Wine, music to draw visitors to Oklahoma

Published on NewsOK Modified: June 2, 2014 at 4:09 pm •  Published: June 2, 2014

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Oklahoma's tourism and agriculture departments are launching separate initiatives hoping to entice visitors to the state this summer through wine and music.

Rhythm & Routes will showcase musical artists and venues while Oklahoma Wine Trails showcases wineries through "trails" — itineraries that will take visitors across the state. Oklahoma Tourism Department spokeswoman Leslie Blair said people will be able to use the agency's website to find their favorite artist and develop itineraries based on that person's life.

Starting July 1, the site will include interviews, photos and other memorabilia.

"If you look at all the musical stars and the innovations that have come out of Oklahoma, it's really impressive," Blair said. "These are people — say, Reba, Vince, Garth, Kristin Chenoweth — people instantly know who you're talking about. People may not realize they're from Oklahoma, and so I think it's important for us to recognize the great, talented individuals and also not just individuals, but venues."

The first phase of the rollout of Rhythm & Routes is made up of 43 artists and venues, including Bob Wills, Carrie Underwood, Hanson, Kings of Leon, Vince Gill, Garth Brooks, Reba McEntire and Cain's Ballroom.

The Oklahoma Wine Trails features 10 different itineraries featuring a handful of wineries grouped together by location to showcase the state's booming wine industry, said agritourism program administrator Jamie Cummings.

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