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Local business women team up to spark new tasty tradition

Blue Earth’s first Wine Walk &?Tasting Event takes to streets

May 7, 2017
Katie Mullaly - Register Staff Writer ( , Faribault County Register

Wine. What's not to love?

Now, Blue Earth has a brand new event to showcase not only local Minnesota wines, but local Blue Earth businesses as well.

The first-ever Wine Walk & Tasting Event will be hitting the streets of Blue Earth on May 13 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tickets are available the day of the event at Becki Steier Studio (110 N. Main Street). Guests must have a valid photo ID and must check in at Becki Steier Studio before they begin.

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Guests who are looking to indulge samples of up to two ounces of wine at each stop, have the option to keep a collectible glass for the event when purchasing tickets for $20, while those who wish to pass on the glass may purchase their tickets for $15. Treats will also be available at every location of the Wine Walk as well.

So, the big question is: how does this benefit the Blue Earth community? And the answer is simple.

First and foremost, the proceeds from ticket sales will be benefitting the local charity Bucs 4 Hope, a non-profit group which provides assistance to area families dealing with medical difficulties such as cancer or other serious illnesses.

The Knights of Columbus have joined the efforts and will be sponsoring the Juba's Food Stand for the day where guests can build their own burger. There is even talk of waiters being at different locations of the Wine Walk to take orders for guests. One hundred percent of the proceeds from this portion of the Wine Walk event will also be going to Bucs 4 Hope.

According to the group of women who set up this BIC-sponsored event, Becki Steier, Emily Hanson, Julie Loge, Marie Northwick and Brenda Mensing, it will benefit the local community even further.

Not only will there be delectable wines for every palate to taste red, white, dry, rose and many other wines but the walk itself will promote businesses of Blue Earth.

With 16 different tasting locations spread throughout the city of Blue Earth, the event encourages guests to shop locally. Those 16 businesses include Ankeny Furniture, Armon Decorating, Blue Earth Custom Embroidery, Becki Steier Studio, Classic Cuts, Dikken's Furniture & Decorating, Double Play, Gartzke's Floral & Gifts, Headlines Plus, Heartland Embroidery, Juba's at Oswald Brewing Company, Michele's Sewing, Prairie Chick Market, Sandy's Salon, Twisted Vine Floral, and Thrivent Financial.

"Blue Earth is vibrant and booming with fantastic new businesses blossoming all of the time," says Hanson. "There is so much we have to offer locally with a variety of businesses, and this Wine Walk features so much around our town."

"We noticed there are so many events held at the end of the year, like our wonderful Holiday Sampler, and we wanted to really set something up in the springtime for people to enjoy our downtown throughout the year," adds Steier.

"We want people to have fun," says Loge. "And we want to bring something unique to Blue Earth. It is hard to find an event around Mother's Day and we hope to create a special event for mothers, daughters, and anyone else wanting to celebrate with us. We even put in a special request for good weather."

Whether that message will get to the big guy upstairs remains to be seen, but the Wine Walk planning team remains hopeful.

These local business women hope to expand the Wine Walk in the future, not only for the benefit of the Bucs 4 Hope fund, but for the local commerce as well.

"It's crazy to think we've lost so many businesses over the years, but now we are finally seeing so many businesses return to Blue Earth, and we want our community to take full advantage of that," says Steier. "And if we can enjoy a little local wine tasting while supporting our small town businesses, all the better."

Some people may recognize that not all of the participating businesses are in the downtown area. The Wine Walk team has thought of that, too. A bus will be provided to give transportation to the other local participating businesses in town. This bus will be located on the east side of the Double Play parking lot so guests may have a safe ride to both Twisted Vine Floral and Sandy's Salon.

Now, what if you find yourself enjoying a specific wine on the wine walk and want to take one of the many selections home with you? The Blue Earth Liquor Store is offering a 10 percent discount to Wine Walk ticket holders for the wines that are sampled during the walk.

The Wine Walk team share they are a bit nervous for the turnout. They hope the Wine Walk will spark more individuals in the local community to engage in their local economy.

"We can be just as competitive of a downtown as other local areas. We have a great variety of businesses in our city and it is a worthwhile visit for people from near and far," says Hanson.

For ticket holders participating in the Wine Walk, not only is wine, shopping, and food available, but a grand prize will also be drawn at the end of the day.

Those participants names will be put into a drawing for a wine rack, two bottles of wine, two glasses, a Blue Earth Wine and Spirits tote bag, a piece of artwork from Becki Steier Studio, and a $25 BIC Bucs gift card.

The Wine Walk and tasting event group hope to create a little more foot traffic for the Blue Earth storefronts while creating a greater community experience in the future.

With the benefit of helping a local non-profit, local businesses and sampling different wines all day, guests from far and wide can come to truly sample all there is to enjoy in Blue Earth.



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