2nd Annual Adirondack Wine & Food Festival Earns Designation as an Official Taste New York Event
Significant Funding is Awarded from Governor Cuomo’s Craft Beverage Initiative and Warren County, Village & Town of Lake George Occupancy Tax Funds
Contact: Sasha Pardy, Owner & Stephanie Ottino, Festival Coordinator / Phone: (518) 668-9463 x15 / EMAIL US>> / For Photos, Videos & Logos, visit>>
LAKE GEORGE, N.Y. (March 29, 2016): Adirondack Festivals LLC, a company formed by the owners of Adirondack Winery in Lake George, is pleased to officially announce the details of the 2nd Annual Adirondack Wine & Food Festival, taking place June 25th & 26th at Charles R Wood Festival Commons in Lake George Village. “This festival celebrates the bounty of amazing craft beverages and locally made foods that New York has to offer.” said Owner Sasha Pardy.
The Festival is a farmer’s market style (rain or shine) event where over 50 wineries, craft beverage and specialty food vendors set up tents, serve samples and sell their fine products, giving festival-goers the opportunity to “try before they buy”. A Festival ticket ($35 at the gate, $25 pre-sale) gets the attendee access to the event for one day and a commemorative festival wine glass to be used to sample the hundreds of hand-crafted products available to try that day, plus take the glass home with them.
The 1st Adirondack Wine & Food Festival was held the same weekend last June as one of the first events to debut Festival Commons and has since been recognized by many as the most successful new event to take place in Lake George. “Festival Commons is the perfect spot for an event like ours. It’s got ample green space, nearby parking, and walking access to plentiful hotels, restaurants, attractions and shops for our attendees to enjoy before and after the festival,” said Pardy.
“Our goal for 2016 is 5,000 attendees,” said Stephanie Ottino, Festival Coordinator. “We were quite pleased with last year’s attendance of 2,500 people, especially considering our goal for a sunny weekend was 3,000 people and we were burdened with a heavy rain forecast leading up to the event and both Saturday night and all day Sunday had rain showers,” she explained. “That said, our festival brought an important demographic to Lake George. On average our attendees are females, age 25-44 with buying power – statistics show that wine tourists have a 16% higher income than the average tourist or individual,” she added.
“We are excited to report that the Adirondack Wine & Food Festival is receiving generous support from New York State’s ‘Taste New York’ Program, with a $63,000 grant,” announced Ms. Pardy. She noted that this funding comes from Governor Cuomo’s $3 million Craft Beverage Marketing and Promotion Grant Program, which was created to increase the profile, awareness and sales of New York State-produced wine, beer, spirits, and hard cider, all of which will be present at the Adirondack Wine & Food Festival. In addition, with an estimation that the festival will generate demand for 1,250 room nights for the region, the Warren County Occupancy Tax Committee and the Village and Town of Lake George also awarded $15,000 in funding to the event.
To be considered for the Craft Beverage Grant, Ms. Ottino submitted a lengthy application to Empire State Development, showing that the Adirondack Wine & Food Festival would not only benefit the Lake George region, but also many Craft Beverage and specialty food producers from around the state, who are able to taste and sell their products at the festival. At current count, 15 wineries, 3 breweries, 4 distilleries and 2 cideries have committed, plus several artisanal food producers including cheese, maple syrup, desserts and more. By the time the festival rolls around, over 50 vendors are expected.
“New York State’s craft beverage industry has an annual economic impact of $27 billion and thanks to the support of Governor Cuomo, the production and sale of wine, beer, spirits and cider continues to grow,” said Empire State Development President, CEO & Commissioner Howard Zemsky. “ESD is proud to support the Adirondack Wine & Food Festival and we look forward to getting the diverse and delicious products of local businesses in front of thousands of enthusiasts at the event in June.”
“This grant money is being funneled straight into our efforts to put on an excellent event and attract 5,000 attendees from near and far,” explained Pardy. “With the addition of the Taste NY funding, we’re able to expand our marketing campaign to include advertising through multiple mediums including print and digital, social media, radio, television, billboards and more. We’ll have a presence reaching not just the Lake George/Glens Falls region; but also the Adirondacks, Albany, Hudson Valley, Vermont, New York City, Long Island and more. Marketing has already started, but our campaign goes into full swing in the two months leading up to the festival,” said Pardy. “We’re already seeing compelling demographics in website and social media traffic showing that most people researching the event are hailing from New York City and Long Island, followed by our local region, Albany Metro, then NJ, MA, CT, PA and VA,” she added.
Pardy and Ottino have been working year-round to make the 2nd annual Adirondack Wine & Food Festival be the best it can be. “While vendor feedback was excellent last year, with reports of sales and booth foot traffic being excellent; some festival attendees expressed frustration with vendors being inadequately prepared to handle the crowd in terms of staffing and inventory. Additionally, attendees wanted more food options than we provided,” said Ms. Pardy. “We’re determined to improve those concerns,” said Ottino. “This year we will have significantly more craft beverage and food vendors at the festival (including 4 food trucks and additional prepared food vendors), all of whom are planning to come well-staffed; which should create a great flow and atmosphere and countless options for attendees,” she said.
The SUNY Adirondack Foundation has been named as the designated beneficiary of the Festival for the second year in a row, donating a portion of ticket sales to the non-profit. “We wanted the Festival to be connected to a great, local cause that was also related to Wine and Food,” said Pardy. “What better group to work with than SUNY Adirondack, which has a growing Culinary Arts Program,” she added. SUNY Adirondack Culinary Arts Program Faculty and Students will be present at the festival showcasing their skills with Cooking Demonstrations under a special tent throughout the festival. They will also be raising money by selling baked goods, food, non-alcoholic beverages and items at the event.
