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Record Year For Washington Grape Growers Convention

April 02, 2013

With nearly 2,200 attending, the 2013 convention of the state’s wine grape growers set another record. The Washington Association of Wine Grape Growers annual meeting was held last month in Kennewick and included over a dozen educational sessions and a sold-out trade show with 169 booths.

Each year the group also honors industry members with Grower of the Year, Industry Service, Restaurant Appreciation plus two categories of awards for the Poster Session. Awards were:


Servando Rodriquez, production manager at Sagemoor Farms, received the 2012 Erick Hanson Memorial Wine Grape Grower Award for his demonstrated viticultural skills. His 37 years of service spans almost the entire modern era of the Washington state wine grape industry. Servando started at Sagemoor in 1974.


Roger Gamache, of Gamache Vineyards received the 2012 Industry Service Award for his tireless volunteerism and dedication on behalf of and for the continual improvement and benefit of the wine grape industry. Roger has been farming for over 30 years. He is currently a board member for the Washington Wine Industry Foundation.


Each year, the Washington Association of Wine Grape Growers selects a restaurant that does an exceptional job of showcasing and educating diners about Washington wines. This year’s recipient was recently remodeled Ray’s Boathouse, in Seattle. Mo Shaw is the restaurant’s general manager, and Richard Kelsey has been wine director at Ray's since 2008. The new look of the remodeled restaurant draws from the 1950’s and 1960’s pleasure-boating aesthetic, and the dining room seats 112.


The Poster Session offered prizes in two categories: Graduate, and Professional. Awards went to:


1st Place (tie): Markus Keller, Giulio Carmassi, Colin Lee, and Bhaskar Bondada

Washington State University, Irrigated Agriculture Research and Extension Center, Prosser

TOPIC: Linking Grapevine Bleeding, Budbreak, Shoot Growth, and Fruit Set

1st Place (tie): John Ferguson, Lynn Mills, Sean Hills, Michelle Moyer, Gerrit Hoogenboom, and Markus Keller

Washington State University, Prosser

TOPIC: WSU Decision Support Tools for Grape Cold Damage Management

2nd Place: G Grove, M. Moer, and M. Schwager

Washington State University, Irrigated Agriculture Research and Extension Center, Prosser

TOPIC: Effect of Bloom-Centered Quinoxyfen Applications on Powdery Mildew Severity on “White Riesling” Berries.

3rd Place: James F. Harbertson, L. Federico Casassa, Christopher W. Beaver, Maria Mireles, Richard C. Larsen, Helene Hopfer, and Hildegarde Heymann

School of Food Science, Irrigated Agriculture Research & Extension Center, Washington State University, Prosser, WA; Department of Viticulture and Enology, University of California, Davis, CA

TOPIC: Effect of Fruit Maturity, Ethanol Concentration, and Maceration Length in Washington State Merlot Wines Over Two Seasons


1st Place: Sudarsana Poojari, Olufemi J. Alabi, Naidu A. Rayapati

Department of Plant Pathology, Washington State University, Irrigated Agriculture Research and Extension Center, Prosser

TOPIC: New Virus Disease Threatening Washington Vineyards

2nd Place: L. Federico Casassa, Richard C. Larsen, Christopher W. Beaver, Maria S. Mireles, Markus Keller, William R. Riley, Russell Smithyman, and James F. Harbertson

School of Food Science, Washington State University, Irrigated Agriculture Research & Extension Center, Prosser; Viticulture and Enology Program Washington State University, Irrigated Agriculture Research and Extension Center, Prosser; Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture, Washington State University, Irrigated Agriculture Research and Extension Center, Prosser; Ste. Michelle Wine Estates, Prosser

TOPIC: Interactive Effect of Regulated Deficit Irrigation and Skin Contact Time in Cabernet Sauvignon Wines

3rd Place: A.D. Howland, P.A. Skinkis, R.P. Schreiner, and I.A. Zasada

Department of Horticulture, Oregon State University, OR; USDA-ARS Horticultural Crops Research Laboratory, Corvallis, OR

TOPIC: Spatial Distribution of Plant Parasitic Nematodes in Washington Vineyards


Students of viticulture, enology, and/or wine business programs at Central Washington University, South Seattle Community College, Walla Walla Community College, Washington State University, and Yakima Valley Community College volunteered at the WAWGG Convention for a combined total of over 210 hours.

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