Tuesday, 23 July 2024

Wine Auction arrives this weekend

LAKE COUNTY – It's once again time for Lake County's premier fundraising event.


The Lake County Wine Alliance will hold its 10th annual Lake County Wine Auction, a benefit for the arts, health, and community of Lake County, on Saturday, Sept. 19, at the National Guard

Armory, located at 1431 Hoyt Ave. in Lakeport.


This annual gala is a must-attend event with live and silent auctions, wine and gourmet foods from local purveyors and music. Twenty-five Lake County wineries will participate.


The Lake County Wine Alliance is a nonprofit organization of Lake County wineries, winegrape growers, and community supporters whose mission is to foster the arts, benefit health services, and support the community.


Since its first event in 2000, the Lake County Wine Auction has contributed more than $714,000 to local programs.


This year’s event is chaired by Andy Beckstoffer, chairman and CEO of Beckstoffer Vineyards; the evening’s auctioneer will be Tom DiNardo, founder of DiNardo & Lord Auctioneers.


“The Wine Alliance board is looking forward to an exciting evening of raising funds to support many worthy programs in Lake County,” said Beckstoffer.


Rob Roumiguiere, partner in Roumiguiere Vineyards and treasurer for the Lake County Wine Alliance, is this year’s master of ceremonies. The Lake County Diamonds will provide the event's music.


Black-tie is encouraged.


The Wine Auction begins at 5 p.m.; tickets are $100 per person.


Organizers said this week a limited number of tickets for the event are still available.


Once again this year, acclaimed local watercolor artist John Clarke created a watercolor-on-silk painting and donated it to the Wine Alliance both to be reproduced as a fine art poster and to be auctioned off as original artwork. This year’s piece is titled, “Sunset Waltz.”


Other auction items include weekend and weeklong getaways, wine packages, wine tasting events, and a variety of goods and services like massages and other luxuries.


The Wine Auction committee has added a special attraction to this year's auction – a Vintage Vault where seven wineries will pour special library wines and do vertical tastings of limited vintages.


Participating will be Brassfield Estate Winery, Dusinberre Cellars, Langtry Estate & Vineyards, Shannon Ridge Vineyards & Winery, Steele Wines, Tulip Hill Winery and Wildhurst Vineyards. The unique opportunity to taste remarkable wines from these exceptional Lake County wineries will be available for an additional charge of $25 per person, payable at the event.


The Wine Alliance board of directors annually selects the recipients to benefit from the auction proceeds. A record number of applicants submitted their funding requests to the Lake County Wine Alliance this year, demonstrating the number of programs seeking financial assistance.


Seven nonprofit organizations, five high schools, senior centers, and health programs have been selected as beneficiaries of this year’s event, announced Margaret Walker-Stimmel, president of the sponsoring Lake County Wine Alliance.


This year's beneficiaries include:


The Arts: The Allegro Scholarship Program assists exceptional music students with financial needs and will receive $2,000. The fine arts programs at each of the five high schools in Lake County (Clear Lake

High, Kelseyville High, Lower Lake High, Middletown High, and Upper Lake High) will share the balance of funds in this category.


Health: The Lake County Hunger Task Force will receive $2,500 to assist senior centers and food banks with produce from its community gardens. The balance of funds will be shared equally by the five senior centers that provide “meals on wheels” or nutrition programs and the St. Helena Hospital Clearlake Medical Imaging department for its no-cost mammograms to low or no-income women.


Community: The Stitch and Give Knitters will receive $1,000 to help them provide knitted items to the women’s shelter, pregnant teen program, Head Start program, and newborn hats to area hospitals. The

Lake County Chapter of Vietnam Veterans of America will receive $5,000 for its advocacy and outreach programs, including the Avenue of Flags at local cemeteries, and providing gifts to patients at extended-care facilities. Remaining funds in this category will be shared between People Services Inc., and Senior Law Project, Inc. People Services has been meeting the needs of the developmentally disabled in Lake County for 35 years. The Senior Law Project provides legal help to elder clients in Lake County.


The Ely Stage Stop & Country Museum project of the Lake County Historical Society will receive special attention through a “fund a need” live auction lot. The recently re-located structure is considered to be Lake County’s oldest “stick-built” building, dating to the late 1850s. It will be the centerpiece of a new interpretive museum for Lake County’s agrarian past.


Corporate and major sponsors this year include Pacific Gas and Electric Co., Beckstoffer Vineyards, Bella Vista Farming, Buckingham Golf & Country Club, Enchantic Art, Kelseyville Lumber, McDermaid Family Vineyards, Mendo Lake Credit Union, Kelseyville Wine Company, Lake County Winegrape Commission, St. Helena Hospital Clearlake, Umpqua Bank, WestAmerica Bank and Wildhurst Vineyards.


For tickets to the Lake County Wine Auction and information on the Friday evening dinners, contact 866-279-WINE, www.winealliance.org .

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