Every month, we feature a member of our SippingTHIS community (aka Sipper) who is doing awesome things in wine and for the world.
Stacy has been a Sipper since the early SippingTHIS days. She followed, liked, and pressed click to purchase on numerous shirts, which she then added her own flair to (read on for more on that). But at SippingTHIS, we care about more than a purchase, we care about community and connections. We've loved learning more about Stacy over the years and more about Virginia wines (her specialty). When she asked us to participate in one of her charity events last year, we were honored and moved by everything she's doing.
Stacy is a rockstar in so many ways, and we're so excited to feature her this August.
Read on to learn more about Stacy.
Laura (SippingTHIS): How did you get into wine?
Stacy: My very first job out of college was working for an event production company, and one of our events was the Town Point Virginia Wine Festival in Norfolk, Virginia. Being a part of this event for three years, I watched how wine brought people together and I learned a lot about Virginia wines in general and how the industry was exploding. It wasn’t until a few years later when I finally got to visit some vineyards throughout the state that I just fell in love with the wine, the experiences, and the feeling that I got when enjoying it all surrounded by our beautiful nature. I enjoyed my time so much that I wanted to start telling everyone about it. So, I eventually started my blog, Virginia Wine Know, and from there my passion has just progressed to me studying wine, getting some certifications, and becoming an avid wine lover (expanding my palate to wines from all over the world).
Laura: Tell us about @VAWineKnow?
Stacy: My IG account is a progression of my blog and what was originally my Twitter handle (in the early stages of my blog, Twitter was the most popular social media platform to engage). I just love to share good vibes and good wine! My whole premise is that wine is an experience. It’s about the laughs shared, foods paired, and relaxing/stress-free environment that it promotes. So, my goal with Instagram is to spread all those good vibes about Virginia wines/wineries (and wine in general).
Laura: What impact do you want to make in the wine world?
Stacy: I started blogging about 11 years ago so the answer to that question has certainly changed a lot over time. For several years, I struggled with the notion of trying to transition my full-time career into wine or not. And, this might be something I still end up doing eventually (so ask me this again in five years lol) but to answer your question directly right now, I just want to continue growing my social channel and influencing/educating people about the overall wine experience and hopefully “opening the cellar doors” to people who are interested in wine and making it much more approachable for them.
Laura: What is your favorite wine?
Stacy: Tough question! I love big, bold reds of many varietals but one of my favorites is Cabernet Franc. This is usually used as a blending grape, but it grows so well in Virginia that it can stand on its own. I really enjoy the earthy, bell-peppery notes of it. It’s usually my go-to at the wineries when I get a glass to sit and enjoy.
Laura: Tell us about Cindy’s Legacy.
Stacy: Thank you for asking. Cindy’s Legacy is a 501c3 charity that I founded in 2011 after my mother passed away from cancer. Our family struggled financially during this time so after her death, I vowed that families should not have to worry about daily living expenses as well as medication and treatment costs while trying to survive a cancer diagnosis. Since 2011, we have provided more than $70,000 in financial aid grants to 300+ cancer patients nationwide.
Laura: How can people support the foundation?
Stacy: We usually hold several wine tastings and silent auction events every year to raise vital funds, but this year, and likely next, will be very different. We must rely on individual and corporate donations. We are always accepting donations via our website at www.cindyslegacy.org or even directly from our IG and Facebook pages (@cindyslegacy). When we can hold in-person events again, we will be grateful for any silent auction item donations (thanks so much to SippingTHIS for past donations!). Note, we are an all-volunteer organization so virtually every penny we raise goes right back out to cancer patients in need!
Laura: How did you find out about SippingTHIS?
Stacy: I just happened to find you on Instagram and was hooked! The sayings you come up with are just brilliant.
Laura: People are loving how you customized your SippingTHIS shirts. How does one achieve that look?
Stacy: I am not much of an artsy person, but you can learn to do anything on YouTube! I usually start with cutting off the collar, then I cut a few slits on the sleeves. I also do some slits in the back too.
Laura: What is your favorite SippingTHIS saying?
Stacy: Malbec that Ass Up (Back that Ass Up is my favorite dance/clubbing song of all time!!)
Laura: Anything else you’d like to share with my audience?
Stacy: I guess I’ll take this opportunity to also self-promote the fact that I work in marketing and communications full-time, and I also help start-ups and small businesses with their social media marketing and management. (Leave a comment below if you're interested in learning more about Stacy's services).