The 2007 edition of Auction Napa Valley raised more than $9.8 million for local health care, youth services and affordable housing non-profits.
Now in its 27th year and appropriately themed “The American Classic,” the event was again the quintessential Napa Valley experience, focusing on the outstanding wines from Napa wineries, the culinary excellence of the region’s chefs and restaurateurs, the renowned hospitality of the vintners, and the collaborative effort in the Napa Valley with more than 800 local volunteers.
As the final gavel fell, 45 Live, 106 Barrel and 81 E (online)
lots that offered extraordinary collections of wine, vintner-hosted
events and travel adventures donated by the organization’s many
wineries had raised more than $9.8 million.
“This is a tremendous showing of generosity by our bidders, who
come from around the world and from our community to support these
charities,” said Bill Phelps, whose family and winery team chaired the
The auction proceedings began as soon as the 800-plus guests –
including bidders and vintners – were seated. Comedian Dana Carvey
welcomed the crowd with his infamous humor that pokes fun at current
events and politicians.
Not long into his program, he took several jabs at Speaker of the
House and Napa Valley vineyard owner Nancy Pelosi. Then, when it was
brought to his attention that her husband Paul was seated near the
stage, Carvey recovered with a laundry list of compliments praising the
Speaker, hoping to get off the self-inflicted hot seat with Mr. Pelosi.
The crowd roared and Pelosi countered that it was all in good fun.
Perhaps the most moving bidding came just before the final five
lots were offered when John Shafer of Shafer Vineyards took the stage
to encourage bidders to raise their paddles in an ANV-first: “fund a
need.” With no prize to be won other than supporting children’s medical
care at Clinic Ole, bidders raised their paddles to get in on the
giving, beginning with those in for $1,000, then those in for $5,000
and so on.
The highest bids of the round came from perennial top bidder Joy
Craft of Woodside, California, who gave $200,000, and from the
Trinchero family and Joseph Phelps family, who jointly gave $225,000.
When the lot closed, it had raised $764,000 from 68 bidders.
Breaking new records, the Staglin Family Vineyards Lot 24 surged
ahead in bidding that had stalled at $900,000 for a package that
included not only wine, but a six-day driving trip with the Staglins in Italy with the use of two Maserati sports cars. The surge occurred when
winery owners Shari and Garen Staglin added ownership of one of the
Maseratis if the bidder advanced to $1.1 million.
A couple from Woodside, California, who asked to remain anonymous,
raised their paddle and the gavel fell… setting a new auction
The couple commented to a crowd of well-wishers: “We love what the Auction stands for and what it does for Napa Valley.”
It’s certain that the in-need men, women and children who benefit
from auction proceeds also will appreciate what that couple did for