Wednesday, 08 February 2023

Wine Alliance reports on weekend event

BUCKINGHAM – Initial tallies are showing another great year for the Lake County Wine Alliance's annual auction.


The event was held Saturday at Buckingham.


Auction chair Marie Beery noted that "it was a beautiful event ... taken to another level this year with the participation of Narsai David and (auctioneer) Archie McLaren."


Wine Alliance member Wilda Shock reported Monday that more than 400 people attended the auction.


She said Wine Alliance Treasurer Rob Roumiguiere reported that the live auction's 34 lots brought $71,300, with 84 silent auction lots bringing an additional $14,500.


The single item bringing the highest bid in the live auction was Mike and Jan Thompson's "Pig Out at the Pump House" for $5,200, said Shock. A private tasting, tour and lunch at Ceago Vinegarden brought $3,600 and then was doubled for another group, netting $7,200.

 

The travel and wine packages in the live auction were geographically varied and included some special wine lots put together by master of ceremonies Narsai David which weren't included in the printed program, Shock added.


Event sponsors provided $65,500, said Shock, with ticket sales totaling more than $36,000.


Another large contribution, said Shock, came from the 21 wineries and 22 restaurants and food purveyors who donated all their goods and services. This year saw the largest number ever of winery and restaurants participants.


Seven Lake County wineries contributed to the Syrah Blend cuvee crafted by Jed Steele and Joy Merrilees at Steele Wines; five wineries donated to the Sauvignon Blanc cuvee, Shock said. These special blends were offered in one 9-liter bottle each in the live auction, and served at the tables of the major sponsors. A new feature this year was a bottle of donated Dusinberre champagne served to the tables of the high bidders for each live auction lot.


The event also included a special Congressional recognition of Gerald Ployez, who served as the Lake County Wine Alliance's first president when the nonprofit formed in 2000.

 

This year's Wine Auction beneficiaries include Sponsoring Survivorship, the Adult Day Care/Respite Day Care Centers, Habitat for Humanity of Lake County, Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Lake County, Lake County Community Radio/KPFZ, the fine arts programs at the five Lake County high schools, and the Meals on Wheels on programs at five senior centers.


Organizers report that more than $530,000 has been contributed to community groups in Lake County from the proceeds of the first six auctions. The auction chair is Marie Beery, assisted by Linda Byrd, co-chair, both of Kelseyville.

 

Estimated proceeds that will be donated to the selected beneficiaries will be between $85,000 and $90,000, Shock said, roughly equivalent to the funds raised in the two auctions. She said auction bidders are directly benefiting the organizations with their purchases, as sponsors and ticket sales primarily cover expenses of producing this major event, and those costs have increased every year.

 

Plans for next year's event are about to begin. The Wine Auction committee is meeting next week to start the review process and planning for the 2008 event, scheduled for Oct. 18.

 

Information about sponsorships and donations may be obtained from the Lake County Wine Alliance, P.O. Box 530, Kelseyville 95451; phone 866-279-WINE.


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