Tybee Island Wine Festival kicks off Thursday night

Tybee Island Wine Festival kicks off Thursday night

TYBEE ISLAND, GA (WTOC)—What's better than spending a weekend sampling some of the best wine from around the area while raising funds that benefit a local non-profit organization? Not much, and that's why Tybee Post Theater capitalizes on the publics' thirst for fun at this year's 10th annual Tybee Wine Festival.

Ms. Cindy Meyer, this year's festival chair, has helped organize the three-day festival kicking off tonight, April 26.

"Thursday's event starts with cocktails and bubbles at 6 p.m., Friday starts at 6 p.m. and Saturday's Grand Wine Tasting begins at 3 p.m. until 6 p.m. We only have about 25 tickets left available for Thursday and Friday's events, and tickets are still currently available for Saturday," Meyer said.

The Wine Festival has continued to grow, with each year drawing in more people to the island. The Tybee Island Wine Festival is one of Tybee Post Theater's major fundraising events, according to Melissa Turner, Executive Director of the theater.

This year's festival will feature three main events, one on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. All the events are for people 21 or older, will take place rain or shine and there no pets are allowed unless it is a licensed service dog.

"Thursday is a Caribbean themed three course wine dinner at the Lite Shrine Club, which has the most commanding views of any ocean front facility on the island," Meyer said.

This event is exclusively catered by SAVOR. Savannah and cocktails on the patio begins at 6 p.m., with dinner served at 7 p.m.

Friday and Saturday bring a different feel. Friday's event is a Shuckin' and Pickin' Oyster Roast and Pig Pickin' on the lawn at Tybee Post Theater. It concludes with a concert inside the theater by Spec Hosti, one of Tybee's own, and everyone goes home with a souvenir oyster knife and wine glass, according to the Tybee Post Theater's website.

To cap off the weekend, the Grand Wine Tasting is held at Tybee's own Light Station, on the lawn below the lighthouse. This is the festival's signature event, with over 100 international wines and different samplings offered. Some of the restaurants providing samplings for the Grand Wine Tasting are: Coco's Sunset Grille, Tybee Island Social Club, Fannies on the Beach, Huc A Poo's and more.

There is also an exclusive VIP tent this year, which will offer special menu items, additional wines, and table and chairs under a tent. Regular tickets are $60, and VIP are $100.

According to Turner, this is the largest annual fundraiser for the theater. However, it remains unable to sustain itself on ticket sales alone, so it relies on donations, memberships, grants, fundraisers and help from its dedicated volunteers to continue offering its large array of programming.

"We've got more than 50 volunteers working the three Wine Festival events for us. But, during the rest of the year, we have a dedicated crew of about 25-30 volunteers who work the events," Turner said. "And we are always looking for additional volunteers."

The proceeds from the event benefit the historic Tybee Post Theater, the programs it offers, and the maintenance and upkeep of the historic building, according to Meyers.

Interested people can visit tybeeposttheater.org to order tickets, and anyone interested in volunteering for the theater can email info@tybeeposttheater.org.

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