Tuesday, July 27, 2010

YMCA Camp Orkila for the day

Today, I had the opportunity to journey to beautiful Camp Orkila on Orcas Island with a group of women leaders to share our middle school memories and how we navigated the chasm between that point in our lives and where we are today with a group of girls entering 8th and 9th grade this fall who are part of the YMCA Patsy Collins Adventure in Leadership (PCAL).  This camp is all about empowering girls with the self-confidence to lead, the desire to give back to their communities and the awareness to live a healthy and balanced life.
The group included business owners, an attorney, corporate business executives, a world champion weight lifter, the heads of a couple of non-profit foundations, and at least three past or present Microsoft executives (see top photo of entire group).  We met at Kenmore Air on Lake Union and made the brief, yet spectacular flight through the San Juan Islands on two float planes, both of which were not able to tie up at the dock when we arrived, so our first camp challenge was to attain a foothold on the beach without getting too wet.
Once ashore, we were greeted by a few of the girls with welcome signs (see bottom photo above) and then escorted to meet the rest of the PCAL girls and their enthusiastic camp counselors.  We had the chance to sit with just a few of the girls at individual tables over lunch and the girls seemed to thoroughly enjoy telling us about their camp activities.  See photo of me with Maya and Channing on either side.
Following lunch, we sat in a big circle and each of the women shared a bit about our own life stories and then couldn’t resist giving the girls lots of advice.  All of the women guests were totally engaged and enjoying the conversation and shared stories, but I noticed as the hour wore on that the girls’ eyes were glazing over, so I don’t think they were quite up to having so much advice thrown their way.  I’m not sure what the answer is, but it would be interesting to think about a way to transfer some of the valuable information that was shared today in an interactive manner that the girls might enjoy more and where they could be more emotionally engaged.

Sun Valley Weekend & WAW Reunion

Over the weekend, Ken and I stayed with our good friends, Trudi & Dave Syferd, in Sun Valley to attend some of the Sun Valley Wine Auction festivities.  These events raise funds for the arts in Sun Valley.
We reconnected with many of our WAW (aka WhoopAssWino) friends at the annual Winetasting in the afternoon and then the Concert & Picnic at Warm Springs. There were some challenges at the picnic with insufficient food and disorganized service but representatives from Sun Valley Center for the Arts handled this beautifully the next day by making follow up calls to apologize and to offer refunds.
After the picnic, we journeyed to Lane Ranch for the “12th WAW Reunion and Apres Picnic Party.” This party is a tradition where WAW members and guests bring wine to share.  This is the annual event when selected new provisional and active members are inducted into this prestigious organization.  See third photo above to see Rick & Jacque Doane following their induction and fourth photo to see Carl & Renee Behnke being officially inducted.
But all was not about wine thankfully.  In addition, I had the chance to play two games of golf, one at the Sun Valley Golf Course and the other at the Elkhorn Golf Club with friends, Dave & Trudi, Anne-Marie Hedges and Susan Richey.
See photos of WAW members above.
Top photo from L-R-Tom Hedges, Greg Lill, Cathi Hatch, Ron Lachini
2nd photo from L-R-Ron Elgin, Rick Doane, Ted Baseler, Jacque Doane, Stacy Lill, Julia deHaan
3rd photo from L-R-Trudi Syferd, Anne-Marie Hedges, Joyce McCallum
4th photo from L-R-Carl Behnke, Renee Behnke, Ron Elgin, Ted Baseler

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

WSU competes favorably with UC Davis in Viticulture & Enology!

Over lunch yesterday at ZINO Vino Liquid Assets Forum, our ZINO Society sponsor partner, Washington State University, provided the content for the lunch discussion.  Dr.  Thomas Heinick-King, WSU Professor and Director of Viticulture & Enology spoke about the breadth of the Enology program offered at WSU.  I was not aware until yesterday that WSU now has a Viticulture & Enology program as large as the one at UC Davis!  Dr. James Harbertson, Assistant Scientist of Enology at WSU then spoke about the actual Science of Wine:  Tannins and Astringency, showing diagrams of cells and molecules and comparing the tannin levels in two different Chateau Ste. Michelle wines.  We had the chance to compare and contrast in the glass between the 2007 Columbia Crest Reserve Merlot and 2007 Columbia Crest Grand Estates Merlot.  When Dr. Harbertson asked us which wine did we think had more tannin, most of the audience seemed to figure it out correctly (but we did have a pretty sophisticated wine-drinking audience at the event).  What was especially interesting to me is that the Reserve Merlot had two and one-half times the amount of tannin as the Grand Estates Merlot.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

ZINO Vino Liquid Assets Forum a Success!

