2005 Swiss Wine Festival is now just one week away; volunteers are busy with details

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For volunteers working on the 34th Swiss Wine Festival, it’s been a short 12 months since last year’s event closed down on the banks of the Ohio River in the Paul Ogle Riverfront Park.

For members of the community and visitors to the area, next Thursday cannot come quickly enough, as this year’s festival prepares to get underway. Once again the Swiss Wine Festival Board of Directors has worked hard all year to make the 2005 festival the biggest and best ever.

The festival committee is bringing many new attractions and entertainers to this year’s festival; and those will be mixed with all of the traditional events that will make this a great four days for visitors of all ages,

There are all types of new things going on at this year’s festival, from a first-time appearance by the “Spirit of Jefferson” Riverboat from Louisville to new bands and improved amusement rides.

This is the first time the “Spirit of Jefferson” has been to Vevay during the Swiss Wine Festival. This boat is larger than the previous one and has two levels inside with air conditioning. There will be dinner cruises on Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights. There will be a fireworks cruise on Saturday night and a Moonlight cruise on Friday night. Sightseeing cruises will be held throughout the weekend.

Another new event this year is a Laser Light Show that will take place on both Friday and Saturday nights. On Saturday night the traditional Fireworks Show will immediately follow the Laser Light Show.

Prior to the laser light show on Friday night will be a Hot Air Balloon “Glow” that will take place at the Ball Field. Hot Air Balloon tether rides will be available before the Balloon Glow that night.

The amusement rides are always popular with kids — young and old, and this year the festival will be featuring the Murray Brothers Shows from Cincinnati, Ohio. Murray Brothers will provide all of the amusement rides and games on the midway.

Discount amusement rides tickets are being sold again this year, and are now available on a limited basis at various locations around the county.

Another new event this year at the Swiss Wine Festival is a Corn Hole Tournament. The Corn Hole Tournament will be held in the Ball Field, and there are divisions and categories for all ages of players. Never tried to play a game of cornhole? There will be plenty of people around during the festival to help you learn.

An antique auction will take place on Sunday afternoon in the ball field. Anyone wanting to sell some antiques may bring them to this event for sale, and Mike Danner is in charge of this activity.

Entertainment will be spotlighted throughout the four days, with acts taking place at the Main Stage, Ogle Stage, boat dock parking lot, and also strolling around the festival grounds.

The headliner entertainment on Friday night will be the Endless Summer Band. The Endless Summer Band offers a fantastic, family musical variety show. The four lead vocal stylists really bring the mega hits to life with much more than just great voices. Colorful costume changes, high energy choreography, and hilarious comedy bits are all part of what you will see with the Endless Summer Band.

Back by popular demand after a successful appearance last year, The Van-Dells will be the headliner entertainment on Saturday night. The Van-Dells are an oldies show group specializing in 50s and 60s Rock-n-Roll. They sing a cross section of oldies and combine a unique blend of comedy, choreography, tight harmonies and costume changes.

Along with the new events, there are still plenty of events that have become festival traditions. The 2005 Swiss Wine Festival will also again include:

Little Swiss Polka Dancers, Edelweiss Dancers, Fireworks Show (Saturday night), Grand Festival Parade (Saturday 10 a.m.), Arts and Crafts booths, Community Grape Stomp (Thursday night), Grape Stomping, Steintossen.

Also: Run for the Rose, 5K Walk Run (Saturday 8 a.m.), 3K River Run, Edelweiss Prince and Princess Program (at Belterra on Sunday, August 7th), Teen Princess Pageant, Swiss Ambassador Program, Wine Tasting Pavilion, Beer Garden.

Also: Food Booths, Helicopter Rides (Saturday night), Lots of professional entertainment, Community Church Service, Duck Race, Great Canoe Race, Weight Lifting Contest, 3 on 3 Basketball Tournaments, Cruise-In, Poker Run, and the “Savor the Taste” wine judging, which will be held this Saturday, August 20th.

For additional information, please visit the festival web site at www.swisswinefestival.org.