VMworld 2012 Activity Highlight: Napa Pizza and Wine

Hello again, Crystal here and I’m back to tell you more about one of the outstanding activities I have planned for Spousetivities at VMworld 2012 in San Francisco. This time I want to talk about the Napa Pizza and Wine event, scheduled for Thursday, August 30, at 10:00 AM.

Much like the Sonoma Wine and Dine event on Monday, this activity gives Spousetivities participants the EXCLUSIVE OPPORTUNITY to visit both William Hill Estate Winery and the Louis M. Martini Winery in St. Helena. You’ll start the day on a private bus headed to the William Hill Estate Winery. At this near-legendary 200-acre estate (of which 140 acres are planted), you’ll enjoy a personalized 1 hour tour and wine tasting. The bus will then take you to the Louis M. Martini winery, where you’ll have another personalized tour. However, that’s not all–participants will also get to take part in an interactive tasting and pairing activity. You’ll get to explore the nuances of food and wine pairing and experience first-hand how your palate responds when wine is paired with ingredients of various tastes and textures. (Oh, and along the way you’ll be making your own pizza. Cool, huh?)

You’ll come away from the Napa Pizza and Wine experience with not only a great day’s worth of memories, but newfound knowledge on the foundations of taste science and wine pairing. What an opportunity!

You can sign up for the Napa Pizza and Wine event at the VMworld 2012 Spousetivities registration page. Don’t miss out!


VMworld 2012 Activity Highlight: Sonoma Wine and Dine

Hi everyone, this is Crystal, and I wanted to take a moment to highlight one of the activities planned for VMworld 2012 in San Francisco. As you know, I have a great line-up of activities planned for VMworld 2012, and with so many great activities it can be hard to choose between activities sometimes. With that in mind, allow me to highlight one great activity that I don’t want you to overlook: the Sonoma Wine and Dine!

Scheduled for Monday, August 27, at 10:30 AM (immediately following our famous “Get to Know You” breakfast), the Sonoma Wine and Dine is a great opportunity to visit a winery that is NOT OPEN TO THE GENERAL PUBLIC. That’s right, folks–Spousetivities has scored an exclusive opportunity to visit MacMurray Ranch!

If you’re like me, you might not have heard of MacMurray Ranch. MacMurray Ranch sits in the Russian River Valley, surrounded by the foothills and mountains of the Pacific Coastal Range. The ranch encompasses 1,700 acres and was first settled over 150 years ago by the Porter family. The ranch was purchased in the 1940s by actor Fred MacMurray, who farmed it for over 50 years. The ranch’s rich diversity of soil gives MacMurray Ranch wines their rich aroma and depth of flavor. This private ranch is NOT OPEN to the public–only by signing up with Spousetivities will you get the opportunity to tour this beautiful property.

Participants who select this activity will enjoy a private bus to MacMurray Ranch and a 1 hour personalized tour–including a wine tasting–of this beautiful and oh-so-exclusive property. Following the tour of MacMurray Ranch, participants will head over to Gallo of Sonoma Winery for another personalized 1 hour tour and another wine tasting, followed by a picnic lunch with local salads, meats, sandwiches, cheeses, and more! After the conclusion of the second tour, tasting, and lunch, participants will ride back to San Francisco in their private bus.

This is a fabulous event and I’m so thrilled to offer participants this opportunity. Don’t hesitate–head over to the registration page and sign up for the Sonoma Wine and Dine today!


VMworld 2012 Spousetivities Registration Now Open

It’s time once again for VMworld, and you know what that means—it’s time for Spousetivities at VMworld again! This year VMworld will be back in San Francisco, and I’ve been working hard to put together a fantastic line-up of activities for you. Registration is already open, so click here to visit the registration page and sign up. Read on if you want more details on the activities.

Here’s a quick look at the activities we have planned for you:

  • On Monday, August 27, we’ll get the week started with our “Get to Know You” breakfast. There, you’ll enjoy some great food and some great company as you meet other participants and get more information on the various events throughout the week. Last-minute signups for activities with available seats will be accepted at the breakfast, but I don’t recommend waiting—a lot of these activities are going to sell out!
  • After the breakfast, you’ll have the option of doing either the City Walking Tour OR the Sonoma Wine and Dine trip. The Sonoma trip is out of this world (I have a separate post just about that waiting to be published), but if you’re a first-timer in San Francisco the City Walking Tour will hit all the highlights: Pier 39, Coit Tower, and Ghirardelli Square.
  • Tuesday offers participants the option of either a Muir Woods/Sausalito tour (by private bus, of course!) or the Ferry Building Tour and Tasting. The Ferry Building food tour will expose you to some great cheese, charcuterie, and chocolate. (In case you’re wondering what charcuterie is, I was wondering too—it’s a term used for cold cooked meats.)
  • Wednesday is a short day (to get you back in time for the VMworld party that night, featuring Jon Bon Jovi) with only the Half Moon Bay/Filoli tour. Lunch is included!
  • Thursday has two options from which you can choose: the SF City Tour (by private bus with a local tour guide) or the Napa Pizza and Wine tour. I’m really excited about the Napa Pizza and Wine tour; look for more information on that event soon. Both are great events.

