Kenwood Press

Serving the communities of Kenwood, Glen Ellen and Oakmont

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Business Beat: 09/15/2012

Business Beat

Business beat

Ben Stone to keynote “Endow the Valley” kickoff eventSonoma Valley Fund has designated October as “Endow Sonoma Valley Month.” The initiative seeks to increase awareness and participation of Valley residents in planned giving, an increasingly important component of the overall funding picture for Sonoma Valley's frontline charities.

To increase awareness and understanding of the purpose and mechanics of planned giving, Sonoma Valley Fund, with the help of its 22 non-profit partners, will host a series of informational meetings and events during the month of October - all of them free of charge and open to the public.

Endow Sonoma Valley's inaugural event will take place on Oct. 11 at 5 p.m. at Vintage House in Sonoma. Ben Stone, Executive Director of the Sonoma County Economic Development Board will deliver his “State of Our Community” presentation, containing observations and insights on current conditions in the Valley and the broad implications and challenges they pose to local nonprofit groups. He will be followed by estate planning attorney Valerie Pistole, who will describe simple and practical ways to consider and arrange for a planned gift. Complimentary food and wine will be served.

Additional information on “Endow Sonoma Valley Month” events and the importance of planned giving to the future economic vitality and overall quality of life for Sonoma Valley is available at

Oakmont Gardens sold

The senior community Oakmont Gardens in Oakmont has been sold to MBK Senior Living, an Irvine-based company involved in the acquisition, third party management and development of senior living communities throughout the western United States.

MBK currently owns or manages 16 independent living, assisted living and memory care communities in California, Washington, Utah, and Arizona.

The Oakmont Gardens purchase adds 124 independent living units and 39 assisted living units to MBK, bringing the overall company portfolio to a total of 2,099 units.

“We are very pleased to be acquiring a team of compassionate, caring and talented individuals who share our passion for working with seniors and their families”, said MBK's president Terry Howard.

For more information about Oakmont Gardens, go to, or call 538-1914. Oakmont Gardens is located at 301 White Oak Drive.

Get hands-on at Sonoma Valley Crush

Have you ever considered getting involved in the wine harvest and crush? You can find out what it's like this month with the Heart of Sonoma Valley Association's 2012 Sonoma Valley CRUSH experience.

The 'Crush Weekend Wine Tasting Pass' is $35 per person and gives you access to harvest activities and wine tastings at select tasting rooms the weekend of Sept. 29 and 30 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day.

Participating wineries, all in Kenwood and Glen Ellen, are Audelssa Estate Winery, Deerfield Ranch Winery, Enkidu Wines, Eric Ross Winery, Family Wineries of Sonoma Valley, Kaz Winery, Kenwood Vineyards, Little Vineyards, Loxton Cellars, Mayo Family Winery, Moondance Cellars, Muscardini Cellars, Paradise Ridge Winery, Ty Caton Vineyards, Valley of the Moon Winery, and VJB Vineyards & Cellars.

To order tickets or find a complete list of winery events, go to

Artist Michael Acker showing at Red Barn Store

Boyes Hot Springs artist Michael Acker will show a selection of his work in photo/collage/water color at Oak Hill Farm's Red Barn Store through Sept. 30.

Acker is known for his photo/collage work documenting the history of the Highway 12 corridor in the Springs area. His extensive career includes winning a Pollock-Krasner grant in 2010. At the Red Barn Store he will be showing images from nature, some gathered at Quarryhill Botanical Gardens.

The Red Barn Store is located at 15101 Sonoma Highway in Glen Ellen. They are open Wednesday-Sunday, 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Call them at 996-6643, or go to

To see Michael Acker's work, go to

Len Tillem holds seminar in Oakmont

Attorney and talk show host Len Tillem will hold a free estate planning and asset preservation seminar at the Oakmont Golf Club, 7035 Oakmont Dr. on Tuesday, Sept. 18, 10 a.m. to noon.

Topics will include dynasty trusts to protect assets you leave to your children, special needs trusts for disabled children, ill spouse or parent, asset preservation planning to protect from long-term care costs, and how to protect your home from Medi-Cal claims.

Seating is limited, so call 800-996-4505 to make a reservation, or go to

Seminars will also be held on Sept. 20, 10 a.m. to noon at the Petaluma Community Center, and Sept. 27, 4-6 p.m. at the Sonoma Veterans Building.

Oktoberfest at Cafe Europe

Café Europe will be celebrating Oktoberfest through Oct. 21, with entertainment, special meals, and Spaten Oktoberfest beer on tap

Food-wise, look for a special pork shank entrée on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays; beef roulade, hasenpfeffer, and wild boar ragout on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays; and a sausage plate with Munich weiswurst, and trout Mueller on Tuesdays through Sundays.

Entertainment includes Karl Lebherz on Sept. 21; Ned Gault on Sept. 22, 29 and Oct. 6, 13, 20; Keith Church on Sept. 23, 30 and Oct. 7, 14, 21; and Bill Blythe on Sept. 22.

For more information about specials and the rest of the menu, go to Café Europe is located in the St. Francis Shopping Center in Santa Rosa. To reach them, call 538-5255.

Chamber hosts breakfast forum

The Sonoma Valley Chamber of Commerce will host its “Tops in Sonoma” Breakfast Forum and Mid-year Economic Update on Friday, Sept. 28, 7:30-9 a.m. at the Sonoma Golf Club, 17700 Arnold Dr. in Sonoma. This annual event gives recognition to the top tax revenue generators and job providers in Sonoma Valley.

Make your reservation by Tuesday, Sept. 25. Call 996-1033 to obtain a registration form, or go to

Tickets on sale for Sonoma Valley Reserve

Tickets are now on sale for Sonoma Valley Reserve, an exclusive wine event in Sonoma Valley slated for Oct. 20-21.

This semiannual event, a series of themed daytrips around the region, will showcase rare offerings and hidden gems of Sonoma Valley wine destinations, many of which are seldom open to the public.

Produced by the Sonoma Valley Vintners & Growers Alliance, each tour includes four customized winery visits, comfortable transportation by California Wine Tours and wine country picnic lunch.

Tickets for Sonoma Valley Reserve are on sale now at $95 for one day or $150 for two days. Sonoma Valley Reserve ticketholders will depart from Sonoma. For an additional nominal fee ($30 per person), round-trip motor coach transportation to Sonoma is available from San Francisco and Mill Valley. For tickets go to or call 935-0803.

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