‘Wine, Film and Fashion’ whets appetite for festival

Helen Tracy, Barb Moore and Sharon Colonis [Photo: Kaila Jones]

Fashionistas and film fans got a sneak peek at great things to come at the second annual Wine, Film and Fashion event hosted by Vero Beach Outlets on Mother’s Day weekend to advance the fourth annual Vero Beach Wine + Film Festival. Inspired by Suncoast Mental Health Center, the event’s beneficiary, this year’s theme is A Wide Lens on Life.

Shaded by a large tent, attendees were treated to wine samplings, culinary delights from Wild Thyme Catering and a fashion show showcasing stylish outfits from 17 different Outlet stores, and relaxed on outdoor seating from Design Within Reach and Restoration Hardware.

Later, they enjoyed trailers of Cinema Couture films, a new category of curated films featuring fashion icons, due to be screened at Costa d’Este during the festival: “Larger Than Life: The Kevyn Aucoin Story,” “Iris, A Film by Albert Maysles,” “The First Monday in May” and “The Gospel According To André.”

“This is our best and first overall partnership for the Film Festival, which is leading up to our best and largest festival year ever,” said the ever enthusiastic VBWFF founder, Jerusha Stewart. “It’s all about what to wear to the Vero Beach Wine & Film Festival. Part of what’s so significant about the partnership with Vero Beach Outlets is that we have the opportunity to do this whole fashion showcase, and bring fashion as a category into the film festival.”

She pointed out that Vero Beach Outlets is a finalist for an International Council of Shopping Centers Global MAXI Award for this ‘Bridging the Affluent Divide’ event.

“We included a lot of community members this year, so we actually have Indian River County Fire Department modeling swimwear, Dori Stone, the executive director of the Chamber, is walking for Chico’s, and Annamarie (LaBella) and Ian (Thompson) from Riverside Theatre are walking for Brooks Brothers,” said Beth Hager, Vero Beach Outlets marketing coordinator, adding that Premier Model Management was again coordinating the show.

As attendees mulled over VBWFF ticket opportunities and awaited the show, Stewart gave an update on the newer aspects of the festival, scheduled for June 6-9 at locations around town.

“We have added Majestic Theatre for the first time,” said Stewart. “We just added an opening night Centennial Champagne and Cake party Thursday night at Majestic for Vero Visions, the screening of films from filmmakers on the Treasure Coast. We’re going to be screening and giving the awards for the category of Vero Visions, which are our local regional filmmakers. So that’s a big deal for us this year.”

Also new is a $35 Pick 4 Cinema Pass, which enables someone to pick any four of the regular weekend screenings.

In addition to the festival’s sister partner, the Sonoma International Film Festival, two new partnerships introduced are California’s Wild & Scenic Film Festival, and Nova Scotia’s Devour! The Food Film Fest, which will feature a Chefs and Shorts dinner at Vero Beach Hotel & Spa.

“The Wild and Scenic environmental and adventure films are phenomenal. Oh my gosh; I could talk all day about those,” said Stewart. “The Wild and Scenic Film Festival is the second largest traveling film festival in the world.”

For a full list of films and events, visit vbwff.org.

Photos by: Kaila Jones
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