Browsing articles in "wine festivals"
Mar 3, 2015
Terri Judson

Oyamel’s 8th Annual Tequila & Mezcal Festival Kicks Off Tonight


By DCist Contributor Nathan Wilkinson

In a world where beer and wine festivals come and go with regularity, a cocktail drinker like myself can really get excited about something as unique as a tequila and mezcal festival. For starters, this is unexplored territory for even the most experienced scotch and bourbon drinkers. You know, those guys who can blind taste a whiskey and tell you the region where it was distilled and the color of the sheep that graze in nearby pastures? Yeah. They can’t do the same with mezcal.

That’s why Oyamel’s (401 7th Street NW) festival promises to be a fun and educational event.

The festival kicks off with an all-inclusive party tonight from 6 – 9 p.m., and will feature tequila and mezcal tasting stations, live music from Latin band Montuno, and specialty food and cocktails for $60 dollars per person. And since many of these liquors are not widely available in the U.S., there’s bound to be something new for everyone.

Oyamel’s beverage manager and level four Mezcalier Jasmine Chae has created a special cocktail menu that features chili pepper infusions. Try the sweet Pica Pepino, made with Milagro Tequila Blanco, cucumber, Serrano peppers and lemon, or the dry and refreshing Paloma de Oaxaca with mezcal and grapefruit-jalapeño soda. Then there’s the Manhattan-like La Capital with Tequila Añejo, sweet vermouth and guajillo chili, and, my favorite and the spiciest, Media Naranja with Fidencio Clásico, sour orange, habanero, egg white, and bitters.

Complimentary tequila and mezcal tastings will be available in the bar from 4-6 p.m. on Tuesday, March 3 through Thursday, March 5 and next week on Monday, March 9 through Thursday, March 12. The tastings will feature renowned brands such as Tequila Avión, Fidencio Mezcal, Wahaka Mezcal, El Silencio Mezcal, and Herradura Tequila. In addition to the special cocktails, the festival also features seasonal dishes that integrate chilies such as Costeno Amarillo and Chihuacle Negro. Both food and drink specials will be available from March 2-15.

Recommended Reading

Mar 2, 2015
Terri Judson

sf|noir Wine & Food Festival celebrates black culture and cuisine

San Francisco has long been characterized as a rich tapestry of cultural diversity and tolerance. But as the gap in wealth grows wider and rent prices skyrocket, communities of people are slowly being erased from the city’s fabric. And no group has seen a bigger depletion than the black community. From 1990 to 2010, the black population in San Francisco dwindled by 38 percent.

“San Francisco can’t claim the diversity that it has a reputation for if it doesn’t have black people or if it is not representing all cultures,” said Hervé Ernest, founder, sf|noir.

In response to the exodus of the black population, Ernest founded sf|noir in 2001, a non-profit organization dedicated to highlighting the contributions of the black community to dance, art, film and music. “We couldn’t necessarily stop the out migration of African Americans, but it was trying to ensure there was an institution here that was charged with presenting rich and dynamic presentations of black arts and culture,” he said.

Tapping into the vibrant food scene of the Bay Area, the sf|noir Wine and Food Festival was born in 2010. Coinciding with Black History Month, this year’s five-day gathering featured an array of events including spoken word performances, hosted by food activist and eco-chef, Bryant Terry, that examined the injustices in our food system as well as cooking demos with likes of Chef David Lawrence of 1300 Fillmore and Chef Romney “Nani” Steele of The Cook and Her Farmer.

“There are all these amazing food and wine festivals occurring in San Francisco and throughout the Bay Area. We wanted to put together a festival celebrating the culinary arts from an African American perspective,” said Ernest.

Started during the Willie Brown administration, sf|noir benefited from his support and was able to secure multi-year funding early on, which helped get the organization off the ground. Ernest noted that subsequent administrations have been slower to support sf|noir and see it as a real priority. His hope is that through future city initiatives he can secure additional funding and take sf|noir from being an organization that provides sporadic events throughout the year to a full-time arts organization.

“I believe we would be able to do a lot more and cement the idea that San Francisco is welcoming to all of the people that make living in the city an enriching and an amazing experience.”

Recommended Reading

Mar 2, 2015
Terri Judson

Weddings, wines and miracles

As you have probably noticed, part of this edition of SoVa Living focuses upon local wines and wineries.

When thinking of wine, festivals and Christianity, my thoughts immediately turn to Jesus’ miracle of turning the water into wine at the wedding in Cana, which is described in John 2:1-11.

Let’s reflect for a few moments upon Jesus turning common water into uncommon, world-class wine; and upon what this miracle meant for the wedding party then, as well as for us today.

The story opens with Jesus and his disciples being invited to a wedding in the village of Cana. The mother of Jesus was there, helping with the wedding festivities. Jesus and his disciples arrived to participate. The mother of Jesus came to Him to tell him that the wine had run out. Jesus’ response reveals that she was asking Jesus to fix the situation. Can you imagine having the house and yard filled with guests, and hearing the news that you are out of wine. In a village you couldn’t just run out to a store for more.

