Stomping for a Cause

As my research for IU Health North Hospital Art of Wine continues, our guest writer, Megan Marshall, shares her love of grape stomping!

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Hello! My name is Megan and I am lucky enough to be an intern again in the Carmel Arts & Design District this summer.  After helping to spread the word about fellow 2009 intern Bethany’s Arts and Design District blog, I decided I had to get a piece of internet stardom for myself. What better way to get my feet wet in the world of blogging than jumping right into the history of grape stomping in honor of our upcoming event IU Health North Hospital Art of Wine?

Believe it or not, the 1956 episode “Lucy’s Italian Movie” of I Love Lucy was NOT the first known grape stomping event, although I certainly like to credit it with the historical significance of creating a grape stomping memory for generations of Americans.  It is believed that grape stomping as a winemaking process dates back as far as 200 BC.  Grape stomping was the process used in every winemaking country to extract the juices from freshly picked grapes for wine.

However, grape stomping does not have the strongest history in United States.  Legislation was written to outlaw the practice in response to health concerns during the twentieth century.  Apparently, wine drinkers grew uncomfortable about knowing that bare feet had created the wine they were about to enjoy with family and friends.  A fair concern if you ask me! But never fear, wine stomping still maintains a strong presence at wineries and wine festivals across the U.S.

Now you may be asking, “Why the sudden lesson in the history of grape stomping?”  Well, this year for IU Health North Hospital Art of Wine, we decided to create an event with a twist by combining three things that anyone who knows me well will say I can not get enough of:

  • History
  • Giving back to the community
  • And a little friendly competition!

Be sure to check out members of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Indiana Chapter, in a dueling grape stomp competition to raise awareness and funds for their organization between 5:30 and 6:30 p.m. in front of the Simple Sweet Shoppe this weekend at IU Health North Hospital Art of  Wine!

On the left, the hilarious Lucille Ball and her grape stomping partner in the 1956 I Love Lucy episode titled “Lucy’s Italian Movie”. On the right, bloggers Bethany and Megan recreate the episode in the Carmel Arts & Design District office.

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