Petaluma’s downtown merchants inbite you to stop by for Petaluma’s Harvest Days and “Scarecrows on the Town,” — October 24th -26th, 2014. Events will be taking place in merchant locations at various times all three days, as the community celebrates Fall bounty.
Highlights include pie tasting, pumpkin carving, delectable Harvest menus, a cupcake cook off and bake sale and for the 3rd year Scarecrows will be donning their best attire and taking up residence throughout downtown. Download a map of all participating merchant locations at www.petalumadowntown.com/harvest.html.
Participate in a plethora of events including I Leoni’s “Hocus Pocus Cupcake Bakeoff” and sale from 10AM to 3PM. Show off your ghoulishly great baking skills or simply stop by for some pre-Halloween treats. All proceeds will be donated to Petaluma COTS. For more information or questions, call I Leoni at (707) 762-9611.
Petaluma Market will be hosting a FREE pumpkin carving and decorating contest. All supplies will be provided. Just bring yourself and a little creativity for a frightfully good time.
Also, Petaluma Pie Company is holding its annual “Guess the Weight of the Pie” contest as well as hosting a blind tasting of sweet potato vs. pumpkin pie; will you be able to tell the difference?
Free Range Provisions and Eats is having an Heirloom Apple Tasting; come and enjoy rare apples with heritage beginnings. Gallery One Petaluma is holding a fall show, featuring a wide selection of hand-blown glass pumpkins, hand carved gourds, and sculptures by Steven McGovney based on The Raven by Edgar Allen Poe. Enjoy a taste of fall bounty for dinner at Graffiti restaurant, where they will be featuring a harvest menu.
In addition to Harvest Days, Petaluma is host to many fall destinations. Visit the Petaluma Farmers Market from 2PM-5:30PM in Walnut Park. Also, check out the Petaluma Pumpkin Patch and A-Maze-Ing Corn Maze, The Great Peter Pumpkin Patch of the Spring Hill Cheese Company, and McClelland’s Organic Dairy for all of your pumpkin and corn maze needs. Don’t forget about The Petaluma Art Center’s “El Dia de Los Muertos Exhibition and Celebration all month long.
There's a new store on the block this holiday shopping season. As we continue our focus on shopping locally, especially when out and about buying gifts, it's good to have lots of options around town.
Petaluma Home & Garden is located at 516 Petaluma Boulevard South, Petaluma. Owner Alonda O'Kane has exquisite taste, I can testify to that. I've seen this Sonoma County style-maven's interior design in action around wine country and it is extremely well curated and distinctively elegant.
Alonda will be carrying in her stylish new store a wide range of internationally sourced home AND garden items, including the store's signature Miele vacuum cleaners.
Other items to look for in Petaluma Home & Garden include:
Fermob Bistro Sets - Made in France
Treasure Garden Umbrellas and Stand - Sunbrella Fabric
Petaluma-based artist Shannon Abbey whose illustrated works have featured in the Wall Street Journal and Pottery Barn, brings chalk board art to a new, affordable level, locally, this Fall season.
Her beautiful, one-of-a-kind chalkboards are meticulously created with durable chalk ink paint. They wash off with water and a cloth but don't rub off, enabling them to be stored and brought out for years to come.
"Chalk paint is easier to work with than chalk, and I get integrity of line and a nice sharp edge," says Shannon, whose boards are now available in French Hen Antique store, on 218 Petaluma Boulevard North, downtown Petaluma.
"I am also working on creating sets of boards for a frame so images may be changed out with the seasons or subsequent holidays," she says. "Customers may purchase a frame and have a board for Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas... Chalkboards are big in decorating this year and I am always on the lookout for unusual old frames. In addition, if someone has a frame already I'm happy to create a board or boards to fit that frame."
Shannon brings 20 years of experience as an illustrator and fine artist to her new line of work. "I love to tell a story in my work and this is the perfect opportunity," she says. "Many people wish they could afford original art for their home. If they can't stretch for my paintings, these pieces offer original art for a lot less money."
