Published by The Critograph on Oct. 26, 2016
Katherine Graves, Assistant Editor-
If you love wine and are looking for an opportunity to enjoy the local community this Halloween weekend, Lazy Days Winery in Amherst will host their fourth annual HalloWine event at their pavilion on Saturday, Oct. 29 from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.
There will be live music, a bonfire at sunset, costume contests, vendors and a food truck at the event. Those who attend can also purchase glasses or bottles of wine, beer and sangria.
The event will have costume contests with prizes for best kids’ costume, best couples’ costume and best overall costume, said Welsey Fitzhugh, the winery’s marketing and events coordinator and the winery founder’s granddaughter.
The Mouth Wide Open food truck will be at the event, Fitzhugh stated. The truck specializes in sliders, such as crab cakes and spicy whiskey burgers, according to the food truck’s website.
The vendors who will be at the event are Natural Necessities, Paparazzi Jewelry, LuLaRoe, White Dawg Crafts and Favored Flavors. Brittany Carpenter Photography will be taking pictures of the event and will have a photo booth for people to take their own pictures, said Fitzhugh.
Live music for the event will be provided by Plan B, who will play from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m., and Apple Butter Soul, who will play from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. Apple Butter Soul previously played at last year’s HalloWine event and at the winery’s Virginia Summer Solstice Wine Festival earlier this year. This is the first year that Plan B will be playing at the event, expressed Fitzhugh.
Lazy Days Winery opened in 2007. Welsey Fitzhugh’s grandfather, William Fitzhugh started the winery and is now the owner and head winemaker.
“It used to be an old cattle stock auction house,” Fitzhugh said. “We bought the property, and we took a look at it and realized the soil and the land was right for a winery. So shortly after purchasing the property, it became Lazy Days Winery.”
John Fitzhugh, Welsey Fitzhugh’s father, is also the manager and the co-owner of the winery.
“The entire family helps harvest the grapes and put on the events. We have family as young as seven years old picking grapes,” Fitzhugh stated.
The winery is well-known for their peach wine and their blackberry wine. The peach wine is made solely from peaches, and the blackberry wine is made solely from wild blackberries. The winery only uses local fruit from Virginia in their wines, Fitzhugh said.
Some of the awards that Lazy Days Winery has won are silver medal for their Capuchin White in the 2015 Virginia Governor’s Cup and silver medal for their Petit Verdot in the 2016 Virginia Governor’s Cup, stated Fitzhugh.
The winery can also be booked as a venue for personal events, Fitzhugh said. It is frequently used as a wedding venue, but it can also be used for private parties.
Fitzhugh is a Richmond native who received a degree in marketing from Virginia Commonwealth University. She said that she began planning events at her family’s winery once she graduated. She now plans the wine festivals, such as HalloWine and the Virginia Summer Solstice Festival, as well as weddings at the winery.
Lazy Days Winery has Sangria Saturdays on the first and third Saturdays of every month, all year-round. At these events, people can purchase growlers and fill them with sangria. Nov. 5 will be the last Sangria Saturday event that will have live music, Fitzhugh said. Lazy Days will have live music at the events again next year when the weather is warmer.
Every summer, the winery holds its other annual festival, the Virginia Summer Solstice Wine Festival. Next year, the event will be held on June 24, Fitzhugh stated. Ten wineries are involved in the summer festival, and the event also has live music and vendors.
The price of admission for the HalloWine event is $10 and includes a free wine glass and wine tasting. The price of admission for those who do not want to drink is $5, said Fitzhugh. Children get into the event for free. The proceeds for the event will go to the winery.
Those attending the HalloWine event can bring blankets, chairs and outside food to the event. Outside beverages are not allowed into the event, Fitzhugh expressed.
The event is rain or shine. Pets are not allowed at the event. Smokers are free to smoke cigarettes outside of the pavilion, stated Fitzhugh.
Lazy Days Winery is located at 1351 N. Amherst Highway in Amherst. Regular hours of operation are from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. The winery is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays.
To find more information on the winery, you can visit the winery’s website at http://www.lazydayswinery.com/.