Food, film, fun at a drive-in benefit at SOMO Village in Rohnert Park

Tasty food was inside the cars and a classic, feel-good motion picture outside Saturday at a drive-in benefit at Rohnert Park’s SOMO Village.

The movie-and-dinner event raised campaign dollars for longtime Rep. Mike Thompson, D-St. Helena, and also sustaining funds for a nonprofit that helps prepare local young people for productive and challenging careers.

Guests happily ensconced in their automobiles enjoyed a selection of packaged dinners from SOMO Village’s Sally Tomatoes catering company. Diners chose from kebabs with chicken, sausage or prawns, each served on mushroom risotto and accompanied by caesar salad and either chocolate raspberry brownies or kettle corn.

Thompson visited car-to-car. As darkness fell, the congressman, Sonoma County Supervisor Chris Coursey and Gerard Giudice, the co-founder of Sally Tomatoes and mayor of Rohnert Park, updated the guests on impacts of federal stimulus spending and other issues.

Then the large projection screen lit up with a specially made video by Francis Ford Coppola, who introduced the night’s movie: his 1986 fantasy comedy-drama, “Peggy Sue Got Married,” which was filmed in Petaluma and Santa Rosa and stars Kathleen Turner and Nicolas Cage.

The Thompson campaign will donate $2,500 of the proceeds from A Drive-In Movie Night with the Santa Rosa-based Career Technical Education Foundation. The nonprofit works to strengthen opportunities for high-school students to enter careers in technology, manufacturing, agriculture, health-and-wellness and other rewarding fields.

There is more on the organization at its website,

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