After discussion, Jesus changed approximately 150 gallons of ritual hand-washing water into 150 gallons of superb wine. The head-waiter was stunned by the quality of the wine Jesus provided (vs. 10), and also by the fact that the hosts did not use the good wine first and then after everyone was tipsy bring out the low-grade wine for the rest of the celebration. Jesus had the man sampling the best wine of the entire celebration.

In vs. 11 we read that through this first miracle at this wedding, Jesus began manifesting His unique glory, and as a result that His disciples believed in Him. Jesus did this miracle to help a family in need, but also to reveal His glory, goodness and kindness to those in attendance. This miracle was to become a living portrait depicting the goodness of God, and what Jesus came to accomplish. So what is it that this miracle reveals to us about Jesus and His ministry?

This miracle happened at a wedding. A wedding represents the beginning of a new life. The marriage of a husband and wife reveal a new commitment between a man and woman, which leads to them developing a new identity as they together begin a new family. The new merged identity (i.e., the husband and wife becoming one flesh), develops over time as the couple daily discover new ways of relating to one another. They were once two unconnected persons; now they have a shared identity and a merged life. This is described in Genesis 2:24 (ESV): “Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.” So the wedding is to be the celebration of a new life being born.

Where there is a celebration, one will often find wine. In the Bible wine is frequently associated with joy and with celebration. In God’s presence is fullness of joy.

However, wine also represents God-empowered transformation. Grape juice ferments and is transformed to produce wine. Wine begins in one form, but through a God-designed process ends up in a different form. Grapes are crushed, change shape, and in the process their nature is transformed. Grapes do not produce joy in the human body, nor does grape juice. But when God changes grapes into wine, joy accompanies it. Jesus came to transform us from living a joyless existence into living a joyful existence.

Wine represents the new quality of life that Jesus came to bring, just as the marriage of a husband and wife brings a new quality of life to that couple. The legalism and empty rituals of religion, seen in the story’s ceremonial water, were to be replaced by God-created joy that flows from a new kind of relationship with God. The sadness of being alone and without God would change into the joy of experiencing new life with Jesus and in never again being alone.

The waters of religious legalism were to be replaced with the joy-giving wine from God. Jesus did not just come to replace one set of religious traditions (Judaism) with another brand (Christendom). The wine steward states in vs. 10 that the wine Jesus produced was the best wine of the entire celebration. The joyful relationship with God that Jesus offers to mankind far exceeds the drudgery of lifeless religion, just as the joy from a fine world-class wine easily excels the experience of drinking rancid water.

This miracle points to the reality that Jesus came to miraculously change our lives. God can take the simple and make it awesome. God can take the mundane and make it stunning. God can change corruptible water into incorruptible wine. Lives of boring ritual can be replaced with the wine of joy. Jesus came to give us a new beginning in our relationship with God, and in life, which is indeed a much greater miracle than merely changing water into wine.

Where are you in your life today? Is your life more like stagnant water, or more like shimmering wine? Are you joyless or joyful? Are you just doing your duty, or are you delighting in living life with God?

As you enjoy the fine wines of the Southern Virginia region, with each glass remember to reflect upon God, who through Jesus continues to transform you and me into His wine of joy.

Recommended Reading

Mar 1, 2015
Terri Judson

Building A Marketing Plan On A Shoestring Budget

Any successful business owner understands the importance of marketing, but most small businesses don’t have the money to invest.

In the second in a series of business seminars, 30 people Wednesday learned how to build a marketing plan on a shoestring budget.

Ana Gutowski, CEO of the Rim Country Regional Chamber of Commerce, presented a range of low-cost options. One free tool is the elevator pitch, which she called “the simplest, most powerful tool for a small-business owner.”

The pitch is a short speech about the business or service given during face-to-face networking.

If a business owner can’t clearly articulate who they are, what they sell and why it is better than the competition, customers won’t know either, she said.

But networking is more than just talking about your business. Like dating, owners should ask questions and listen before spouting details about their great business.

Gutowski suggests networking at beer and wine festivals, civic events, chamber and library events, fundraisers, festivals and service group meetings, like Rotary and Kiwanis.

Kiwanis and Rotary meetings are also great places to speak. Most of these groups welcome speakers at their meetings and the library will often host a talk in its meeting room. A construction worker, for example, could hold a talk on how to winterize your home.

“You are not selling stuff, but offering information,” she said. “This builds your brand and reputation.”

Other low-cost ideas include sending out press releases to the Roundup and local radio stations. Releases can cover anything from an employee promotion, a new product or service or an event.

If money is tight, share the cost of a Roundup ad with another business. A landscaper could team up with a nursery and they could also split the cost of a booth at the chamber’s annual Business Showcase.

