Wine to liven downtown Summerland

Many of Summerland’s downtown stores will be open late on Friday, May 4 for shopping and for in-store tastings from wineries around the area.

Twelve wineries and 13 businesses are taking part in first-ever Summerland Wine Walk, which will go from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the area of Main Street and Victoria Road.

Organizer Laurie Weir, who owns Barn Owl Gifts in Summerland, said a similar, less-formal event was held in December when many people were out Christmas shopping.

She said that was a success, and now participating businesses are trying to take it a step further as the area is shifting to the summer tourist season.

“A bunch of us thought ‘we should really stay open late,’ but what attracts people to come into your store late, really? You can’t just throw open the doors,” Weir said.

“So we thought well everybody likes wine, and a few of us know some of the winery owners. So we asked if they wouldn’t mind doing (wine) pouring, and they did.”

There’s no fee for the public, and Weir hopes Friday’s event is the first of many to be hosted.

“As we get more participants and get more people coming and enjoying our little town, the event will grow and in future we hope to have kind of a farmer’s market aspect to it,” she said.

“But right now we’re testing the waters and if it’s successful we’ll go forward with making it bigger and better.”

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