So Jan and Lisa Starr have put the final touches on our submission for the NSW State Tourism Awards. Imagine it!!
Canowindra has two finalists in these Awards..Pretty good for a town of less than 2000 people!!! We’re humming. Especially since we have also announced that Toms Waterhole Wines with support from other sponsors will also be running another Balloon Festival during the April school holidays in 2010. They are looking for support from schools to enter the model hot air balloon building and flying competition plus there will be kite flying events all week. For the Mums and Dads, Gardners Ground Organic Cowra Chardonnay will feature on the restaurant menus all week Check out our developing programme at www.gjkerr.com.au
Thanks for your interest and comments guys and girls. As Barb has noted we have modified the dates to tag onto the end of the Rice Festival. We are still looking for suggestions for inclusion into the programme so welcome any ideas you might have. In essence there will be daily prizes plus an overall winner for the seven day event. All participants will have to pay their own way since the sponsorship money will all be going into prizes, that’s the sponsors decision. Most of the competitions will be creative events so in reality very few strict FAI type flying tasks. Some ideas on the board at the moment are for a two day campout long jump, an aerial kite grab,,,variation on a key grab, drop a boot on a dam to be retreived and returnrd by crew, and golden stiletto where pilots fly and drop a bike rider who has to ride back to mission control to claim their prize…any more suggestions??
In conjunction with the core event we are providing the free facilities for camping and a training camp to be run, with keynote workshop speakers provided, if there is any interest in doing this? We would need the co-operation of a club or The ABF to provide instructors and examiners if this was to go ahead.
WE will be running a statewide model hot air balloon building and flying competition for school kids plus kite building and flying competitions and building workshops. A model balloon glow is also on the cards. Radio controlled “toys” that fly will also have a place so Justin get ready for some serious competion for your toys!!!
Any input, suggestions and expressions of interest are welcome.
Some dates to note
Canowindra Challenge 5th – 11th April 2010
Easter Friday 2nd – Monday 5th April
NSW School holidays 1st – 18th April
Vic School holidays 26th March – 11th April
QLD school holidays 2nd – 11th April
SA svchool holidays 1 – 18th April
ACT school holidays 9th – 27th April
F.O.O.D Week 100 mile dinner in Canowindra main street Monday 12th April
Orange F.O.O.D Week (wine and food festival) 10th to 18th April
Say how would it be if we could do a Balloon Glow with a difference? If we had say two balloons in say five different locations scattered on hills around Canowindra on a perfect night. We can’t say which night because it depends on the weather but have you seen the TV advert with all the white balloons ..computer graphics of course? In addition another say five balloons in Canowindra say at the Caravan Park. all would be coregraphed by radio to provide 20 minutes of visual night balloon glow spectacular. Of course it would need some major filming rights and all participants would be amply rewarded. What do you think? Should be an attraction for a major film or advertising scam???
Toms Waterhole Wines wish to advise all Cowra Region grape growers of their intention to purchase the VERY BEST Shiraz fruit that money can buy in 2010. Almost certainly the fruit will come from a low yielding block that is not over irrigated. We will be looking for expressions of interest from growers from late February onwards so that we can watch the development of the fruit leading up to ripening and harvest. We really think we have the formula to make the Best Cowra Shiraz but in any case we sure mean to give it our best shot by starting with the best grapes!!!
Just a reminder that this Sunday 23rd August is our second “Sunday Lunch” function in the Winery. The last one was a sellout success with 33 people enjoying a tasting of the whole range of Tomswaterhole Wines together with Graham and Jan’s fabulous woodfired pizza. Sunday 23rd starting at 12.30 $20 a head for all the pizza you can eat. Why not get a few friends together and come and hear first hand about the “Canowindra Challenge-Festival of Flight”. There will be a short presentation and workshop about it over lunch.
The Happy Winemaker
A story for our time
Once upon a time a winemaker came to a small country town. He saw the green hills. He saw the clean river. He saw the rich soil and he felt the warm sun and he knew that this was the place to plant his precious Chardonnay grape vines
So he planted his grape vines on those green hills with the clean water and the rich soil and the warm sun and soon the vines were heavy with bunches of rich, fat golden grapes. And the winemaker took those rich fat golden bunches and pressed them and fermented them and made a rich fat luscious golden wine with just a hint of the green hills that the vines grew on. Then he stored the wine in the finest oak from the forest and after a time he bottled the wine and the people came from all around to taste this marvelous drink.
The winemaker became famous and throughout the world people begged for his wine and other people tried to copy it but none of them had green hills and clean water and rich soil and warm sun like his little country town. And the winemaker was happy and the people who drank his wine were happy and the winemaker even had hopes that he might become rich.
One day a narrow eyed man in a white coat knocked at the winemaker’s door. “Hello,” said the winemaker, “how can I help you?”
The narrow eyed man looked down his narrow nose at the winemaker. “I travel all over the world tasting wine,” said the man. “I know all there is to know about wine. I am an expert. If I like a wine I give it a star and if I don’t like a wine I write nasty things about it. Then my friends who live in big cities and drink coffee with froth on the top and watch themselves in mirrors will stop drinking the wine so I am very important. I have heard about your wine and I have come to taste it.”
