Vineyard teams up with cancer fund | TheUnion.com

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Vineyard teams up with cancer fund

A recent partnership between Lucchesi Vineyards and the Barbara Schmidt Millar Memorial Fund will soon mean thousands of dollars for breast cancer prevention and awareness.

The winery and vineyard’s owners, Mario and Linda Clough, have plans to bottle and label 250 cases of one of their wines with a logo of the Celebration of Life Women’s Triathlon logo, which is both an athletic and fundraising event organized in memory of Millar, a 42-year-old woman who died after a battle against cancer in September 1994.

Twenty percent of proceeds from each $19.99 bottle sold will be given to the fund, said Cathy Anderson-Meyers, the triathlon organizer and one of Millar’s close friends. According to Anderson-Meyers, those proceeds will translate into nearly $12,000.

Anderson-Meyers said the Cloughs have dealt with breast cancer in their family as well, serving as a strong motivator to get involved in the campaign of raising awareness on the life-threatening illness.

The Barbara Schmidt Millar Memorial Fund provides money for women who are underinsured or who lack health coverage to have mammograms at the Sierra Nevada Breast Imaging Center on Whispering Pines Lane in Grass Valley. Women can have a digital mammogram, a crucial step in spotting breast cancer. Money also goes into a scholarship pool, and scholarships are awarded to female high school students who wish to pursue careers in the health field.

“Barbara was a nurse and she wouldn’t have been able to do that if it weren’t for scholarships,” Anderson-Meyers said.

The annual triathlon has become a popular western Nevada County event, drawing more than 400 competitors in September 2005. Nearly $40,000 was raised in 2005.

Bottling of the wine featuring the triathlon logo will take place Feb. 17, with a release party to be scheduled for later this spring, Anderson-Meyers said. Following the release party, the wine will be available for purchase at area restaurants and markets.

“We’re hoping to continue the partnership into future years if this year works out well,” Anderson-Meyers said.

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To contact staff writer Brittany Retherford, e-mail brittanyr@theunion.com or call 477-4247.