As usual, there will be prizes and giveaways, the famous vWife T-shirts (I’ll also have some gender-neutral shirts for anyone who needs them), and bags filled with goodies. All in all, Spousetivities at VMworld 2012 is shaping up to be a great event, and I’m looking forward to seeing all of you there!

Of course, some great sponsors help make these events possible, so I’d like to take a moment to thank (in alphabetical order) eGroup, HyTrust, Train Signal, VMUG, The Virtualization Practice, and Xangati. (If you’re a vendor looking for an innovative way to raise awareness, please contact me—I have sponsorship slots still available.)

Don’t delay—sign up today!


VMworld 2010 Spousetivities Wrap-Up

Thanks to our fantastic sponsors–EMC, Train Signal, and HyTrust–Spousetivities 2010 at VMworld US was an amazing success! I gave away every business card I had and people just started writing down the website. So many people asked about the vWife t-shirts and even offered to buy them from me. I told them to bring their spouse to the next event and they were sure to get one. It was wonderful to meet so many great people, both attendees of the conference and Spousetivities attendees. Thank you to everyone for the support. The next event is VMworld EMEA in Copenhagen, Denmark.

In case you are just now hearing about these fantastic events, let me provide a summary of our activities this past week in San Francisco. There were organized tours to Napa, Sausalito, and Golden Gate Park. We had exclusive lunches with amazing views at Horizons Restaurant in Sausalito. We enjoyed an exquisite lunch in the gardens at V. Sattui Winery in Napa. There were also organized photographic tours of San Francisco. We enjoyed breath taking views from Twin Peaks, went down to the water at the Golden Gate Bridge, and saw sites like Lombard Street, the Painted Ladies, and Treasure Island. There were also groups that got together and did walking tours through China Town, Ghirardelli Square, Pier 39, and of course, Alcatraz!

Next year, VMworld will be held in Las Vegas. While some love the lights and action, others dread the thought of going there. Rest assured, there will be something for everyone! We will do tours of the city, visit chocolate factories, spend time at Hoover Dam, the Grand Canyon, and even Lake Mead. Preparations are already underway! I am excited about some new ideas I have for next year, too.

For some of us, it will be four years of enjoying Spousetivities, for others, it will be your first time joining in the fun. Either way, you are sure to meet some great people and have a wonderful time. Stay tuned for Spousetivities information for VMworld 2011 as well as other upcoming conferences.


Spouse Activities Update 3

Good evening everyone! I am in San Francisco making final preparations for VMworld Spousetivities 2010. I wanted to take a few minutes to update everyone on the tours. We have had a great response this year to activities but some days have been more popular than others. To keep costs down, a couple of tours that have been offered on multiple days have now been combined.

The Monday photographic tour is getting full, but there is still room if you want to enjoy this trip. This trip is repeated on Wednesday as well. This is a great activity for either of these two days since the VMworld reception is Monday night and the VMworld party is Wednesday night. This tour wraps up early in the day. If this sounds like the tour for you, go ahead and get registered for Monday or Wednesday. This tour is also good if the kiddos are joining you since there are a lot of cool things see!

The Monday wine tour is going to be a rockin’ good time! There are still discounts available for this tour so sign up now and use discount code winetime for $25 off the tour and code winetimelunch for $10 off the fantastic lunch. You won’t want to miss this tour and you’ll have some great company, too!

The Tuesday houseboat tour still has room. Pack your sweater and join me on a fun day of seeing these awesome homes! This tour also offers a very exclusive lunch. Whether you are a wine drinker or not, you’ll love this tour and lunch. If you register now, you can still take advantage of discount code: houseboatlunch and get the lunch for free! This $55 value is available courtesy of EMC. Attendees and those joining them at the reception Monday night stop by and thank EMC for making this possible!

If Alcatraz and Angel Island interests you more, please register here for this fantastic adventure. There will be no transportation to Pier 33, but it is a reasonable walk from most of the area hotels or you can easily take the bus or trolley. Public transportation is free if you purchase the City Pass! You may choose to meet at Pier 33 or at the Marriott Marquis and go together as a group. Group will depart from Marriott by 8:45 AM.

If you aren’t joining us on the Photographic tour on Wednesday but you still want something to do, then sign up for one of the groups that are sightseeing or participating in City Pass activities. These groups will be formed on Monday at the breakfast and will be breakout tours with no formal structure. You will see the city your way and at your own pace!

Thursday’s Muir Woods has some room left. This is a wonderful tour that allows us to take in the beauty of the towering Redwoods. You’ll feel like you are in another world during this nature escape. If this is just what the doctor ordered and you wish to join me for this tour, you can register here.

