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'Virtual Tasting' Sales Open For Manhattan Wine Auction

May 01, 2020 07:43AM ● By Jeanne Fratello
Now's your chance to get in on this year's unique spin on the Manhattan Wine Auction. The wine auction's "Virtual Tastings" are now on sale.

Due to the statewide ban on gatherings, the 26th annual Manhattan Wine Auction - benefiting the Manhattan Beach Education Foundation (MBEF) - will be held virtually on Saturday, May 30.

When you buy a ticket for a virtual tasting, you'll have the opportunity to pick up the items to be sampled. Then you'll participate from home in an interactive, live stream tasting with the experts at 6:00 p.m. on May 30.

This year's virtual tasting experiences include Memento Mori Winery/MAXEM Wines, Booker Wines, Sextant Wines, Nosotros Tequila, Gray Whale Gin, and El Segundo Brewing.

The tasting packages are limited and are expected to sell out quickly.

Other features of this year's wine auction include a silent auction, a live auction, a paddle raise for teachers, and a raffle of a vacation package in Cabo.

Coming in mid-May, there will also be an opportunity to buy tickets for a special vintner dinner series to be held in the fall.

Education Funding Facing Challenges

The Manhattan Wine Auction is traditionally the biggest fundraiser of the year for MBEF, raising more than $1 million each year in the past few years.

This year, MBEF is looking to raise significant dollars for the Manhattan Beach Public schools due to MBUSD budget cuts. 

In February, the Manhattan Beach Unified School District announced that it needed to make $3.6 million in reductions to its 2020/21 budget, including teacher and personnel layoffs.

In April, MBUSD administrators warned that further cuts may be necessary, given the grim state of the economy and the state's budget challenges related to the coronavirus pandemic.

MBEF has pledged continue to support MBUSD during the budget crisis, through the wine auction and other fundraising efforts.

And in case you're missing the opportunity to gather with friends, mark your calendars now: The date for next year's wine auction already been set for June 12, 2021.

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