Winters Farm to School Annual Feast
Our primary fundraiser has always been our annual Summer Feast held at the historic Wolfskill Ranch on the south side of Putah Creek in Winters. Our 2020 Summer Feast was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic. We have also canceled our 2021 Summer Feast for the same reason.
Even though our Summer Feast is canceled again this year, we wanted to share a bit about that special event. For those new to our annual feast, we gather around 11:30 am for appetizers under the generous shade of an old, majestic pecan tree. Guests have plenty of time to mingle with friends new and old and to browse the selection of unique silent auction items donated by local families and businesses. Around 1 pm guests take their seats for our afternoon feast. One long table is set under the fragrant canopy of 160-year old olive trees planted by John Wolfskill. Everyone brings her own tableware so the table is an eclectic mix of color, styles, crystal, silver and fine china. Taking over two hours to enjoy the delicious food and drink, all donated by local farms, wineries and breweries, the feast is a leisurely way to spend an afternoon all benefiting a great cause.
Each year we have held our feast at Wolfskill because the location itself is both beautiful and historic. The Wolfskill Ranch has a long and fascinating history that weaves into the greater story of California becoming a state and Winters becoming such an agricultural hub. Today Wolfskill is a topnotch research facility housing both the UC Davis Department of Plant Sciences Experimental Orchards and the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Clonal Germplasm Repository.
Every year, guests of the Farm to School feast have had the opportunity to learn more about all of the work being conducted at Wolfskill – innovative work which draws visiting scholars from around the world. For those interested in learning more about the important research taking place at Wolfskill, guests are given the opportunity to participate in a 30 minute Walking Tour of the Wolfskill Experimental Orchards. Each year a professor from the UC Davis Department of Plant Sciences leads the tour which focuses on the breadth of research, extension and teaching that the Department of Plant Sciences contributes to the local, regional and world agricultural economies.
Dr. John Preece, Former Director of the USDA’s National Clonal Germplasm Repository located at Wolfskill is also available to talk about their important work at the Repository. Dr. Preece is also a wealth of information about the fascinating history of the Wolfskill property and the Wolfskill family.
Our feast has become a favorite summer celebration for our area and has sold out every year. It is such a delightful way to taste and experience the rich agricultural bounty in Yolo County … and all for the good cause of raising funds so our school children can eat locally-grown, healthier foods at school. A perfect day you might say!