Country music was quite foreign to Dutch-born Nadine Poiesz of the East Bay until a girlfriend persuaded her three years ago to make her first visit to Sonoma County for the big Country Summer festival.
Nadine left the county fairgrounds in 2014 sensing that two men had gotten under her skin: headliner Darius Rucker and a Santa Rosa mechanic and muscle-car maker named Brent Baughman.
It was just before Darius Rucker took to the stage that Nadine found it impossible not to notice that a nice-looking guy was looking at her and, as he would admit later, “gathering the nerve” to walk over and say something.
So the two of them spoke — before and after and all the while they were blown away by Darius Rucker.
That was the start of something good for Brent and Nadine.
They fell in love and not terribly long afterward Nadine moved to Santa Rosa, subsequently taking a job with Camelbak in Petaluma.
And on June 2, the 34-year-old Brent and Nadine, who is 29, recited vows in a Western-themed wedding ceremony in the Sierra Nevada foothill town of Three Rivers.
When it came time for their first song, on came Darius Rucker’s “Wagon Wheel.”
And look who’s back at this weekend’s Country Summer, co-starring with Thomas Rhett, Justin Moore and Randy Houser.
Of course, it’s Rucker, the Grammy winner and former lead singer with Hootie & the Blowfish.
Prior to his performance on Saturday night, the Charleston resident met and congratulated the newlyweds at a backstage reception.
Mr. and Mrs. Baughman brought along their wedding guest book so that their favorite country star could be the last to sign it.
HER NAME IS LOVELY but only lately does it have heads snapping.
Melania Kang of Santa Rosa pronounces her first name mell-AIN-yah. But when somebody who doesn’t know her reads her name aloud because her order is ready or it’s her turn to be seen or served, it’s likely to come out as the currently more familiar mell-AHN-yah, as the first lady pronounces it.
When that happens, folks perk up and look about as if expecting to spot a Slovenia-born former model accompanied by Secret Service agents.
Sometimes Ms. Kang finds it best just to list her name as Mel.
PULL, DON’T PUSH: If you need a good laugh, and who doesn’t, stop by the G.S. Market in Fulton, where River and Fulton roads cross.
Walk up and check out the sign that owner Jesse Rana posted on the landmark building’s door after it stuck enough to cause some would-be customers to assume that it was locked, and to return to their cars and leave.
Read no further here if you don’t want the experience spoiled.
The notice reads:
How to get inside of the store.
1. Extend your arm out and grab the door handle.
2. Pull with all your strength toward you.
3. I repeat PULL TOWARD YOU.
4. If you are still not able to get in the door I am sorry there is no help for you and we will see you next time.