By Jessica Isaacs | [email protected]
Photos by Ken Ketchie
A perfect summer day prompted folks from across the state to travel to Linville Falls for the annual Avery County Wine and Beer Festival on Saturday, which saw an impressive turnout.
“It went really well and we had a great day,” said Melynda Martin Pepple, executive director of the Avery County Chamber of Commerce, which hosted the event at Linville Falls Winery.
The chamber sold nearly 200 tickets in advance and the event saw a steady crowd of 400-500 people at a time throughout the afternoon as folks poured in to grab a drink.
Featured local vendors included: Banner Elk Winery and Villa, Booneshine Brewing Company, Grandfather Vineyard, Linville Falls Winery, Flat Top Brewing Company and Beech Mountain Brewing Company.
Pepple said the chamber team was pleased to see that it’s new advertising plan, which included various online, social media and radio marketing tools, yielded a crowd of folks from various parts of the state.
“Everyone was delighted that it was pretty and the overall atmosphere showed that people were excited to be there. We had folks from Charlotte, the other side of Johnson City, Greensboro, Winston Salem,” she said. “Many of them said they were searching online for things to do in the mountains this weekend and they drove up just for the day. That was an exciting thing to hear.”
In a new effort this year to promote participating vendors, many guests signed up through the chamber to receive updates from area breweries and wineries, a project that gives businesses involved a tangible look at how many people they were able to reach over the course of the afternoon.
Pepple said the success of the event was a product of hard work contributed by chamber staff, volunteers, vendors and the folks at Linville Falls Winery.
“It was great community support that made this a successful event and that’s what it’s all about. We all came together and worked together to promote our vendors,” she said. “People had their blankets and their chairs out just enjoying the afternoon and it was kind of an all day thing. People were just coming out to hang out all day, so it was good.”
For more information on the Avery Chamber and other events, call the chamber office at 828-898-5605 or visit averycounty.com.