Do you hear that? What is it?
It’s the second annual Call of the Wild Gala, a fundraiser for the Jack London State Historic Park, scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 23.
Last year’s gala featured Mike Benziger and other local notables in a fun-filled party under the stars amid the winery ruins. This year the highlight is time-traveling back to Jack London’s favorite Bay Area watering hole, Heinhold’s First and Last Saloon in Oakland. The stage will be set to replicate the famous saloon – which still stands in Oakland’s Jack London Square – known as a favorite rendezvous whose bigger-than-life regulars inspired some of the writer’s most colorful characters.
“We are so excited to recreate and share one of the pivotal spots that Jack frequented in his formative years, one that clearly influenced his greatest adventure novels,” said Tjiksa Van Wyk, executive director of the park.
“It is the ideal setting for our gala,” adds Van Wyk, “creating a dramatic and evocative sense of a place where we can celebrate the power of storytelling as guests literally become part of the narrative unfolding.”
Van Wyk promises an “immersive event,” with bawdy ladies of the evening, drunken sailors, pickpockets, card sharks and fortunetellers roaming the meadow next to Jack and wife Charmian’s cabin. Naturally Jack London himself will appear, accompanied by characters such as Wolf Larson (“Sea Wolf”) and John Thornton (“Call of the Wild”). Libby Oberlin and Moira McGovern will produce the immersive theater event.
Guests will be invited to sample some of Sonoma’s finest artisanal whiskeys, then sit down to a dinner prepared by Stellar Catering with fine wines by Kenwood Vineyards.
“Such an interactive event gives us the opportunity to share the importance of keeping Jack’s story and home alive,” said Van Wyk.
Since 2015, the park has been maintained by Jack London Park Partners, which receives no funding from the State of California and depends completely on community support to maintain the park and continue to tell Jack London’s story to future generations.
Single tickets for “Call of the Wild” are $200, with sponsorship levels from $1,000 to $10,000. For more information, call 938-1003 or go to jacklondonpark.com.
"Call of the Wild" Gala
When: Saturday, Sept. 23, from 6 to 10 p.m.
Where: The Winery Ruins at Jack London State Historic Park, 2400 London Ranch Road, Glen Ellen.
Sponsorships for “Call of the Wild” are:
- Writer—$10,000 for a reserved table and 10 tickets to the event
- Rancher—$5,000 for a reserved table and 8 tickets
- Adventurer—$2,500 for assigned seating and 4 tickets
- Sailor—$1,000 for assigned seating and 2 tickets