CHICAGO, IL – CLINK Festival founders, Chrishon Lampley, owner of Love Cork Screw wines and Joyce Dawkins, founder of She ROCKS It Magazine are pleased to announce the debut of the inaugural CLINK Wine & Spirits Festival, the first-of-its-kind Chicago-based wine and spirits festival dedicated to highlighting Women, Black, Indigenous, and People of Color in the industry. Featuring panel discussions, a walkaround tasting showcasing more than 50 minority-owned wine & spirit brands paired with fare from local Chicago chefs of color, a cigar lounge, a mocktail waterpark and a DJ, the event will take place on September 18 from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Wilder Mansion located in Elmhurst, IL.

“As a minority business owner, navigating the business of building a wine brand in this industry can oftentimes feel like you are on an island,” said Chrishon Lampley, CLINK Co-Founder. “It is imperative that we continue to celebrate, encourage, and advocate for diversity in the wine & spirits industry. CLINK presents an interactive educational forum for beverage trade professionals, media, and wine & spirits enthusiasts to taste, network, celebrate our progress and empower future minority women in the industry.”

“My goal with CLINK is for attendees to see the amazing things that can happen if you just believe in yourself,” said Joyce Dawkins, CLINK Co-Founder. “And to encourage attendees to not be afraid to take a leap of faith. Even if only 1% of women currently occupy a space, that should motivate you even more to just do it.”

The CLINK Wine & Spirits Festival is pleased to welcome some of the nation’s most up and coming minority leaders in the food and beverage industry and beyond. Featured guests include Theodora Lee (Founder, Theopolis Vineyards); Regine Rousseau (Founder, Shall We Wine); Chasity Cooper (Wine Culture Expert); Nicole Kearney (Founder, Sip & Share Wines); Catalina Gaete-Bentz (Founder, Catan Pisco); Chef Dominique Leach (Executive Chef & Owner, Lexington Betty Smokehouse); Candice Crane (Founder, Petal Organic Sparkling Water); and many more.

CLINK is made possible, in part, by lead sponsor, Mariano’s, the popular Midwest grocery chain whose proactive commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion continues to advance opportunities for diverse businesses, suppliers, owners, and founders.

“At Mariano’s, we are proud to support BIPOC and Women Owned Businesses, and those that support them as well,” said Amanda Puck, Director of Strategic Brand Development for Mariano’s. “We have a commitment to local vendors and are excited to support the first annual CLINK Wine & Spirits Festival with our team of accomplished Tastemaker Chefs who will complement the event’s all-star roster of minority-owned wine, spirits and non-alcoholic beverage producers.”

For full schedule details and ticketing information, please visit www.clinkfestival.com.

About CLINK Wine & Spirits FestivalCLINK is a Chicago-based wine and spirits festival dedicated to highlighting Women, Black, Indigenous and People of Color in the industry. Created to educate, empower, and encourage minority women to follow their dreams, CLINK is a representation of women collaborating to create an experience that will shine the light on the success of women and BIPOC entrepreneurs across the nation.