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A slice of downtown: Inside River City Art and Wine

Downtown Waynesboro has many cute little shops to offer tourists and locals alike. River City Art and Wine Emporium is in a class all of its own.

Opened in 2008, the shop was originally started to fulfill a longtime dream of proprietor Eileen O’Rourke. She hoped to open a shop that would sell her excellent photography, antiques, wines and homemade jewelry, among other things, when she moved to Waynesboro from New York and saw the downtown space owned by Linda Roland that would suit perfectly.

A huge advocate of downtown revitalization in Waynesboro, O’Rourke and Roland opened the wine and gift shop together, adding micro-brewed beer to the mix as well. The downtown community is an ideal area for a local and tourist client base especially for the two ladies who love the area and “want to see revitalization happen,” O’Rourke said.

As the manager and co-owner, O’Rourke basically runs the shop, with the help of a few part-time employees, supplying it with a wide selection of over 160 different types wines and 44 different types of beer. River City Art and Wine Emporium embodies all the charm of Waynesboro, with exotic foreign wines with tastings of flights of all different themes ranging from South African made to French.

Right now, O’Rourke’s favorite red wine is a “Rioja that flew out of here” and for white wine a “muscle white from France that is not real sweet and not too acidic… it has a nice balance,” but her favorite changes from season to season.

Most of O’Rourke’s vast knowledge on the subject of wine is from experience and her love for it.

Story by Elizabeth German. Elizabeth is a rising senior at Wilson Memorial High School and an AugustaFreePress.com intern.


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