Tales from Town

Historical society plans full four-day weekend to celebrate harvest

Cambria nonprofit's October fundraiser comes in conjunction with its Scarecrow Festival

Special to The CambrianJuly 31, 2013 

After posing for their formal photo to appear in major publications, top chefs for the Cambria Historical Society Vine Dining fundraiser relaxed and enjoyed a few laughs. From left are Jay Somers, Steve Kniffen, Matt Beckett and Michael Wood.

CHRIS LESCHINSKY — Courtesy Photo

The Cambria Historical Society has “gone grande” with this year’s harvest festival. We have expanded our annual major fundraiser to cover an entire weekend — and then some — Oct. 11-14.

In place of hosting a barbecue on the museum grounds, this year we are launching the Cambria Scarecrows’ Harvest Weekend, a four-day series of events to celebrate our community’s agricultural heritage and the spectacular food and wine of the Central Coast.
The premier Vine Dining winemaker dinner at the Stolo Family Winery on Santa Rosa Creek Road will take place at 3:30 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 13, with guests shuttled to the venue.

Guest chefs Steve Kniffen of the Sea Chest Oyster Bar, Jay Somers of Indigo Moon Café, Matt Beckett of Linn’s Restaurant and Michael Wood of Robin’s Restaurant have collaborated to provide a remarkable menu paired with Stolo Family wines to be served in the meadow overlooking the scenic vineyard.

Enjoy sunset over the hills accompanied by a select live auction and music. Individual tickets at $110, or tables for eight at $800, are available at the Cambria Historical Museum and on our website, cambriahistoricalsociety.com. Get them before we are sold out of the limited number!

Also benefiting the society and museum will be a special tour of local farms and ranches from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 14. This action-packed day includes a behind-the-scenes look at places not usually included on previous tours: Linn’s Farm greenhouse, Soto’s Harmony cattle ranch, Mike and Carol Broadhurst’s Dragon Spring Farm farmer’s market offerings, and George and Beth Kendall’s Dos Pasos Ranch specialty fall produce.

Ellis and Susie Bassetti will provide a yummy luncheon after a tour of their vineyard, olive orchard and gardens, and the day will end with a visit and wine tasting at Harmony Cellars.
Your knowledgeable guides on this small-bus experience will be Joy Fitzhugh, longtime rancher and legislative analyst for the San Luis Obispo County Farm Bureau; and Bob Soto, 10th-generation rancher and author of “An Old California Family: the Sotos of Cambria.”
Tickets ($85) are also available at the museum and website.

Kick-off for the weekend begins at the Cambria Farmers Market on Friday, Oct. 11, with the popular Harvest Pie Contest. Enter your favorite fruit, nut or pumpkin pie for $5, and compete for a $100 gift certificate from Robin’s, Linn’s, or Black Cat restaurants. Get your entry blanks online, at the museum, or at Robin’s.

Everyone’s a winner, for visitors will get to taste five samples for $5, and then vote for their favorites; proceeds benefit the museum’s Heirloom Gardens. Fresh caramel apples from McCall’s Farms will also be on sale, along with designer shopping bags.

On Saturday, Oct. 12, farm-to-table vendors will set up in the museum’s Heirloom Gardens and throughout historic East Village; the SLO Pokes will provide live music to accompany beer tasting. Savor local wines in Bruce Black’s Squibb House garden and, across the street, with Leslie Gainer at (appropriately) Taste: Wine. No charge for admission, so y’all come.

The Cambria Historical Society also supports the widely acclaimed month-long Scarecrow Festival, kicking off from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 3, at the Cambria Nursery. This year’s winners will be announced there. Tickets are going fast at the Cambria Chamber of Commerce (767 Main St.) and www.brownpapertickets.com. All the town’s visitors can cast a “Straw Vote” and may win a two-day Cambria vacation. For more details, go to www.cambriascarerows.com.

Tales from Town is special to The Cambrian. The Cambria Historical Museum at Burton Drive and Center Streets is open from 1 to 4 p.m. Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays and 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Mondays. The Heirloom Gardens are open for public enjoyment every day. For more, call 927-2891 or go to www.cambriahistoricalsociety.com. Consuelo Macedo is community relations chairwoman of the Cambria Historical Society.

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