One place that likely will cost money is building a professional website. A website is the central marketing hub for a business and should have updated and accurate information presented in a way that is appealing and tailored to the product. It should also be on par with or better than the competition.

The website should include links to the business’ Facebook and Twitter profiles. Facebook offers a free way to promote events and sales and hear back from customers instantly.

If a customer leaves a comment on a business’ Facebook page, they should always respond, even if the comment is criticism.

For loyal customers, ask for referrals. If the customer responds, reward them for their help. Barbara Hartwell, who owns Tax Bookkeeping Service, LLC, said she offers a discount for every referral a client brings her business.

Leverage those helpful customers and ask them for testimonials, which you put on the website.

Whatever you decide to do, build a plan. Gutowski created a free Excel 12-month marketing plan for business owners to use. Visit the Roundup to download the file.

Document

12-month marketing plan

Download .XLSX

How to write an elevator pitch

1) Define who you are.

2) Describe what you do.

3) Identify your ideal client

4) Explain what is unique and different about the business or business owner.

5) State what you want to happen next.

6) Create an attention-grabbing hook.

7) Put it all together.

Recommended Reading

Feb 28, 2015
Terri Judson

Wine festivals tempt with tastings, entertainment

Across Texas this spring, corks will be popping at all of the many outdoor wine festivals. Yet, even though wine is the main focus, these festivals offer live entertainment, wine tastings, craft beers, great food, vendor booths, and more. But most of all, these festivals offer a time to relax and enjoy the outdoors, and pleasant surroundings.

Savor Dallas, March 19-22

Now in its 11th year, the Savor Dallas Wine and Food Festival has grown into a wine and culinary extravaganza and has become a signature for the city of Dallas. Savor Dallas will feature selections from DFW’s premier restaurants and top chefs, stylish craft cocktails and beers and, of course, a variety of world-class wines. The city has invited its most celebrated chefs and mixologists; and craft breweries from around the country and garnered the support of expert sommeliers to curate an incredible collections of tastes to delight anyone’s palate.

There will be cuisine from over 60 top chefs, and more than 400 premium wines, spirits and beers. The festival is staged in beautiful settings including the Dallas Arts District, and other locations around the Metroplex.

For more information and tickets, visit www.savordallas.com.

Sugar Land Wine and Food Affair, April 8-12

Attracting more than 10,000 food- and wine-lovers annually, the 12th annual Sugar Land Wine and Food Affair is where top chefs share secrets, sommeliers get uncorked and all manner of foodies – from bonafide gourmets to everyday eaters – come to indulge in fantastic fare, sensational spirits and some of the finest wines around.

This year’s event will include participation by more than 75 chefs and restaurants, creating original dishes with their signature touches. Over 2,600 bottles of wine will be poured, tasted, and paired at the five-day fun-filled event, including educational seminars, wine and beer tastings and bidding auctions, among other exciting events. Continuing last year’s traditions and schedule, the affair will kick-off with a five-course VIP dinner, “La Dolce Vita,” on Wednesday evening; The Bartender Challenge on Thursday; The Grand Tasting and Grand Auction on Friday evening; The Sip Stroll at the historical Imperial Sugar Factory on Saturday afternoon; and The Bistro Brunch Sunday afternoon to conclude event festivities. For more information and tickets, visit www.sugarlandwineandfoodaffair.com.

Galveston Island Food Wine Festival April 16-19

The sixth annual Galveston Island Food and Wine Festival is held in historic uptown Galveston’s Saengerfest Park. Wine aficionados have the opportunity to sample a variety of delicious foods and wine, mingle with expert winemakers and fellow enthusiasts, and enjoy a most pleasurable atmosphere filled with music and dancing. Wine vendors, novelty art and jewelry vendors, and the traditional Bailliage of La Chaîne des Rôtisseurs Dinner are just a few exciting features at this event. For more information: www.galveston.com/foodandwine.

Granbury Wine Walk, April 24-25

Hood County is always a wine lover’s choice (four wineries in one small county), but never more than during the Granbury Wine Walk. While you can stroll downtown Granbury with your favorite merlot in hand any day, only during the Granbury Wine Walk can you walk to as many as 20 participating Texas wineries.

The sixth annual Granbury Wine Walk is the place to experience the authentic character of Texas through its wine, food, music and art.

For more wine festivals, visit www.localwineevents.com/festivals.

Recommended Reading

Feb 27, 2015
Terri Judson

Not-to-miss March festivals, fun around Sonoma County

It seems the year 2015 has barely started, and yet the second month of it is almost over. And now the spring festival season is coming up on us rapidly. Get ready to march through a busy month of special events.

Whether you’re interested in food, wine, literature, art, music or dance, you’re likely to find something you like in this list of happenings scheduled throughout Sonoma County during March.

Friday, Feb. 27 through Sunday, March 1: Izzy’s 25th annual Tattoo Blues. Three dozen top tattoo artists, the Wildfire Dancers and live music by Snake Alley, Fire and Wheels and Stevie G the Blue Collar Blues Band. Opens at noon today, 11 a.m. Saturday and Sunday. Flamingo Resort. $20-$35. 848-8300, santarosatattoosandblues.com.

