Napa County farmworker skills recognized in 21st annual grapevine pruning contest
Eight workers who keep grapevines in shape came out on top in a field of 106 people at the 21st annual Napa County Pruning Contest.
“As a past winner, now judging, I’m proud and happy to be helping and hope to encourage competitors to win,” said Celia Perez of V. Sattui Winery and the first women’s division champion in 2014, “People think that the Pruning Contest is only for men, but I am here to prove it’s for everyone, and that anyone can win.”
Four women along with four men captured recognition and prizes at the Feb. 4 competition which was staged by Napa Valley Grapegrowers. During the main event, each of the contestants pruned five vines in the day’s preliminary competition. Those with the highest scores went on to the final round.
The winners received gifts including cash and gift cards ranging from $1,675 to $550 each as well as pruning tools, clothing, Napa Valley wine, a handmade silver belt buckle from Max Lang Belt and Buckles. First-place winners got something extra this year: a champion jackets from Felco.
Competitors are Napa County farmworkers and full-time employees. All farmworkers who work in Napa County are eligible to compete, the group stated.
The group recognized businesses supporting the event: Nemerever Vineyards, Pulido~Walker, Silicon Valley Bank, Martinez Orchards, Central Valley Ag Supplies, FELCO, Duarte Trees & Vines, Sunbelt Rentals, Ag Health Benefits Alliance, Copper Cane Wines & Provisions, Jaguar Farm Labor Contracting, Crocker & Starr, Brotemarkle Davis & Co, H&E Equipment Services, Malloy Imrie & Vasconi Insurance Services, Novavine, Pearls Farm Labor, Renteria Vineyard Management, Silver Oak, John Derr Farming, Grow West, Sunridge Nurseries, Taddei Vineyards, Gonzalez Vineyard Management, V. Sattui Winery, A&J Vineyard Supply, Larkmead Vineyards, Green Valley Tractor, and OLE Health.