marketing and Communications at the Wheeling Area Chamber of Commerce

And those events will turn into memories that people treasure for years to come.  

In addition to the White Palace renovations, a new multi-surface floor has been put in at the J.B. Chamber Memorial Rink which will allow rolling skating, roller hockey and pickleball. The renovations made in the Rink were made possible by a large donation from the Wheeling Armature Hockey Association.