Wines galore can be sampled at Harford Wine Festival Sept. 28

A one-day license was approved Sept. 18 by the liquor control board, 4-0, for the Harford County Wine Festival at Rockfield Manor, which is planned for noon to 6 p.m. Sept. 28.

This is the eighth wine festival held in the bowl next to the manor house; the event has grown from 1,000 people in the early years ago to 3,000 last year, said Mark Welsh, of the Rockfield Foundation.

Tickets for the wine-tasting are $25 for adults 21 and older (in advance, $30 at the gate); $10 for ages 13 to 20; and free for children 12 and younger. VIP tickets are $60 a person and gets guests access to the Manor House, premium wine and food pairings from Pairings Bistro including crab soup, lobster macaroni and cheese and fresh salads.

The event will benefit the Rockfield Foundation and Harford County Toys for Tots.

Tickets will get guests coupons for 20 1/2-ounce samples of the various wines, provided by Bel Air Liquors. Wine will also be available for sale by the bottle. Beer will also be sold.

The Amish Outlaws will play from noon to 3 p.m. and Don't Stop will take the stage from 3 to 6 p.m. Ed and Rick will also be playing during the day.

Tickets for the rain or shine event can be bought at or by calling 410-638-4565.

Organizers have made a few adjustments this year to accommodate the growing crowd, which is being capped at 3,000.

To alleviate some of the parking issues in previous years, volunteers and vendors will be parking on Ewing Street, while the lot and field above the Rockfield bowl area will be for visitors, with additional parking at John Carroll School, where traffic will be directed by mobile billboards.

Bouncers will be working the main gate to ID visitors, and Bel Air Police will be on-site throughout the festival. The number of restrooms has been increased from seven to 20. Three hand-washing stations will be set up.

Towson Gymnast

A one-day license also was approved for a bull roast Oct. 4 to benefit Towson University's gymnastics team through the Towson University Foundation.

The team lost a lot of its funding 15 years ago and since then has been trying to rebuild its program, Assistant Coach Rebecca Schaller told the liquor board Wednesday. Since joining the staff three years ago, she has been trying to help raise money to "get the program up to par with teams we compete with."

Funds raised will go toward scholarships, team travel and new equipment" so our athletes can have the best experience at Towson as they can," Schaller said.

The bull roast will be the Great Hall on Harford Gymnastics' location at 701 Whitaker Mill Road in Fallston, said Schaller, who added they're hoping to have 50 to 60 people.

"It's new at this point. We're hoping to grow year after year," she said.

Schaller said she will be at the door to check IDs, and only people 21 and older will be allowed to attend. Schaller was advised to make sure volunteers aren't drinking at the event, and Schaller assured they wouldn't be.

Other action

•Red Robin at Harford Mall will remain open while it undergoes a facelift, board members were told Wednesday. The restaurant will get fresh paint, new tables and new wall décor. The work is scheduled for Sept. 30 to Oct. 28; the restaurant will remain open and work will be done after hours.

•Old School Tavern in the 3400 block of Conowingo Road in Street is using its outside patio since it got its necessary approvals, board members were told.

•A license was issued Monday for the first floor of the Water's Edge Events Center and owners are working on the outside seating, liquor board inspector Danielle Markette said. Temporary fencing is up, but Clark Turner plans to install a nicer gate and fence in the area.

•The board voted 4-0 to approve outside serving requests for Laurrapin Griller, Rodgers House Tavern, Coakley's Pub, MacGregor's Restaurant and Vineyard Wine Bar for the First Fridays celebration in Havre de Grace Oct. 4.

•One-day beer and wine licenses were approved for Northeastern Maryland Tech Council for a wine-tasting Oct. 10 and Bel Air Downtown Alliance Inc.'s Girls Night Out in Bel Air Oct. 17.

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