The spirit of giving back was the theme of the Niagara Wine Trail USA's "Share the Bounty" event, held Veterans Day weekend.
Twenty wineries along the wine trail raised funds and nonperishable items for local charities and food banks. The combined efforts of the wineries raised more than $10,500 - a record-breaking amount - with an estimated 1,120-plus nonperishable food items donated.
"We are just overjoyed with the generosity that we saw during 'Share the Bounty' this year," said Elizabeth Maute, trail coordinator. "We raised more than we ever have as a trail. It feels good to give back to the communities that support us during the year."
The event encourages each winery on the trail to pick a charity or worthy 501(c)(3) cause within the community to donate proceeds from wine tasting sales collected during that weekend. In addition to donated wine tasting fees, several wineries along the trail were serving this year as drop-off locations for the local "Peanut Butter & Jelly Drive" in Niagara County, which continues to run through the first week of December.
The charities that benefited from "Share the Bounty," and the participating wineries, include:
The Niagara Wine Trail will hold next year's "Share the Bounty" event Nov. 13-15. For more information on the Niagara Wine Trail USA, member wineries, and a schedule of upcoming events, visit www.niagarawinetrail.org.