RACINE, BOONE COUNTY, WV (WOWK) — It’s a popular Labor Day event every year, and today was no exception.

The annual United Mine Workers of America, UMWA, picnic and rally at Slack Park in Racine, also brings out dozens of labor leaders, union members, and politicians. The crowd was treated to speeches, music and good food.

Many expressed hope that with thousands of new jobs coming to West Virginia in the coming years, organized labor will fill many of those positions.

“In the history of the state, labor has played such an important part. West Virginia was really ground zero for the fight for the better wages, for health care, for treating the people who built this country, treating the men and women with the respect they deserve,” said Del. Mike Pushkin (D) Kanawha, who also heads up the local chapter of the American Federation of Musicians.

Many expressed hope that coal mining will remain on the upswing here in the Mountain State, especially with exports to U.S. allies overseas.