The rain forecast could not have been more favorable for the sixth annual Southern California Tasting & Auction at the Cal Poly Pomona Rose Garden and Aratani Japanese Garden.
With more than 700 attendees and around 900 tickets sold, including sponsors, the benefit helped raise money for student scholarships and academic enrichment opportunities throughout the school that is not funded by the state.
University President Michael Ortiz said the event went extremely well.
“Every year, they seem to be bringing a little bit more variety, and I think this year was particularly good in terms of what was presented to the people that came,” said Ortiz.
Bang the Gavel Auctions led the live auction. Schools donated items to be auctioned to have money raised for their programs.
“Our intent originally was to raise strictly scholarships, but then there are things that we cannot do on campus because of the limitations of the state… so we broadened the scope in terms of what we are doing,” said Ortiz. “The largest part of what happens here, in the revenue that’s raised, goes to scholarships.”
Event Coordinator Donna Holman said the event could not have been made possible without the many volunteers.
“We want to thank everyone who helps assist with the event,” said Holman. “It’s because of all their hard work, and they are ambassadors for the university [that] they are greatly appreciated.”
Hospitality students volunteered for the event for their Event Management class.
“There is such an eclectic mix of food and wine and an opportunity to try all of these different things that you might not always try,” said event volunteer, third-year Hospitality student Melissa Fackler. “But it’s kind of an opportunity, and meeting people all centered around the cause of [raising money for] Cal Poly [makes for] a good event.”
Amy Parton was a third time event returnee who has made a traditional friend reunion out of it.
“[We return each year because] the vendors are excellent, the auction is wonderful and for our time [spent] with our friends,” said Parton. “This is the only time we get together and meet up again, so it’s been wonderful.”
Alumna Alison Reese has attended the Tasting and Auction for the past four years with her alumnus husband and his family.
“I’m enjoying myself with some beer, wine, appetizers and family,” said Reese. “It is great food and drink for your money.”
Joan Hemmers attended the event with her hus-