Those who like their wine served up with a side of adventure need look no further than Sanders Ridge Winery, located at 2280 Sanders Ridge Lane in Boonville. Not only is there an on-site restaurant, but Sanders Ridge is also home to the Big Woods Zipline.
The nearly mile-long course features 12 lines that weave through the forest just behind the vineyard. Manager Jennifer Hiatt said the zipline was not initially their idea, but when winery owner Neil Shore was approached about having one built on the property, he agreed. The course has become a popular destination and added to the overall winery experience for visitors.
“It’s been a nice addition,” Hiatt said of the zipline. The zipline attracts all kinds, especially families who often stay on to enjoy some wine and a meal at The Hearth Restaurant. Group outings are especially popular, Hiatt said. From bachelor parties to birthdays, the zipline and winery create a fun atmosphere for a special gathering. Ages 8 and up can do the zipline and this spring the zipline and winery played host to a very special birthday gathering.
Lola Steelman Davis celebrated her 90th birthday ziplining at the Big Woods Zipline. Davis was no stranger to the high-wired sport. She first ziplined five years ago on her 85th birthday.
“I enjoyed it so much that I said if I was healthy enough I wanted to do it again when I turned 90,” Davis said. Davis was indeed the picture of health at a gala celebration in her honor at The Hearth Restaurant at Sanders Ridge Winery. More than 40 friends and family members joined her for her birthday party, complete with red velvet cake.
As evidenced by Davis’ celebration, the zipline is suitable for all sorts of festive celebrations. With hiking trails on the property as well, Hiatt said many folks choose to make a whole day out of their visit to Sanders Ridge.
The zipline offers a thrill, but it’s also not so extreme as to cause fear. Two guides assist zipliners through the course, which visitors have said is extremely lovely.
“It’s a pretty scenic view, it’s relaxing,” Hiatt said. “We’ve had some people who have ziplined all over the world and they said that this is one of the prettiest courses they’ve ever done.
“It’s nice because it’s in the trees but it’s not so terribly high that you feel really uncomfortable,” Hiatt said.
The zipline is a popular destination for those in nearby cities such as Winston-Salem and Charlotte, Hiatt added.
“It’s nice because it seems like you’ve gotten away. It feels like you’ve gotten in a little bit of a vacation even though it’s really close to home.”
The property also boasts a cabin so visitors can stay the weekend if they choose. With other activities nearby such as hot air balloon rides, river rafting and skydiving.
For more information on the Big Woods Zipline, visit www.bigwoodszipline.com or call 336-677-1509.
Kitsey Burns Harrison may be reached at 336-679-2341 or on Twitter at @RippleReporterK.