The Middle Peninsula is located between the York and Rappahannock rivers and is comprised of 6 counties: Essex, Gloucester, King & Queen, King William, Mathews and Middlesex.
The peninsula draws its lifeblood from the rich bounties of the meadows, forests and waterways.
The harvesting of finfish and shellfish, the construction and maintenance of both pleasure and work boats, and the use of the waterways for transportation continue to be important facets of the community.
The focus on the water has also expanded into the areas of research and development. The peninsula is already home to numerous marine product manufacturers, a major ocean mining venture and the renowned Virginia Institute of Marine Science.
Our region's vast forests of hardwoods and softwoods supply the nation with building materials. Sawmills are located through the 6 county areas, producing construction lumber, treated wood products and veneers.
West Point is a regional center for both manufacturing and retail trade activity. The proximity to rivers, port facilities, railroad lines and I-64 connectors provide transportation advantages and assure continuing growth in the future.
There are approximately 126 farms in King William County with a total of 59,326 acres devoted to farming. Principle crops and livestock include corn for grain and seed, wheat and beef cattle.
Aviation services are provided by the Middle Peninsula Regional Airport. Richmond International Airport offers daily flights via 14 airlines. Additional commercial flights are available at Williamsburg/Newport News International Airport and Norfolk International.
The seven public school systems in the Middle Peninsula region serve students in grades K-12. In addition to public schools, approximately sixteen private schools serve grades K-12 and special education needs in the Middle Peninsula area.
Institutions of higher education include a local community college, the Virginia Institute of Marine Science and several within commuting distance including the College of William and Mary, Virginia Commonwealth University, the University of Richmond, Christopher Newport University and Hampton University.
The School of Marine Science/Virginia Institute of Marine Science (SMS/VIMS), has a tripartite mission of research, education and advisory service in marine science. This mandate established an institution that is uniquely prepared to educate the highly qualified researchers, resource managers, and educators needed for the future.
Rappahannock Community College has a campus in Glenns, providing associate degrees, certificates and career studies certificates. It also offers Teletechnet in association with Old Dominion University, to offer 4 year and higher degrees.
Rescue squads provide emergency service to the Riverside-Walter Reed Hospital in Gloucester, Williamsburg Community Hospital and the many medical facilities in the Richmond and Hampton Roads area, including Virginia Commonwealth University's Medical College of Virginia.
The Virginia Oyster Heritage Program will undertake large-scale oyster restoration throughout Virginia's coastal zone, including the seaside. The challenge is to return the oyster to a position of major importance in the area - for both environmental and commercial benefits.
The Chesapeake Bay, rivers, ponds, creeks and streams offer unlimited opportunities for swimming, sailing, canoeing, fishing, skiing, boating and other water related activities on the Middle Peninsula. The miles of unspoiled shoreline are among the finest in Virginia. Numerous marinas, boat ramps, and public landings provide convenient water access to residents and visitors.
Public facilities include county or town operated parks, pools and beaches. More than 150 private marinas operate on the Middle Peninsula. The Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) has identified 32 conservation sites, which receive protection through state, federal, or The Nature Conservancy ownership and management, on the Middle Peninsula.
The Rappahannock River is known for its bountiful supply of seafood. Three rivers, the Pamunkey, the Piankatank and the Mattaponi, on the Middle Peninsula have been identified as Virginia Scenic Rivers.
Zoar State Forest in King William County offers passive recreation. The Dragon Run Swamp is great for canoeing and observing variety of wildlife.
The York River features a 28-foot channel at West Point. Port facilities are available at West Point, the Port of Hampton Roads and the Port of Richmond.
Community activities include art shows, community concerts, and theater productions. Annual festivals include the Gloucester Daffodil Festival (the first weekend in April), the West Point Crab Carnival (the first weekend in October), Mathews Market Days (the first full weekend in September), and the Urbanna Oyster Festival (the weekend of the first Saturday in November).