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Loudoun’s Artisan Trail celebrates launch at Stone Tower Winery

Artisan Trail members and supporters celebrate the launch at Stone Tower Winery Oct. 18. Facebook/Beth Hockenberry Erickson
The Loudoun Artisan Trail celebrated its official launch Wednesday night at a reception at Stone Tower Winery in Leesburg.

“It's been quite awhile in the making, and it's fabulous having it come to fruition. Our members are really excited about the ability to network with each other, collaborate, support, and position Loudoun as an artisan destination,” said Lisa Strout, a local artist, gallery manager at Tryst Gallery in Leesburg and one of the founders of the trail.

Loudoun's Artisan Trail is made up of local arts and agricultural businesses, tourism and economic development representatives and cultural businesses. The organizers represent a public-private initiative aimed at strengthening the relationships and connectivity of local businesses while also emphasizing local products.

Brochures are available online and hard copies are displayed throughout the county. There are 138 sites so far. Loudoun is Virginia's 31st trail and one of its largest. It's a part of the Artisan Centers of Virginia, headquartered in Greenville, Va. The Artisan Center was founded in 1999.

"We are so excited and thrilled to have Loudoun as a trail," said Connie Weyrick, office manager at the center.

By becoming an Artisan Trail member, food producers, artists, distilleries and others will find their businesses plotted on a map. Visitors to the county and those living here will experience “the vast array of products, from cheeses and honey to organic body lotions and herbs to art created by our neighbors” through the map, said Strout.

Members pay a fee ranging from $100 to $170 for the first year, with renewal rates of $60 to $120 for the following years.

The Town of Purcellville has been actively involved in the process and is the location of several points of interest sites on the map – The Town Hall, Music and Arts Festival in May, and the Wine and Food Festival in July, as well as a variety of artists located in the town.

“It is the culmination of so much work and effort and is indicative of the support the county is showing artists,” said Purcellville Arts Council Chairwoman Liz Jarvis, who serves on the Artisan Trail committee.

More information on how to become a trail site member can be found at http://www.artisanscenterofvirginia.org.

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