Record Attendance at the 15th Annual Napa County Pruning Contest
February 04, 2016
NAPA, CA (February 4, 2016) - Under beautiful sunny skies, the Napa Valley Grapegrowers' Farmworker Foundation held its 15th Annual Napa County Pruning Contest. The industry's best vineyard workers challenged each other's art, skill, and speed at pruning Napa Valley vineyards. 85 men participated in the men's division and 13 women competed in the women's division.
Beginning at 9 a.m. on Beringer Vineyards Gamble Ranch, each contestant pruned six Chardonnay vines in the day's preliminary competition. Teams of three judges reviewed the quality of the cuts, which accounted for 40% of the total score; 60% of the score is the time it took to prune the vines. Six top scoring women and eight top scoring men moved on to the finals, where four men and four women placed as winners.
Most contestants were champions of similar, preliminary competitions in their workplace vineyards and are area residents, full time employees, volunteer to compete and paid her/his regular salary for that day. The annual Pruning Contest is one of dozens of activities produced by NVG's Farmworker Foundation to support vineyard workers and their families.
After the contest, everyone enjoyed an abundant taco lunch while celebratory music played. Winners in each division took home more than $4,500 in cash winnings, armfuls of tools, clothing, gift cards, and other valuable gifts. NVG encourages winners' employers to match their cash prizes.
Women's Division Winners:
1st Place: Maria Araceli Marin, Walsh Vineyards Management - $950 plus a custom trophy buckle and various vineyard tools, and a gift basket full of useful clothing items and gift cards
2nd Place: Dolores Torres, Promontory - $650 plus tools and a gift basket
3rd Place: Guadalupe Marin, Walsh Vineyards Management - $400 plus tools and a gift basket
4th Place: Marisol Arreola, Nunez Vineyard Management - $225 plus tools and a gift basket
Men's Division Winners:
1st Place: Sergio Perez Ponce, Nord Vineyard Management - $950 plus a custom trophy buckle and various vineyard tools, and a gift basket full of useful clothing items and gift cards
2nd Place: Victor Silvestre, Renteria Vineyard Management - $650 plus tools and a gift basket
3rd Place: Solano Ponce, Nunez Vineyard Management - $400 plus tools and a gift basket
4th Place: Martin Cervantes, Renteria Vineyard Management - $225 plus tools and a gift basket
All pruning equipment provided by premier sponsor, Central Valley Builders. Gift cards and cash courtesy of Silicon Valley Bank and Vineyard Industry Products.
About Napa Valley Grapegrowers
NVG is a non-profit trade organization that has played a vital role in strengthening Napa Valley's reputation as a world-class viticultural region for over 39 years. NVG represents almost 700 Napa County grape growers and associated businesses. Through its unprecedented Farmworker Foundation, NVG has raised over $2 million to produce high-level programs for vineyard workers that focus on health and safety, personal success tools such as gaining management and leadership skills, financial advice, English language opportunities, and information on community services for them and their families. The Napa Valley Farmworker Foundation has educated over 7,500 farmworkers and supervisors to date.