A recent ribbon cutting, hosted by the Van Alstyne Chamber of Commerce, saw Cooley Bay Winery owner Tom Busch surrounded by family, friends and well-wishers from all parts of Grayson and Collin County.

Busch purchased and renovated an old telephone wire building at 292 Cartwright Road on the west side of Van Alstyne. The original building had a tall telephone tower nearby, which a tornado flattened, and the telephone company never rebuilt.

Their loss was his gain. Busch said the all-concrete building, including its concrete ceiling, is perfect for the wine-making process, which he is now accomplishing through another brewery. As he grows the business, he will move that wine-making to the Cartwright Road location.

Busch has built a relaxing and contemporary building around the original one, leaving parts in place, but enhancing much of the original décor. There is lots of parking space available, and Busch plans to have the location available soon for private parties, such as baby showers or lengthy business workshops.

Part of that “growing business’”will also involve Busch applying for and receiving additional licenses, such as one to allow Cooley Bay wine to be sold at retail markets. For now, he’s going to open the Winery on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, from 1 p.m.-7 p.m.

Busch commended the Van Alstyne’s former city manager, Frank Baker, with being instrumental in helping him get open. Baker, Busch said, walked him through the myriad of ordinances and other requirements that might have been too complicated for Busch to complete on his own.

Cooley Bay’s grand opening will begin at 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 28, with wine samples given out and with Bent Creek trio playing for guests.