Autumnfest 2013 Top 10 Festivals and Events in Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country

TEMECULA VALLEY Southern California Wine Country, June 4, 2013 – “From the Friday of Labor Day weekend through Thanksgiving Thursday, the festive, friendly abundance of autumn is celebrated as Autumnfest. With winery events, farmers markets, olive ranch tours, cornfield maze, pumpkins, a quilt show, Race for the Cure, Halloween week, and Barrel Tasting Weekend, golden sunny days and autumn nights are ideal to stay and experience Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country,” shares Kimberly Adams, Temecula Valley Convention & Visitors Bureau president and CEO.



“Autumnfest’s Top 10 Festivals and Events are great inspiration for extended-stay midweek getaways that linger into and beyond the weekend. Temecula hotels-and-resorts’ Sunday-through Thursday (better-than-weekend) nightly room-rates are appealing; the savings become resources for Autumnfest activities and purchases of Temecula Valley goodness and greatness.” Located 1-hour from San Diego, Orange County, and Palm Desert; and 1½ hours from Los Angeles, the casual, picturesque valley includes Downtown Old Town Temecula, Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country, and Pechanga Resort & Casino.

1-Autumnfest Events at Temecula Valley Wineries


(Labor Day Weekend through September-October-November)


Autumnfest is one of the most exciting and celebratory seasons in gracious and friendly Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country. From the Friday-Saturday-Sunday-Monday of Labor Day weekend throughout Autumnfest, unique and memorable winery venues host a variety of events. Signature “wine-and-live-music” is at wineries including Briar Rose, Callaway, Cougar, Europa Village, Falkner, Keyways, Leoness, Lorimar, Miramonte, Mount Palomar, Robert Renzoni, and Wilson Creek. Visitors with a quest for learning reserve in advance for Wine 101, educational tours, in-depth wine tastings, and related programs at wineries like Callaway, Europa Village, Falkner, Leoness, Lorimar, Robert Renzoni, South Coast, and Wiens.




During Autumnfest Temecula Valley Wine Country features Thornton Winery’s 25th anniversary Champagne Jazz concert series with jazz greats like Boz Scaggs, George Benson, Jesse Cook, and Keiko Matsui. Harvest Grape Stomps are at wineries such as Mount Palomar, Ponte, South Coast, and Wilson Creek; Wiensfest is at Wiens Family Cellars; Mount Palomar hosts Oktoberfest.




2-Old Town Temecula California-Certified Farmers Markets


(August 31, September 7-14-21-28, October 5-12-19-26, and November 2-9-16-23-30)


On Saturday mornings in Old Town Temecula, visitors join local chefs and slow food aficionados at the California Certified Farmers Market (6th Street between Old Town Front and Mercedes). With a happy atmosphere, the market celebrates the local bounty of fresh, local, seasonal fruits and vegetables (including exotic and organic), artisan foods, and fresh-baked goods. Shoppers enjoy spontaneous conversations with local farmers, growers, and artisans, and fill their shopping bags with avocados as well as prized “last-chance” peaches (September); persimmons and guavas (September-October); and sweet navel oranges, tangerines, pomegranates, and exotics like dragon fruit and Budha’s hand/fingered citron (November). Even visitors with a farmers market “back-home” are impressed and delighted with the Old Town Farmers Market – especially during Autumnfest.




After a morning at the Farmers Market, the festivities and fresh air inspire an appetite to be satisfied at one of Old Town Temecula’s independently owned bistros, cafés, and restaurants. The variety of Old Town dining establishments includes Baily’s, Front Street Bar & Grill, Nitza’s Pizza, Palumbo’s Ristorante, PUBlic House, Rosa’s Cantina, Soro’s Mediterranean Grill, Sweet Lumpy’s, The Bank of Mexican Food, and The Gambling Cowboy. After lunch, visitors enjoy traditional, southern-style, made-from-scratch desserts at Robin’s Nest bakery and dessert room.




3-California Wine Month in Temecula Valley Wine Country


(September 1-30)


In celebration of California Wine Month, the Temecula Valley Winegrowers promote SIP passports throughout September. The SIP Passport includes vouchers for tasting-flights at any 5 of the Temecula Valley Winegrowers 35 participating member wineries. Mid-month (September 14) all 35 of the Temecula Valley Winegrowers Association member wineries join together on one evening for the annual CRUSH Wine & Culinary Showcase tasting event at Callaway Vineyard & Winery. Ticketholders (the event is traditionally a sell-out) meet winery owners, talk with winemakers, and savor the culinary creations of both winery and local restaurants while sampling award-winning Temecula Valley wines.