March 6-8 and March 13-15: 37th annual Barrel Tasting. With more than 100 northern Sonoma County wineries participating, you can sample wines from the barrel, talk to winemakers and explore the Alexander, Dry Creek and Russian River valleys. 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day. Advance ticket sales end at 9 p.m. Monday, March 2: weekend, $40; Sunday only, $30. At the door: weekend, $60; Sunday only: $40. wineroad.com.

March 14: Sonoma County Bluegrass and Folk Festival. The lineup for this 15th annual event includes Si Kahn, Anne and Pete Sibley, the Kathy Kallick Band, Steep Ravine, Bean Creek and Dan Crary, Steve Spurgin and Bill Evans. 1-9 p.m. Doors open at noon. $30 in advance; $35 at the door. Sebastopol Community Cultural Center, 390 Morris St., Sebastopol. 823-1511, seb.org.

March 18-April 19: Art of Gastronomy, a juried art exhibition celebrating food and drink, features 111 works by 72 artists from across the United States. The monthlong celebration also includes literary and culinary events. Exhibition hours: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sundays, Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays; 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Healdsburg Center for the Arts, 130 Plaza St., Healdsburg. 337-2422, healdsburgcenterforthearts.com.

March 20-22: California’s Artisan Cheese Festival. It’s so much more than just a topping for a burger. Discover the diversity and excellence of California’s artisan cheeses with three days of tastings, seminars, demonstrations, classes, tours and author appearances. Enjoy the best of cow, sheep and goat milk cheeses, and find out which go best with great wines and beers. $20-$135. Sheraton Sonoma County, 745 Baywood Drive, Petaluma. 837-1928, artisancheesefestival.com.

March 20-21: Pigs Pinot. Dry Creek Kitchen’s Chef Charlie Palmer invites the public to join him and a stellar cast of master sommeliers and international celebrity chefs for the 10th annual, two-day celebration of pinot noir and pork at the Healdsburg Hotel. $125-$175. Hotel Healdsburg, 25 Matheson St., Healdsburg. 922-5249, pigsandpinot.com.

March 21-22: Savor Sonoma Valley. Meet winemakers, mingle with wine lovers, see original work by local artists and listen to live music when 17 Sonoma Valley wineries showcase 2014 vintage wines, straight from the barrels, and offer samples of new releases. Look forward to great wine and food pairings, too. 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. both days. Weekend pass, $65; Sunday only, $50. Various Sonoma Valley wineries. 866-794-9463, heartofsonomavalley.com.

March 25-29: 18th annual Sonoma International Film Festival. More than 90 films, including independent features, documentaries, shorts and a showcase of Spanish-language films, all shown at venues within walking distance of Sonoma Plaza. Cinema pass: $250; cinema soirée pass: $650. sonomafilmfest.org.

March 26-29: Sebastopol Documentary Film Festival. See films on subjects that big-budget commercial features seldom touch when Sebastopol presents its eighth annual celebration of nonfiction, with screenings at the Rialto Cinemas and other venues. Topics range from local to global. All-access pass, $250; opening night, $30; regular films and programs, $10. Headquarters: Sebastopol Center for the Arts, 282 S. High St., Sebastopol. 829-4797, sebastopolfilmfestival.org.

March 28: Battle of the Brews: The boom in craft beers, brewed throughout Northern California on a smaller scale than the big national brands, has raised the profile of this 19th annual event in a region long known for its wine festivals. Sponsored by the Active 20-30 Club of Santa Rosa, the daylong celebration includes beer and food tastings and pairings, a professional brewers’ competition, the ‘Wich Hunt showcase of specialty sandwiches by local chefs, and more. 1-8 p.m. $40-$95. Sonoma County Fairgrounds, 1350 Bennett Valley Road, Santa Rosa. 545-4200, battleofthebrews.com.

You can reach Staff Writer Dan Taylor at 521-5243 or dan.taylor@pressdemocrat.com.

Recommended Reading

Feb 27, 2015
Terri Judson

Festivals and entertainment happening in March

It seems the year 2015 has barely started, and yet the second month of it is almost over. And now the spring festival season is coming up on us rapidly. Get ready to march through a busy month of special events.

Whether you’re interested in food, wine, literature, art, music or dance, you’re likely to find something you like in this list of happenings scheduled throughout Sonoma County during March.

Friday, Feb. 27 through Sunday, March 1: Izzy’s 25th annual Tattoo Blues. Three dozen top tattoo artists, the Wildfire Dancers and live music by Snake Alley, Fire and Wheels and Stevie G the Blue Collar Blues Band. Opens at noon today, 11 a.m. Saturday and Sunday. Flamingo Resort. $20-$35. 848-8300, santarosatattoosandblues.com.