"Fog Valley Crush" Kickstarter campaign has funded! In large part, looking at the nifty numbers behind the scenes, from clicks through Southern Sonoma Country Life. From my heart, thank you, thank you, thank you!
Now, if you're a bit of a tortoise and wondering why you never got around to pre-ordering, I will be posting where you'll be able to buy a copy, locally, soon.
In the meantime, I woke up thinking of the sequel this morning!
My family, pets and backyard get a special hug too for being so patient these past few months!
A lot of wonderful fundraiser info pops into my inbox on a daily basis. It's great to be able to share the work of so many caring people in our community, each working in their own unique way to make this such a tremendous place to live.
Here's a new non-profit in Sonoma County that strikes an exceptional note:
Live Music Lantern(LML) is a Sonoma County nonprofit(501c3) that provides self care in the form of gifting tickets to hear live music to educators and social service providers as a way to strengthen the entire community.
Co-founders Elijah and Kaya Barntsen and music industry pro Ian Davis launched the non-profit in dedication to Elijah and Kaya's mother, former childcare worker Barbara Barntsen who suffers chronic Bipolar I Disorder and Schizophrenia.
During years and years of crisis after crisis trying to navigate a never ending maze that included their mothers' hospitalizations, arrests and homelessness, the siblings turned to key organizations such as National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)and Buckelew for the necessary support and mental health education they so desperately needed.
"As years went on, we continued to face the challenge of helping our mother get stable. We realized this was not a sprint but a marathon, and decided to focus more on taking care of ourselves with different forms of therapy, exercise, social gatherings, and enjoying live music amidst the chaos. It was these forms of self-care, along with setting boundaries that allowed us to get our lives back on track," the siblings share on their website.
"In January of 2014, we decided it was time to take action to support the health of our entire community and Live Music Lantern was born. We chose to support educators and social service providers because they were there to guide us throughout our childhood and in later life crises with our Mother. Because live music is the greatest source of inspiration and healing for us, we are dedicated to sharing it. We wish to “shine a light” on the wonderful teachers and social service providers in our community by providing them with the means for self care through live music."
Free concert tickets have since been given to over 200 educators and social workers since June of 2014.
Current recipients of Live Music Lantern ticket donations are hardworking and dedicated staff at Buckelew Programs, Catholic Charities, Petaluma People Services Center, Nami, Victor Treatment Centers and Social Advocates for Youth.
The group's goal is to grow to a level where it is able to provide all teachers/social workers in Sonoma County with the opportunity to see a live show at least once a year.
What an astonishing month! When I decided to take the plunge and self publish Fog Valley Crush, I thought long and hard about how best to undertake its design, printing, sales and distribution. All big learning curves for a new author whose favorite part of building a book was actually writing it.
Well, I have to say, this past month has been pretty darn fun and exciting, nail biting at times, but ultimately, an extraordinary experience in bringing my thoughts on the way we live and eat in this unique little part of wine country to readers around the world.
I'd been advised by a few people in the publishing industry, initially, that this was a 'regional' book. Personally, I always felt it had broader appeal. That's why I wanted to make the book exactly as I had envisioned and by self publishing, have not had to relegate it to my own neighborhood alone. Not that I don't value my community — it is YOU who have supported the Kickstarter Campaign primarily. What has transpired, though, is so many people from all over the world pledging a pre-order to read about "Fog Valley". That's what I wanted. To share our stories. It's fantastic to think that many of these books will have wings to the other side of the country, the other side of the world.
This is where we're at as of 8am Wednesday. Twenty two hours to go and so close to covering most all of the initial actual costs of producing this book (excluding the 2 1/2 years of writing — no price on that!). I'd set the goal lower so as not to risk reaching too high. You blasted my expectations. I can't thank you enough.
Now, if you are a procrastinator (and most of us are) and you would like to pre-order, click here and do so today! Ordered one, but think you'd like more? Still time to adjust your pledge.