winery building

Soaring to New Heights

For the past 20 years, Soaring Wings Vineyard and Brewing has served as a destination for entertainment, relaxation, and celebration. Owners Jim and Sharon Shaw have grown the family business into a venue known for concerts, award-winning wines and brews, and breathtaking views that overlook the hills of Springfield, Nebraska, just 10 miles south of Omaha. Now the Shaws are ready to retire and pass the baton on to new owners who will take Soaring Wings to the next level.

  • vineyard sign
  • man and woman
  • winery
  • people at festival
  • house
  • wooden barrels
  • restaurant

Jim Shaw has been a brewer for most of his life. When he and Sharon moved to Nebraska in 1998, they decided to take advantage of the state’s Farm Winery Act that encouraged the growth of vineyards and wineries across the state. In 2001 they found the ideal land in Springfield—close to Omaha, right off the highway, and “the view was unreal,” Jim Shaw said. When they approached the farmer, he agreed to sell for a reasonable price. “The farmer thought it’d be a hoot to grow grapes. It was a homerun.”

The name Soaring Wings was a tribute to Jim Shaw’s time serving as a pilot in the Air Force and his career as a commercial airline pilot. The Shaws planted their first vines in 2002, made their first wine in 2003, and opened the tasting room in 2004. Within the 29-acre property, there are 7,000 plants—13 hybrid varietals that can withstand cold winters—that sit on 10.5 acres and produce 3,000 cases of wine annually and have won more than 300 medals over the years. There is also a tasting room and event space that seats up to 120 people, commercial grade kitchen, winery, brewery, shed, outdoor shop, an outdoor amphitheater for 2,000 people, and a 3,900 square foot upscale home with four bedrooms and three bathrooms.  

Because Soaring Wings encompasses both commercial and residential property, the Shaws use a collaborative sales approach. Paul Lanphier with Arise Ventures represents the business brokerage side, and Michael Maley with M2 Real Estate Group through Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices represents the real estate side. “This has been a great collaboration to get more exposure for a unique property,” Maley said.

After 11 years in the luxury real estate market, Maley recently launched M2 Real Estate Group with Steve Stuart and Tyler Trelles. Their approach to success in a competitive industry is based on offering a team that has a three-person leadership structure, which brings three different personalities and styles to the table. “We all have different techniques for how to be successful, and that sets us apart,” Maley said. “Representing a property like Soaring Wings allows us to showcase those strengths. There is no situation we can’t handle.”

The team has already grown to 14 agents in just two months, and Maley thrives on coaching each one. “I’ve seen it all in real estate, and there are a thousand ways to be successful,” he said. “Everyone has their own approach, and I want to help strengthen those ideas and niche perspectives.” Maley jumped at the chance to work with the Shaws and help them find the perfect owners to take over the property and business. 

Jim Shaw said ideally he’s looking for an individual or group who wants to focus on running more events, because that has been such a successful part of the business. “We’re one of the top wedding venues, top outdoor venues, and have won Best of Omaha for local wineries and vineyards,” Shaw said. “It only takes people one time here, and they feel like they’re in Napa or Sonoma.” When the winery first opened, Shaw said mostly older couples would visit. Now, it’s become a hot spot for a younger generation who bring their kids to run around the grounds while the adults enjoy a glass of wine.

Shaw said the operation is turnkey and would be seamless for someone to step right in. Soaring Wings has a fulltime wine maker, a vineyard manager, and he’d be happy to teach the brewing. “I want the new owners to be successful and will help them with the transition.” He recently retired as a pilot, and the Shaws are ready for their next chapter. “It’s bittersweet, but I’m ready,” Jim Shaw said. “I devoted 22 years to it, and now I want to golf, spend time with my family, and enjoy it without having to worry as a business owner. We’ll definitely be back.”

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