Recommended Winery Event Best Practices

Association wide and cultural events are critical to the branding, visibility and sales of Sonoma County wines. In addition, association sponsored wine events have existed in Sonoma County for nearly forty years. These events contribute hundreds of thousands of dollars to our local economy and also make a significant supporting impact to local charitable organizations and causes throughout Sonoma County.

The following are recommended “Winery Event Best Practices” that will assist in event planning, communication, management, execution and promotion. They are also designed to work with and assist our winery neighbors to minimize any potential challenges or problems related to winery / charitable events.


Comply with your “use permit” limitations and allowances.


Cap number of guests for event and communicate this to nearby neighbors.


Proactive Communication

Read More

  • Reach out and develop positive communications with neighbors.
  • Assign a contact person (with a contact cell phone number) to your event that is responsible for communicating with neighbors before, during and immediately after your event.
  • Post your activity details (day, time, location, contact person and cell number…) on your website, Social Media platforms and in event promotional materials.
  • Reach out to neighbors to assess any potential impacts or signage needs and share event details. Use neighborhood groups, newspaper ads, Social Media posts, emails, posters…
  • Develop and share your traffic and parking plans with your neighbors and make sure to manage it. Have a person accountable for this.
  • Promote and adhere to your advertised event hours.


Hire CHP officers to assist with your event, if traffic and attendance warrant.


Offer designated driver tickets to your event.


Have plenty of water available and visible for event participants to consume.


Designate a staff person to “float” during the event and monitor the event’s progress, schedule, participants, and be available to “troubleshoot” any problems, concerns.


Offer “Responsible Hospitality Training” twice a year for winery Hospitality Staff as well as attend Sonoma County Vintners “Community Connection” Event Best Practices Seminar Series.


Finally, your staff can go a long way to assist with the positive execution of an event and increased communication with event participants. Provide your staff with adequate training and support information for your event and ask them to be enthusiastic and positive ambassadors for your event, winery and Sonoma County.