Here are some festivals and other educational opportunities just around the corner. One of the best ways to begin learning about Illinois wines is to simply jump in with both feet at one of the great festivals that take place around the state. There are usually a large number of wineries, grape varieties, and wine styles represented at these events.
These are just the ones on my radar -if you are an industry professional, and would like your event posted, don’t hesitate to make contact.
May 21-22 Art of Illinois Wine Festival
The Illinois Grape Growers and Vintners Association, Downtown Springfield Inc. and the Old Capitol Foundation are teaming up to offer the fourth annual Art of Illinois Wine Festival from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, May 21 and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, May 22.
May 28 – Manito Wine, Art, Balloon, and Jazz Festival, Manito
The name sums it up pretty well. Local artists, musicians, and hot air balloon enthusiasts will be showcasing their skills. Several wineries will be also be on hand, along with great food and company. A great event in a small town in central IL.
June 4, 5 – 2 Rivers Wine Festival, Ottawa
Save the date now for this 2 day event on June 4 and 5, which takes place in historic downtown Ottawa – where the 2 Rivers join – the Illinois River and the Fox River. It’s where nearly 30 vintners from across Illinois, a host of jazz musicians, scheduled cooking and wine demonstrations, fine antiques, botanicals, crafts and more – all will be showcased to kick off the summer season.
June 18 – Winemaking Tips and Techniques Seminar, Carbondale Domenic_Workshop_June_2011-2
Domenic Carisetti, the organizer and speaker of this event, is one of the top wine makers and industry consultants in the Northeast.
June 27-29 – Illinois State Fair Wine Competition, Springfield IL
This affordable, local competition accepts entries from both commercial and amateur winemakers. Sponsored by the Illinois Grape Growers and Vintners Association, IL Dept of Ag, and Lincoln Land Community College. Here are the 2010 winners:
July 9 – Winery Sustainability and Design Workshop, Springfield IL
This workshop, led by industry leader Dr. Bruce Zoecklein of Virginia Tech, will address a variety of topics relevant to both those in the planning stage as well as established wineries looking to upgrade or expand their facility. If you’re thinking abut getting a winery up and running in the future, this is THE event for you. Topics include winery design, design pitfalls, sustainable winery architecture, sustainable practices and monitoring, winery and tasting room design and marketing, and winery business and licensing issues. To register or for more information, contact Megan Pressnall at firstname.lastname@example.org or (217) 726-8518.