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      Nebraska Wine And Jazz Festival Boosts State's Agri-Tourism

      Kearney celebrates homegrown talent, as the artistry of music, wine making and food marks the unofficial kickoff to summer.

      Flowing spirits and soothing melodies are all part of the 6th annual Nebraska Wine and Jazz festival in Kearney this weekend.

      This unique fundraiser serves a dual purpose... highlighting local artists, and educating guests about Nebraska wines, all while promoting the state's rural Agri–tourism economy in the process.

      "We started out wanting to promote Agri–tourism, I mean, a lot of people are going to taste, sample, enjoy wines that they never tried before," said event coordinator Judi Sickler, "And we've heard from a lot of people who have fallen in love with Nebraska wines, they tour Nebraska, check out these vineyards, and so it's our way of promoting Agri-tourism which is great in this state."

      "It lets people be aware that there are grapes and vineyards and wonderful wines in Nebraska, they don't have to go to California," said Cedar Hills Winery owner Joyce Sears. "And I know our our tasting rooms and a lot of other tasting rooms, we have a lot of guests from out of state and they all enjoy Nebraska wines."

      The Nebraska Wine and Jazz Festival runs until 11 Fiday night and continues Saturday from 3pm until 11pm in downtown Kearney.

      Proceeds support nonprofits through the Kearney Area Community Foundation.

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