March 6-8 and March 13-15: 37th annual Barrel Tasting. With more than 100 northern Sonoma County wineries participating, you can sample wines from the barrel, talk to winemakers and explore the Alexander, Dry Creek and Russian River valleys. 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day. Advance ticket sales end at 9 p.m. Monday, March 2: weekend, $40; Sunday only, $30. At the door: weekend, $60; Sunday only: $40. wineroad.com.

March 14: Sonoma County Bluegrass and Folk Festival. The lineup for this 15th annual event includes Si Kahn, Anne and Pete Sibley, the Kathy Kallick Band, Steep Ravine, Bean Creek and Dan Crary, Steve Spurgin and Bill Evans. 1-9 p.m. Doors open at noon. $30 in advance; $35 at the door. Sebastopol Community Cultural Center, 390 Morris St., Sebastopol. 823-1511, seb.org.

March 18-April 19: Art of Gastronomy, a juried art exhibition celebrating food and drink, features 111 works by 72 artists from across the United States. The monthlong celebration also includes literary and culinary events. Exhibition hours: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sundays, Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays; 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Healdsburg Center for the Arts, 130 Plaza St., Healdsburg. 337-2422, healdsburgcenterforthearts.com.

March 20-22: California’s Artisan Cheese Festival. It’s so much more than just a topping for a burger. Discover the diversity and excellence of California’s artisan cheeses with three days of tastings, seminars, demonstrations, classes, tours and author appearances. Enjoy the best of cow, sheep and goat milk cheeses, and find out which go best with great wines and beers. $20-$135. Sheraton Sonoma County, 745 Baywood Drive, Petaluma. 837-1928, artisancheesefestival.com.

March 20-21: Pigs Pinot. Dry Creek Kitchen’s Chef Charlie Palmer invites the public to join him and a stellar cast of master sommeliers and international celebrity chefs for the 10th annual, two-day celebration of pinot noir and pork at the Healdsburg Hotel. $125-$175. Hotel Healdsburg, 25 Matheson St., Healdsburg. 922-5249, pigsandpinot.com.

March 21-22: Savor Sonoma Valley. Meet winemakers, mingle with wine lovers, see original work by local artists and listen to live music when 17 Sonoma Valley wineries showcase 2014 vintage wines, straight from the barrels, and offer samples of new releases. Look forward to great wine and food pairings, too. 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. both days. Weekend pass, $65; Sunday only, $50. Various Sonoma Valley wineries. 866-794-9463, heartofsonomavalley.com.

March 25-29: 18th annual Sonoma International Film Festival. More than 90 films, including independent features, documentaries, shorts and a showcase of Spanish-language films, all shown at venues within walking distance of Sonoma Plaza. Cinema pass: $250; cinema soirée pass: $650. sonomafilmfest.org.

March 26-29: Sebastopol Documentary Film Festival. See films on subjects that big-budget commercial features seldom touch when Sebastopol presents its eighth annual celebration of nonfiction, with screenings at the Rialto Cinemas and other venues. Topics range from local to global. All-access pass, $250; opening night, $30; regular films and programs, $10. Headquarters: Sebastopol Center for the Arts, 282 S. High St., Sebastopol. 829-4797, sebastopolfilmfestival.org.

March 28: Battle of the Brews: The boom in craft beers, brewed throughout Northern California on a smaller scale than the big national brands, has raised the profile of this 19th annual event in a region long known for its wine festivals. Sponsored by the Active 20-30 Club of Santa Rosa, the daylong celebration includes beer and food tastings and pairings, a professional brewers’ competition, the ‘Wich Hunt showcase of specialty sandwiches by local chefs, and more. 1-8 p.m. $40-$95. Sonoma County Fairgrounds, 1350 Bennett Valley Road, Santa Rosa. 545-4200, battleofthebrews.com.

You can reach Staff Writer Dan Taylor at 521-5243 or dan.taylor@pressdemocrat.com.

Recommended Reading

Feb 26, 2015
Terri Judson

Grand Junction’s stance on climate change laughable to other regions

SHARE

Email to a friend
Save to Facebook
Post to Twitter
Save to delicious


Email letters, February 25, 2015

Grand Junction’s stance on climate change laughable to other regions

Why would any science based or tech company choose to locate in a city/county with a math and science center and a “university” (one that wants to graduate engineers and be taken seriously in the engineering community) that endorse a climate change/global warming denier as keynote speaker at an energy gathering?

There is a reason why the Front Range is a better place for economic development, and why folks over there laugh at Grand Junction and CMU. Anti-intellectual attitudes posing as science get us mountain bikes and wine festivals and Country Jam as economic development. People who take climate change seriously come to us for entertainment.

SANDRA N BROWN
Grand Junction

Obama’s Keystone Pipeline veto was classic double talk

After listening to President Obama explain why he vetoed the Keystone Pipeline, I now know how a dog must feel watching a ceiling fan: completely bewildered. This is a classic job of double talk.

