October 21, 2020

The fruits of their labor

Wine Festival to showcase Yorktown

By Selina Foreman

Correspondent

Spending a sunny October Saturday along the gorgeous York River sounds like a perfect day. The only way to make it better? Add wine.

“You just can’t beat the waterfront and the venue,” said Mark Medford, president of Village Events, Ltd., which presents the Yorktown Wine Festival each year. “The venue is really cool.”

“It’s supposed to be an absolute gorgeous day this year.”

The annual festival continues to grow each year and features a wide range of tasting and shopping opportunities. This year, 14 carefully curated wineries will showcase the fruits of their labor.

“We limit the number of wineries, because we want them all to be successful,” said Medford.

However, the festival itself has increased its footprint in recent years to allow for more festivalgoers and vendors. Upwards of 3,000 folks were in attendance last year, and Medford takes care to ensure the festival can accommodate everyone.

“We’ve kind of expanded downwards in the riverfront area to allow more room for people to walk around and enjoy,” Medford said. “It’s just a really fun event.”

Longtime festival participant and local favorite Williamsburg Winery has been involved with the festival since its infancy.

“It’s a great way to highlight the Yorktown area, which is so beautiful and so much fun,” said Kathryn Parsons, marketing and wine club assistant at Williamsburg Winery. “It’s one of our favorite events every year.”

The festival will also feature a Virginia Craft Beer garden near the fountain featuring limited tastings of specialty brews. The list of breweries includes locals like Williamsburg’s Alewerks Brewing Company and Billsburg Brewery. For drinkers who eschew both wine and beer, Yorktown’s own Larry’s Original Hard Lemonade will also be on site.

Another relatively recent addition to the line up of libations is Copper Fox Distillery. The popularity of locally owned distilleries is on the rise, and Copper Fox made a successful showing at the festival last year.

“We feel like that’s an option that some folks may want to explore,” said Medford.

All that tasting can work up an appetite, and several food trucks and vendors selling everything from seafood to barbecue will also be on site.

Once you have slaked your thirst and filled your belly, more than 30 local artists and businesses will be on hand to address retail therapy needs. The key word here is local — and that is one of the reasons this festival in particular is a fave of Williamsburg Winery.

“It’s smaller, and a little bit more local centered,” said Parsons. “It really instills that sense of community.”