Unlimited wine, unlimited fun
Published: Wednesday, September 19, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, September 19, 2012 10:09
The Niagara Wine Festival is back for its 61st year.From Sept. 21-30, downtown St. Catharines will be showcasing Ontario’s award-winning wineries at Montebello Park.
Not only is there unlimited wine, but extensive programming including the CIBC Grande Parade being held on Sept. 29 at 11:00 a.m.
“The CIBC Grande Parade is always a draw, and this year the parade will include some new marching bands, floats and the New Stand and Show performances,” said Kimberly Hundertmark, Executive Director of the Niagara Wine Festival.
“We asked local dance troops to submit a two minute video for the opportunity to perform during the parade. So, along the parade route there will be a bleacher area where the four troops will stop and perform for the audience.”
There will be educational sessions that eager festival-goers can attend including Brock University’s Cool Climate Oenology and Viticulture Institute’s (CCOVI)seminar programs and World-class chefs.
“In Montebello Park we have expanded the successful CCOVI wine seminar program to include chefs from the Canadian Wine and Food Institute, and will be using the Mobile Culinary Theatre,” Hundertmark said.
“Each day we will host three seminars, each of them showcasing a different winemaker and either a chef or a member of Dairy Farmers of Canada. Dr. Linda Bramble and the team of CCOVI faculty and students will assist with the seminars.”
Hundertmark added that the trip along the wine route in the vineyards will be in full tilt as wineries harvest this year’s vintage wine.
“It is always the best time to visit wine country with the Discovery Pass, and six unique wine experiences at over 30 wineries,” she said.
There have been a few changes this year. Hundertmark said that the layout of the park has been modified to accommodate the seminar series and ticketing for the All Access Lounge (VIP area) has been made more affordable.
“We have changed up the layout of the park a bit with the expansion of the seminar series. We have also made the ticketing for the All Access Lounge a bit more affordable with a $20 admission charge, which gets you access to that covered seating area and a glass of wine.”
Aside from wine-focused events and activities, there are also games and chances to win exciting prizes.
“Astral Media will be on site doing cool interactive games with prizes, and WestJet will be offering opportunities to win getaways,” said Hundertmark. “We have Grapeland as always for the kids and the Mayor’s Grape Stomp after the Pied Piper Parade on the first Saturday.”
There will be live entertainment to accompany the wine tasting and food sampling that make the Niagara Wine Festival so renowned.
“We are very excited to have Platinum Blonde opening the festival. They will be joined by Elise Legrow, an emerging young artist. As Tribute bands are always popular on weekend one, we have Glory Days: A Tribute to Bruce Springsteen on Saturday and Blue Radio: A Tribute to Blue Rodeo on Sunday,” said Hundertmark.
Check out the Niagara Wine Festival beginning Sept. 21 at Montebello Park and visit niagarawinefestival.com for more information.