Autumn Traditions

Photo courtesy of Monticello

The 14th annual Heritage Harvest Festival at Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello’s kicked off its virtual offerings in October and will run through early December.

Annual harvest festivals continue with precautions in place.

Celebrate fall’s bounty at two popular harvest festivals. Revel in autumn’s abundance at the 19th annual Heritage Harvest Soup & Wine Festival at AmRhein’s Wine Cellars on Nov. 14-15. The weekend-long event in Bent Mountain, just outside Roanoke, will kick off with a triple feature of select homemade soups, the winery’s estate wines, and live music, including Roanoke’s local favorite artist, Ron Downing, and the alternative/folk artist Betsy Kelderhouse.

Attendees will be greeted with a cup and a ticket indicating their soup choices, and will then head to the wine tasting bar to select a pour to pair with the soups. “Guests get to sample five pairings, then they choose their favorite. This year we’re going to have a vote for crowd favorite soup,” says AmRhein marketing manager Jackie Sells. “Every year we try to highlight a few local restaurants and chefs in the area. We will have a blue crab and shrimp bisque by Ben Ward and a chicken Thai infused soup by Mike McCarthy, to name a few.” Vegan and gluten-free options will also be available. To cope with COVID, the festival will offer two seating time slots in which only 50 guests at a time will be permitted to enter, and social distancing guidelines will be enforced. AmRheinWine.com

A cherished Charlottesville tradition has gone virtual this year, making it easier than ever to get involved. The 14th annual Heritage Harvest Festival at Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello’s kicked off its virtual offerings in October and will run through early December. This fan-favorite festival will offer food classes, décor inspiration, farm footage, gardening tips, and vital conversations, plus programs like The Earth in Her Hands: Women in the World of Plants Growing a Better Tomorrow and Handmade for the Holidays: Décor for Your Door

“We wanted to see how we could transition what is typically a robust live festival with many different programs and thousands of guests, to a virtual experience,” says Megan Howerton, director of events and food & beverage at the Thomas Jefferson Foundation. “Our hope is that we could still give guests a sense of place—a sense of being on the grounds. We aimed to ensure that the programs stemmed from the three topic pillars of the Heritage Harvest Festival, which are food, farm, and gardening.” Monticello.org

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