WINNETKA – The East Elm Wine Walk invites guests to spend Saturday, September 16, walking through the beautiful streets of downtown Winnetka, perusing shops, and sipping wine served by knowledgeable reps from the Wilmette Wine Cellar. The event benefits Boys Hope Girls Hope of Illinois.
“Boys Hope Girls Hope helps change the trajectory of the lives of so many that have limited options because of where they are growing up,” said Peter Beale-DelVecchio, executive director. “Events like the East Elm Wine Walk mean that we will have support to further the important work that we do.”
Beale-DelVecchio said Boys Hope Girls Hope provides a family like environment for scholars. The proceeds from the East Elm Wine Walk will go directly toward food, housing, tuition, technology for school, electronic text book subscriptions, uniforms, ACT preparation, extracurricular fees, and counseling.
Beale-DelVecchio said Boys Hope Girls Hope scholars come from North Chicago, Waukegan, and the south, west, and north sides of Chicago.
“There is a lot of progress being made, but the challenges of getting a high quality education in their neighborhoods is still very real,” he said. “Coupled with the violence that we hear about day after day, we have to find answers for this next generation that want to chase the opportunity for better education.”
Co-chair Deb McMahon, manager of J. McLaughlin Winnetka, created the event three years ago to showcase the shops and restaurants in the Winnetka business districts.
She said that despite pouring rain and conflicts with other events, there still was a nice turnout at the 2016 East Elm Wine Walk. That event also benefited Boys Hope Girls Hope of Illinois.
“Boys Hope Girls Hope of Illinois is not only a great charity, but they also have a strong support base, and they’re a wonderful organization to work with,” she said.
McMahon said the East Elm Wine Walk will pair wine with local food offerings, and that there will be more food vendors this year, including Grateful Bites, Little Ricky’s, Trifecta, Mirani’s at Home, Stacked & Folded, Café Aroma, Guildhall, and The Floured Apron.
Throughout the Wine Walk, Tom Boyle, owner of Wilmette Wine Cellar, will have trained wine reps pouring wine at each store. “Tom provides all of the wine and he’s fabulous,” said McMahon.
East Elm Wine Walk began featuring live music last year, and it will partner with the North Shore Music Institute to provide music in different locations.
“We’re grateful to the chamber, the village and Boys Hope Girls Hope to have some great organizations behind us,” said McMahon, who is thrilled to be working with her first co-chair, Rachel Mann, managing director of CONLON/Christie’s International Real Estate’s North Shore Office, Winnetka.
Mann said that while guests are sampling wine and enjoying light bites, they will have the opportunity to explore the 16 local participating businesses, boutiques and shops on East Elm Street in Winnetka.
Mann also has high praise for Boys Hope Girls Hope of Illinois. “The kids and their stories are incredibly inspiring and they are always willing to assist in preparation for this event,” said Mann. “Peter Beale-DelVecchio and his team leaders from Boys Hope Girls Hope of Illinois have been amazing to work with.”
McMahon said each guest will receive a tasting glass, a swag bag and a tour book that includes information about Boys Hope Girls Hope, a map for each stop and explanation of which wine is being poured at each stop.
Tickets may be purchased for $50 online or $60 at the door.
“The total ticket price goes to the charity, as we have all of our expenses covered via our sponsorships,” said McMahon.
She added this year East Elm Wine Walk will be considering having two walk-in registration sites, as the majority of the stops are on Lincoln, because Elm is going to be under construction.
East Elm Wine Walk will be held on September 16 from 4 to 7 p.m. on the corner of Lincoln and Elm Street, Winnetka. For tickets and more information on the check-in sites visit: www.picatic.com/eastelmwinewalk2017 .
Madeline Karnes contributed to this story.
Boys Hope Girls Hope of Illinois