I’m happily exhausted after a very full day of wine panels and wine tasting at the inaugural ZINO Vino Liquid Assets Forum which was held today at Bell Harbor Conference Center.  Thank you to ZINO Society member, Shelley Tomberg for helping to make this possible!  The panelists were impressive and had incredible expertise and knowledge to share with the attendees.
The most frustrating part of the day was that each panel had so much more they could have shared, but in each case the time ran out before we were ready to move on to the next topic.  We will be asking the attendees for advice for next year, but the best suggestion I have heard so far is to start the event earlier in the day and extend the length of time for each panel.
The Twitter stream was pretty amazing with dozens upon dozens of tweets occurring over the course of the day.  You can access it at #zinovino.
The ZINO Society team did an amazing job of bringing a brand-new event to fruition over a short period of time.  See photo above of set-up by the team.  Mary Holmes, ZINO Society Chief Marketing Officer (photo above at podium), gets credit for envisioning the opportunity and convincing the rest of the ZINO Society executive team to move forward and make it happen.
We owe a BIG thank you to everyone who was involved including all of our sponsors and all of the wineries that brought their new wines to pour as part of the Northwest Emerging Wines Awards tasting (N.E.W. Awards) at the end of the day.  A mammoth thank you to our Major Sponsors, Banner Bank, Columbia Hospitality, Stoel Rives and Washington State University.  See photo of two of the three Stoel Rives panelists, Chris Hermann and Jay Rafter above.
The panel pictured above is the Legends of the Fall panel which included Ted Baseler of Ste. Michelle Wine Estates,  Bob Betz of Betz Family Vineyards, Dick Boushey of Boushey Vineyards, Norm McKibben of Pepper Bridge Winery and Rick Small of Woodward Canyon Winery.  They are titans in the business of wine and the attendees hung on every word they shared!
See photos of most of the panelists and speakers who participated by clicking on this link.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

N.O.A.H. Music for the Animals featuring Lyle Lovett

On Friday evening, Patty Barrier and I once again left our husbands at home happily convalescing while we journeyed to Chateau Ste. Michelle Winery for the N.O.A.H. 8th Annual Auction and fundraiser followed by the Lyle Lovett concert.
N.O.A.H. is a non-profit organization dedicated to stopping euthanasia of healthy, adoptable and treatable dogs and cats by transferring these homeless pets from partner shelters and arranging for quality pet adoptions, dog training, providing spaying and neutering service for animals adopted by low-income families, humane education and volunteer programs. 
Patty, along with N.O.A.H. founders, Charlene & Orin Edson and dozens of volunteers and friends have been ardent supporters of N.O.A.H.  Kip Toner of Kip Toner Benefit Auctions handled the auctioneer role and did an entertaining and efficient job of auctioning off the 13 live auction items with help from Master of Ceremonies, Jesse Jones of KING 5 News.  They resorted to occasional but light-hearted bullying to increase the prices, but all was in good fun and to help the animals.
Following the auction, we adjourned to the concert and had a fantastic time sitting in the sun and listening to Lyle Lovett and his big band.  We especially enjoyed three of his male singers, two of whom also danced in unison while singing.  “Sweet Pea”, the third singer, sat on a stool due to his recent knee surgery and didn’t join in the dancing.
One of Patty’s and my favorite lyrics performed is a new song, “Natural Forces” from Lyle Lovett’s recent album that he wrote in honor of the soldiers fighting in Iran and Afghanistan.  Here were my favorite lines:
Now as I sit here safe at home
With a cold Coors Lite an' the TV on
All the sacrifice and the death and woe
Lord I pray that I'm worth fighting for

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

A New Music Maestro

Over the weekend, Ken and I were pleased to meet the new Music Maestro for the Seattle Symphony Orchestra who will take on the leadership of SSO, when our dear friend, Jerry Schwarz, retires at the end of next season.  SSO Chairman of the Board, Leslie Chihuly, hosted a reception at the Chihuly Boathouse for Seattle Symphony board members to meet new SSO Music Maestro, Ludovic Morlot.  As a SSO Lifetime Trustee, I am thrilled to see what the next chapter will bring.
We arrived at the Boathouse right behind a car with a family with two young girls  who were welcomed by the valet right in front of Ken and me.  Ken said “”Who would be bringing children to meet the new Symphony Director?” and his question was answered in moments when we entered the Boathouse and met the Morlot family.  It turned out that the family who had arrived right before us was Ludovic Morlot, a charming man who arrived with his beautiful wife, Ghizlane and two young daughters Nora and Iman.
Of course, the SSO family was warm in their reception to him and enjoyed the time to get to know him one on one.  Once Leslie asked him to speak and he shared his vision of what he hoped to bring to the Seattle Symphony, his daughters decided to sit down on either side of KenLudovic told us that he has a special affinity for French music but said that he plans to present all kinds of beautiful and romantic music.  We also heard from Ludovic that Nora plays the violin and that Iman plays the cello.  Iman, his youngest daughter, showed her potential dance abilities as she continued to do turn after turn using Dale’s 88 foot downed Douglas Fir log table as a ballet barre during her father’s remarks.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

What a ZOO!

