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BRCC, wineries team up for festival

The first Blue Ridge Wine and Artisan Cider Festival will be held this weekend as area wineries team up with Blue Ridge Community College to celebrate local wine and hard cider and raise money for scholarships. The Saturday afternoon festival also features music and food.



The event is designed to promote the local wine industry while raising money for programs that train students for jobs in the region's burgeoning wine and beer industry.
The indoor-outdoor event will take place at BRCC's Blue Ridge Conference Hall and outdoors facing the lake.
"Really what we're trying to do is reach out to all of the wineries in our area, primarily focusing on Henderson County just to be able to promote the wineries and viticulture," said BRCC President Molly Parkhill.
The community college is seeing increased interest in its fermentation and distillation classes and also grape-growing courses, which it has developed in cooperation with N.C. State University. The college may also look at adding wine production classes.
"Right now it's all been focusing on the brewing," Parkhill said. "We're hoping in the spring to do a beerfest. We're really hoping to make this (wine festival) an annual event to help fund scholarships... We're hoping for a good turnout. We're really trying to make it a premier wine festival."

Blue Ridge Wine

and Artisan Cider Festival


Noon-6 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 25.

Blue Ridge Conference Hall and by the lake, BRCC.

Wineries and cideries: Burntshirt Vineyards, Lakes James Cellars Winery, Naked Apple Hard Cider, Windy Ridge Farms/Twisted Apple (serving regular cider), Crate Wines, Laurel Gray Vineyards, Saint Paul Mountain Vineyards, Waldensian Wine, Mountain Brook Vineyards, Russian Chapel Hills Winery

Food vendors: Season's Restaurant, Great Food for Any Mood, Cecilia's Kitchen

Fields of Gold Gelato.

Entertainment: noon-1 p.m. Hunnilicious; 1-2 p.m. Daniel Herbert; 2-3 p.m. Ellen Trnka and Carrie Morrison; 3-4 p.m. Carver & Carmody; 4-6 p.m.: Appalachian Fire.

Lawn chairs or blankets welcome; free parking.

No pets, coolers or outside food or drink.

Tickets: $25 in advance, $30 at the door. Designated driver and under 21: $10. Purchase online at or by check or cash only at the BRCC Cashier Office in the Sink Building.

Proceeds benefit Brewing, Distillation and Fermentation and Horticulture Technology programs and student scholarships.
The wine and cider tastings and the food are all geared toward the promotion of Henderson County grapes, apples and food.
A tasting ticket includes a commemorative tasting glass and tastings from participating wineries and cideries.