NASCAR Banquet in the winner’s circle
Sonoma Raceway’s NASCAR Grand Marshal’s Banquet to benefit Speedway Children’s Charities topped all of those I have attended. The program was the best and the food was the best ever. Both the program and the menu focused on Sonoma’s John Lasseter’s “Cars 3” characters and theme.
Sonoma Raceway president Steve Page emceed with his usual wry humor and introduced Disney and Pixar Chief Creative Officer John Lasseter of Glen Ellen, who told the story and showed a fabulous video about how the “Cars” concept hatched in his brain, and introduced the producer, director, artist, partner and Richard Petty and other NASCAR drivers who perform voices in “Cars 3.”
Stand-up comedian Cristela Alonzo, the voice of “Cruz Ramirez,” told her life story, which Lasseter said contributed to Pixar weaving her into the character, and Page naming her Grand Marshal.
A first generation American, she grew up in “a small border town” in south Texas where “people didn’t have dreams. My parents dreamed of having electricity and water. When they got those they had arrived, they had succeeded.” So she wasn’t supposed to dream of being a comic or an actor, but of being a hairdresser.
She moved to Los Angeles and got a job in the office of a comedy club where people told her she was so funny she should be on stage – and she started performing. Someone brought a Pixar person in to see her standup act – and soon after she got a call asking her to visit Pixar, which she thought meant to work in the office, so she asked “What do you want me to do?” Now she is living her dream.
Georgeanne Brennan re-schedules
Due to an attack of high fever and flu, author Georgeanne Brennan called last Saturday morning to cancel her appearance at Readers’ Books, sponsored by the Last Wednesday Food Group.
She has rescheduled to join us at Readers’ at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, July 26. All of you who have already bought her books at Readers’ can bring them then to have Brennan sign them. And everyone is welcome to bring tastes to share as well.
Golden Gate Salmon cancels Boxer dinner
The Golden Gate Salmon Association has postponed its fourth annual Sonoma Salmon Celebration Dinner & Fundraiser at Ramekins scheduled for July 21.
Michael Coats, emcee of the event, announced the cancellation of the fun dinner where former U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer was to have been honored with the “Salmon Champion Award.”
Ari Weisswasser of Glen Ellen Star, Carlo Cavallo of B&V Whiskey Bar and Grille, Adolfo Veronese of Aventine Glen Ellen, Yoshiharo Sogi of Zina Lounge, and Kyle Kuklewski of Ramekins were to have prepared salmon caught by both commercial and recreational salmon fishers.
Let’s hope they can reschedule soon.
Nibs & Sips
Sonoma resident Mark Lyon, former longtime winemaker at Sebastiani Winery, celebrated his new Eco Terreno wines in Cloverdale on Saturday, June 24… Landmark Vineyards offers a new food truck series on the last Saturday of each month. It launched in May with neighbor Tips Tri-Tip trolley, followed by the Wurst with sausages, burgers and salads on June 24, Foodie Farmhouse on July 29, Picazo on Aug. 26, and Dabba on Sept. 30… Haute Living magazine has named Anne Moller-Racke of Donum Estate, Eileen Crane of Domaine Carneros, and Margo Van Staaveren of Chateau St. Jean among the Top 10 Female Winemakers in Northern California.