St. Lawrence County Wine Trail included in state Senate’s budget proposal
Thursday, March 20, 2014 - 2:38 pm

The budget proposal recently approved in the state Senate includes a measure to establish a St. Lawrence County Wine Trail.

The St. Lawrence County Wine Trail would start near Black Lake’s Bella Brooke Winery in Morristown, extending to Lisbon’s River Myst Winery and then to High Peaks Winery in Winthrop. The trail is being designed to also bring visitors to St. Lawrence Brewing’s microbrewery in Canton, allowing the four companies additional opportunities to work together to market themselves.

The aim of the trail is to help put local vineyards and winemakers on the map, attract more tourists to the area, boost local business and create jobs in the region.

“The North Country has a perfect opportunity to capitalize on the fast-growing wine and grape industries by creating a St. Lawrence Wine Trail that links our area’s vineyards and winemakers,” said 48th District Sen. Patty Ritchie (R-Heuvelton).

Ritchie, who chairs the Senate Agriculture Committee, represents northern St. Lawrence County including Ogdensburg, Canton, Gouverneur, Oswegatchie, Waddington, Lisbon, Madrid, Louisville, DeKalb, DePeyster, Hermon, Edwards, Fowler, Rossie, Macomb, Morristown, and Hammond, plus Jefferson and Oswego counties.

“The inclusion of the St. Lawrence Wine Trail in the Senate’s spending plan represents a major step for this legislation,” Ritchie said.

“I’m looking forward to working to make sure the proposal—which would create new business, employment and tourism opportunities—is included in the final enacted budget.”

According to the New York State Wine and Grape Foundation more than 250 new wineries have opened across the state over the past 27 years. A recent study by the foundation also determined that nearly 5 million tourists visit annually to take advantage of the state’s wineries. In addition, the study suggested that those tourists spend $376.5 million annually on wine-related expenditures.