Asheville Wine & Food Festival to grow growing minds

The weekend just after Buncombe County schools get back in session brings the Asheville Wine & Food Festival. This year, ASAP’s Growing Minds program is an event beneficiary.

“It’s about revitalizing our food culture and industry, and ASAP is the premier reason WNC has a vibrant local food culture now,” says event founder and director Bob Bowles.

Asheville Wine & Food Festival has committed to supporting organizations working with food and farm. Last year’s beneficiary was Slow Food Asheville. “Slow Food Asheville seeks to educate youth — through our FEAST program — and have that youth share their food experiences with their family and friends,” Bowles says. “So, there’s a natural continuation with ASAP’s Growing Minds Farm to School Program, which is influencing children to connect with their food and to know where their food comes from. Each organization is using the techniques available to them to achieve this mission, because we know that young children have influence. They can change their parents’ minds.”

The event kicks off on Aug. 23 with the final WNC Chefs Challenge; the festival worked with ASAP to source secret Appalachian Grown-certified ingredients throughout the competition. The challenge is followed by a special dessert event, SWEET, on Aug. 24, with the big event — featuring more than 300 regional, national and international wines; creations prepared by Asheville’s chefs, live entertainment and more — taking place Aug. 25. Stop by ASAP’s booth for a farm-to-school cooking demonstration; Farm Tour passes will also be available for purchase. For festival tickets and more information, visit

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