Autumn Harvest Winery changing hands, but will stay in the family
Ten years after creating a winery to complement their family’s well-known orchard, a Chippewa Falls couple are selling both businesses. However, Autumn Harvest Winery and John McIlquham Orchard will stay in family hands. Marykay and John McIlquham are selling the businesses to John’s cousin and his wife, Chad and Jean McIlquham. The businesses will officially change hands on May 1 – the first day the winery and orchard in rural Chippewa Falls will be open for the year.
“It’s a little sooner than we anticipated, but it’s a great opportunity for all parties,” Marykay McIlquham said. “I’m happy that the orchard will continue to operate within the McIlquham family,” her husband added.
Marykay and John launched Autumn Harvest Winery in 2005, while the orchard was founded in 1924. Autumn Harvest now produces a dozen varieties of wine from grapes, apples, whole fruits, and fruit juices. The wines are sold statewide as well as at the winery’s tasting room, which features gourmet foods and a gift shop, as well as live music and special events.
The wine and apples draw in people from all over the region every summer and fall. Marykay and John said they are excited for the opportunities that selling the business will bring. “We’re looking forward to some baseball games this summer, some fishing and family time,” said Marykay, adding the couple appreciate the support they’ve gotten over the years. “A lot of our customers have become friends,” she said.
Learn more about Autumn Harvest Winery at www.autumnharvestwinery.com.