Monday, January 11, 2010

Send a Wine Blogger to Walla Walla!

Yup, for only one week skip that morning "iced latte grande with 2/3 half-caf free trade, 2 1/2 pumps of sugar-free cinnamon dolce, 2 1/2 pumps of sugar-free vanilla, 1 pump sugar-free gingerbread, half 2% milk, half nonfat, a splash of soy, 2 raw sugar packets, 3 Splenda packets and 3 honey packets (shaken not stirred in the hot espresso first) light with ice and whip, heavy on the chocolate sprinkles, light nutmeg sprinkles, and don't forget the twist and two olives."

Just think - with all the money you’re spending on fluff, flavoring, whip and grounds, you could help send a wine blogger to Walla Walla! Now, I bet you're thinking, "Why would I want to send a wine blogger to Walla Walla?" Here's why - so they can share with their many readers all about the growing wine industry and the many distinct wine appellations in Washington State, as well as Walla Walla’s own fabulous wines, food, agriculture, and historical downtown. Th-Th-That’s why!

The Wine Bloggers Conference Scholarship Fund was designed to sponsor selected recipients in attending the Third Annual North American Wine Bloggers Conference in Walla Walla, Washington held at the Marcus Whitman Hotel, June 25-27, 2010.

Funds for the Wine Bloggers Conference Scholarship Fund are generated by donations from wineries, PR and marketing agencies, wine industry members, and individual wine lovers. Through a committee, applicants are asked to describe their blog, their financial needs pertaining to the Wine Bloggers Conference, and why they are deserving of a sponsorship. Funds are awarded based on the committee selection process, and monies are pooled. No one donation will be given to a specific individual, which provides more wine bloggers to attend the conference. It is important to know that the committee members, who will determine the scholarship recipients, have paid all their own individual fees to attend the conference.

Now, what’s that reason again to send a wine blogger to Walla Walla? First of all, the majority of independent wine bloggers write for free - for the love of the grape. In the mean time, the wine industry's traditional media is evolving and traditional print is being replaced with social media and blogging. And if you don’t believe it, ask the traditional print media why they have suddenly hopped on the Facebook, Twitter, and the blogging bandwagon. And here you thought Facebook et al and blogging was just for techy, love starved, angst ridden teen-agers.

The Third Annual North American Wine Bloggers Conference offers an extraordinary opportunity for wine bloggers, wineries and wine and media related industries to learn more about this exciting industry, from soil to bottle, and most of all, gain further understanding of each other's needs. Wine lovers, wineries and companies that donate to the scholarship fund will be spotlighted on the Wine Bloggers Scholarship Fund website, and every effort will be made to encourage the winning scholarship recipients to blog about you as well.

And when this is all said and done, who will benefit most of all? It is the wine consumer who will benefit as they seek up-to-date information online about what wines to purchase and overall information about the growing world wide wine industry.

Many thanks to Thea Dwelle of the Wine Bloggers Scholarship Fund and her committee. Tell them I sent you.

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