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Business Beat: 02/15/2018

Business Beat Feb. 15, 2018

New vet joins Valley of the Moon

vet smiling with her dog
Dr. Ashley Atkin and Harley

Valley of the Moon Veterinary Hospital has welcomed a new veterinarian to their team. Dr. Ashley Atkin received her B.S. in Animal Science from U.C. Davis and graduated from U.C. Davis School of Veterinary Medicine in 2010. After graduation, she completed her internship at PetCare Veterinary Hospital in Santa Rosa. She practiced in Pleasanton and San Ramon for six years until recently moving to Petaluma. Her veterinary interests include internal medicine, surgery, dentistry, patient care, and client education. In her spare time, Atkin enjoys spending time with her husband Neil and son Mason, hiking, drinking wine, skiing, and traveling. Her furry family includes a dachshund mix named Harley, and Bongo the cat.

Family-friendly dining has arrived in Wine Country

Palooza Brewery & Gastropub in Kenwood is starting something new for families in March. On Mondays, kids age 12 and younger eat free from 4 to 8 p.m. when dining with an adult.

Do you know what else is free at Palooza? Free live music every Thursday night from 8 to 10 p.m. Thursday Night Live will feature a rotating line-up of local musicians of all music styles. Check out the calendar on

Other spring news for Palooza includes the return of Tuesday Night Ping Pong Tournaments, starting at 6:30 p.m., and Wednesday Night Trivia is back in March.

Restaurant Week coming up

The tastiest time of year, Sonoma County Restaurant Week, is slated for March 2 through 11. For the first time, Restaurant Week stretches a full 10 delicious days. This addition gives patrons even more chances to take advantage of Restaurant Week deals and unique, one-time menus.

Featuring locally sourced produce, meats, seafood, and herbs, the event offers three-course, prix-fixe dinner menus for $19, $29, or $39. Two-course, prix-fixe lunch menus are available for $10 or $15.

No tickets or passes are required; just visit and plan your culinary road map through nearly 20 communities. More than 120 restaurants are already registered, with new restaurants being added daily.

Locally, participating restaurants include Palooza Gastropub & Wine Bar, Café Citti, and Salt & Stone in Kenwood and Yeti Restaurant, Umbria, and fig café & wine bar in Glen Ellen.

Dollars and cents in the wine biz

Tom Sheppard
Tom Sheppard

The Wine Business Institute at Sonoma State University will host a workshop on “Budgeting & Financial Analysis for the Wine Industry” on Feb. 17. This workshop will explore the essential components involved in developing successful budget and forecasting methods, starting with a framework to understand strategic, business, and operational models. Throughout the workshop, students will explore various ways to analyze budgets, identify key performance indicators, and build reporting structures that will help any business professional make financial and budgetary decisions. Whether starting or expanding a wine business, this workshop will help change and improve the way you manage your financial operations.

The workshop will be taught by Tom Sheppard a strategic-minded CFO and partner at CFOs2Go. He combines strategy, finance and operations to help companies build, grow and improve their businesses. He is an advisor to senior executives on evaluating and driving their strategic business decisions and works on such issues as new businesses, financing, mergers and acquisitions, strategic partnerships, supply chain strategy and responding to changes in business. Clients range from pre-funding start-ups to major multi-national corporations.

Cost is $360. Runs 8:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. To register go to

Pesticide use near schools

New regulations are now in effect that restrict the type and timing of pesticide applications near schools and licensed child care facilities throughout the county. In response to these new regulations, the Sonoma County Farm Bureau, in cooperation with the Sonoma County Department of Agriculture will be organizing four seminars to be held throughout the county to aid growers and pest control businesses in understanding the new regulations for pesticide use near school sites.

To determine applicators' knowledge gaps on spray practices, the University of California Cooperative Extension will conduct a brief survey on topics such as sprayer calibration, coverage, and drift control practices currently used by operators.

These no-cost seminars will be presented in English and held from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m., and an hour of Laws and Regs Continuing Education Credit from the Department of Pesticide Regulation has been requested.

Feb. 28 - Schell-Vista Fire Protection District

March 21 - Graton Fire Protection District

March 23 - Geyserville Fire Protection District

April 11 - Two Rock Volunteer Fire Department

Seminar reservations are required. Go to For questions, contact Anita Hawkins at 544-5575 or To further assist in meeting state regulations, the Land Stewardship Division of the Agriculture Department will end the morning with a video of the new “Land Steward's Guide to Vineyard and Orchard Erosion Control.

Business Blurbs

Chateau St. Jean is having its annual President's Day Case Sale, Feb. 17-19. Enjoy 50 percent off on cases. Chateau St. Jean is located at 8555 Sonoma Hwy. in Kenwood… On Feb. 24, come to a custom-blending experience at Muscardini Cellars in Kenwood with winemaker Michael Muscardini. Reservations are now being accepted at 12 p.m., 2 p.m., and 4 p.m. to learn the art of wine blending. Email meghan@muscardinicellars.comLandmark Winery's 2015 Overlook Pinot Noir has received 91 points from Wine Enthusiast Magazine… Aventine Glen Ellen will be closed starting Feb. 15 for remodeling. Improvements will include fixing the floors in the kitchen and in the bar. The plan is to be closed for three weeks, but due to unforeseen health issues with Chef Adolfo, a reopening date is yet to be announced.

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Community Calendar

Fire Recovery hikes
Birdwalk with Carolyn Greene
Orchids, ferns & spiders hike
Fire Recovery hikes
Fire Recovery hikes
Oakmont Sunday Symposium
Evening hike with a naturalist
Hear about the Galapagos Expedition at SIR #53
Easter Egg dyeing
Glen Ellen Easter Egg Hunt
Kenwood Easter Egg Hunt