Colorado Wine Country Hosts 2010 Wine Events, Festivals

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Grand Junction announces schedule

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The Grand Junction Visitor and Convention Bureau, located in the heart of Colorado’s burgeoning wine country, has announced its lineup of wine events and festivals for 2010.

Visitors can explore nearly 20 vineyards, boutique wineries and tasting rooms along the Grand Valley American Viticultural Area (AVA) by car, limo or bicycle. Most Grand Valley wineries have tours or tasting rooms where visitors can taste the range of vintages each winery produces, and gain education in the science and art of wine production. Visitors also can take advantage of several wine events and festivals this year:

  •     Spring Barrel Tasting (April 24-25, May 15-16) – Eight of the area’s best wineries will feature their current releases as well as give sneak peeks at new releases. All wines will also be paired with appropriate foods.
  •     Art and Jazz Festival (May 7-9): Live jazz, food vendors, gallery tours and wine tasting.
  •     Colorado Mountain Winefest (Sept. 16-19) – The state's oldest, largest and most anticipated wine festival offers one collective toast to the Colorado wine country grape harvest and the state's finest vintages. Festival highlights include wine and food pairing events, chef demos, grape stomps, winery tours and chocolate and wine tastings.
  •     Tour de Vineyards Bicycle Tour (Sept. 18) – The 25-mile bicycle tour – named “Best Event for Wine and Pedaling” by Rocky Mountain Sports Magazine – winds through picturesque rural roads. Registration includes a course map, welcome packet and post-ride pasta salad lunch.
  •     AAA Train Tour to Colorado’s Wine Country(July 23-25) – The train tour to Colorado’s Wine Country offers a comfortable, low-stress, low-key way to traverse the majestic Rocky Mountains from Denver to Grand Junction. Included is a day-of-departure continental breakfast, two nights’ hotel accommodations in Grand Junction (with breakfast each day), visits to several Grand Valley wineries, on-board entertainment, Wine 101 seminar and wine tasting poured by one of the wineries that participants will visit in Grand Junction. Return to Denver is via luxury motor coach.

The events give visitors and residents alike special opportunities to see and sample some of the best and newest wines in the region, according to Jennifer Grossheim-Harris, marketing and public relations manager for the Grand Junction Visitor and Convention Bureau. “The Grand Valley wine region is characterized by personal operations, beautiful scenery and rural landscapes,” she says. “Visitors to these events will find many of the winery owners are also the winemakers/vintners and are on site to talk with visitors.”

The region also is unique in its grape-growing climate. Vineyards are nestled in temperate river valleys and mesas ranging in elevation from 4,000 to 7,000 feet, among the highest in the world. Long daylight hours of intense high-altitude sunlight mature the fruit completely and build the natural sugars, while cool evenings cause the grapes to retain the acids so vital to premium winemaking.

For more details and ticket information on all events, go to http://www.visitgrandjunction.com.

About Grand Junction (http://www.visitgrandjunction.com)
Nestled near 11,000-foot Grand Mesa and the 7,500-foot Book Cliffs, Grand Junction is the largest city in western Colorado. At an altitude of 4,586 feet, warm summers and moderate spring, fall and winter seasons allow for year-round golf, hiking and biking. Boasting more than 275 days of sunshine annually, Grand Junction recently was named one of the eight sunniest cities in the United States by TourismReview.com.

Among Grand Junction’s spectacular red cliffs and winding canyons are the Grand Mesa, the world’s largest flat-topped mountain, the Colorado National Monument, Bookcliff Wild Horse Area, two national scenic byways and five golf courses. Grand Junction lies in the heart of the Colorado-Utah Dinosaur Diamond, and is internationally known for its wealth of dinosaur excavation sites, exhibits and fossils.

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