Langley wine tasting festival celebrates 25 years in style

Like the vino that the annual celebration revolves around, the Fraser Valley Wine Tasting Festival seems to get better with age.

The 25th edition of the festival at the Willowbrook Shopping Centre hit a whole new stratosphere, both in terms of attendance and money raised.

For the second time in the festival’s history, it sold out with more than 1,000 tickets sold.

Early estimates have more than $70,000 raised, and that may rise to close to $80,000 once the final fundraising total is tabulated.

Proceeds will go to the Autism Society of B.C., the Access Youth Outreach Services Society (formerly PoCoMo Youth Services Society), and Focus BC which helps troubled youth with education and therapy.

The Autism Society of BC has been around since 1974 and is a parent-based and parent-directed society providing support to individuals with autism and their families.

Organized by the Rotary Club of Langley Central, the event has raised more than $800,000 for local charities since its humble beginnings in 1989, when the inaugural festival at the George Preston Recreation Centre raised a modest $900.

“It’s going very, very well,” club president Guy Tousingant at roughly 7:30 p.m. Saturday, early on at the gala.

Tousingant called the festival, “the social event of Langley.”

“Every year, I’m surprised at the amount of people who attend and this year is overwhelming,” added Tousingant. “The response has been just incredible.”

The festival featured 38 wine merchants offering more than 200 different types of wines from all over the world for local oenophiles (a.k.a. wine enthusiasts) to sample.

Club members John Morgan and David Taft co-chaired the festival. Morgan offered a “big thank you” to diamond sponsor, BDO Dunwoody, which he noted has donated $90,000 to the event over the past six years.

Morgan was thrilled after the event.

“We’ve got an awesome committee,” he said. “Members have been doing this for so many years and we’d never be able to pull this off without their help. I’m absolutely ecstatic with the success we had this year. This is the most we’ve ever raised. This event also wouldn’t be possible without the support of the community and the local restaurants that were involved.”

Just Posted

Upcycling: possibilities endless for Langley artists using recovered items

Past winner enjoys taking garbage, and not recycling but upcycling it into something better.

Walnut Grove liquor store move turned down by council

For the second time since December, council has voted against the plan.

UPDATE: At least two hospitalized after plane leaves runway at Abbotsford Airport

Incident occurred around noon on Friday; Transport Canada investigating

VIDEO: Langley crews prepare for salting and plowing

With heavy snow expected, crews are working 24-hours until the weather system passes.

TransLink says 28 new Skytrain cars to arrive early

The cars for the Expo and Millennium lines will now be delivered three years earlier

Therapy dogs make appearance at B.C. Games

The St. John’s Ambulance therapy dog program launches a pilot project at the 2018 Kamloops B.C. Winter Games

Heavy snowfall for Coquihalla

Kelowna - Snowfall is expected to continue on the highway until Sunday

Czechmate: Canada wins men’s Olympic hockey bronze

Vernon’s Andrew Ebbett scores twice as Canada beats Czech Republic 6-4

Canucks fold 5-3 in first ever trip to Vegas

Daniel Sedin had two points as Canucks fall to the Golden Knights Friday night

That’s a wrap: B.C. Games results after Day 1

Vancouver-Coastal Zone 5 is in the lead for medals Friday at the Kamloops 2018 B.C. Winter Games

Sticking the landing at the B.C. Games

Gymnasts talk competition, B.C. Winter Games, and teamwork in Kamloops

$153M in federal cash to fund child care, education training in B.C.

Bilateral agreement will create 1,370 new infant and toddler spaces

A B.C. woman talks her life in the sex trade

A view into the life from one Kelowna prostitute and the issues it can cause for women

Twitter feed prays for — instead of preying on — B.C. MLAs

Non-partisan Christian group wants to support politicians through personalized prayer

Most Read