This past April 28 was a big day — or night — in Chino Valley. On that date, Earthworks Garden Supply on Highway 89 was ground zero for the first-ever Wine, Bites and Brews blowout, hosted by the Chino Valley Lioness Club and the Chino Valley Area Chamber of Commerce.

It was a seriously fun opportunity to meet old friends and to make new ones. Co-event coordinator Patty Lindsey told me the club and Chamber expected around 100 attendees but by evening’s end, some 300 to 350 folks had stopped by to sample wine, beer and eats.

Lindsey reported that four wineries, two breweries, five food vendors, three massage ladies, three French hens, two turtle doves and a partridge in a pear tree participated in the event. Actually, I just made up the hens, doves and pear tree thing, but visitors also enjoyed a coffee bar, tunes from a musician and a chat with Mr. Wilson, the 12-year-old resident owl from the Heritage Park Zoological Sanctuary.

A large number of door prizes and silent auction items rounded out the evening. When I left near closing time, throngs of townies could still be seen at the wine, beer and food stations, so I don’t know how long the whole affair lasted. I did hear that Mr. Wilson was cracking one-liners instead of dispensing the wise counsel one would expect from your standard Strigiforme (Mr. Wilson’s Latin name).

This year’s Wine, Bites and Brews event was a successful fundraiser for the Lioness and Chamber organizations, but it demonstrated a lot more. WBB featured a successful coordination of local business, service club and Chamber groups for a common goal. And, it provided evidence that residents of Chino Valley and environs are a zestful and cohesive bunch. A strong sense of community was on display April 28 that can only be confirmed by next year’s WBB program scheduled for April 27, 2019, again at Earthworks. Circle April 27 on your calendar and watch for details late this year.

The next major community celebration in Chino Valley this year will be Morning Lions Club’s Territorial Day on Sept. 1. The annual town parade will observe the theme “My Hometown Chino Valley.” (Incidentally, if your group would like to participate in the parade, you’ll be able to complete your application online soon.)

The pancake breakfast follows at the Senior Center as will the Lioness craft fair in Memory Park next door, along with other events on the first. The day will end with the traditional Future Farmers of America Corn Dinner in the Del Rio Elementary School gym. So, Sept. 1, 2018 also deserves a big circle on your calendar.

I encourage all residents of Chino Valley, Paulden and the Quad Cities to participate in our community events. Even better, if you’d like to be a part of planning those events, consider becoming a member of either the Chino Valley Lioness Club or the Morning Lions Club. Please contact me at wilaugust46@gmail.com or chinovalleylioness@yahoo.com for more information. Men and women are welcomed as members of each organization.

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