The Democrats are always spouting about how they want to help the middle class find jobs, yet when given the chance to create jobs, they tell those people to get lost.

BOB STRONG
Montrose

Why did Tippetts not inform Airport Authority Board of his machinations?

This letter is in regards to Tuesday’s editorial: “Board should have heard Tippetts out.”

A better thing to wonder or be concerned about is why Tippetts did not fully inform the entire Airport Authority Board of his machinations.

I suspect that our “outstanding citizen,” who was Chairman of the Board, was aware of all of Tippetts’ efforts and reasons for his activities. If not, then why was he not?

My one interface with Tippetts was less than satisfactory. He was far less than truthful in addressing my letter regarding loss of Patriot Guard free parking when attending Welcome Home ceremonies or send-offs for our local veterans.

CREIGHTON BRICKER
Grand Junction

Enforcement of leash laws will allow for enjoyment and safety of our parks

At last, more leash law enforcement.

Dogs off leash in city parks and on the River Trail are a huge problem. Even “friendly” dogs endanger leashed dogs, bikers, walkers, small children, the elderly, other loose dogs, and themselves. Owners who let their dogs run loose often turn a blind eye to their dog’s droppings, negatively impacting the usage of parks for everyone.

I’d estimate unleashed dogs at local parks could range from 20 to 50 percent depending on location, weather and day of the week. That’s like allowing 20-50 percent of drivers to ignore traffic laws because they “impinge” on the drivers’ freedoms. It’s more than “sort of rude” to allow dogs’ rights to trump those of people; it’s dangerous.

The persistent problem of unleashed dogs has negatively impacted where and when I walk my leashed and obedience titled pets, how many I take, my enjoyment, and if we suddenly have to abort the whole thing. To fend off loose dogs, I’ve had to quickly pick up little ones and face down belligerent owners. I’ve been knocked down, threatened, gotten tangled in leashes, and had a panicked pet slip the collar. And I’ve heard similar complaints countless times from other responsible dog owners.

As a petite, senior lady, I’m more comfortable walking my dog through a building crowded with hundreds of leashed and controlled dogs of all different breeds, sizes and temperaments at a dog show than to take my chances at a busy city park. Sad, isn’t it?

Responsible dog owners will surely welcome increased enforcement of leash laws for the greater enjoyment and safety of our beautiful parks and trails.

PENNY HOPKINS
Grand Junction

Sentinel’s reporting on global climate change suggests a liberal bias

Wow, Sunday’s edition of the Daily Sentinel of the editorial page was a plethora of liberalism on display. Almost every article was about the evils of drilling for gas and oil, fracking, and global warming. If I didn’t know better, I would have thought I was living in Boulder or some other bastion of liberalism.

One writer says that any impact study for oil and gas drilling in the North Fork should not only include the specific drill pad site, but the whole specific unit, across county lines, and include the whole region. Why stop there? Why not the whole U.S. or, even better, the whole world? Maybe the whole world should quit drilling for gas and oil? That is a liberal’s dream. Of course the Saudi’s, the Russians, and a whole host of other countries might not want to go along.

One writer is concerned about oil and gas exploration threatening a world heritage site of unknown size for which he would like a protective boundary of an unknown size to save this area. Maybe the whole world should quit drilling. He writes about the Pueblo people leaving the Chaco Canyon area 1,000 years ago because of environmental factors; presumably because of all the fracking activity.

The next writer comes right out and says he wants fracking banned as he says it is bad for the environment. He says that there is a man called Dr. Evil who represents the oil and gas industry against Mothers Against Drunk Driving, unions, and everything pure and good in the universe. I guess he is willing to have us dependent on other countries for our gas and oil. He probably believes that solar and wind are the answers to our energy needs.

Finally, there was an environmental scientist that is so sure that the hoax called global warming is really occurring and that any person who holds a different point of view should be banned from speaking at the Grand Junction Energy Forum and Expo.

While I admit that I am unfamiliar with Casey’s predictions in global climate change I can say that any predictions of the man-made global climate change group have not proved to be true either. Otherwise the media would be falling all over themselves reporting it.

I am wondering what the people in the northeast part of this country think about global warming? Once again we see the progressive, liberal, left trying to shut out anyone who dares have a different idea.

If you believe that global warming is happening and it turns out that you are right, why would you care if someone espouses an alternate view? It is only if you want to believe that it is true and it turns out that it is not true that you have a problem.

I am just asking if it wouldn’t be too much of a problem for the Daily Sentinel to have a more balanced reporting on this subject.

MICHAEL HIGGINS
Grand Junction

Energy forum speaker has no support among real scientists

Bonnie Peterson’s letter today relative to the energy “expo” – not its official name – this coming weekend is interesting. She lists the various speakers, all of whom are related to the petroleum industry, or who are historically strong supporters of same, except the keynote speaker, John Casey, who would seem to probably have hidden support from the industry. Nothing in her letter would indicate anybody from the solar, wind or age-old hydraulic generation industries being involved. Why is that? Were they specifically not invited or did they choose not to be involved with an event being misrepresented to the public?

