Sip n’ Savor returns after a year off

Sip n’ Savor returned Saturday after being canceled last year due to COVID-19. The event brought large crowds to the downtown plaza and participants had the chance to sample wine, beer, ciders, seltzers, and enjoy live entertainment and food thanks to some beautiful weather.

    Sip n’ Savor is sponsored by the St. James Chamber of Commerce and Chamber Director Robin Ziegler said the day was a huge success. “We had around 600 ticket holders,” she said. That number is similar to the numbers experienced in 2019, showing Sip n’ Savor remains a popular event. “We had great feedback from many attendees and vendors saying they had a great time,” Ziegler added.
     Over 30 unique wine, beer, and microbrews were available throughout the day for those tasting. This year’s participating vendors included Grellner Sales and Service, Grey Eagle Distributors, Adam Puchta Winery, Eagles Landing Winery, Golden Rock Winery, Meramec Vineyards and Winery, Spencer Manor Winery, Weston Wine Company, and White Mule Winery.
    Vendors were spread out over one side of Washington and Springfield streets, with lots of room to allow participants to social distance as they moved from one vendor to the next. There were also hand sanitizer stations spread out throughout the event to provide additional safety measures.
    “We also want to give a shout out to Phelps County Bank for providing us with individual hand sanitizers for our participants and thank you for being our registration table sponsor,” Ziegler said.
    “A huge thank you goes to USA Express for the use of their hand sanitizer stations, the St. James Golf Course for the use of their carts, the city of St. James for all their help with preparing the area for the event and providing us with the outdoor supplies like trashcans, picnic tables, street cleaning, and the list goes on,” Zeigler said.
    She also thanked Grellner Sales and Service for making the signs, Hutcheson Ford for providing water, The James Foundation for providing tables and chair, and the many businesses that provided goodies for the participant bags given at check-in.
    Along with the many wines, beers, and food that was offered, Kinsey Lee, Rosewood, and KZNN provided live entertainment throughout the day.
    Zeigler said the Chamber also wants to thank all the many volunteers who stepped up to make this year possible, especially with the pandemic still looming in people’s minds. This year’s Sip n’ Savor Committee included Taisia Gordon, chair, Beth Gardner, Sip n’ Savor secretary and Chamber past president, Casey Stuck, chamber president, Lazet Kent, Leah Nash, treasurer, Marsha Wayman, Wes Swee, Jack Mueller, board vice president, Amie Campbell, Chamber secretary, and City Administrator Jim Fleming.
    Since 2009, Sip n’ Savor has been one of the largest events held each year to draw tourism to downtown St. James and Ziegler said the Chamber is very pleased with the return of the event. The Chamber will be evaluating how the event went and will start planning for next year’s Sip n’ Savor in the coming months.