The Oregon Truffle Festival will return to the area beginning this weekend, with its most visible event set for Sunday at the Chehalem Cultural Center.
The annual event is designed to "explore the shared terroir of wine and native truffles," said Kelsey Hutchinson, a spokesman for the communications agency promoting the event, Play Nice.
The festival celebrates the local truffle industry with a series of wine dinners, truffle hunts led by trained dogs, and educational seminars, Hutchinson said.
"With ala carte events like the Newberg Fresh Truffle Marketplace and 'Shaved and Infused' at Abbey Road Farm … there are many ways to experience the region's native and cultivated culinary truffles in Oregon wine country," she added.
The festival kicks off with the aforementioned "Shaved and Confused," set for 7 to 9 p.m. Saturday at Abbey Road Farm, 10280 N.E. Oak Springs Road near Carlton. The event features what Hutchinson characterized as a "dynamic, walk around dinner that promises countless truffle-infused small plates" and includes live music from pop-punk band The Junebugs. A selection of wines from Abbey Roads will be on hand as well as truffle bites concocted by area chefs.
The Newberg Fresh Truffle Marketplace is set for 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the cultural center, 415 E. Sheridan St. Attendees can shop for fresh-forged Oregon truffles, witness truffle cooking demonstrations with take-home recipes, taste local wines, sample artisan foods and watch a truffle dog demonstration.
Just prior to the opening of the marketplace, the festival will host James Beard Award-winning author Rowan Jacobson, in a lecture titled "Truffles and Terroir." The talk will begin at 10 a.m. and runs $40 per person.
The festival will wrap up with a pair of Sunday Supper Series at Trellis Wine Bar and Kitchen in Dundee and Valley Commissary in McMinnville.
Set for 6 to 7:30 p.m. Sunday and costing $90 to attend, the Trellis event "offers guests and opportunity to get acquainted with Dundee's hottest new restaurant and wine bar," the release said. Dinner will be prepared by Trellis' chef Joe Jackson and includes wine pairings.
Festival-goers could also choose the Sunday Supper Series at Valley Commissary from 6 to 7 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $95 for the event, which will include a short wine reception followed by a dinner prepared by Chef Jesse Kincheloe.
For more information, visit www.playnicepr.com.
Arts & Leisure briefs
McMinnville Short Film Festival on tap in February
The ninth-annual McMinnville Short Film Festival is set for Feb. 21-23 at Linfield College, McMinnville Cinemas and on the Chemeketa Community College campus in McMinnville.
The festival is open to amateur and professional filmmakers' works in all genres but of no more than 20 minutes in length. This year's festival will screen 85 films from around the world, according to a press release, and will feature speaker Scott Ballard, an award-winning filmmaker from Portland.
The films will be shown in what are characterized as "screening blocks," that include narratives, environmental, animation, horror, experimental/'A Bit Strange,' documentary, student showcase and Native American.
"The festival organizers curated a sophisticated collection of high caliber films from both local and international directors," said Portland filmmaker Zach Putnam. "They created a welcoming environmental for all attendees, but as a filmmakers I was treated like a king."
Tickets for individual screenings are $10, while an all-access pass is $85 and includes all screenings as well as entrance to the awards dinner on Feb. 23.
The event is a fundraiser for the McMinnville Film Festival Foundation.
Songwriters to perform at vineyard
McMINNVILLE -- Coeur de Terre Vineyards will hold the Willamette Valley Songwriters Showcase beginning at 4 p.m. Saturday at the winery's headquarters at 21000 S.W. Eagle Point Road.
Award-winning musicians will perform original songs during a fundraiser for Ethos, a nonprofit formed "in the belief that all children, regardless of socioeconomic status or geographic location, deserve access to music education," a release from the winery said.
"Students, particularly in rural areas, are isolated from both in-school and out-of-school opportunities to find creative expression through music, and they miss out on the vast social and academic benefits music provides," Rachel Gilmore, director of operations at Ethos, said. "We are so honored to have the support of the Willamette Valley Songwriters Showcase and the incredible local musicians featured."
Bee enthusiast will speak at library
The Newberg Public Library will host beekeeper and educator Jeff Clark from 7 to 8 p.m. March 6 at its headquarters at the corner of Hancock and Howard streets.
Clark, a mentor in the Oregon Master Beekeeper program and a past board member of the Tualatin Valley Beekeepers Assoc., will speak on a love of bees he has enjoyed since a youth.
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