Commerce Chenango Hosting First Wine, Beer, And Food Festival On Saturday
Published: July 27th, 2022
By: Sarah Genter

Commerce Chenango hosting first Wine, Beer, and Food Festival on Saturday There will be several beer, wine, food, and product vendors at the first ever Chenango County Wine, Beer, and Food Festival. Deja Brew will be providing bagels, pastries, coffee, tea, and wraps in the VIP lounge at the festival, which is scheduled from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday, July 30 at the Chenango County Fairgrounds. (Photo by Sarah Genter)

CHENANGO COUNTY — The first ever Chenango County Wine, Beer, and Food Festival presented by Commerce Chenango Tourism is only days away, but tickets are still available for purchase online and will be available at the gates the day of the event.

The festival is scheduled to run from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday, July 30 at the Chenango County Fairgrounds, and will feature a current total of ten wineries, breweries, and distilleries; 11 food vendors; and 22 crafters and artisans.

Commerce Chenango President and CEO Kerri Green said the festival has been an idea of Commerce Chenango's since she began with the organization in 2019, and this year they were finally able to make it happen.

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"To know that we had this idea and we wanted to do this and it took this long to pull it together, and to see it finally all coming together and working out has been such an amazing feeling," she said. "The volunteers and the staff have done a great job putting the event together, the vendors are going to be there, we still have people signing up. We just signed on another winery yesterday that heard about the event and wants to come. So I just think this kind of thing is just going to continue to grow."

Several levels of tickets are available for the festival. Basic general admission tickets are $35, upgraded general admission tickets, known as "Taster's Tickets" are $45, and VIP tickets are $82. Designated Driver tickets are available for $15 as well, for those who don't wish to drink at the event.

Details about each ticket level and purchasing is available at

"Ticket sales, I think we’re close to 400 right now so that’s pretty exciting. I think we’ll hit our target. I know a lot of people had said they still need to buy their tickets, they’re going to get them that day and all that. So we were trying to be conservative for year one, we’ll see where we end up," she said. "The first 500 people will get a special guest bag that we had made, so it’s filled with some items, it’s a little cinch bag with some items inside."

Each ticket holder will also receive taster's tickets to redeem for beverages from festival vendors, as well as a reusable tasting glass to enjoy them in.

Those who purchase a VIP ticket will also get early access to the fairgrounds, from 11 a.m. to noon, as well as access to the exclusive VIP lounge.

"Our VIP guests will not only get early access to the grounds, but they get a special VIP swag bag and access to the VIP area, which is going to be decked out with chairs, it’s going to be in shade, there’ll be food in there provided by Deja Brew, and they’ll sort of get a nice viewing area of where the stage is going to be," said Green.

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In addition to wine, beer, and food, several crafters and artisans will also be set up in the Chenango County Fairgrounds Exhibition Hall. Goods will range from art, to handmade soaps, to clothing, and much more.

"We were really specific about inviting people who do handmade items. We were really trying to stay away from direct sale types of businesses, and we also made sure that we didn’t have five of the same type of vendors. So we were really careful about who we invited to come this year," said Green.

For festival goers who decide to take home a bottle of wine or two, or some handmade products, Green said a free concierge service will be available to all attendees.

"There’s a concierge area that sfcu is sponsoring. So we’ll have people out on golf carts, so if you want to buy a bunch of stuff, you want to get a box of wine or something, they’re going to be going around picking items up, or you can bring your items to the concierge tent and they’ll hold them for you and then help you get it out to your car when you’re ready to leave," Green explained.

"So people should be prepared to come, and taste, and buy what they want, and feel free if they're shopping in the crafter area and want to stick stuff they don’t want to carry around, we’ll have that concierge set up all day and people to help them with that."

Rounding out the event will be musical performances by two local bands. According to Green, the Jason Wicks Band will be hitting the stage from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., and the Nate Gross Band will headline the festival from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. Attendees are encouraged to bring camping chairs to sit and enjoy the show.

The Chenango County Wine, Beer, and Food Festival has truly been a group effort. Sponsorship has been provided by the SUNY Morrisville Norwich Campus, Principle Design and Engineering, Coughlin and Gerhart LLP, sfcu, Deja Brew, Kerry BioScience, the Pennysaver, The Evening Sun, WCDO Radio, WBNG, and Casella.

Several local agencies and organizations have also lent a hand to festival organizers.

"To be able to help celebrate the fairgrounds, their 175th anniversary is this year, they’ve been so great to work with, and the people on the grounds who are helping us with electric and setup and all of our vendors, even the City of Norwich Police Department is coming to help us with security," Green said. "The Chenango County Emergency Management is going to be on site so we have a medic, and everyone has just been really fantastic to really come together to make this festival happen. "

"So I really just want to give them a shoutout and thank them, because we definitely couldn’t have done this without everybody doing what they can to give us the support that we need to make this event really successful and safe for people. So everyone’s just been really fabulous to work with," she added.

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While this may be the first Wine, Beer, and Food Festival, Green said it certainly won't be the last. Planning and preparation has already begun for next year's festival, and organizers hope to utilize feedback from attendees and vendors to make future events even better.

"This year will be a good year to see what works well, what we need to look at changing for next year, but we’re already planning next year’s. So it’s our plan to do this the last Saturday in July moving forward, and we’ll kind of see how it goes from here," said Green.

"It’s our first year doing it, I’m not saying everything we’re doing is 100 percent perfect. We did the best we could from the research that we did, and those of us who have been to events like this, we kind of took the best of what we’ve been to and put it together to come up with what this year should look like," she continued. "We’ll definitely get feedback from our vendors and from our ticket holders, and figure out what they’d like to see next year, what we could do better, different. But it definitely is a good starting off point, I think. In terms of a first year I’m very, very happy with how it’s all come together."

More information about the Chenango County Wine, Beer, and Food Festival, ticket purchases, and full vendor lists can be found at