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Stompin’, muckin’ ’round the fair

By Staff | Aug 23, 2013

By KRISS NELSON jknelson@frontiernet.net DES MOINES — As a way to help promote the state’s wine and grapes, the Iowa State Fair has been hosting the Wine Experience at Grandfather’s Barn for the past five years. The Wine Experience is put on by the Iowa Wine Growers Association and ISU Extension. As part of the Wine Experience, fair goers can come sample and purchase wine, listen to entertainment sponsored by the Wine Growers Association, listen to daily presentations from experts and participate in the Grape Getaway. The Grape Getaway provides a display of trivia and facts about grapes and wine, as well as a place for kids to press grapes and make grape juice. Kids can also color on a grape-shaped table — including coloring a 20-by6-foot Iowa State Fair grape-themed mural. One of the more popular aspects of the Wine Experience is the grape stomp, which was held five times throughout each day of the fair and allowed for three teams at a time to work at getting as much as juice out of the provided grapes as they could. Each team consisted of a stomper and a mucker. The stomper stomps while the mucker keep the juice flowing into the catch basin, keeping skins cleared from the drain hole. After 3 minutes of stomping, the stomper jumps out of the barrel and helps the teammate with mucking for an additional 3 minutes. At the end of 6 minutes the juice is measured. Although there is a winner each time, each participant receives a participation ribbon and a picture in front of a large grape stomp barrel. However, at the end of the fair, daily and an overall winner will be announced. Shannon Goes and her brother, Ethan Goes, won one of the Aug. 12 afternoon sessions, drawing 13.75 centimeters of juice out of their bucket of grapes. “It was very slick and very mushy,” said Ethan, who was the stomper of the sibling team. “It was a lot of fun. Who doesn’t want to stomp on grapes?” said Shannon. “Not always going to have a chance to do it.” Michael White, viticulture specialist for Iowa State Univerity Extension, said the grape stomp “is a great way for fair goers to participate in a free competition. This is mainly for family and friends to come and be a part of some free entertainment.” White said the grapes were donated each day by Dave and Heidi Klodd, from Annelise Vineyards in Indianola. Last year, White said there were 186 grape stomps using 6 tons of grapes with $110 worth of grapes in each bucket. The good news is, the juice produced from the grape stomp will not go to waste. “We will make wine with the juice and we should have 100 gallons of 7-percent alcohol wine,” said White.

DES MOINES – As a way to help promote the state’s wine and grapes, the Iowa State Fair has been hosting the Wine Experience at Grandfather’s Barn for the past five years.

The Wine Experience is put on by the Iowa Wine Growers Association and ISU Extension.

As part of the Wine Experience, fair goers can come sample and purchase wine, listen to entertainment sponsored by the Wine Growers Association, listen to daily presentations from experts and participate in the Grape Getaway.

The Grape Getaway provides a display of trivia and facts about grapes and wine, as well as a place for kids to press grapes and make grape juice. Kids can also color on a grape-shaped table – including coloring a 20-by6-foot Iowa State Fair grape-themed mural.

One of the more popular aspects of the Wine Experience is the grape stomp, which was held five times throughout each day of the fair and allowed for three teams at a time to work at getting as much as juice out of the provided grapes as they could.

REBA AND KAY KINGSLEY, of Waverly, work at mucking the grapes to collect juice during the grape stomp at the Iowa State Fair.

Each team consisted of a stomper and a mucker. The stomper stomps while the mucker keep the juice flowing into the catch basin, keeping skins cleared from the drain hole.

After 3 minutes of stomping, the stomper jumps out of the barrel and helps the teammate with mucking for an additional 3 minutes.

At the end of 6 minutes the juice is measured. Although there is a winner each time, each participant receives a participation ribbon and a picture in front of a large grape stomp barrel. However, at the end of the fair, daily and an overall winner will be announced.

Shannon Goes and her brother, Ethan Goes, won one of the Aug. 12 afternoon sessions, drawing 13.75 centimeters of juice out of their bucket of grapes.

“It was very slick and very mushy,” said Ethan, who was the stomper of the sibling team.

“This is mainly for family and friends to come and be a part of some free entertainment.” —Micheal White ISU viticulturalist

“It was a lot of fun. Who doesn’t want to stomp on grapes?” said Shannon. “Not always going to have a chance to do it.”

Michael White, viticulture specialist for Iowa State Univerity Extension, said the grape stomp “is a great way for fair goers to participate in a free competition. This is mainly for family and friends to come and be a part of some free entertainment.”

White said the grapes were donated each day by Dave and Heidi Klodd, from Annelise Vineyards in Indianola.

Last year, White said there were 186 grape stomps using 6 tons of grapes with $110 worth of grapes in each bucket.

The good news is, the juice produced from the grape stomp will not go to waste.

“We will make wine with the juice and we should have 100 gallons of 7-percent alcohol wine,” said White.

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