The Adirondack Wine and Food Festival website and ticket sales are live. Visit www.ADKWINEFEST.com for more information, images, videos, logos, and more.
ABOUT THE CRAFT BEVERAGE GRANT PROGRAM:
The $3 million Craft Beverage Marketing and Promotion Grant Program was created by Governor Andrew M. Cuomo to increase the profile, awareness and sales of New York State-produced wine, beer, spirits, and hard cider, will provide matching funds for the marketing and promotion of craft beverages. Up to $250,000 will be awarded to eligible Not-For-Profit organizations and For-Profit entities to help cover the costs associated with marketing the craft beverage industry. This includes the purchase of recognized media advertising, production costs of print collateral and audio/visual, industry related tours, marketing materials, and website design, development, and updates.
The eligible project must incorporate the Taste NY initiative as applicable and appropriate to the project, including but not limited to, the use of the Taste NY logo. Taste NY affiliation must be coordinated with the NYS Department of Agriculture and Markets. Taste NY is an initiative that highlights the quality, diversity, and economic impact of New York’s food and beverage industry.
Successful projects will support the Regional Economic Development Council’s long term strategic plans for economic growth in regions, as well as align with current I LOVE NEW YORK marketing strategies.
MWBE REQUIREMENT: Recipients of this grant are required to use a portion of their grant money towards a contract with a NYS certified Minority or Women-owned Business Enterprises (MWBE). The Adirondack Wine & Food Festival will work with Mannix Marketing, a NYS certified Woman-Owned Business to meet this requirement.
ABOUT ADIRONDACK FESTIVALS LLC:
Founded in 2014, Adirondack Festivals LLC is based out of Queensbury, New York and owned by Sasha Pardy, who is also co-owner and president of Adirondack Winery; the Presenting Sponsor of the Adirondack Wine and Food Festival; in conjunction with Taste New York in 2016. The first festival was held June 27th & 28th, 2015 at the Charles R Wood Festival Commons in Lake George, New York and was a huge success, drawing 2,500 attendees out to celebrate the best New York has to offer in Wine, Craft Beverage, locally-produced food & products & more. The designated beneficiary of the Adirondack Wine and Food Festival is the SUNY Adirondack Foundation, working closely with the SUNY Adirondack Culinary Arts Program. www.AdkWineFest.com
ABOUT SUNY ADIRONDACK FOUNDATION:
The SUNY Adirondack Foundation is a 501(c) 3 charitable corporation established in 1983. The Foundation’s primary function is to provide financial support to the college and its students. Funds are raised and distributed as student scholarships, faculty/staff professional development grants and to support College related special projects. WEBSITE>>
ABOUT SUNY ADIRONDACK CULINARY ARTS PROGRAM:
SUNY Adirondack offers a two-year Associate in Applied Science (AAS) degree in Culinary Arts with a focus on the scientific and artistic elements behind food and drink. Since culinary minds are constantly exploring and evolving the industry, students will find a wealth of career choices for trained chefs upon graduation. WEBSITE>>
Adirondack Wine & Food Festival FAQs
WHEN: Saturday, June 25th (11a-6p) & Sunday June 26th (11a-5p)
WHERE: Charles R. Wood Festival Commons, Westbrook Rd, Lake George
“Take your taste buds on an unforgettable journey as you are introduced to over 50 New York State wineries, craft beverage producers and artisanal food vendors, with the beauty of Lake George as your backdrop!”
About Charles R. Wood Festival Commons:
Home to the Adirondack Wine & Food Festival for the 2nd year in a row, the newly completed Charles R. Wood Festival Commons on Westbrook Road is the perfect location for the event! With the view of the Lake as its backdrop, and located within walking distance from plenty of parking, shops, restaurants, attractions and hotels… attendees may take advantage of all Lake George has to offer while in town for the Festival!
Farmers market designation:
The ADK Wine & Food Festival has been granted a Farmers Market Designation once again from the Dept. of Agriculture & Markets. This permit allows craft beverage and food vendors to not only sample their products, but also sell their products to attendees, which many experienced great success with at the 2015 festival. To encourage purchasing, the festival will offer a purchase drop-off / pick-up tent so attendees need not carry around their bags/purchases!
Adk Wine Fest – Statistics / Demographics / Trends:
- Location: Website traffic and ticket buyer information show that most people researching the event hail from NYC and Long Island, followed by the local region, Albany Metro and then NJ, MA, CT, PA & VA.
- Age/Sex: a large percentage of attendees are females between the ages of 25-44. Consumer studies show women have tremendous buying power in the U.S. today.
- Recent wine industry studies show that wine related tourists provided over $401.5 million in tourism expenditures in NY annually and that the income of wine related tourists is 16% higher than that of an average tourist or individual.
The Craft Beverage Industry is Booming – Statistics & Trends
- Adirondack Craft Beverage Trail and Map: launched in 2014, now includes 28 members across the Adirondacks, Warren, Washington & Saratoga counties. Recipient of ESD funding in 2015.
- Upper Hudson Valley Wine Trail: launched in 2013, now has 12 member wineries in Warren, Washington & Saratoga counties. Working to Official Designation as NYS Wine Trail w/ Trail Signage in region.
- Last year, the 400th winery opened in New York and New York was named the “Wine Region of the Year” by Wine Enthusiast Magazine. NY Wines earned over 700 Medals at Wine Competitions as well.
- A New York Wine & Grape Foundation study shows the wine industry has a $4.8 billion economic impact and attracts 5.3 million tourists annually to the state
- In 2015, Governor Cuomo announced the NYS craft beer industry grew 59% between 2013-2014 and the total economic impact was estimated at $3.5 billion.