Wine lovers will gather this weekend in downtown Yadkinville to celebrate the 13th annual Yadkin Valley Grape Festival. The event, hosted by the Yadkin County Chamber of Commerce, was created to help promote the ever-growing wine industry in the area.
“We are excited for the upcoming 13th annual Yadkin Valley Grape Festival,” said Jamie Johnston of the Yadkin County Chamber of Commerce. “We have visitors that are coming from all over to attend this year’s festival to taste the wonderful wines of the Yadkin Valley. It’s going to be a great day in the Yadkin Valley!
“We wanted visitors to experience what great wines we have in this area,” Johnston said. As a number of area wine festivals take place in the spring, Johnston said they chose to do a fall festival to offer something special for area visitors to come back to later in the year.
The celebration will begin at 11 a.m. with events continuing on through the evening. The festival will feature more than 20 area wineries as well as local food and craft vendors. The festivities will be in downtown Yadkinville until 5 p.m. with a Wine Wind Down event from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Yadkin Cultural Arts Center.
The festival will include live music beginning with Larry Wishon performing at 11:15, Brandon Snow at 1 p.m. and Big Daddy Mojo from 3 to 5 p.m.
Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the gate. A military ticket is $20 at the gate with ID. Group tickets are available as well.
“We appreciate all the support we have received over the years from the Yadkin Valley wineries that have participated in our festival to our sponsors and volunteers,” Johnston said.
Joyce Allman of Badin and her boyfriend, John Cheek, who lives on Badin Lake, were at the festival for the very first time last year.
“We read about it online,” Allman said, “and we liked the setup. We thought it was well organized.”
Cheek said he had heard a lot of good things about the Yadkinville festival.
As of last fall, Allman and Cheek had visited 45 North Carolina wineries as well as wineries in Kentucky, Indiana, Ohio, Virginia and South Carolina.
“We love travel and we always find a winery to visit,” she said. “A lot of times we run into people that we know or who knows somebody that we know.”
Speaking of the wines they sampled at the 2015 festival, Allman said, “They’re all good. He likes drier wines, and I like semi-sweet and sweet, and the blends.”
Julie and David Brittain of Newton were also among the visitors at last year’s festival. They said they have been regulars at the Yadkin Valley Grape Festival for seven or eight years. Their favorite area winery is Shadow Springs.
Couples Suzette and David Diddulph and Alice and Dana Fogle have been driving from Florida to the Yadkin Valley wine festivals for eight or nine years as well.
“We love North Carolina rural wineries,” Alice Fogle said.
For more information on the Yadkin Valley Grape Festival, visit www.yvgf.com or call 336-679-2200.
Kitsey Burns Harrison may be reached at 336-679-2341 or on Twitter and Instagram @RippleReporterK.