Last night, Patty Barrier and I left our ailing spouses (Jimmy with recent shoulder surgery and Ken with needed knee surgery) to have a quiet dinner together, while we went to the big Woodland Park Zoo Jungle Party “Big Claws, Big Cause”.  Barrier Motors Audi was one of the sponsors of the event.
We arrived early so we could go on the giraffe tour.  Patty and I enjoyed the giraffe tour immensely! We got to feed the three giraffes, the large Reticulated male and the two Rothchilds’ giraffes, the shy female, Olivia,  and the 1-1/2 year old playful baby female.  The giraffes had very long purple tongues that could reach many inches towards the maple leaves that we were hand feeding them.  The big male giraffe could easily reach over the tall fence to eat the leaves that we gingerly held towards him.
Following our bonding with the giraffes, we stopped and checked out the hippopotamus feeding as well and met Water Lily (see photos above), who was enjoying large sections of cut cantaloupe between submerging herself in the water and swimming around her pond.
The party itself was impressive with spirited bidding at the auction and dozens of generous “raise the paddle” bids.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

A Sizzling Pre-Cruise Barbecue

Tonight Ken and I hosted a casual barbecue at our home for our friends joining us on our upcoming cruise to meet one another.  It was a sizzling hot night so we quaffed sangria and white wine while we played part of a round of croquet in the shade prior to dinner.  I’m pretty sure I was ahead when we had to stop for dinner!!
There will be 10 couples in our group on the Seabourn Odyssey Dalmatian Coast cruise and all attended the party this evening except Charlie & Nancy Hogan, Denny Dochnahl who was doing Nascar driving in Florida and Debi Giannola who was in Las Vegas completing a 6 week linguistics class.
In the top photo above, somehow we missed including Bernie Dochnahl in the group photo though she was with us.  Also joining us for dinner but not pictured in the group photo was new Banner Bank President and CEO, Mark Grescovich who has recently moved here from Cleveland.  Group photo pictured from left to right:
Top row:  Cathi Hatch, Len Giannola, Ken Hatch, Joe Sasenick, John Midby
Middle row:  Kyle Johnson, Judith Kindler, Rebecka Milne, Betty Sasenick, Mark Pellegrino, Walter Schoenfeld, Bonny Midby
Front row:  Bruce Milne, Nancy Pellegrino, Esther Schoenfeld
Over barbecued ribs and chicken, potato salad, baked beans, roasted corn salad and berry crisp, we shared stories of some of our favorite trips of the past.  The Hotel Negresco in Nice figured heavily in the conversation as a favorite place many of our group had stayed.  Hearing the stories from each person really brought back a rush of fun memories from previous trips for everybody!
Now, we can’t wait for the cruise!

Cleaning up the blogosphere . . .

Well, I don’t know about cleaning up the entire blogosphere, but we are in the process of re-organizing the ZINO Society blog and I look forward to seeing more of the ZINOpreneurs, our Roundtable members, Social members and sponsors, our Wine Professional Members, and ZINO Society events showcased.  Be watching for a morph of my blog and the ZINO Society Showcase blog within the next few weeks.  ZINO Society sponsor, Blaine Millet of WOM10 is leading the update.
In the meantime, I really enjoyed kicking off our new “featured ZINOpreneur” blog posting on the ZINO Society blog with entrepreneur, Ken Berkun of Labels That TalkKen lives in Hawaii and I was surprised when I saw him when he was in town, it was the first time he was not wearing an aloha shirt!  Here is the link to our dialog:  http://bit.ly/cVY4Hd .

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Welcome Kristie & Bradley!

I am so pleased to welcome Kristie Lanum back to ZINO Society after a two year hiatus.  Kristie has rejoined ZINO Society as the Executive Vice President and as part of her new position has taken over the management of the entrepreneur oversight and relations.  Assisting Kristie for the summer with entrepreneur interaction and planning and activities to help execute our upcoming, all-day ZINO Zillionaire Investment Forum scheduled for September 15th is Brigham Young University student, Bradley KingBradley just joined us at the beginning of this week.  We are so happy to have him on board too and he is already making himself invaluable!

Strategies for Courting Angel Investors

On Tuesday this week, ZINO Society presented our second Get Funded! Winning Strategies for Courting Angel Investors event for entrepreneurs who are interested in seeking angel funding for start-up or expansion capital.  A fascinating group of entrepreneurs attended representing their companies from various business sectors.  The companies ranged from Software as a Service, marketing, a three wheel motorcycle company, consumer products and services, a winery, a medical device company as well as a number of others.  See photos of the group above.
We were hosted by ZINO Society long-term sponsor and friend, Davis Wright Tremaine, in its spectacular 22nd floor office.  Attending on behalf of DWT were Haeryung Shin and Kate WhiteHaeryung’s input and advice during the workshop from an attorney’s perspective, was very helpful.  ZINOPartner and Founder of Business Plans Northwest, Bryan Brewer, led the interactive training session which included advice on how to present more effectively in front of angel investors as well as what information is most important to include in a presentation seeking funding.  He listed the seven deadly sins to avoid when making a pitch to angel investors as obfuscation, verbosity, inaccuracy, laziness, arrogance, impatience, and delusion.  More detail about each of these deadly sins is on Bryan’s website.
What is your pet peeve when it comes to listening to an entrepreneur present his or her funding pitch?