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Toasting Tamarac in style: Friends host fundraiser at Richwood Winery to boost education

The silent auction held as part of Friday night's Toast to Tamarac fundraiser for the Tamarac National Wildlife Refuge included dozens of outdoors and nature-themed items. (Vicki Gerdes / Tribune)1 / 2
A picture-perfect early fall evening brought out big crowds to Richwood Winery for its annual Toast to Tamarac fundraiser , where they enjoyed sampling the winery's finest vintages, touring the vineyard, shopping the silent auction and listening to live music from the David Ferreira Trio. (Vicki Gerdes / Tribune)2 / 2

A near perfect fall evening brought out more than 230 guests to Richwood Winery Friday evening to help support Tamarac National Wildlife Refuge.

Friday night's Toast to Tamarac fundraiser featured live music by the David Ferreira Trio, a silent auction and lawn games, as well as appetizers and ample opportunities to sample the winery's best vintages, or enjoy a beer, water or soda.

Hosted by the Friends of Tamarac NWR, the 8th Annual Toast raised funds to support the Refuge's environmental education programs, based at the Discovery Center and staffed primarily by Friends volunteers.

"Our environmental education programs out at Tamarac are designed to provide everything necessary to get youngsters off their (computer, tablet and smartphone) screens and out into the woods, to enjoy the outdoors," said Friends volunteer Vonnie Jacobson, who helped organize this year's Toast. "We have such a beautiful refuge, and great volunteers to help our young people learn about its lovely, wild spaces."

The Tamarac Discovery Center, completed in 2015 through a $600,000 fundraising campaign organized by the Friends of Tamarac, is the permanent home to the Refuge's environmental education programs, which bring upwards of 3,000 students from area school districts out to rural Rochert each year.

Vicki Gerdes

Staff writer at Detroit Lakes Newspapers for the past 18-plus years, currently editor of the entertainment and community pages as well as covering city council and the Detroit Lakes School Board. 

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