Well, all the prep work, judging, creative ideas, amazing donations, and the wines are long gone, but the 2018 Competition and Social at the Beban Park will long be remembered. The auctions, both silent and not-so-silent, raised record sums and is testimony to the extraordinary enthusiasm, creativity, and support from members and the corporate community.
I must add thanks to the gifted winemakers who donated gold and silver award winning wines to the not-so-silent auction. The top winemakers in the club continue to present the very best in many of the judging categories and generously donate their wines. Admirable barely seems adequate?
No doubt, the quality of the silent auction display goes a long way to contributing to the record bids. We are fortunate to have such talented people to donate, spearhead and carry this load. Talking of merchandising, did anyone notice the smooth and crafty work of Mr. Sausage in the silent auction display? Yes, I’m referring to Chris Gebhard and his Polish Sausage. His initial display included slices of the sausage to sample – very enticing! When the 15 minute warning was given for closing the table, guess what he did. Under the table was a cooler and he quietly lifted out two bags of the sausage and placed them by the bid sheet. I should point out, he entered the packages as “3 kilos”. I added 6.6 lbs to the display description which seems so much more than 3 kilos – particularly, those still using Fahrenheit and inches! Well, when bidders saw how much sausage was in the bags the bid sheets were on fire! End result – 50% more than the bid sheet value! Great work Chris.
And congratulations to Jo Graham for her singular success in topping any bid I made for food items. May she enjoy my halibut and cheese prepared from the other item I didn’t win – “ Culinaria Italy “ book. Timely work Jo.
And you have to admire the cagey vets you see hovering around the tables just before closing time, looking for any weak prey. Yep, the Becks quietly pounced on a $60 Great Canadian Oil Change for a mere 50 cents on the dollar plus lottery tickets thrown in! And a handmade wooden wine rack for the minimum bid! Very astute work George.
Guess which donations received the most competitive bids and the highest value – 12 bids and $705! “ Six Course Dinner For Four” captured both honours. Cindy and Mike Scott’s culinary and wine entertaining skills are indeed a club resource we can be proud of. The Pelegrín and Huyghebaerts are the successful consumers. Exceptional work Cindy and Mike in event planning, video display and donations.
I would be remiss in not mentioning the considerable work of Doug Morrison in hunting, fishing and canvassing the corporate word for donations. His wines also picked up a number of medal awards – the most notable a Rhone Style Red which garnered a gold and best in class. Congratulations Doug.
There are some other medals that stand out: Cindy’s 19.5 point Chardonnay – near perfect score. Don Holmes’ wines won numerous medals – all grapes from his own vineyard in Duncan. He is both an excellent grower and winemaker. Franco Sartor and his Baco Noir (non-vinifera), a bronze but not to shabby when you realize this is a red grape that he grows in Campbell River; also he will be tickled with a gold for his rhubarb wine.
It’s also nice to see some of the new members winning awards having only started on this adventure a few years ago. But, experience still rules and we congratulate Cindy Scott who was awarded Winemaker of the Year, Best in Show and Best Dry Red Zinfandel:
Lastly, a pat on the back to our first time Not-So-Silent Auctioneer Jim Thorp. The absence of the legendary Franco for this event was a great worry to some members. Add to this the fact that the number of wines donated to the auction was down substantially this year and you can imagine the treasurer’s concern. Well, total wine sale proceeds were exceptional with a record $260 bid for one case of wine and single bottle prices through the roof! Excellent work Jim.
Well, there you have it – if you missed the event this year then get ready to mark your calendars for next year when we host the Provincial Competition.
And so it starts all over again. Lots of work for everyone!