The winemaker was a naturally polite person so he invited the narrow eyed man to taste his golden luscious wine. The man took a glass, swirled the wine around, looked at the colour, stuck his narrow nose in the top, took a sip and spat the wine on the floor.
“Aren’t you going to drink the wine?” asked the winemaker.
“I never drink the wine,” said the narrow eyed man. “That would spoil my sense of taste.” Then he looked at the wine again and looked at the winemaker. “You say this is Chardonnay?” he asked.
“Yes,” said the winemaker, now suddenly afraid.
“No,” said the narrow eyed man. “I have traveled all over the world and I have been in the land of frogs where they have been making Chardonnay for hundreds of years and where, you will agree, they know how to make Chardonnay. This is nothing like Chardonnay from the land of frogs. This isn’t proper Chardonnay at all.” he looked sternly at the winemaker. “Unless you start making Chardonnay like the Chardonnay from the land of frogs I will write nasty things about you and my friends in the city who drink coffee with froth on top and like to look at themselves in mirrors will not buy your wine.”
“What must I do?” asked the winemaker in great fear.
“In the land of frogs the hills are not green, the water is not clear, the soil is not rich, the sun is not warm and their oak barrels are old. You must copy that.” The narrow eyed man in the white coat turned to go. “And remember, I will be watching you and I will return.”
Afraid that he would lose his sales to the city people the winemaker began to change the way he grew his grapes and made his wine. He let the soil grow poor and the hills turn brown. He stopped giving his vines the clear water from the river. He picked the bunches of grapes before they became fat and golden in the sun. He stored the wine in stainless steel tanks and it never saw the oak of the forest.
True to his word the narrow eyed man in the white coat returned and tasted the wine. “This,” he said, “is more like the Chardonnay from the land of the frogs.”
“But most people tell me they don’t like it,” said the winemaker.
“Don’t worry about most people,” said the narrow eyed man. “I’m the only important person; me and my friends who drink coffee with froth on the top and watch themselves in mirrors.”
So the winemaker continued in his new style, making Chardonnay like the Chardonnay from the land of frogs and most people stopped drinking it and he began to lose money. “Help me,” he called to the narrow eyed man. “You say you are an expert. My business cannot survive. What should I do?”
“Your problem,” said the narrow eyed man “is Chardonnay. People, real people who drink coffee with froth on the top and look at themselves in mirrors, those people don’t like Chardonnay any more. But in the land of the frogs there is another grape called Marsanne. You should grow that instead.”
So the winemaker planted Marsanne. It did not make a very nice wine and not many people bought it so he called out to the narrow eyed man again.
“No, no, I didn’t say Marsanne,” said the narrow eyed man. “I said a grape from the land of bulls, Verdelho”
So the winemaker planted Verdelho and it didn’t make a very nice wine and not many people bought it so he called to the narrow eyed man again.
“Verdelho? Why did you plant Verdelho? No, you need to plant the vine from the land of spaghetti. You need to plant Pinot Grigio.”
So he planted Pinot Grigio and it didn’t make very nice wine and not many people bought it. So the winemaker turned to the narrow eyed man.
“I’m sorry,” said the winemaker, “but I can no longer make wine. I don’t like the wine I do make and the people don’t buy it so before I run out of money altogether I’m going to pull up all my grapes and grow wheat and canola in the rich soil and fatten sheep on the green hills and sit in the warm sun and catch fish in the clear river and I won’t ever again have to worry about narrow eyed men in white coats or city people who drink coffee with froth on it and watch themselves in mirrors.
And,” he said to himself, “on the top of the hill will be one small row of Chardonnay that will grow fat rich golden grapes and I will make a fat golden wine just for me.”
In preparation for the arrival of the Goologong horse trail riders arriving this coming weekend for a trail ride around Canowindra, we have slashed the long grass on the common surrounding the Toms Waterhole creek. This is to make sure they have a nice campsite for their Saturday night camp after attending a special function of winetasting and woodfired pizza at the nearby Tomswaterhole Winery just two kilometers up the road.
I am wondering how many other groups would like to know of the great free bush campsite at Tomswaterhole? Four wheel drive clubs, pony clubs, grey nomads, motorhomers………….
It is hoped that this will heighten the awareness of Canowindra’s many award winning businesses. Canowindra is fast becomming a great tourist destination in the Central West.
[ image : gjkerr ]
Today we are happy to announce that the first $5000 of sponsorship money is committed towards the “ Canowindra Challenge “ a ballooning based event, to be held in Canowindra, NSW Australia in April 2010, with participants competing for;
First Prize – $10,000 AUD cash
Second Prize – $5000 AUD cash.
Third Prize – 2 years supply of excellent Canowindra organic Chardonnay
Participation is encouraged from international pilots.
Tonight we have an indication of strong support and interest from Japan. For a reference from a Japanese pilot who has been flying in Canowindra for the last two months contact mayuminzyosh -at- yahoo.co.jp
Last night Alexander Hayes visited our winery and took us through some web 2.0 related ideas and one of those ideas is to use our website as a media rich podcast for listeners who may be interested in knowing more about our business.
Alex has used podcasting to great effect in the past over at http://talkingvte.blogspot.com
Click on the link below and have a listen to our first test podcast which if you had added our website to your iTunes program you would have already downloaded.