California Wine Month is an especially excellent time to experience Temecula Valley winery-restaurants where talented winery chefs expertly pair premium, award-winning vintages with fresh, local, seasonal foods in a celebration of sun, soil, and natural affinity. Winery restaurants – many with dining rooms and terraces overlooking Temecula Valley Wine Country’s vineyards and rolling hills – include Café Champagne, Carol’s at Baily Winery, Creekside Grille, Maurice’s Kitchen, MDO Bistro, Meritage at Callaway, The Pinnacle, Restaurant at Leoness, Restaurant at Ponte, Shorty’s Bistro, and the Vineyard Rose.




4-Temecula Olive Oil Company Olive Ranch Tours


(select dates in September-October-November)


With an Olive Ranch east of Old Town Temecula, Temecula Olive Oil Company is family-owned and operated, and produces premium, 100% extra-virgin olive oil using 100% California olives. To capture unique qualities and distinctive flavors, a wide variety of olives are planted, grown, and harvested. By advance reservation on select dates, visitors can tour the Olive Ranch and learn of Temecula Olive Oil Company’s sustainable agriculture practices. Tour-participants see the olive mill and press, and learn of hand pressing to extract oil from the fruit to produce fresh, full-flavored, 100% extra-virgin olive oil. An olive oil tasting follows the tour. Those experiencing the true, all-natural freshness of Temecula Olive Oil for the first time are most often amazed; there is nothing else quite like it.




5-Autumnfest Farms: Cornfield Maze, Pumpkins, Hay Wagon Rides




With seasonal farm-inspired activities, two Temecula Valley properties welcome visitors during Autumnfest. Peltzer Farm Pumpkin Patch (open daily September 28-October 31) features the namesake pumpkin-patch, a petting farm, pig races, a tractor collection, and train rides. The Peltzer Farm seasonal bounty available for purchase includes pumpkins (up to 100-pounders), gourds, and corn stalks.




Big Horse Corn Maze and Harvest Festival (open weekends in October) is Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country’s original 11+ acre Cornfield Maze (believed to be Southern California’s largest authentic corn maze). Visitors discover and experience the challenges of the multi-path puzzle of pathways lined with 7-foot tall cornstalks. Additional on-the-farm activities include hay wagon rides, corn cannon, and pumpkin bowling.




6-Old Town Temecula Outdoor Quilt Show




Temecula Valley’s most colorful Autumnfest display is likely the Old Town Temecula Outdoor Quilt Show. Along six blocks of Old Town Front Street, hundreds of handmade quilts made with thousands of yards of patch-worked fabric hang from banisters and along storefronts. Small quilts are available for purchase at Town Square; a Valley of the Mist Quilters guild boutique is held at Temecula Civic Center; and a large, quilt auction takes place at 1 pm.




Strolling the pedestrian-friendly Old Town Temecula shopping-dining-entertainment district to witness the colorful celebration, provides easy opportunities to experience Old Town’s independently owned stores and boutiques. Among Old Town retail establishments are The Farmer’s Wife, Granny’s Attic & Antiques, Old California Lavender, Old Town Spice & Tea Merchants, Old Town Rootbeer Company, Old Town Sweet Shop, Temecula Lavender Company, and Temecula Olive Oil Company.




7-Susan G. Komen Inland Empire Race for the Cure


(October 20)


With more than 10,000 participants expected, Promenade Temecula is the venue for the 15th annual Susan G. Komen Inland Empire Race for the Cure. The popular fundraising event includes an Expo, Kids Expo, Survivor Activities, 5K Run/Walk competitive event, 5K Run/Walk fun run, 1.5-mile Family Fun Run/Walk, a Kids Only (10 and under) Run, and Awards Ceremony. In keeping with tradition and in a vivid demonstration of support and commitment, most participants and spectators wear the color pink.




8-Halloween Week in Temecula Valley Wine Country


(October 27-31)


Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country offers a memorable get-away during Halloween week with novelty activities to stay and experience. The Haunted Behind-the-Scenes Wine Tour at South Coast Winery takes participants from the vineyard to the winery’s cellar, complete with ghouls and goblins, and concludes with wine pairing in the private Carter Reserve Room. Evening dining is inspired by fresh seasonal ingredients at Café Champagne at Thornton Winery; the Vineyard Rose restaurant at South Coast Winery; at Baily’s restaurant in Old Town Temecula; and at Temet Grill located within Temecula Creek Inn Resort. An alternate, abundant-dining experience is The Pechanga Buffet with 250 fresh items and action stations.




