Wine trail to roll out magazines in welcome centers, rest stops

The Virginia Wine Trail will be rolling out a new magazine in the next couple months. These magazines will contain information on all 35 or so members of the wine trail, which includes 22 wineries, a cidery and various other stops spanning from Berryville to near Roanoke.

Vicki Ruckman, the wine trail’s secretary and events coordinator, was part of the team behind bringing the magazine concept to fruition.

“It’s going to be 36 to 40 pages,” she said. “It’ll be something that will be on the shelves and be useful. Depending on how quickly they go we’ll be printing 25,000 and then we’ll be updating and were hoping this will help add some more lodging and dining partners and then start having more content. … Once it’s printed, it will be distributed to all welcome centers on interstates in Virginia and welcome centers like Shenandoah County Tourism and Harrisonburg Welcome Center and 15 others.”

Roughly half of the magazine’s expenses will be funded by a grant secured by the wine trail with the help of Jenna French, director of tourism for Shenandoah County.

“One of the things that we had to show the Virginia Tourism Corporation in order win the grant is that we were going to bring more visitors from outside Virginia,” Ruckman said. “Our main goal is to get to where visitors anywhere in the state will be able to see it (the magazine).”

Randy Phillips, owner of Cave Ridge Vineyards in Mount Jackson, also played a substantial role in the magazine’s development.

“Randy Phillips, the owner and winemaker at Cave Ridge, had picked up a copy of a similar magazine in upstate New York and said ‘wouldn’t it be really cool if we could do this?’ They have marketing grants for that,” Ruckman said. “We kind of kicked it around for a few months,  then we talked to Jenna and she said ‘this is a great idea, here’s what you need to do.'”

Then came time to select printers, Ruckman said.

“We got bids from different printers and picked the one who publishes what used to be Virginia Wine Lovers’ Magazine,” she said. “That’s the kind of publication we’re looking for. Its 8.5 by 11 with a glossy finish.”

Ruckman said the grant monies will cover $7,500 of the magazine’s costs, with the Wine Trail supplying the remaining $7,500 or so. She hopes to go to press by the end of April.

Contact staff writer Nathan Budryk at 540-465-5137 ext. 155, or