Held on September 11th-12th, the Winesong! charity wine auction which benefits the Mendocino Coast Hospital Foundation was by any reasonable definition a success. When the last lot was sold, Winesong! 2009 had raised over $542,000.Though just under the $551,000 2008 total, it was close enough in this down market for everyone involved—bidders, donors, friends and hosts–to walk away feeling good about bucking the trend.
A crowd of over 1,000 attended what was Winesong’s 25th celebration. Events over the weekend honored long-time contributors such as Narsai David, the food and wine reviewer for KCBS News in San Francisco. He was joined by 200 others who have attended Winesong for 20 years or more at a pre-auction reception hosted by Linda and Fedele Bauccio at their magnificent ocean-front home on the Mendocino Coast. With Margaret Fox, Harvest Market’s Culinary Director, designing delicious appetizers to accompany an array of Italian wines imported by Un Po Pazzo of San Francisco, the friendly, feel good mood was established.
Record Live Auction
Consisting of 77 lots, Saturday’s Live Auction brought in $504,000 with the Silent Auction setting a record at $38,000. Part of the Live Auction proceeds consisted of a specific fund-a-cause project —the purchase a portable ultrasound unit for the Emergency Room– which brought the audience together as guests pledged cash contributions that ultimately totaled $62,000.
Beginning with Lot #1, a six magnum vertical of Spottswoode Cabernet purchased for $3,000 by Bill & Sharon Shubin of Ketchum, Idaho, the bidding remained lively. Dozens of paddles went up at each subsequent lot as bidders seemed to temporarily suspend their concerns about the economy and to enjoy the moment. A week’s stay for four couples at Monte Bernardi in Tuscany was high bid of the day at $30,000. It was purchased by the Hughes and Hasty families of Mendocino, and throughout the day many local residents did their part to enliven the bidding.
Auction Chairman. Norm Roby, who since 1992 has been soliciting donations and encourages bidders to attend, said, “Quite honestly, this was such a difficult year that you learn who your real friends are. I’m happy to report Winesong! has many, many genuine friends who live here on the coast or who annually travel the winding road to join us.”
He added, “This year was also different in that one or two bidders did not dominate the auction. While our good friends the Shubins were top bidders for the second consecutive year, winning bidders were spread throughout the tent with over 30 couples spending more than $7,500.”
2009 Top Ten Bidders:
- Bill & Sharon Shubin, Ketchum, Idaho
- Ralphine Ippoliti, Orlando, Florida
- John & Kathy Hughes, Albion, CA
- Charles & Olivier Hasty, Little River,CA
- Mick Friend & Lori Bradford, Fair Oaks, CA
- Paul & Joan Selchau, Mendocino
- David & Nadine Greco, San Clemente, CA
- Mike & Mary Schuh, Glen Ellen, CA
- Scott & Norma Morrison, Boca Raton, Florida
- Lynn Dunn, Redwood City, CA