Late last week at Gundlach-Bundschu in Sonoma, many lucky children were thrilled to see what a big-time grape harvest is all about. Kids from the Sonoma Valley 4-H Club and their parents bundled up on a cold night to witness a display that most in the region don't get to see. Being up close to the lights and size of the machinery wowed not only the kids but their parents too.
Towle Merrit, of Walsh Vineyard Management, explained to them how the process of machine harvesting works, and why the nighttime is the right time to harvest. They received hands-on experience too; not only did they sample the clean berries after being dumped into the bins, but the highlight was a ride down a vineyard row and back on top the Pellenc 8590.
The lesson of the evening: give kids an idea of what types of professions are out there—with hard work one can become anything they want, whether that's a farmer or an engineer.