PUNXSUTAWNEY — An upcoming event at the home of Punxsutawney Phil, the world-famous groundhog, will have people “sipping” their way into the autumn season.
The Gobbler’s Knob Wine Festival will be Saturday, Oct. 6, from 2-9 p.m. at 1548 Woodland Ave. Extension with two sessions — one from 2-5 p.m. And the other from 6-9 p.m.
Punxsutawney Groundhog Club President Katie Donald said the event has been staged for five years now, and is a cooperative effort of the PGC and the Punxsutawney Chamber of Commerce.
In the past, there has always been around eight or nine vendors, Donald said, but it was decided to have more wineries than vendors this year. Right now, 11 state-wide wineries are signed up to serve products, but organizers expect to have more, Donald said.
“We have a lot of great wineries in the region, and we would like to showcase them as much as possible,” Donald said.
Each winery brings its product to sample and sell, as well as other items like T-shirts, wine openers, stoppers and others, Donald says.
Other vendors will be present, and appetizers are included with the purchase of a ticket. There will be live acoustic music, and each session has an appearance by Punxsutawney Phil.
The appearance of Phil at Punxsutawney events is crucial, Donald says, since the fundraisers are staged to raise money for Groundhog Day and promote the Legend of the famous groundhog.
“Any event that we have, Phil is in attendance,” Donald said. “People enjoy seeing him and getting their picture taken with him. He’s known worldwide, and has a very special job to do Feb. 2.”
The 11 local wineries committed to a presence at the event include Laurel Mountain Winery of Falls Creek, the Winery at Wilcox of DuBois, Bee Kind Winery of Clearfield, Shadow Vineyard & Winery of Punxsutawney, Woody Lodge Winery of Ashville, Deer Creek Winery of Shippenville, Groundhog Winery, Twisted Vine, Wapiti Ridge of DuBois, Black Dog Wine Company of Oakdale, Bear Creek Wines of Kane, Country Vineyard & Winery of Blairsville and Allegheny Wine Cellars of Sheffield.
“This event is also an attempt to showcase our community (during) another time of year, other than Groundhog Day,” Donald said. “Punxsutawney has great events and things to do every weekend, that help draw visitors in and give the residents something to do as well.”
The regular ticket price is $25 and includes a wine glass, and the “designated driver” ticket is $10.
This year will offer a special twist, too, Donald says. Yoga and aromatherapy will be offered by Santosha Yoga Studio of Punxsutawney, while groundhoggers sip on their favorite wine. Yoga is included in the price of the ticket.
Space is limited for both sessions, Donald said, so people are encouraged to purchase a ticket in advance. For tickets, visit www.groundhog.org.