Peterson is alleged to be the person who invited Casey whose scientific background is questionable, to be charitable. She seems to challenge people to attend to hear her speaker to open their minds to new ideas. Really?

A column and a letter to the editor point out just what kind of person Casey is. Peterson implies that all ideas have equivalency and should be equally considered. Or is she just suggesting that everybody needs a little entertainment sometime at an event supposedly with a scientific orientation?

Her speaker is a recognized entrepreneur selling himself and his book and is a charlatan and quack. Having him speak at an event promoted as having anything to do with science is an outrage. His new and interesting ideas have no support among real scientists, for good reason. He depends on the unsophisticated and gullible to buy his book.

Was Peterson sucked in by Casey’s nonsense or was he purposely engaged because of his climate change denier position supported by the petroleum industry whose “expo” this is, but is unsaid in its promotion?

JOHN BORGEN
Grand Junction

Carbon fee and dividend the conservative answer to climate change

On the very same day that President Obama vetoed the Keystone XL pipeline, the little town of Carbondale threw its support toward a legislative proposal that benefits both the climate and the economy.

On Tuesday the town of Carbondale passed, “A resolution urging the U.S. Congress to pass legislation that levies an annually increasing revenue-neutral fee on the carbon in fossil fuels at the point of production and importation.” More simply put, the town officially asked Representative Scott Tipton, Senator Cory Gardner, and Senator Michael Bennet to support George Schultz’ carbon fee and dividend. Schultz was President Reagan’s Secretary of State, and he offers fee and dividend as the conservative answer to climate change.

Republicans and many others will no doubt be enraged by the President’s decision on the Pipeline. But there is a way forward – especially if it’s jobs you want. Keystone XL would create roughly 42,000 jobs, most of them construction jobs lasting about 19 weeks. That’s nothing to sneeze at.

But carbon fee and dividend, if enacted in 2016, would add 2.1 million jobs to the economy over the next decade – without the federal government spending a dime.

In fact, an economic study of this transparent policy showed that it would also reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 33 percent in 10 years. That is a far bigger impact than any pipeline decision or EPA regulation, and it comes with a net positive for the US economy.

Rep. Tipton and Sens. Gardner and Bennet: If it’s jobs you want, price carbon at the point when fossil fuels come out of the ground, and give all the money back to the American people. Trust me, voters will like clean air and monthly dividends.

AMELIA POTVIN
Carbondale

Tax on Keystone Pipeline would appeal to Democrats

Getting additional Democrats to vote for the Keystone project sufficient enough to override a veto is easy. Tell them that if they approve, they can add another tax to all the oil that flows through the pipeline. They won’t be able to resist!

L.W. HUNLEY
Grand Junction


Recommended Reading

Feb 26, 2015
Terri Judson

Festivals and fun abound in March

It seems the year 2015 has barely started, and yet the second month of it is almost over. And now the spring festival season is coming up on us rapidly. Get ready to march through a busy month of special events.

Whether you’re interested in food, wine, literature, art, music or dance, you’re likely to find something you like in this list of happenings scheduled throughout Sonoma County during March.

Friday, Feb. 27 through Sunday, March 1: Izzy’s 25th annual Tattoo Blues. Three dozen top tattoo artists, the Wildfire Dancers and live music by Snake Alley, Fire and Wheels and Stevie G the Blue Collar Blues Band. Opens at noon today, 11 a.m. Saturday and Sunday. Flamingo Resort. $20-$35. 848-8300, santarosatattoosandblues.com.

March 6-8 and March 13-15: 37th annual Barrel Tasting. With more than 100 northern Sonoma County wineries participating, you can sample wines from the barrel, talk to winemakers and explore the Alexander, Dry Creek and Russian River valleys. 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day. Advance ticket sales end at 9 p.m. Monday, March 2: weekend, $40; Sunday only, $30. At the door: weekend, $60; Sunday only: $40. wineroad.com.

March 14: Sonoma County Bluegrass and Folk Festival. The lineup for this 15th annual event includes Si Kahn, Anne and Pete Sibley, the Kathy Kallick Band, Steep Ravine, Bean Creek and Dan Crary, Steve Spurgin and Bill Evans. 1-9 p.m. Doors open at noon. $30 in advance; $35 at the door. Sebastopol Community Cultural Center, 390 Morris St., Sebastopol. 823-1511, seb.org.

March 18-April 19: Art of Gastronomy, a juried art exhibition celebrating food and drink, features 111 works by 72 artists from across the United States. The monthlong celebration also includes literary and culinary events. Exhibition hours: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sundays, Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays; 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Healdsburg Center for the Arts, 130 Plaza St., Healdsburg. 337-2422, healdsburgcenterforthearts.com.

