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Avery County uncorks winery trolley tours

By Jesse Campbell (

Article Published: Jun. 26 | Modified: Jun. 26
Avery County uncorks winery trolley tours

The monthly High Country Trolley Wine Tour will offer tourists a firsthand look at the fruits of area vineyards’ labors.

Photo by Frank Ruggiero


Wine Tour Dates

June 26
July 22
Aug. 21
Sept. 25
Oct. 16

Unless you’re hanging out at your favorite swimming or fishing hole this summer, there’s probably no better way to spend a summer day in Avery County than the High Country Trolley Wine Tour.

For the cost of $40, wine lovers will be escorted via trolley to three local wineries and Blind Squirrel Brewery to sample some of the area’s finest craft beverages.

Participating wineries include Grandfather, Banner Elk and Linville Falls.

Dates for the tour are scattered throughout the summer and fall with the kickoff drive on Thursday, June 26. All tours begin by meeting at Erick’s Cheese and Wine across from the chamber’s offices. Lunch and samples are included.

The wine tours began part out of necessity and as a way to network local businesses in the tourism industry.

“We wanted to showcase wineries in the area,” said Sue Freeman, executive director of the Avery County Chamber of Commerce. “They have a great product that we want to get out there.”

All but one of the dates for the tour fall on Thursdays.

“We chose Thursday because it’s a shoulder day and there’s not much traffic,” Freeman said. “We also don’t want to take money away from the restaurants and wineries.”

The tours have been beneficial for everyone involved.

“It’s been a nice touch as a marketing event for the chamber,” Freeman said. “We’ve been able to wrangle all tourism (businesses) together.”

In addition to fine wine, local historians will regale guests with stories and anecdotes from Avery County’s storied past, Freeman said.

Tickets can be purchased at the Avery County Chamber of Commerce. For more information, call (828) 898-5605.

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