First-Ever Wine Tourism Day in North America to take place May 11

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (May 10, 2013) - The Charlottesville Albemarle Convention & Visitors Bureau (CACVB) invites locals and visitors alike to take part in the first-ever Wine Tourism Day, taking place on Saturday, May 11, 2013.

"With over thirty wineries in a thirty-mile radius around Charlottesville, there is no better place to celebrate Wine Tourism Day," said Kurt Burkhart, CACVB Executive Director. "Our area can also claim to be the birthplace of winemaking in America, with Thomas Jefferson having imported vines from Europe and trying his hand at winemaking at Monticello."

Virginia was recently named one of the top-10 wine destinations by the prestigious Wine Enthusiast magazine, and Virginia wines are recognized more and more for their high-quality and uniqueness.

"There are now over 7,500 wineries in 205 American Viticultural Areas, 38 authorized wine appellations in Canada, and another 40 appellations in Mexico", says Allan Wright, president of Zephyr Adventures, the active wine tour company organizing Wine Tourism Day. "Most of these wine regions and many of these wineries are dependent on visitors who sleep in hotel beds, eat in restaurants, and buy wine from cellar doors. Wine tourism is very important to the success of many local economies and is a subject worth commemorating."

About the CACVB
In addition to serving as the global resource for marketing the tourism assets of Charlottesville and Albemarle County, Virginia, through www.visitcharlottesville.org, the CVB assists tour operators, meeting planners, reunions and other groups in planning visits to the destination. CACVB's mission is "to enhance the economic prosperity of City and County by promoting, selling and marketing the City of Charlottesville and County of Albemarle, as a destination, in pursuit of the meetings and tourism markets." CACVB operates the Downtown Visitor Center (610 E Main St) which is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and a satellite Visitor Center in the Albemarle County Office Building (401 McIntire Rd) which is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., as well as a touch-screen kiosk at Monticello's Thomas Jefferson Visitor Center.

About Wine Tourism Day
The idea for a Wine Tourism Day comes from Europe, where the European Day of Wine Tourism has been ongoing since 2009. Attendees of the 2012 Wine Tourism Conference, an annual gathering of the industry's leaders, discussed bringing the concept to North America. Wine Tourism Day is supported by a number of industry partners including LocalWineEvents.com, Touring and Tasting Marketing & Media, WineAmerica, the Wine Industry Network, the Wine Tourism Conference, and Zephyr Adventures, in addition to wine and tourism associations in wine regions throughout North America. For more information and to find a list of events on Wine Tourism Day, please visit www.WineTourismDay.org.