winterfest-long-island.jpgRIVERHEAD, NY – Visit the East End of Long Island this winter during Winterfest 2009 - JAZZ ON THE VINE, for over 60 FREE jazz concerts at area wineries and over 100 special offers from area businesses from Feb. 14-Mar. 22, 2009. The musical calendar for “JAZZ ON THE VINE - 2009” has been extended to six weekends this year, beginning Saturday, February 14 and continuing through Sunday, March 22 (up from five weekends last year). ‘National Treasure’ David Amram, the legendary Teddy Charles, world renowned Bakithi Kumalo, Dwayne Kerr and his Funky Flute Band and the Beledo Quartet, considered mythical to Uruguayan music connoisseurs, among many other outstanding talents, will perform during Winterfest. “We have a stellar line up of musicians from both near and far," says Pat Snyder Executive Director of the East End Arts Council. “There is no shortage of jazz genres to choose from including Brazilian, Afro-Cuban, Contemporary, Jazz Standards, Dixieland, Smooth jazz, bebop and more. There is definitely something for everyone." In addition to the amazing series of free jazz concerts, the program is supplemented by special offers from area hotels, restaurants, limo/tour companies, cultural and family attractions, and other businesses participating in the promotion. Similar to a ‘Restaurant Week,’ only better, Winterfest lets visitors know Long Island is open for business and a mid-winter escape not only brings great entertainment, but great value. The Winterfest program launches Valentine’s Day weekend and offers couples the opportunity to enjoy the free jazz concerts and also plan an extended stay at an area hotel or B&B. Families are also welcome during Winterfest with area attractions offering specials discounts and programs. Book a hotel or a limo to create a memorable experience. Visit for a complete schedule of FREE jazz concerts and other events and offers. The 2009 Winterfest is being organized by the Long Island Wine Council, the East End Arts Council (EEAC), Suffolk County Department of Economic Development and Workforce Housing (SCED&WH), the Long Island Convention and Visitors Bureau (LICVB), with support from American Express, WLIU Radio and LI Pulse magazine. The 2009 promotion also benefits from significant additional funding from an Agri-Tourism grant from New York’s Department of Agriculture and Markets and an Explore New York grant from the State’s Tourism Division. “This year’s Winterfest program promises to be the best one yet,” said Suffolk County Executive Steve Levy. “Suffolk County is such a unique and diverse area that there is something for everyone at any time of the year. Our great county is often thought of as a hotspot only in the summer, when, in reality, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Winterfest 2009 and the Jazz on the Vine event are terrific representations of this.” Winterfest was conceived in 2006 to generate increased business on the East End during the slowest part of the year by promoting a calendar of activities and specific offers. Last year was the first time that the promotion adopted a particular musical theme and it was so successful, the events were extended from five weeks/50 free concerts to six weeks/60 free concerts. And participation by area businesses offering discounts and promotions is up over ten percent from last year. “The calendar of free jazz concerts is a main draw to Winterfest, especially during these difficult economic times, and the additional special offers from area businesses make it a great deal,” said Kristen Matejka, director of marketing at the LICVB. “Many of the area businesses, hotels and B&Bs have put together getaway packages that include some really unique experiences as well.” According to Steve Bate, executive director of the Wine Council, “We were thrilled with the results of the 2008 program. Our participating wineries experienced an increase in sales of between 20 and 200 percent during this normally slow time of year. The promotion also exceeded our expectations in drawing new audiences from the New York metropolitan area, across Long Island and New England.” Visit for Details
“JAZZ ON THE VINE” will be the theme of the 2009 Long Island Winterfest, which will run from February 14 to March 22. The program will feature local jazz musicians performing at winery tasting rooms every weekend afternoon over the six-week period. The musical calendar will be supplemented by special offers and promotions at businesses and cultural venues throughout the region. 2009 Jazz on the Vine events are being organized by the Long Island Wine Council, the East End Arts Council, Suffolk County Department of Economic Development and Workforce Housing, the Long Island Convention and Visitors Bureau with support from American Express, WLIU and LI Pulse magazine. A full marketing plan includes promotion to the NYC, CT and Long Island markets. This year, the program received additional New York State funding grants for the promotion.***PHOTOS AVAILABLE Contact: Steven Bate, LI Wine Council, (631) 722-2220; Pat Snyder, EEAC, (631) 727-0900; Kristen Matejka, LICVB, (631) 951-3900; John Callegari, SCED&WFH, (631) 853-4005