Like a fine wine, the Grove City Wine and Arts Festival seems to be getting better with age.
The eighth annual event will feature more than 100 vendors, including 22 Ohio wineries, and will once again be a two-day event.
The festival will be held from 5 to 10 p.m. June 15 and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. June 16 along Broadway and Park Street in the Town Center.
"Adding Friday night to the festival last year really helped boost the attendance," said Andy Furr, executive director of Grove City Town Center Inc.
"We didn't have a clear idea of what Friday night would be, but it seemed like it brought in a whole different segment of the population that maybe weren't coming when it was a Saturday-only event," he said.
Last year's event drew about 30,000 people over the two days, Furr said.
The 22 wineries participating in this year's event will include familiar and new vintners.
"There is such a burgeoning wine industry in our state, and I think people will be surprised when they come to the festival and see what a variety of wines are produced right here in Ohio," Furr said. "We're getting interest for more and more wineries who want to be part of our event."
"People are always surprised when they learn how many wineries there are in Ohio," said Dave Crosby, who owns Plum Run Winery at 3946 Broadway. Plum Rum Winery has participated in each year's festival.
"We're up to about 290 wine makers in the state and just around central Ohio along there are probably about 30 wine operations," he said. "It's a very close-knit group. We all support each other, communicate with each other and help promote our fellow wineries.
The state's easing of regulations has helped spur the growing wine industry in Ohio, Crosby said.
"That's probably been the biggest factor," he said. "The state has changed its laws, and whether you want to make wine, beer or liquor, it's a lot easier now for people to open and operate a facility."
The wineries at the Wine and Arts Festival include a mix of those using grapes they grow themselves and others that import grapes from out of state, Furr said.
"We're still not growing enough grapes in Ohio to supply ourselves, so a lot of wineries have to go elsewhere to get the ingredients they need," Crosby said.
Admission to the festival is free. Tickets to sample wines can be purchased at the event in bundles of eight with a souvenir glass for $20. Most wineries offer samples for one ticket or a glass of wine for three tickets. Higher-end wines may require two tickets for samples and four for a glass.
After the initial purchase, additional tickets cost three for $5.
The arts portion of the festival will be well represented with more than 80 artists and at least a dozen crafters participating, Furr said.
"We'll have a nice spectrum of all different types of media, including fabrics, ceramics, woodworking, jewelry and painting," he said.
The artists were selected through a juried process, said Furr, who added that more than 300 artists have applied.
"While our focus for the wines is Ohio, we'll have several artists who come from out of state," he said.
A dozen food trucks will serve "everything from comfort food and barbecue to high-end dishes," Furr said.
The event also will include live entertainment.
Parking will be available throughout the Town Center and surrounding neighborhoods.
In addition, shuttle service will be provided from the parking lot at the Broadway Center on the corner of Southwest and Broadway and from local hotels.