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Fine vintages on show at NM Wine Festival

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“Early Morning Harvest,” an acrylic painting by Nicholas Montaño, is the chosen image for this year’s wine festival in Bernalillo. (Courtesy of the New Mexico Wine Festival at Bernalillo)

“Early Morning Harvest,” an acrylic painting by Nicholas Montaño, is the chosen image for this year’s wine festival in Bernalillo. (Courtesy of the New Mexico Wine Festival at Bernalillo)

Wineries from across the state will be showing off their finest vintages in Bernalillo this weekend during the 27th annual New Mexico Wine Festival.

The three-day event runs from noon to 7 p.m. today through Monday at Loretto Park just west of Camino del Pueblo, the town’s main street.

As in past years, visitors can stroll the grounds, sampling wines or purchasing bottles of wine from 19 wineries, including such local names as Corrales Winery, Gruet Winery of Albuquerque and Matheson Winery of Rio Rancho. Visitors must be at least 21 years old to sample or buy wine.

There will also be plenty to look at among the dozens of vendor stands, including ceramics, glasswork, metalwork and pottery, as well as clothing and jewelry.

Music is on the menu, too, with a full line-up each afternoon featuring a mix of styles, including such locally well-known artists as Hillary Smith, and the Allstar Lineup of Hip Pocket and Cathryn McGill.

There will also be fun for the kids with jumpers, a petting zoo and face-painting.

This year’s wine festival poster is an original piece titled “Early Morning Harvest” by 24-year-old Nicholas Montaño that depicts a stylized vineyard and sky in the early morning.

This year, visitors can download festival tickets onto their mobile device. When you buy your tickets online from the festival website, newmexicowinefestival.com, a link will be provided to download your ticket as an image to your device. You may also download the image from your desktop and send it to your device. Festival staffers will scan them as they appear on your phone or tablet.

Bernalillo has a long association with wine. The La Salle Christian Brothers, who came to the town in 1872, opened a winery in 1883 to fund the school they founded. The Christian Brothers winery operated until 1948, according to the wine festival website.

The town is about 13 miles north of Albuquerque just west of Interstate 25. Get off at interstate Exits 240 or 242.

Visitors can also take advantage of the service offered daily by the Rail Runner, with trains from as far away as Belen and Santa Fe.

A free shuttle service runs between the U.S. 550/Sandoval Rail Runner station and the festival site.

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