Wine Consumer

Magazine

Note to Self: Never Miss the Fall Music Festival at B.R. Cohn Again.

WineConsumer, Landon McPherson
10/02/2013

For 27 years now one of the best Wine Country music festivals has been benefiting many reputable charities throughout the Bay Area and is a must add to anyone’s social calendar who loves food, wine and music.  What started as a charity golf tournament is now the B.R. Cohn Fall Music Festival, right here in our very own beautiful Sonoma County.  Slowly the community of Glen Ellen has watched this event progress from something simple yet profound into something big and magnificent, a close comparison to an extreme make over show that Oprah had her hand in.  But Oprah can’t take credit for this one; it’s Bruce Cohn’s charitable heart that continues to make this event bigger and better every September as an effort to raise more money for local charity.

Bruce Cohn

This was my first time attending the event and I’m here to report a guaranteed checklist of experiences at this music festival includes: good times, great wine, fabulous food and laughs.  In addition, you can also feel good about yourself at the end of your fabulous day because it’s all for a good cause.  Throughout the years, over 3 million dollars has been donated to charities and organizations like the Veteran’s Associations, Valley of the Moon Children’s Home, and $300,000 was raised specifically for Hurricane Katrina relief back in 2005.  This year, the beneficiaries of the event included Redwood Empire Food Bank, Sonoma Valley Education Foundation, The Guardsman and Field of Dreams.  In order to spread the wealth among all those deserving, Cohn makes a point to select different charities each year.

The 2013 B. R. Cohn Fall Music Festival began Friday September 20th with a live charity auction and dinner hosted at the B.R. Cohn Winery’s 140-year old Olive Grove.  Dinner was prepared by award winning and James Beard nominee Chef Mark Stark.  In addition to the fabulous food prepared by Sonoma County favorite Chef Mark Stark, guests also enjoyed an acoustic musical performance by Pablo Cruise while bidding on trips, private dinners, one of a kind large format wines and autographed guitars.

Bruce CohnSaturday and Sunday were filled with music all day with performances by Bad Company with Paul Rodgers, The Doobie Brothers, Pablo Crusie, Lara Johnston, Kopecky Family Band, Pat Simmons, Jr., Fight Club, Gin Blossoms and Heart.  Approximately 5,000 people were in attendance and personally, it was astounding to be part of such a momentous occasion and see so many people in one place having an amazing time.  I spoke with a few people who were there through the bouts of rain on Saturday and the general consensus was “So, it was a little wet – the music was still great!"

When asked about the future of the event, Bruce Cohn simply said “I know that permits won’t allow us to extend it beyond what we’re already doing, but I am really excited for next year.  The Doobie Brothers are releasing a new album next year and are collaborating with a few country artists.  Next year will have a lot more country music on stage and we’re very excited for some of those big country names to be a part of this festival!”

The B.R. Cohn Fall Music Festival is one of those events not to be missed in Wine Country and now that I’ve experienced it first-hand, I’ll be first in line for tickets to next year’s big event!