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Over 70 Performances To Take Place During Winterfest's 10th Anniversary

Sydney A. Braat

The Winterfest Kick-Off Party will be held at Hotel Indigo East End. (Photo: www.facebook.com)

Winterfest - Live On The Vine will return to the East End on Friday, February 24th and offer over 70 performances during its four week run, which will culminate on Sunday, March 19th. This marks the mid-winter music, wine and performing arts festival's 10th year!

Winterfest is looking forward to broadening the benefits to the entire East End region of Long Island. This year, Winterfest will be managed by a steering committee representing a broad collective of businesses reflecting the East End, including wineries, breweries, restaurants, hotels, performing arts, art galleries, and retail businesses.

"Winterfest has proven its value to the East End by highlighting the area as an exciting destination through brand recognition," said Patricia Drake Snyder, Executive Director of East End Arts, a founding partner of the project. "Now as the festival umbrellas to include all activities on the East End, it will be a powerful marketing tool to support the winter economy."

Winterfest began in 2006 as an economic engine to support businesses during the slow winter months. The event won the Arts Destination Marketing Award in 2012 which was presented by Americans for the Arts and Destination Marketing Association International (DMAI).

The Winterfest Kick-Off Party will be held on Friday, February 24th, from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m., at Hotel Indigo East End in Riverhead. The evening will feature music by East End Trio along with tastings by Winterfest-participating local restaurants, vineyards, and breweries. Tickets are $50 in advance and $65 at the door.

During the four week series, performances will span across the North Fork and South Fork, with show-stopping concerts at Baiting Hollow Farm Vineyard, Bistro 72, Bedell Cellars, Clovis Point Vineyard, Blue Duck Bakery, East End Arts, Harmony Vineyards, Hotel Indigo East End, Long Island Spirits, Long Ireland Brewery, Martha Clara Vineyards, Palmer Vineyards, Peconic Ballet Theatre, Peconic Landing, Pellegrini Vineyards, Perabell Food Bar, Riverhead Cider House, Southampton Inn, Sparkling Pointe Vineyard, Suffolk Theater, Vail-Leavitt Theatre, The Village Cheese Shop, and Wölffer Estate.

This year, the festival will debut the "Winterfest Experience," which will premiere on Saturday, February 25th with a Wine Tour. The experience will include an overnight stay at either Hotel Indigo East End or Hyatt Place Long Island, as well as visits to Pellegrini Vineyards for a Jack Morelli concert and complimentary glass of wine, Martha Clara Vineyards for a wine tasting with the winemaker Juan E. Micieli- Martinez, and a three course dinner at Dark Horse Restaurant in Riverhead. A Brewery Tour will take place on Saturday, March 4th. Along with an overnight stay at the Hotel Indigo East End or Hyatt Place Long Island, tourgoers will stop by Greenport Brewery (Greenport Village location), Long Ireland Beer Company for a tasting and behind the scenes tour, Crooked Ladder Brewing Company for a tasting and complimentary pint glass, and, finally, Digger's Ales N' Eats for a three course dinner.

For the entire Winterfest schedule, visit www.liwinterfest.com.

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