WEST LIBERTY, Iowa–When the Brick Street Gallery at 104 West Third Street in West Liberty first opened earlier this summer, its advisory board made a goal of holding at least one special public event each quarter. For their first event, they discussed hosting a wine walk and inviting other local business owners to get involved. Lisa Wertzbaugher, who owns the building that houses the Brick Street Gallery and belongs to the West Liberty Chamber of Commerce, heard about the idea, she embraced it and started helping to organize the first ever West Liberty Wine Walk. Set to take place Sept. 10, the walk will show off some of West Liberty’s most fun local shops and give adult shoppers the chance to sample a variety of wines they may never have come across otherwise. For example, Wertzbaugher shared that one business owner will have wine from a regional winery in Galena, Illinois available, giving shoppers a taste of something new from not too far away.
In the past, Wertzbaugher had heard of neighboring towns hosting events similar to the West Liberty Wine Walk and thought that trying something similar could benefit the downtown. “We look to other towns to see what’s working and adapt it for ourselves,” she explained. So far, four West Liberty businesses, West Elle Salon and Boutique, Shop 121, Slightly Vintage, and the Brick Street Gallery have signed up to participate in the walk, and Wertzbaugher believes several more may as well. From 5 to 8 p.m. Sept. 10, anyone 21 and up may visit any of the participating shops to sample their wines and their wares. The owners of each shop will select a wine they particularly enjoy to offer tastings of, ensuring that each store has something a little different. To encourage people to take advantage of their extended hours that evening, many of the participating businesses will have special sales or deals going on as well.
An event free and open to any adult who would like to participate, Wertzbaugher hopes it will draw many people to Downtown West Liberty, especially those who may not have visited before. “It’s a great way to kickoff fall,” she said. “It’s free entertainment on a Friday night, and I really encourage people to see what West Liberty has to offer.”
She would also like to see people get to know some of West Liberty’s newest shops and see all the special items they have to offer. “We have some new shops that have opened in the last few years,” she observed. “I love all of the shops here in West Liberty, so I’m looking forward to making some purchases,” she added.