It is easy to see why some of the most popular live entertainment venues in Wine Country are the wineries themselves.
The settings are beautiful, especially during the summer, when a lot of the events can be held outdoors. And you can have a glass of wine while you're enjoying the show.
Phillip Humes, a retired Santa Rosa business executive, loves a good outdoor show and put it poetically: "There is a magical ambience to listening to live music at a winery."
Evidently, he's not the only one who feels that way.
Francis Ford Coppola Winery in Geyserville, for example, reports steady crowds for live music, dancing and film screenings.
"We've been offering a variety of events since 2010," said Marlow Daniel, director of public relations for Francis Ford Coppola Presents. "We're offering guests a different perspective on the traditional wine tasting experience."
Summertime offers a steady stream of entertainment events, but the pace begins to slow by early August in some places.
Not at the wineries. Here's a quick look at what some wineries have planned for the first weekend of an otherwise sleepy month:
<b>"Gigolo: The New Cole Porter Review"</b> will be performed outdoors at the Francis Ford Coppola Winery, 300 Via Archimedes, Geyserville, at 7 p.m. Aug. 2-4 and Aug. 10-11.
The new musical revue is the creation of North Bay theatrical set designer Paul Gilger, the architect who designed the theaters at Santa Rosa's 6th Street Playhouse and the Cloverdale Performing Arts Center.
Gilger also has a track record as a producer with "Showtune," his musical salute to "Mame" composer Jerry Herman. It played San Francisco in 1985 and 1996 and England in 1998, and opened Off Broadway in New York in 2003.
Single tickets cost $35. You can get a table for two for $120 or a table for four for $210 in the winery's new Starlight Lounge. The price includes a glass of wine for each guest, plus tickets to the performance.
<b>The GunBun Summer Fun Film Fest</b> presents an outdoor screening of the 1980 comedy classic "Caddyshack," starring Chevy Chase and Rodney Dangerfield, at 8:45 p.m. Aug. 3 at the Gundlach Bundschu Winery, 2000 Denmark St., Sonoma. Doors open at 7 p.m. for games and activities. Information: 938-5277, gunbun.com.
If you miss that showing, the same movie screens again at 8:30 p.m. Aug. 10, outdoors at Moshin Vineyards, 10295 Westside Road, Healdsburg. Admission costs $10 and includes a "bottomless bag" of popcorn. "The Sandwich Lady" will serve Saigon green papaya salad with grilled chicken for $10. 433-5499, moshinvineyards.com.
<b>The Rodney Strong Summer Concert Series</b> offers two shows this weekend at the Rodney Strong vineyard, 11455 Old Redwood Highway, just south of Healdsburg.
The pop trio BWB (Rick Braun, Kirk Whalum and Norman Brown) plays Aug. 3, with tickets priced at $60 to $90. And "Streets of Bakersfield" country singer Dwight Yoakam performs Aug. 4. Admission: $60-$115.
The series continues with smooth jazz by Dave Koz & Friends on Aug. 17 ($60-$90) and blues legend B.B. King on Sept. 1 ($75-$115.)
All of the concerts start at 5 p.m. Information: 869-1595, rodneystrong.com.