By Taylor Boyd
The 7th annual Wine & Beer Festival, hosted by the Town of Stuart, went off without a hitch on Saturday.
Town Manager Bryce Simmons said more than 300 people attended the event.
“Everybody seems to be having a good time. The weather’s held out for us, and we have this beautiful sunny day,” he said.
Simmons said he believed the four participating wineries – Villa Appalaccia Winery, Childress Vineyards, Woods Acre Wine, and Stanburn Winery – were successful.
“I haven’t heard anyone say that there’s a particular favorite. I think they’re all great vineyards,” he said.
Norma Bozenmayer was among the attendees. She said seeing support for the fest was her favorite part.
“It’s so nice to see how many people in Stuart come out and support events like this. I love that the Alzheimer’s Group is out here always raising money and making food,” she said.
Bozenmayer also liked seeing the local wineries, some of which she didn’t know were around.
While she is a fan of Stanburn Winery’s products, she noted that she enjoyed wine from Woods Acre Wine as well.
“They had a nice dry wine. I haven’t tried a lot of them because I need to walk down this hill,” she said, chuckling.
Kurt Bozenmayer said he thought the event provided everyone the long-awaited opportunity to get outside, get together, and enjoy food, music, and, of course, wine and beer.
“There’s nothing bad to say about it. I hope we have many more of these over the course of the summer,” he said.
Sarah Wray, who is a member of One Family Productions, said she thought the weather helped bring people out the festival.
“The sunshine helped a lot of folks come out and enjoy themselves after the last couple of years,” she said.
While this is the first year that beer has been available at the event, Wray said the group’s beer sales had been good.
“We really didn’t know what to expect, but it’s nice to have another option, especially after folks have gone around and testing all of the wine. Maybe (they’ll) decide they want to switch it up a little bit,” she said.
Chad Branch said he did not expect the event to be so well-attended. “I was very surprised at how many people came,” he said.
Branch said the wine tasting was his favorite part of the being able to try all the different types and flavors of wine. “I mean you have Childress, Villa Appalaccia, and there’s a fruit wine down there in Cana. I didn’t even know they were in Cana,” he said.