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Arizona Wine Growers Association (AWGA) Elected New Board Members

PHOENIX, Ariz. -- The Arizona Wine Growers Association (AWGA) has announced the election and the re-election of members to its Board of Directors and officers for term through 2018. AWGA is governed by 8 growers in three districts who serve 1 or 2 year terms.

The new directors are Kief Manning, owner/winemaker of Kief-Joshua Vineyards; Barb Coons, owner of Four Tails Vineyard; Cory Whalin, owner/winemaker of Su Vino Winery; Lori Reynolds, owner/winemaker of Sonoita Vineyards; and Michael Pierce, Director of Enology at Yavapai College, owner/winemaker Saeculum Cellars and Bodega Pierce.

Re-elected directors, are Brian Predmore, owner of Alcantara Vineyards and Winery; Ann Roncone, owner of Lightning Ridge Cellars; and John Smith, owner of Sierra Bonita Vineyards.

The elected officers are: Brian Predmore, President; Kief Manning, Vice President; Ann Roncone, Treasurer; and John Smith, Secretary.

"We are pleased to have and welcome the new board members and look forward to their leadership and experience," said AWGA past president, Rod Keeling of Keeling-Schaefer Vineyards. "They will be a valuable asset to our growing organization and will be a powerful voice for Arizona wine growers."

AWGA provides industry leadership to advocate for industry policies, research, leadership, and public education. The organization is dedicated to enhance Arizona's wine growers business in the state's Agritourism and Public Knowledge of Local Wines. The Arizona Wine Growers Association represents over 70 percent of the state industry's wine producers. Our 5 year strategic plan includes focusing on marketing, legislation and promotion of the AZ wine industry in the state.

AWGA has several signature wine festivals starting with our newest event at the University of Arizona, Festival at the Farm on November 11, 2017. There will be a dinner to honor our founding fathers of the AZ wine industry on Friday, November 10, 2017. The Grand Wine Gala on Friday, January 26, 2018 where AZ Republic presents the AZ Wine Awards will be held in Downtown Phoenix at CREATE at the AZ Science Center, followed by the Grand Wine Festival Saturday and Sunday, January 27 and 28, 2018 at Heritage Square. The Oro Valley Wine Festival is Saturday, February 17, 2018 at Steam Pump Ranch in Oro Valley.

Information on the AWGA including participating winery members, events and wine tour maps can be found at

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Kief-Joshua Vineyards Wine Tasting Room Grand Opening in Willcox, AZ

ELGIN, Ariz. -- Kief-Joshua Vineyards (KJV) is officially opening its gates and inviting the public to join them on September 16, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at their Willcox tasting room, located at 4923 E. Arzberger Road. The grand opening will feature wine flights, wines or sangria by the glass, small bites pairings and a local pistachio farmer.

"We had a seriously need for more fruit," says winemaker, Kief Manning. "Since Willcox grows seventy-four percent of Arizona's wine grapes, and is the source of the most highly rated Arizona wines by Wine Spectator, I felt this property would grant us the most opportunity for fruit quality and abundance."

The Willcox area was recently granted AVA (American Viticultural Area) status, meaning this area is now recognized as a unique and distinctive wine-growing region in the United States. The Willcox Wine Consortium consists of at least ten different wineries and tasting rooms, and is a perfect day trip for wine tasting.

Tasting fees:
$10 grants customers a souvenir glass and 5 (1oz) pours Or $7 if you bring a wine glass. Wine by the glass is discounted to $5 and Sangria $3.

For more information, please visit or call 520-455-5582.

From Phoenix or Tucson: From Highway 10, take exit #336 - Take Haskell Avenue to Maley St, head south on 186. Turn right on Kansas Settlement Road. Make a Left on Arzberger (A "paved" road). At Mile marker 3 turn right into Wayward winds and Kief-Joshua Vineyards will be on your left.

Save the dates:
* Magdelena Bash Harvest Festival, featuring new wine releases, two bands, food, vendors and more on Aug. 26, 2017, 11-5 at Kief-Joshua Vineyards-Elgin.

* Kief-Joshua Willcox, October 27-29, 2017 Hallowine: Grapes and Goodies.

* The Southeast Arizona Wine Growers Festival, featuring 15 AZ Wineries on March 10 & 11, 2018 at Kief-Joshua Vineyards-Elgin.

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