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Explore the 'Art of Writing' along the Brandywine Artisan Wine Trail

01/12/2016 10:28AM ● Published by J. Chambless

Lele Galer (left), of Galer Estate Winery, welcomed author Donna Duffy (right) on Jan. 10 as part of 'The Art of Writing,' a series of events scheduled through January at several local wineries. On Jan. 17 at Galer, local food blogger Estelle Tracey (center) will share her love of chocolate.

By Richard L. Gaw
Staff Writer

For the next several weekends, the NFL will successfully hijack millions of American families.

Among those millions of viewers, however, a large contingent will watch the games with feigned interest, wishing they could be elsewhere. For those locals who are looking to add something a little more palatable to their winter weekend plate, eight wineries along The Brandywine Artisan Wine Trail will be celebrating the "Art of Writing" with writer's workshops, book signings, book clubs, blog how-to's and book sales.

Paradocx Vineyard will be hosting a monthly book club starting Jan. 15 from 6 to 8 p.m. at their location in Landenberg. The new club kicks off with "The Round House" by Louise Erdrich. Come to the book club after having read the book, relax with a glass of wine and discuss this mystery/love story with other members of the club.

Wilson Vineyard will be hosting a lesson in painting a sunflower on Jan. 16, from 1 to 4 p.m., led by artist Sally Wilson.

On Jan. 17 from 2 to 4 p.m., local French chocolate blogger extraordinaire Estelle Tracey will visit the Galer Estate Winery discuss turning her passion for chocolate into an international blogging hit, and also a new book. To complement Tracey's passion for chocolate, renowned chocolate maker Robert Campbell will be discussing the art of chocolate, provide samples, and have his award-winning chocolate available for purchase.

At Ten Gallon Hat Winery on Jan. 24, six local authors will come together from 1 to 3 p.m. for a discussion about the art of writing in Chester County. Authors include Matty Dalrymple, Merry Jones, Jon McGoran, Bruce Mowday and Elizabeth Bodien. Dalrymple writes suspense/murder mysteries including her latest, "The Sense of Death." Jones writes that her characters "never know what lies ahead" and she also writes in the suspense and mystery genre. Her latest book is called "In the Woods." McGoran writes mysteries, science fiction and thrillers, and his latest book, "Dust Up," will be published in 2016.

After 20 years in journalism, Mowday is most famous locally for his Historic Walking Tours and contribution to "Reporting The Revolution" in 2012. Bodien is an well-published poet and writer, and is working on a book of translations and a collection of her trance writings. This group of writers will meet again at Galer Estate in the spring.

On Jan. 24, from 1 to 5 p.m., Galer will invite local writer Karen Myers, who will lead a "Plein Air Writer's Workshop" using "Place" as the point of inspiration for those who participate in a writer's workshop. Visiting writers will be invited to share their writings, and a prize will be given for the most compelling piece.

On Jan. 31, from 3 to 5 p.m., Galer will host representatives from Schiffer Publishing, who will be on hand to talk about the publishing business, how to submit an idea for publishing, and offer a variety of new books for sale, with authors in attendance.

At Grace Winery, noted writer Dave Emmi will discuss his latest book, "Divine Philly," on Jan. 23, beginning at 3 p.m. Emmi, whose book deals with Irish immigration to the Delaware Valley, will discuss his research into the Irish Hemphill family and the start of Sweetwater Farm (the location for the current Grace Winery). The conversation will include materials from the 1700s, and live music performed by the author.

Throughout January, Penns Woods Winery will be stocking their shelves with the book "A Wine Tasting Course" by local author and wine expert Marnie Old.

"Our area has so many interesting cultural aspects to it -- writers, sculptors, musicians -- so I thought, 'Let's pull all of that together,'" said Lele Galer of Galer Estate Winery, who helped to organize the event. "Events like these increase the customer base [of our local wineries], but they're also quite a bit of fun, and they incorporate well with wine."

Galer said that several local wineries will be combining forces for "The Art of the Valentine," in February, and "The Art of Photography," in March. For more information about each of these events, visit, or the individual participating winery sites.

To contact Staff Writer Richard L. Gaw, e-mail


galer writer

Photo by Richard L. Gaw

Lele Galer (left), of Galer Estate Winery, welcomed author Donna Duffy (right) on Jan. 10 as part of 'The Art of Writing,' a series of events scheduled through January at several local wineries. On Jan. 17 at Galer, local food blogger Estelle Tracey (center) will share her love of chocolate.

book club Courtesy photo

Wine and reading will be paired up perfectly this winter at area wineries.

Bruce mowday

Merry jones

(run side by side) Courtesy photo

Authors Bruce Mowday and Merry Jones will be part of a panel of local authors at the Ten Gallon Hat Winery on Jan. 24.

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