Illinois State Fair Wine Experience Photos
The Illinois Wine Experience at the Illinois State Fair moved to a new indoor location this year. Nearly 20 wineries served wine to visitors in the Twilight Ballroom on the Fairgrounds in Springfield. Admission was free with sampling tickets available for $1 each. For a purchase of 10 tickets, guests received a complimentary glass. Wine was also available for purchase by the glass, bottle and case.
The Illinois Wine Experience is sponsored by the Illinois Grape Growers and Vintners Association, a non-profit organization dedicated to developing viticulture and enology in Illinois.
Also at the Illinois State Fair, Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka honored more than a dozen Illinois organizations and businesses for their work in promoting agritourism and noted the critical importance of the agritourism to the Illinois economy. Lynfred Winery in Roselle, Baxter’s Vineyards & Nauvoo Winery in Nauvoo, and the East Central Illinois Wine Trail all won the Illinois Excellence in Agritourism Award from Comptroller Topinka.
Agriculture is the number one industry in Illinois, contributing more than $8.85 billion to the state’s economy annually. The state’s 72,500 farms utilize 75 percent of Illinois land, including some of the most fertile soil in the world.