Wine Country continues to emerge from the COVID lockdown, which means life in and around Healdsburg continues to inch closer to the “normal” we knew and loved before the spring of 2020. The farmers’ market has returned. Tuesday night concerts on the Plaza are back. Most stores—including Plank and the new Black Oak Coffee—are open until at least 6 p.m. every day. Here’s a rundown of some other notable happenings around town.
Tickets are now on sale for two of our favorite local events of the year, both of which raise money for important causes in the community. The first, the annual fundraising dinner for Reach for Home, will be held August 8 at the Alexander Valley Hall in Geyserville. The organization works to fight homelessness and provide services to the unhoused population in and around the northern part of Sonoma County. The second, Project Zin, is the brainchild of Clay and Carrie Mauritson from Mauritson Wines, and supports the Downs Syndrome Association North Bay. This latter event—the eleventh annual—will be held August 21 at Bricoleur Vineyards in Windsor.
There’s a new spot to enjoy the Russian River this summer: the private beach at River’s Edge Kayak & Canoe. This summer, for the first time ever, guests can rent private spaces in two beach areas on the north side of Memorial Bridge—just upriver from Memorial Beach Park. Each of the spaces comes an umbrella, four chairs, and a small table. Each space accommodates up to four people, and each rental is good for six hours. The price: $50 per day. (In case you’re wondering, River’s Edge doesn’t have food for sale, but visitors are welcome to bring their own food or by it from Memorial Beach Market & Deli on the west side of Healdsburg Avenue.)
Town is abuzz over two forthcoming openings this month: Bacchus Landing and The Matheson. Bacchus, located on Westside Road just west of town, is a wine-tasting destination with a total of five (as of press time) wineries, a market, bocce courts, and an open-air courtyard to relax and enjoy an afternoon. The latter, The Matheson, is Dustin Valette’s homage to his Healdsburg roots, and comprises two distinct dining public-facing experiences—a casual environment at a rooftop bar and a more formal restaurant on ground level. Valette’s eatery also will have a wine wall with automated dispensers that administer pours of up to 80 wines at any time.
The 35th annual Russian River Watershed Cleanup will take place on September 18, 2021, and Russian Riverkeeper (see below), the organization that sponsors the event, currently is looking for sponsors. The September cleanup is the group’s largest of the year and helps remove trash that accumulates over the summer months on the Russian River. This year, there will be teams across the watershed from Ukiah to Monte Rio all contributing with the shared mission of protecting the river and ocean from trash pollution. The goal in 2021 is to beat the previous high-water mark (pun intended) of 35,000 pounds of trash, 175 tires, and 452 volunteers—all records that were set in 2019.