March 20-22: California’s Artisan Cheese Festival. It’s so much more than just a topping for a burger. Discover the diversity and excellence of California’s artisan cheeses with three days of tastings, seminars, demonstrations, classes, tours and author appearances. Enjoy the best of cow, sheep and goat milk cheeses, and find out which go best with great wines and beers. $20-$135. Sheraton Sonoma County, 745 Baywood Drive, Petaluma. 837-1928, artisancheesefestival.com.

March 20-21: Pigs Pinot. Dry Creek Kitchen’s Chef Charlie Palmer invites the public to join him and a stellar cast of master sommeliers and international celebrity chefs for the 10th annual, two-day celebration of pinot noir and pork at the Healdsburg Hotel. $125-$175. Hotel Healdsburg, 25 Matheson St., Healdsburg. 922-5249, pigsandpinot.com.

March 21-22: Savor Sonoma Valley. Meet winemakers, mingle with wine lovers, see original work by local artists and listen to live music when 17 Sonoma Valley wineries showcase 2014 vintage wines, straight from the barrels, and offer samples of new releases. Look forward to great wine and food pairings, too. 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. both days. Weekend pass, $65; Sunday only, $50. Various Sonoma Valley wineries. 866-794-9463, heartofsonomavalley.com.

March 25-29: 18th annual Sonoma International Film Festival. More than 90 films, including independent features, documentaries, shorts and a showcase of Spanish-language films, all shown at venues within walking distance of Sonoma Plaza. Cinema pass: $250; cinema soirée pass: $650. sonomafilmfest.org.

March 26-29: Sebastopol Documentary Film Festival. See films on subjects that big-budget commercial features seldom touch when Sebastopol presents its eighth annual celebration of nonfiction, with screenings at the Rialto Cinemas and other venues. Topics range from local to global. All-access pass, $250; opening night, $30; regular films and programs, $10. Headquarters: Sebastopol Center for the Arts, 282 S. High St., Sebastopol. 829-4797, sebastopolfilmfestival.org.

March 28: Battle of the Brews: The boom in craft beers, brewed throughout Northern California on a smaller scale than the big national brands, has raised the profile of this 19th annual event in a region long known for its wine festivals. Sponsored by the Active 20-30 Club of Santa Rosa, the daylong celebration includes beer and food tastings and pairings, a professional brewers’ competition, the ‘Wich Hunt showcase of specialty sandwiches by local chefs, and more. 1-8 p.m. $40-$95. Sonoma County Fairgrounds, 1350 Bennett Valley Road, Santa Rosa. 545-4200, battleofthebrews.com.

You can reach Staff Writer Dan Taylor at 521-5243 or dan.taylor@pressdemocrat.com.

Recommended Reading

Feb 25, 2015
Terri Judson

Wine Enthusiasts, It’s Time to Gear Up Your Taste Buds for the Varietal Wine …

Wine enthusiasts, get your grapes ready because the Okanagan Wine Festivals Society has officially announced the 21st annual Best of Varietal Wine Awards, and with a record 121 member wineries participating in this year’s festival, the event is sure to be a real wine of a time.

Photo credit: Okanagan Wine Festivals Facebook.

From April 30th until May 10th, the ten day tasting will showcase over 70 culinary and wine events, and the top British Columbia varietal wines across 32 different categories will be going head-to-head in the awards competition kickoff. The final awards entry deadline for wineries to participate is April 10th, 2015.

The competition has evolved drastically in the last decade, as the event was originally designed with only three red and three white wine categories. For this year’s event, there are almost 400 entries in 25 different wine categories.

The judges will narrow down the entries to select a number of finalists, but only one wine finalist will be declared the champion in each category.

This competition involves a lot of well seasoned industry judges who are literally on the front line and engaged with the consumer. Not to mention actually buying the wines,” said Tim Pawsey, wine writer, hiredbelly.com. “It also affords us an excellent chance to single out the top wines in each stylistic area from some of the best vintages on record in the Okanagan.”

Photo credit: Okanagan Wine Festivals Facebook.

Incorporating a panel of 14 different wine experts, the competition at this year’s wine event is expected to be fierce.

“Whenever our winery wins a Best of Varietal award we see it directly help impact the sales of that product,” said Bruce Hibbard, Sales for Hester Creek Estate Winery and Board President, Okanagan Wine Festivals Society. “The timing of the awards is also opportune, just prior to the start of the summer season, allowing the wineries to capitalize on their marketing and ensuring they get the most value for their submissions.”

The honours will be handed out at the Best of Varietal Awards Reception and Tasting on April 30th, 2015 from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at the Penticton Ramada. Guests will have the opportunity to mix and mingle with winery owners and winemakers. They’ll also be the first wine consumers to taste the award winning wines. Tickets for the event are $50 and are available online or by calling 250-717-5304.

Photo credit: Okanagan Wine Festivals Facebook.

Recommended Reading

Pages:1234567...159»
About - Contact - Privacy - Terms of Service