FORT BRAGG, CA – After a spectacular weekend of award-winning wine, fabulous food, fine art, music, merriment, and charitable giving, this year’s 33rd annual Winesong was declared a resounding success, with increased auction sales and more guests than ever participating in the auctions. Held on the Mendocino Coast on September 8th and 9th, highlights included A Pinot Noir Celebration, the Grand Tasting event and a Live and Silent auction. Winesong is the main fundraising event benefiting the Mendocino Coast District Hospital. Produced by the Mendocino Coast Hospital Foundation, all proceeds go towards supporting the local Hospital that serves the entire Mendocino Coast, plus rural inland areas covering nearly half the distance to Highway 101.
Winesong 2017 kicked off on Friday, September 8th with a sold-out insider’s view of spectacular Pinot Noirs at ‘A Pinot Noir Celebration’ hosted by the Little River Inn. Guests enjoyed Pinot Noir tastings and delicious passed hors d’oeuvres, along with a chance to “talk shop” with the winemakers from Mendocino County, Napa and Sonoma Counties. On Saturday, September 9th, attendees to the Grand Tasting strolled the enchanting Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens while enjoying vintages poured by world-class wineries from Mendocino, Napa, Sonoma and beyond, and bites from nearly 50 fine food purveyors. The celebration continued in the Auction Tents with the always-entertaining main attraction, the Live and Silent Auctions, where nearly 150 lots were on offer – including spectacular wines from a selection of prestigious wine producers, rare and hard-to-find vintages, special vertical and horizontal collections, original paintings and art from highly acclaimed artists, and domestic and international vacation packages.
Bidders at the Live Auction under the big tent helped raise significant funds, with a projected gross of more than $700,000 coming in from the two-day event. After covering production expenses, the Winesong net return will be used to assist the Mendocino Coast District Hospital purchase needed equipment. Some of the most coveted items were the big international trips and spectacular wine auction lots. Leading the way for bidding was a 10-day trip to South Africa, which was doubled at $21,000 per trip! Trips to Italy and Amsterdam each garnered $18,000. An unparalleled 20-bottle collection of Chateau Gruaud Larose Grand Cru went for $16,000 and a rare wine lot featuring companion vineyards from Chateau Pichon Longueville went for $17,000. Another highlight was the “Fund-A-Need” to help provide comfort and care to patients by way of upgraded beds and patient room improvements. The goal was $200,000, which was surpassed by a combination of day of bidders and pre-event gifts to raise $205,000, with 100% of these donations going directly to the Hospital.
“This year’s Winesong had a different layout than in the past, and one of the main purposes was to encourage general admission ticketholders to register for bidder paddles and join the fun,” says Jamie Peters, Event Director for Winesong. “And I’m happy to say that it worked! We had more new bidders than ever and are encouraged ourselves to continue to make it easy and convenient for all guests to participate in the auctions as well as the beautiful tasting.”
Other highlights from the live and silent auction include:
- Lot 12: Artist of the Year art piece – “Barn Song” – a 30” x 30” Bas Relief – $14,000
- Lot 16A: A surprise lot courtesy of Ann & Dick Grace that includes dinner for 4 at The French Laundry and large format wines from Grace Family Vineyards – $12,000
- Lot 22: “Sweethearts in Paradise” – a trip for two couples to Barbados – $13,000
- Lot 24: 45” x 60” giclee on canvas by the late Lowell Herrero – $15,000
“We were thrilled with the results of Winesong 2017,” states Michelle Roberts, Executive Director of the Mendocino Coast Hospital Foundation. “The live auction tent was filled with energy as generous donors responded to the call to action to help us fund vital equipment at Mendocino Coast District Hospital. We thank everyone who helped make the day a success. The generosity around this event is truly awe-inspiring.”
About Winesong & the Mendocino Coast Hospital Foundation
Winesong is produced by the Mendocino Coast Hospital Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to raising funds for the Mendocino Coast District Hospital. Its mission is to help the small rural Hospital provide the best possible medical care to residents as well as the many visitors to the Mendocino Coast. Winesong proceeds have enabled the Hospital to purchase chemotherapy equipment, portable ultrasound machines for the Emergency Room as well as a state-of-the-art Diagnostic Imaging Center, Cardiology Equipment, a Bedside Medicine Verification System and a Patient Bedside Monitoring & Alert system.
For further information, please visit http://winesong.org or call (707) 961-4688.