Blue skies and wildflowers blanketed A Stone’s Throw Winery in historic San Juan Capistrano last weekend as guests sipped and learned about wine and beer at the second annual OCWineFest. Over the course of the weekend, more than 1,500 wine lovers sipped more than 150 wines, beers and spirits, as they mingled, danced to live bands, and nibbled bites, all while learning about the award-winning wines, mostly celebrating the terroir of California – and wines made right here in Orange County. Blazing the (Orange County wine) trail to bring vino and people together – from newbies to aficionados – OCWineFest again proved to balance fun, exploration, and education.
“The second annual OCWineFest’s success solidifies Orange County’s return to wine culture, originally established in the 1800s,” said Linda Kearns, OCWineFest organizer and A Stone’s Throw Winery partner. “I had a community member of San Juan tell me it was the best festival in the city. Hearing that, and seeing the excitement of our community come together, really makes me want to do something extremely special next year.”
Among the more than 40 wineries, breweries and spirits, there were well-established vintners, as well as those new to the wine industry. There were also several philanthropically inclined wineries, including Rescue Dog Wines, and OneHope, highlighting the trend of cause marketing. This blended well with OCWineFest’s overriding theme – spreading awareness and raising funds for Kids Konnected, the Swanner House Restoration Foundation, the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, an organization near and dear to OCWineFest organizer, Col. Sean Magee, also an LLS survivor.
“I’d love to thank our guests, as well as all of our amazing vendors, exhibitors, sponsors, employees, and volunteers,” Magee said. “Your support of OCWineFest, and in turn, the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and Kids Konnected means everything. I hope that you all had a great time and I hope to see you again in 2020. Semper Fi.”
Music was provided by The Shenanigans Band, Kai Kalama, and Hunting Waldo.
Already the team is in the planning stages for the third annual OCWineFest in early 2020. Stay tuned at www.ocwinefest.com.
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