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Photo by Daniel Gonzalez
Photo by Daniel Gonzalez | Gene Casey and The Lone Sharks will headline the Winterfest kickoff concert at The Suffolk Theater.

The premiere North Fork event of the winter season is changing its name and its tune in 2014. Formerly known as Jazz on the Vine, the newly christened Live on the Vine is an amped up version of the popular festival — literally. 

Organizers are expanding the genres of music, which means it’s no longer just jazz, but also rock, folk, country, blues and soul.

“It was the general feeling that we could reach more people and provide a better experience for our audience,” said Pat Snyder of East End Arts.

Now in its 7th year, Winterfest will still offer the best in local wine and food as well as a more diverse lineup of live music. The six-week festival takes place from February 8 through March 16 in various East End vineyard tasting rooms, hotels, theaters and other venues. Dozens of cultural attractions and special offers on hotel and B&Bs, getaway packages, restaurants and winery tours will also be offered.

Giving event goers a taste of what’s to come, East End Arts is joining with Suffolk County National Bank and Edible East End to kick off Winterfest next month.

Local rocker Gene Casey and his band The Lone Sharks will headline the show, which will also feature Mambo Loco accompanied by Paul Simon’s bassist Bakithi Kumalo.

The Winterfest kickoff concert is on Friday, Jan. 17 from 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. at The Suffolk Theater, 118 E Main St, Riverhead.

Tickets are $20 in advance, $25 at the door. They may be purchased online or by calling the box office at 631-727-4343.

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