Bloomtown Derby: A Wine and Food Experience
Thursday, May 4th, 11:00am – Tolley Dental Tent
For the 2017 Shenandoah Apple Blossom Festival®, a much-needed shuffling of events left an open spot in the Festival’s line-up at midday on Festival Thursday in the Tolley Dental Tent. Recognizing that many adults are now ending their work week on Festival Wednesday, Festival Organizers wanted to create an interestingly upscale food-themed event to fill this available slot in the schedule. The Festival’s answer has been to create the new Bloomtown Derby: A Wine and Food Experience, with Debbie Hotinger, a Certified Sommelier/Wine Consultant; and, Sales Manager/Event Coordinator for Global Wines Virginia, as its Chair. Debbie, in turn, has brought in Chef Dan Kalber; and, Paul Ensogna of Big Dog Catering. Chef Dan Kabler is the Executive Chef of Village Square and V2; and, is the Owner and Manager of the Village Bistro. Six pairing stations are planned with the wines starting with a sparkling “Apple Blossom Pink,” and moving on through a selection of whites and reds. The menu of the corresponding food tastings is not complete at this time; but, they will be locally-sourced using local farms and butchers. There will also be a cheese station with pairings. The signature drinks will be the wines; but, additional cocktails will be available for purchase including Pink Cosmopolitans, Mint Juleps, et cetera. Music is planned, with popular local artists performing popular music in an acoustic format. And, to create an even more festive atmosphere, there will also be a Hat Contest for ladies and gentlemen, with a small entry fee, official judges, and prizes for “Best Derby,” “Best Blossom Theme,” Wildest Hat,” et cetera. Tickets for this very interesting new Festival event are $35.00; and SABF Ticket Forms will be available starting Thursday, November 10th, at SABF Headquarters at 540-662-3863, and at www.thebloom.com.
New Dance Party: A Night in Havana
Thursday, May 4th, 8:00pm – Tolley Dental Tent
As Festival Organizers are well aware, the relative popularity of Festival events comes and goes. The Festival’s Disco Dance Party started somewhat slowly years ago with attendance in the hundreds; then, skyrocketed to sellout status for many years in a row; and, finally, in recent years, much like the Beach Party before it, it has been losing traction. Festival Organizers decided to retire the event in 2017 and work on a new costumed, themed dance party for Thursday night in the Tolley Dental Tent. It was decided to combine two very interesting concepts into one for this new event. First, the current fascination with all things Caribbean/Hispanic brought on by the re-opening of American relations with Cuba; and, second, the fond look back at life in the 1920s as featured in the 2017 Theme: “Bloomtown: Bringing the ‘Wow’ for 90 Years!” Thus, new for 2017, the Festival is offering a New Dance Party: A Night in Havana, most ably Chaired by the lady that built the Disco Party into the steamroller event that it once was, Sabra Veach. The Festival is currently auditioning some very hot “Tropical Latin Bands,” multi-piece bands with brass sections that play the hottest Merengue and Cumbia Salsa dance music. “Havana Nights Parties” are a very hot item now; and, attendees are encouraged to dress for, obviously, a night in Havana in 1927. While all the regular food and beverage items you expect to find at the Tolley Dental Tent will be offered, there will certainly be some themed items to fit the party as well. Tickets for this hot new dance are $25.00; and SABF Ticket Forms will be available starting Thursday, November 10th. The public will be kept abreast of the availability of ticketing via www.thebloom.com, via e-blasts to our fan base, via Facebook, and at SABF Headquarters at 540-662-3863.
Ladies Commonwealth Brunch
Friday, May 5th, 11:00am – George Washington Hotel Ballroom
While the Stag Luncheon Presented by Miller Lite; and, the Ferguson Bloomers’ Luncheon are not strictly 100% “gender specific,” it is pretty obvious that the crowds are heavily male-dominated at the “Stag;” and, heavily female-dominated at the “Bloomers.” The open “keg party atmosphere” at the Stag Luncheon is appreciated by nearly 2,000 local gentlemen each year; but, a few years ago, a group of slightly older, business-and-politically-oriented gentlemen wanted to split off and establish a quieter, more conversation-able event; and, at that time, the BB&T Men’s Commonwealth Luncheon was established. Following the logic of all of these moves, during the 2016 Shenandoah Apple Blossom Festival®, it became obvious that there was interest in a female counterpart to the male-dominated BB&T Men’s Commonwealth Luncheon; and, thus, for 2017, the Festival is offering the Ladies’ Commonwealth Brunch. The event will be Chaired by Festival Veterans, Glenne White and Kay Ross; and, will be held in the elegant ballroom at the George Washington Hotel. To get this event off on the right foot, retiring City of Winchester Mayor, Liz Minor, has been asked to be the Honorary Chair, and she has gleefully accepted. Attendance will be limited and will probably be capped at 150 ladies. The George will be operating bars stocked with soft beverages and festive adult beverages; and, “stand-and-nibble” food stations serving cocktail party-style. Midday Friday is a very busy party time in Bloomtown; and, as is the case with the BB&T Men’s Commonwealth Luncheon, all ladies with a business-and-politically-oriented slant to their nature, who are looking for a quieter, more conversation-able atmosphere for their celebration, are asked to consider this event. Tickets for this impressive new Festival event are $50.00; and SABF Ticket Forms will be available starting Thursday, November 10th, at SABF Headquarters at 540-662-3863, and at www.thebloom.com. Stay tuned! The Festival will continue to supply event updates!
HFI Wealth Management Tennis Tournament
Saturday, April 29th, 8:00am
Since the second half of the last century, the Festival has steadily increased its involvement with athletically-themed events, from tribute events like the Partlow Insurance Sports Breakfast, to the Valley Health 10K Race, the Shenandoah Valley Orthodontics Kids’ Bloomin’ Mile, and the Virginia National Bank Pro-Am Golf Tournament. Continuing in that healthy direction, the Festival has been trying to establish a tennis event for the past year-and-a-half. Last year, the Festival, ably represented by SABF Vice President and tennis enthusiast, Kathy Myers; and, in conjunction with HFI Wealth Management and the Winchester Country Club, attempted to put together a Tennis Tournament on the Saturday of the Festival’s Wine Festival [Kickoff] Weekend. A late start, a potential lack of publicity and some logistical issues prevented the event from taking off as hoped. Tennis Tournaments require time; and, the Festival is generally geared toward 3-to-4-hour events. But, there is continuing interest in some form of a tennis-oriented event; and, the Festival intends to continue to investigate all opportunities. It has been suggested, for instance, that some sort of contest could be staged between teams from the various local Racket Clubs. The Festival’s Official Brochure states: “This Brochure was printed well in advance of the Festival. Please note that all times, prices and locations are subject to change!” Festival Organizers work all year at improving and perfecting the Bloom. The public will be kept abreast of event updates via www.thebloom.com, via e-blasts to our fan base, via Facebook, and at SABF Headquarters.