Dakota Creek winery art show a success
By Jack Kintner
Last weekend’s Art at the Winery fair at the Dakota Creek Winery on Haynie Road exceeded all expectations, according to winery owner and show czar Ken Peck.
“We didn’t count but we did a fairly good estimate based on parking of about 2,500 in attendance,” Peck said, adding that he met a number of people from the Seattle area as well as from the B.C. lower mainland in addition to a lot of local and area attendees.
For example, six people who joined his wine club are all from the Bellevue area. “I’m not sure how they got the word, but they did and they came up,” Peck said.
Sales were brisk, pleasing the artists. A couple from Snohomish reported that it was the best show they’ve had.
One glass artist from Ferndale had to send her husband out for more stock, the Costco booth ran out of water and cookies and Blaine artist Lorrie Conyac sold out her entire display of concrete yard art molded on Rhubarb leaves in less than three hours.
The pieces, about the size of a large serving tray and intended for use as bird feeders or birdbaths, cost about $20.
“I wanted to have something everyone could afford that was still unique,” she said.
The festival marked the three-year-old winery’s first year of being open to the public. “We began making wine in 2005,” Peck said, “but it took a couple of years to build up some stock.”
The impetus for what will become an annual event began with Peck’s involvement in the Sweet Road Mother’s Day studio tour last year. “Reaction was so positive to the combination of wine and art, which are such a natural fit, we decided to do our own event,” Peck said, “and fortunately we hit the weather perfectly.”
Participants went from one last year – photographer Jack Kintner – to 55 this year in 47 different displays and booths, plus a dozen musicians and almost two dozen volunteers helping out with everything from cellar tours to parking to clean-up.
Though an ice cream truck showed up at one point, there was no food at the event. That’s something that Peck and his volunteers will address as they plan for next year, along with ways of making sure that next year’s festival has new and different items for returning visitors.
“We already have the date set aside,” Peck said, “August 22, 2009.”