The 27th annual Livermore Valley Wine Auction drew 275 guests for a festive afternoon of winetasting and fundraising Sept. 25 that yielded $275,000 for Livermore Valley Winegrowers Foundation to improve the quality of life for under-served local children.
In the spirit of safety, the event was held entirely outdoors this year in a garden party format that saw attendees wearing hats -- for shade and for glamour -- as they perused items to be auctioned, 17 winemakers poured their best wines, and Matt Finders and Friends played jazz.
The live auction raised $81,000 with items including a Winemaker Jam Session and BBQ at the home of Larry and Margie Dino of Cuda Ridge Wines with fellow winemakers Dane Stark of Page Mill Winery, Mark Clarin of McGrail Vineyards and Karl Wente of Wente Vineyards. Another top lot was called "Party Like It's 1949!" that included a private barn dance at a ranch in the Sierra foothills, with a catered lunch, live bluegrass music, a dance caller and Black Tie limousine transportation for 40 guests.
The fund-a-need benefiting Livermore Shakespeare's new program for seventh-grade students raised more than $80,000. Actors performed two songs, and Livermore Shakespeare director Katie Marcel provided an overview of the new program, which seeks to help seventh-graders express themselves at school.
The other beneficiaries of this year's event are CALICO, achieving justice for abused children; Exceptional Needs Network, summer camps for children with special needs; QUEST, science education; and Reins in Motion, equestrian therapy for children with special needs.
For more information, visit www.lvwf.org.