How Did the WiSH Education Foundation Get the Newhall Library for a Wine Event?

Well, we asked.  But it didn’t just start from there.  Yours truly loves wine events, has been to plenty of wine events, including almost every wine event in town.  I was looking for a new venue, and this is the third one that is bouncing around my noggin, to entice wine people out of their comfort zone and dress up, get excited about a new non-profit and check out a jewel of a location.

Before the library opened, and I’m talking years ago, I attended a meeting at Hart Park to discuss a community wish list.  People wanted a room for Santa Clarita archival material, art on the walls, teen areas…the list went on and on and I left that meeting thinking: What a bunch of dreamers.

Fast-forward and I saw the blueprints of the building, even later I saw the land leveled and the concrete slab going in (did I mention I live in Newhall?) and a fence erected around the property with large posters of what was to be built.

Opening week (yes I waited in line to get in) the first thing I thought was “wine event.”  The glassed in staircase ascended to a glassed in walkway that overlooked Downtown Newhall on one side, the first story on the other and to the left and right, expansive rooms.  And I thought, what a great place for a silent auction.

My wine-eye noted a secluded fireplace, two large rooms (The Heritage room would be the larger of the two and was already being fitted with archival materials) and four glassed-in private study rooms complete with large tables and seating.  I thought, wow, a winemaker could totally hold court in there.

Marlee Lauffer, me, drinking wine in the library during our photo shoot!

When members of the WiSH board, Marlee Lauffer, Amy Daniels and Gail Pinsker, asked if I could help with a wine event I pitched my idea.  The ladies set up a meeting with the city and several library employees to discuss the idea.

To get everyone credited, I went back to Amy Daniels to make sure that those that helped us with the approval were not forgotten.  Amy said, “The library manager was Erin Christmas and of course, the person that we are working with to coordinate everything is Elena Galvez. She is our liaison with the city. There was never any established facilities request procedure for the library until we asked for it! I think you were the one to come up with the idea, Eve, so kudos to you for all you’ve done and for your creativity!”

Gail Pinkser, Public Relations Officer for the Hart School District, added, “The reason we got the library is the strong relationship that the City of Santa Clarita has with the Hart School District.  The City is amazing in partnering with the District on a variety of programs for our students and this is an extension of that benefiting the WiSH Education Foundation.  The City of Santa Clarita is a great place to live, work and play and they feel strongly on supporting programs that benefit our youth, the future of our community.  We approached them and they were immediately excited about opening their new library up for this important benefit.”

Turned out that the library was very open to having events.  A wine event, and possible spillage, was another matter – but that was quickly worked out.  The carpeting is set in squares, something that can be replaced if necessary.

The head librarian, Ed Kieczykowski, walked us around the library just to give us a tour but as we looked around he came up with an idea:  How about they replace the information on their two large monitors with our event art and a map of where each wine tasting would be?  Holy moly I thought, like the directory at a mall?  How cool is that?  We also thought that maps, instead of guests having to carry one, could be placed outside of each of the private study rooms.

Fast forward one more time and Marlee Lauffer and I show up in the library, in our cocktail dresses, with wine and glasses to be photographed for the Magazine of Santa Clarita (Our event’s media sponsor).  If you think people didn’t notice that – you’d be wrong.  Link:

Library pictures link:–for-the-love-of-books-old-town-newhall-public-library.html

Join us:  When visiting a winery the experience of tasting with the winemaker or winery representative is not easily duplicated.  However, the planners behind the inaugural WiSH Education Foundation – benefitting the students of the William S. Hart school district – have done just that.

With the approval from our city’s latest landmark – the Old Town Newhall Library – guests will be able to visit with winemakers in several private “study rooms,” taste additional donated wines served by local volunteers, sample special wine paired foods from innovative local chefs and bid on eclectic silent auction items while overlooking downtown Newhall’s latest incarnation: a twinkle-lit main street.

The number of ticket sales will be limited to guarantee each of our guests an exclusive experience.  At the end of the evening all guests will receive a special gift bag with special offers from our special vendors.  Ticket price is $75 and available now through Adults over 21 only, please.

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