Archive for the ‘Sonoma County Events’ Category

STAYING COOL DURING HEAT WAVES

Thursday, July 16th, 2009

This week’s weather forecast will be in the high 90’s and low 100’s. Triple-digit temperatures is no joke. People tend to think that it’s okay to go about their everyday lives and exert the same amount of energy they do during cooler temperatures, but this is not the case. Heat can be a killer if you do not take the necessary precautions to keep yourself safe and cool.

The following are a few tips you could do this week:

Once it cools off in the evening, open windows and doors with screens to bring the inside temperature down. Check the weather forecast and find out what time the temperature starts rising the following day.

Make sure the close all the windows and doors approximately 2 hours before the temperature starts increasing to trap in the cold air. Keep blinds and shades closed as well as this helps keep your home cool.

Set your termostat to 78 degrees Fahrenheit when you are home and 85 degrees when you are away.

For the infirm, elderly, and those who have trouble maintaining body temperatures (such as diabetics), set your thermostat lower (72 to 75 degrees) when you are home.

For those with pets, provide extra bowls of water. We usually add a tiny pinch of sugar in our dog’s bowl during extremely hot days, since their blood sugar level could drop as well.

Never ever leave infants, children, elderly and pets inside the car during these hot days, no matter what. The temperature inside a car is 10 degrees higher than outside temperatures.

Always keep yourself hydrated and stay out of the sun as much as possible.

Be safe and stay cool!

“Dry Creek Valley Wineries”

Wednesday, June 24th, 2009

“Dry Creek Valley Wineries”

There are wineries in the Dry Creek Valley that are hidden treasures. Wilson Winery, Mauritson, Amista, Dry Creek Winery, Passalacqua, Michel-Schlumberger, Lambert Bridge and Quivira are definitely worth visiting if you’re in town! These wineries are gaining even more recognition over the years, and spending a weekend driving along Dry Creek Road in Healdsburg for wine tasting (with a designated driver, of course) will definitely be fun and memorable. Do bring your camera for this trip because the views of the valley are absolutely stunning! You will always remember Dry Creek Valley after this trip!

Also, if you get hungry and decide to take a break from wine tasting, you can stop by the Dry Creek General Store for drinks, chips, sandwiches, and salads. It’s a great store with a unique atmosphere, and is often frequented by a lot of people during weekends. It also has picnic tables in the front area for you to enjoy, just before you move on to your next destination.

Have fun discovering Dry Creek Valley!

Loving Lavender

Wednesday, June 24th, 2009

“Loving Lavender”

Did you know that Sonoma County is also known for its vast and beautiful lavender fields? Yup, that’s right! Lavender flowers and its oil have been widely used over the years– from potpourri, confetti, herbalism and in food– and there are a number of lavender gardens here that you will surely enjoy!

And, if you love wine and lavender, why not enjoy both in one day? Matanzas Creek Winery will be holding its 13th Annual Days of Wine and Lavender on June 27th, 2009 from 1:00PM-4:00PM. This event will have a live band and a bocce ball court waiting for you and your friends, and of course, food and wine pairing!  Please visit http://www.matanzascreek.com/visit/events.html for more information. See you there!

Sonoma County Vacation Regulations

Wednesday, June 24th, 2009

This is one of several updates to all guests in all areas considering vacation rental stays in Sonoma County.  The PRMD department (permits) is making moves to make vacation rentals restricted and we believe eventually illegal in Sonoma County.  This means a traveler’s choice is limited to B & B’s, hotels, campgrounds and RV parks — no more houses — a real limitation for families.

At the root of this movement is Sonoma Valley, which has two sensative areas, one on Hoff Road and the other in Sobre Vista.  Apparently the noise and complaints were so out of hand that Supervisor Valerie Brown was called at night with complaints from the neighbors.  Upon looking into this further, however you will find hyper sensitive neighbors, blocking driveways, screaming at guests, and even installing security cameras to ‘catch’ illegal activity (not drugs mind your or not noisey parties, but things like excess vehicles, swimming in the pool after 10 p.m. and other ‘offenses’ along this venue).  One neighbor even complained to the Board of Supervisors about a wedding coming up in a month with 100 people and invited them to come look.  It turned out that the wedding was an owners best friend, not even a vacation rental guest.

The Press Democrat published an article on vacation rentals which sung the praises of these complaints, and painted a picture of out of control parties, weddings, events, thievery, etc.  This simply isn’t true.  Of over 800 noise complaints in all of Sonoma County (not just vacation rentals, but ALL noise complaints), only 30 were in sonoma valley, and almost none in the coastal or river areas.  That’s for a whole year mind you, and of those, a handful were for vacation rental.

Homes that are managed well either by a mangement company like Healsburg Property Management or Sonoma County Vacations, or a single homeowner who is actively involved with their rental typically do not have the problem, rather it’s the owner who throws up their product on VRBO and let it rip!

We are working with the board of supervisors and the tot board, and the PRMD and have established a code of conduct for both vacation rental guests and owners, to respect quiet time, neighbors, cars parked in the area, trash pick up, etc.  In the 20 years I’ve been doing this, I’ve never had theft at the home or in the area, and our guests have quieted down when called.  Generally it’s first night excitement in being all together, not to be unruley or difficult to neighbors.

It’s further been discussed that folks come from out of the area and don’t give a damn what they do when they’re here.  That’s simply not true.  As a rule of thumb we’ve not only had respectful guests, but they’ve often participated in charity events, come to live here, helped support our communities financially and even bought a 2nd home themselves.

Please write the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors and explain how you’ve handled yourselves during past stays, taken care of the home, been respectful of the neighbors, etc.  If you don’t want to see vacation rentals go away, it’s very important!!!  The Supervisors do listen!

The 11th Annual Healdsburg Jazz Festival 5/29 to 6/7/09

Saturday, May 9th, 2009
The Healdsburg Jazz Festival is an event you have to experience if you’re visiting Sonoma County! The spectacular organization has been around for 11 years, and it continues to gain recognition and popularity as the years go by. It’s a refreshing experience to be around people, young and old, come together and simply live life through music!
The Healdsburg Jazz Festival is a 10-day festival comprised of highly gifted and renowned jazz musicians who each bring their own flavor to the event. This wonderful experience will be held in  a few boutique restaurants and wineries, the Raven Theater and Hotel Healdsburg. The best thing about this festival is that it is open to the public!
The 11th Annual Healdsburg Jazz Festival begins on May 29 through June 07, 2009.
For more information or to show support for this non-profit organization, please visit http://www.healdsburgjazzfestival.org

Winter Wineland Weather

Monday, January 12th, 2009

I know we need the rain, but isn’t this 70 degree weather bliss?  With no rain in sight until next week (1/19-20), the Winter Wineland Weekend should be GREAT!!!  No wet weather to battle.

Safari West New Year’s Eve

Friday, December 26th, 2008

A very unique way to ring in 2009 at Safari West — festive dinner and fun dancing on the Sonoma Serengeti.  “Romp with the Beasts!”  These folks do a wonderful job of entertaining on their wonderful animal reserve.  $75/pp, advanced reservations required.  707-579-2551 or 800-616-2695.  reservations@safariwest.com.