It's that time of year again, time to celebrate all things citrus at the Cloverdale Citrus Fair, which opens this Friday and continues through Monday, Feb. 17.
Highlights of the fair include a pygmy goat show, poultry judging, cooking demonstrations, an orange juice squeezing contest, lots of live music and so much more.
Cooking demonstrations feature Dave Legro of the Bumblebee fishing vessel on Saturday and John Trull of Vivo Vinegars on Sunday; in the spirit of full disclosure, I'll be following Trull with a presentation of easy-to-make vinaigrettes and other simple dressings.
General admission is $7 per day. Individuals aged 6 to 12 and over 62 pay $5. On Friday, seniors over 62 pay $1 and on Monday kids aged 6 to 12 are admitted free.
For a full schedule, hours and other details, including a full downloadable program, visit <a href="http://cloverdalecitrusfair.org" target="_blank">cloverdalecitrusfair.org</a>.
The fair takes place at the corner of Citrus Fair Dr. and South Washington St. in Cloverdale.
<strong>Laugh Your Way Through Valentine's Day:</strong> This Friday night, Sally Tomatoes cafe (1100 Valley House Dr., Rohnert Park) hosts an evening of dinner, comedy and dance. If you need to make last-minute plans, this could be for you.
Things get started at 7 p.m., with dinner. Menu highlights include pancetta-wrapped prawns; butter lettuce with goat cheese gratin, toasted hazelnuts and hazelnut vinaigrette; pork tenderloin with brandied cherry sauce; asparagus with Hollandaise and fresh raspberry chocolate mousse with dipped strawberries.
Tony Sparks will host stand up comedians RC Chandara and Juan Carlos.
Following the comedy will be dancing to the tunes of Miss Kitty and the Big Dogs.
For last-minute reservations, call 665-9472.
<strong>Homestead Skills:</strong> If you hurry, there is still time to participate in Nan Koehler's first Homestead Skills 101 class. It starts this Friday, Valentine's Day, afternoon and continues all day Saturday, February 15.
The focus is on berry farming and includes visits to working berry farms, raspberry plant starts and all the information you need to establish them successfully.
A second workshop that takes place on February 21 and 22 focuses on goat husbandry. You'll visit goat farms, learn to build a goat stanchion and milk goats with your very own hands.
Both endeavors, Koehler says, are ideal during drought conditions.
Koehler operates Rainbow's End Farm, located between Occidental and Sebastopol; it is a true working, sustainable farm and she is an outstanding teacher, with a remarkable depth of knowledge.
Cost is $50 per workshop. To register, call Nan Koehler at 874-2315 or 321-1162 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
<strong>Sweet Little 116:</strong> This Saturday, Taste Route 116 Wine Group hosts a day of tasting at 11 west county wineries, all nestled near Highway 116 in Forestville, Graton and Sebastopol.
Here's how it works. The general public pays $35 per person; members of wine clubs pay $30 and designated drivers can tag along for $10.
At your first stop, you select a unique wine glass painted by a local artist and then you go from winery to winery, sipping, spitting and nibbling on delicious sweet treats prepared just for this event.
Participating wineries include Atascadero Creek, Balletto Vineyards, Dutton Estate, Graton Ridge Cellars, Hanna Vineyards, Hook &amp; Ladder Tasting Room, Martin Ray Winery, Occidental Road Cellars, Russian River Vineyards, Taft Street Winery and Wine Guerilla.