Visitors can greet the morning from a hot air balloon floating serenely above Temecula Valley Wine Country’s vineyards and rolling hills. Local hot air balloon companies (A Grape Escape, California Dreamin’, D&D Ballooning, and Magical Adventures) launch at sunrise and float quietly just above the vineyards and to 2,000 feet. Downtown Old Town Temecula’s Tasting Trail is particularly intriguing during Autumnfest. Visitors can experience the olive oil tasting bar at Temecula Olive Oil Company and shop for seasonal inspirations; and be inspired at Old Town Spice & Tea Merchants. The crazy variety of hundreds of novelty sodas at Old Town Rootbeer is considered remarkable. Old Town Sweet Shop features hand-scooped pumpkin ice cream and an abundance of retro candy. Robin’s Nest bakery and dessert room showcases pumpkin cheesecake, pumpkin pie, and pumpkin bread. For local craft beer, visitors venture to Uptown Temecula’s Black Market Brewing Company; the autumn seasonal Black Hole Sun is a Russian-style imperial stout with complex flavors. On Thursday night, several Old Town Temecula establishments host October 31 festivities including masquerade parties and costume contests.




9-Temecula Valley Winegrowers Harvest Celebration Barrel Tasting Weekend


(November 2-3)


The Temecula Valley Winegrowers Association celebrates the completion of harvest and the promise of the 2013 vintages with the annual Barrel Tasting Weekend. A food and wine experience to be savored, ticket holders enjoy food pairings with barrel-and-tank-samplings of finished and unfinished wines not yet available to the public.




10-Thanksgiving in Temecula Valley Wine Country


(November 28)


Increasing numbers of families and friends are putting a twist on traditional holidays – including Thanksgiving – and enjoying the value of out-of-the-ordinary shared experiences by getting away together and staying in Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country. Open at sunrise and with hiking trails, oak woodlands, and prairies, the 8,300-acre Santa Rosa Plateau Ecological Reserve is a memorable location to experience and give the first thanks of the day. The greatest Thanksgiving hike is perhaps to see the huge sycamore trees growing along the creek beds. With seasonal splendor, their large leaves turn from green to shades of walnut, mahogany, and gold. Or give thanks celebrating the game of golf at Journey at Pechanga, Temecula Creek Inn Resort, CrossCreek, RedHawk, Legends, Rancho California, or Pala Mesa.




For memorable Thanksgiving feasting, there are a variety of fine restaurants serving excellent, classic and creative fare including Café Champagne at Thornton Winery; the Vineyard Rose restaurant at South Coast Winery; Baily’s restaurant in Old Town Temecula; and Temet Grill located within Temecula Creek Inn Resort. Pechanga Resort & Casino’s fine dining restaurants include The Great Oak steakhouse and Seafood Grotto. Casual dining options include The Pechanga Buffet, Bamboo, Blazing Noodles, and Kelsey’s grill. After dinner, play at Pechanga Casino or catch a top, first-run movie at the Promenade Temecula 15-screen cinema.




Autumnfest visitors in-the-know make time to shop before departure in Temecula Valley Wine Country. The award-winning premium varietals and proprietary blends of Temecula Valley wineries are some of the December holiday season’s most appreciated gifts. Shoppers gather gift boxed sets, gift baskets, and wine accessories that make excellent stocking stuffers.




*Information is believed accurate but may be subject to change.


With natural gifts of climate and geography bolstered by Pu’eska Mountain, the Rainbow Gap, and the Santa Margarita Gap, Temecula Valley is widely recognized for its quality wines and wineries as Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country. The popular boutique destination recently received TripAdvisors’ Travelers Choice “Best U.S. Wine Destination Top 10” award and includes a trio of main attractions: Downtown Old Town Temecula, Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country, and Pechanga Resort & Casino.

The Temecula Valley Convention & Visitors Bureau, the region’s official tourism marketing organization and resource for visitors, is online at; “Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country” on Facebook; and @Visit_Temecula on Twitter. The Temecula Valley Visitors Center in Downtown Old Town Temecula (Third Street and Mercedes, adjacent the free Old Town Temecula Parking Garage) is open 7 days. For visitor information and assistance, call 888/363-2852 or 951/491-6085.

June 18, 2013 · admin · Comments Closed
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