About Us

The Wisconsin Vintners Association came into existence in 1970 because a group of amateur winemakers thought it would be a good idea to have a meeting place for those interested in making and sharing this wonderful alcoholic beverage. During the ensuing decades, the WVA has focused on teaching our members the fundamentals of wine making, and in doing so, we have endeavored to make our association a truly social club that welcomes anyone interested in wine and wine making.

Today, the WVA is one of the oldest and largest amateur wine making clubs in the country, if not the oldest and largest. Over the past decade the WVA has also become philanthropic, regularly donating money to universities and other organizations that promote wine making education. After five decades of growth and development, the WVA remains a club that prides itself on accepting new members as potential lifelong friends.

Membership is open to anyone over 21 years old who has an interest in wine making. There are six membership meetings a year and six additional off site events. Meetings start at 7:30 PM and are held at Clifford’s Restaurant, 10418 West Forest Home Avenue in Hales Corners, WI. Please see the Club Events page for meeting and offsite events dates. At each meeting we conduct some club business, followed by a wine or wine making related topic, which could include a special speaker or a wine evaluation.

The Board of Directors meet 10 times a year on the first Wednesday of the month at a board member’s home. Members of the WVA are always welcome to attend board meetings as guests.

One benefit of WVA membership is learning the wine evaluation process. Learning how to assess wine characteristics will assist members in evaluating and then improving their own wines.

Through the club’s programs, members can educate their palate and develop the required expertise to possibly become a judge at the Club Wine Judging and/or the Wisconsin State Fair Amateur Wine Makers Competition.

Club members have the opportunity usually twice a year to purchase red grapes and/or white grape juice for wine making from local wineries and other sources.

WVA Presidents

1971: Harry Zimdars
1972: John Brust
1973-74: Charlie Thompson
1975: James Mashock
1976-77: Leo Krock
1978-79: Robert Wilson
1980-81: Charlie Thompson
1982: Jerry Uthemann
1983-84: Robert Wilson
1985-86: Dave Brandt
1987: Dewain Purgill
1988: John Paeth
1989-90: Jan Tomko
1991-92: Virgil Penn
1993: Dave Brandt
1994-95: Chuck Finke
1996-97: Paul Brauch
1998-99: Dave Brandt
2000-04: Jerry Horzewski
2005-07: Joanne Ziarek
2008-09: Howard Hasselkus
2010-11: Tom Courtney
2012-13: George Scovronski
2014-16: Donald Betlej
2017-2019: Greg Paczkowski
2020: John Scheel
2021: Jim Remus

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