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Mountain Home Magazine

I’ll Drink to That

No, it hasn’t been a severe winter. But the leaden skies and tart winds still urge us to trot from the car to the office, the office to the house in mind-numbing repetition. This claustrophobic state of Groundhog Day-like sameness has a name: cabin fever. But it also has a cure. What a great time to be alive!

Corning’s thirteenth annual Cabin Fever wine and beer tasting event was born in the depths of winter twelve years ago, as a way to get outside, sample some of the areas best beers and wines, and reintroduce yourself to your social life.

Pip’s Boutique owner Sarah Files, whose shop will this year be hosting Victorianbourg Wine Estate from the south shore of Lake Ontario, says it’s what everyone is craving this time of year. “It doesn’t matter what the weather is. Snow, rain, wind, folks still come out. They wear funny hats and Mardi Gras beads and those glow necklaces are everywhere. People are ready to have fun. There is a group of ladies from Pennsylvania that always come up for the event. They stay at the Radisson and make a weekend of it.”

Joe and Tammy Carey, owners of The Site Cyber Bar and Grill on Bridge Street, will be hosting Cider Creek Hard Cider, an artisanal craft cider maker from Canisteo, New York. The Site has been participating in the event since day one. Says Joe, “It always works. It’s a unique event and everybody seems to have a good time. It’s one night to give people an excuse to get out and enjoy the Corning area and enjoy some things they might not get to taste otherwise.” Besides Cider Creek, The Site will be offering tastings on other craft beers, many of them local.

But it’s not all just beverages. Gaffer District businesses will be hosting an endless variety of other events and experiences. Corning’s Coluccio Family Band will play at Pure Design, says Jill Agosta, manager of Pure Design and Connor’s Mercantile. Besides hosting Rooster Hill Vineyards from Penn Yan and The Peanut Bar Sampling, Connor’s will also host Small Conversations, “a local high school band with quite a following,” says Jill. “It’s a fun night, with a wonderful crowd of people who come through.”

This will be the first-ever Cabin Fever for the new 60 East Gallery on Market Street. Owner Mary O’Connor (with co-owner husband Patrick, whose work helps grace the gallery walls) will be hosting Atwater Estate Vineyards. “I am planning an art-centric experience,” says Mary “super interactive. And really good food to serve with Atwater’s excellent wines.”

This year’s event will be held on Friday, March 11, from 5:00-8:00 p.m. The $15 price tag includes collectible wine and beer glasses and unlimited tastings throughout the Gaffer District. (All Cabin Fever participants must be twenty-one or older, and a legal photo I.D. is required.)

Market Street’s elegant wine store, Bottles & Corks, sponsors a Drink Responsibly Designated Driver Appreciation Program, which encourages the evening’s imbibing participants to designate a driver for the event. Select businesses will be offering them tokens of appreciation, including free non-alcoholic drinks, to reward them for abstaining.

“We’re very proud to sponsor the designated driver program again,” said Mary Beth Maxa, owner of Bottles & Corks. “We want people to know that they can enjoy themselves and have as much fun as they want, while still being responsible and promoting safety throughout the community.”

A complimentary shuttle will run between Market Street and Bridge Street, with bus stops in front of Lando’s and Tony R’s and at the Corner of Market and Wall Streets.

To be a Cabin Fever participant, just check in (beginning at 5 p.m.) at one of three check-in locations: The Information Center of Corning, the Radisson Hotel Corning, or Lando’s Hotel and Lounge. If you want to get your tickets in advance, stop in at the The Information Center of Corning on Market Street. For more information, or to reserve tickets, call (607) 962-8997 or visit

So bundle up in your best and head out. There are people out there who only know you as the plaid scarf with the Ugg boots. 

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