Woodinville Wine Country’s Passport Weekend gets an upgrade

If you haven’t already heard the news, Woodinville Wine Country decided to make changes to their traditional passport weekend. Here is the press release from Woodinville Wine Country:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Woodinville, Wash., February 16, 2011: ­­ Tickets are on sale now to Passport to Woodinville, one of Western Washington’s most popular wine events of the year.  The program has been revamped for 2011 to give wine enthusiasts more time and flexibility to enjoy Woodinville’s increasing number of wineries and tasting rooms.

This year’s passport will be valid for six weeks from April 16 – May 31.  Special offerings such as appetizers and music at select wineries will be offered during the kick-off weekend only April 16 – 17.  In previous years, Passport to Woodinville was restricted to one weekend.
Passports are $65 per person if purchased between now and March 15th, $75 between March 16th and April 16th and are available on-line only at Woodinville Wine Country.  No passports will be sold after April 16th.

Cynthia Dasté, executive director for Woodinville Wine Country, says the changes to the program were made to allow ticket holders to enjoy the event at a more leisurely pace.  “When Passport debuted in 2000, there were less than two dozen wineries in Woodinville.  Today, there are more than 80 wineries and tastings rooms.  By extending the length of the program, we hope to give consumers more opportunities to discover some of Woodinville’s hidden gems as well as the chance to visit their perennial favorites,” Dasté says.  The newly formatted Passport is also a tremendous value, Dasté notes.  The $75 passport represents more than a $175 value.

Ticket holders will receive a passport valid for one tasting at each “destination winery” during the length of the program and may return to Woodinville as often as they wish to explore a different participating winery any time before June 1.  Date restrictions and exceptions by winery may apply and will be clearly stated in each ticket holder’s Passport.  More than 35 wineries will participate in this year’s program.  As always, designated drivers are highly encouraged and will not be charged.

Woodinville Wine Country is conveniently located 25-minutes northeast of downtown Seattle.  For more information about Passport to Woodinville or about touring and tasting in Woodinville, visit http://woodinvillewinecountry.com/.

What It All Means

With around 80 wineries, this is a very positive change for Woodinville Wine Country. One of the biggest complaints about Passport Weekend was not having enough time to visit all of the participating wineries. This lead to some folks trying to cram in as many wineries as they could in one weekend. By making this a six-week affair, people can taste at their leisure and have more than enough time to visit all the participating wineries. It’s a win for consumers and wineries all around.

Since I will be in Prosser/Red Mountain covering Spring Barrel during the media weekend, I will be sending a special correspondent to cover the event this year. I’m really looking forward to this because you will be hearing a lot from this special correspondent in the months to come 😉

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