Gulfshore Business is providing live coverage Saturday afternoon of the 22nd annual Naples Winter Wine Festival auction, where millions of dollars will be raised to benefit local nonprofit agencies that work with area children.
Since its inception in 2001, the Naples Winter Wine Festival, founded by the Naples Children & Education Foundation, has raised nearly $220 million for underprivileged and at-risk children in Collier County. The weekend event has become one of the world’s most prestigious charity wine auctions with world-class food and wine.
After a year of virtually social distancing, the wine festival returns to an in-person charity event this weekend with the theme “Rise Up – Twenty Twenty Twogether.” Intimate dinners Friday with visiting chefs and vintners at private homes in Naples will be followed Saturday by the auction, which is scheduled from 1 to 5 p.m. at Ritz-Carlton Golf Resort in North Naples.
About 600 auction attendees will bid on 43 lots of wine, jewelry, international trips and more one-of-a-kind experiences. This year’s event, following a year when the pandemic kept people apart, is expected to be one of the most successful ever. The auction tally to beat is the 20th-anniversary event in 2020 when $20 million was raised.
“We are thrilled to be resuming our live auction under the tent with our generous friends and supporters from across the country,” said Valerie Boyd, a founding trustee for NCEF. “Together, we will rise up on behalf of the most vulnerable children in Collier County. We anticipate the best and boldest event yet with an amazing weekend full of high energy, high spirits and high bids.”
The average auction lot sells for about $275,000, said festival spokesperson Lisa Juliano. “The generosity of our patrons has just been incredible,” she said.
That generosity has enabled NCEF to provide annual grants that have impacted more than 50 of the most effective nonprofits in the community, making a profound difference and providing more than 275,000 children with the services and resources needed to excel.
Gulfshore Business will be on hand this year to provide the winning bid for each lot as well as a live running tally of the total raised at the auction.
Coverage runs throughout Saturday afternoon at GulfshoreBusiness.com.