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Wine, art a winning combo

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Posted: Monday, March 26, 2012 12:00 pm

By Rose L. Thayer

Killeen Daily Herald

SALADO - Main Street was lined with cars this weekend as Central Texans traveled to Salado to take advantage of art and wine festivals.

The Salado Wine Seller hosted the fourth annual Texas Wine and Rogue Art Fest, featuring 20 wineries and 24 vendors selling art, handmade jewelry, artisan cheese and balsamic vinegars.

"We have a great blend of different Texas wines that are not the same ones you see at every festival," said June Ritterbusch, owner of the wine shop.

This year's event was the largest to date with more than 1,400 people visiting on Saturday and Sunday.

But, "it's not so big that you have to stand in line waiting for wine," Ritterbusch said.

Austin-based Hidden Dragon Art owners Arthur and Rebecca Rang Schoenig said they had a steady flow of people pass by their metal art on display. This was their second year at the festival.

"We like the organization of it," said Rebecca Rang Schoenig. "They put on a nice little festival here. ... We enjoy coming here because it's relaxing."

Arthur Schoenig said the event exposes their art to a different type of crowd than those found at other art festivals because of the wine tasting.

"It has an upper-class feel while being very welcoming," he said.

Louise Hamilton of Killeen came to the festival with her husband on Saturday to try white wines and with her girlfriends on Sunday to sample red wines.

"It's just a great time, and it's nice to have all these Texas wines in one spot," she said. "With the art mixed in, it's perfect."

Hamilton had attended the festival before, but it was her friend Jamesia Dolpa's first visit.

"It has a lot to offer, but it's not overwhelming. There's something for everybody," she said.

Just down Main Street, the 12th annual Wildflower Art Show was under way, sponsored by the Salado Chamber of Commerce, featuring more than 30 artists and artisans along the banks of Salado Creek.

Contact Rose L. Thayer at rthayer@kdhnews.com or (254) 501-7463. Follow her on Twitter at KDHreporter.

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