Over 60 adult beverage providers participated this year

ATASCAERDO — Lovers of wine and other adult beverages headed out to Atascadero Lake Park on Saturday, June 22, for the 27th Annual Atascadero Lakeside Wine Festival. Festivities kicked off at 4 p.m. and lasted until 8 p.m., during which time patrons had 69 wineries, breweries, and cideries pouring for them.

“We [The Atascadero Chamber of. Commerce] hosted an incredible festival with 1,451 enthusiastic participants, making it our largest gathering since 2018. The feedback I’ve received from both vendors and attendees has been overwhelmingly positive, with many proclaiming it the best wine festival on the Central Coast,” said Atascadero Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Josh Cross. “The vibrant atmosphere and the high level of satisfaction among the participants are a testament to the quality and excellence of our volunteers, sponsors, and Wine Festival Committee members.”

The community showed up in such a big way that there wasn’t an extra wine glass in sight once things got started.


“This wine festival went really, really well. We practically sold out of tickets. In fact, we were scrambling for more glasses at the last minute,” said Event Coordinator Gail Kudlac.

On top of selling out, the Wine Fest also had a slew of new wineries participating, with over 100 booths filling up the park. 

“The wineries were very, very pleased because people wanted to actually talk about their wines. We had wineries that had never been to our festival that said, ‘We’re coming back every year,'” added Kudlac.

Like last year, participants could take their wine glasses with them into the Charles Paddock Zoo to have a gander at the animals for the “Roar-and-Pour” experience, and Third Wheel Tours were back with their vintage sidecar rides.

“It’s grown,” Kudlac said about the festival. “I’ve been on the committee, I took a few years off, but I have been basically 20 years on that committee, so I’ve seen a lot of growth in it.” 

The Wine Fest also featured two live bands: Joy Bonner Band on the bandstand and Dulcie Taylor Trio on the zoo’s stage. Both bands got the audience on their feet and dancing. There were also food and merchandise vendors. Not only were they local, but some of the vendors came from as far away as San Diego, Sacramento, and more.

“The guests were happy. They loved it,” Kudlac continued. “They loved the music. We had RVs there that you could go check out. We had radio stations broadcasting live and doing interviews. Everybody got involved. Everybody participated, and everybody had a great time. I didn’t hear one negative thing.”

This year also saw more volunteers than ever, with over 113 volunteers giving their time and effort to making the festival what it was this year.

“They were a godsend. We couldn’t have done it without them,” Kudlac said of the volunteers.

This year, as always, a portion of the proceeds from the Atascadero Lakeside Wine Festival, totaling $10,000, will go to the Charles Paddock Zoo.

The Atascadero Lakeside Wine Festival will be back for its 28th year on June 28, 2025.

Featured Image: Over 1,400 people showed up for the 27th Annual Atascadero Lakeside Wine Fest. Photo by Rick Evans