If you were looking for something a little different for Thursday, join one of the groups enjoying Golden Gate Park or spending time at the famous Pier 39. These groups will be meeting at the Marriott Marquis and can use Muni to reach their destinations. More info will be given at the breakfast and posted here Monday night.

Friday may mean that VMworld has officially ended but Scott and I plan to tour Carmel and Monterey. There are still spots left for this tour and it is a great way to wind down from the hustle of VMworld. This is a wonderful trip for couples and families. Sound good? Then get registered right away!


Discount Time

This is just a quick update to let you know that I have 30 discounts of $25 each to offer for the Monday, August 30th wine tour. This is valid only for the Monday wine tour which departs directly after the breakfast. We are traveling via private motor coach so don’t worry about going back to your room after the breakfast to drop items off. Lunch is also offered with this tour at a cost of $27. This is a private lunch complete with a glass of wine. I can offer an additional discount for the lunch! If you book today, or as long as discounts last, you can receive the $25 off the tour plus $10 off the lunch!

Register here for the Monday wine tour and lunch. When you check out, make sure you include discount code winetime for the tour and discount code winetimelunch for the lunch.

Hurry as this offer will end very soon! This is a tour you don’t want to miss!


Spouse Activities Update 2

I wanted to send this out so that everyone could stay up to date on the progress of the plans for this year at VMworld. Due to reservation requirements, we have had to cancel a couple of tours, but rest assured, those have been replaced with other exciting events. For the latest registration information, please visit the Spousetivities registration site. Make sure to register for the free breakfast and t-shirt while you are there. All of these activities are family friendly, except possibly the wine tour, which may not interest younger children.

If you are interested in the Alcatraz/Angel Island tour, I will be posting more information about that event later this week so please check back often.

In addition to these activities, I have options for other events as well. Please contact me for additional information. You can find me on Twitter @spousetivities and you can e-mail me at the address listed on the about page here on this site.

This will be an exciting year and I am looking forward to meeting everyone in San Francisco!


Spouse Activities Update

VMworld 2010 in San Francisco, CA, is right around the corner! I’m excited about the activities planned for VMworld this year and I wanted to give you a quick update on activities planning and deadlines. Make a note of these deadlines—you don’t want to miss out!

  • Today, August 5, is the last day to register for the “Islands of San Francisco Bay” tour. Many of you might have looked at this entry on the Spousetivities registration site and not realized that this is a tour of Alcatraz and Angel Island. Sorry for not being clearer! Here’s why you should consider registering for this activity. First, this activity includes private transportation between the San Francisco Marriott (very near Moscone, where the conference is being held) and Pier 33. Second, this activity also includes a boxed lunch to enjoy on Angel Island. Third, you’ll also get an expert guide from Organized Chaos (my partner in helping arrange some of these tours). Finally, a $50 discount is available for the first 20 people to e-mail me (see the About page for my e-mail address) and request the discount code. Having done the Alcatraz/Angel Island combination tour myself in previous years, I’d much prefer this private tour. Yes, it is a bit more expensive than the standard public tours, but the public tours don’t include private transportation to and from the conference hotel area, lunch, or an expert guide. So, if you’re interested, e-mail me for the discount code and then go register!
  • If you are interested in the Monterey/Carmel/Hearst Castle event, I’ve managed to get the deadline to register for this event extended to tomorrow, Friday, August 6. (Last time I checked the registration site still listed July 30.) This is a fantastic opportunity for couples to get away before the conference starts and enjoy some great scenery and sites! This awesome two-day event includes private transportation, catered reception-style dinner the night of the first day, overnight accommodations in San Simeon, breakfast and lunch on day two, private tour of Hearst Castle, and professional staff from Organized Chaos to coordinate the entire event. Definitely something to consider for couples interested in some private time before the madness of the conference!
  • Don’t forget that free lunch on the Muir Woods/Sausalito or the House Boat tours is available for people who respond to my earlier post so don’t delay!
  • As I’ve mentioned before, all the activities listed on the Spousetivities registration site include private transportation, and many of them include a private lunch as well. These are goodies that aren’t included in the typical public tours.

Don’t forget that all registrants for spouse activities will get a free T-shirt (last year’s shirts were a HUGE hit!), free welcome breakfast, and a nice gift bag with some goodies inside. All these freebies are courtesy of our sponsors this year: EMC, Train Signal, and HyTrust.

Act now if you’re interested in some of these activities! If you have questions, contact me on Twitter (my Twitter ID is @spousetivities) or drop me an e-mail. Thanks, and I look forward to seeing you in San Francisco!


Hearst Castle Deadline

Hi everyone! Time is sure flying by and VMworld US will be upon us before we know it. I have a very important reminder that you need to note. The deadline for the couples getaway is July 30th. Information about this event is posted here. There is only room for 17 couples, so please register soon. Scott and I currently plan to attend and we’d love you to join us on this exciting adventure. Remember your transportation, your lodging, and all but one of your meals are included in this overnight package. Dinner on Friday night is in a private, ocean-view banquet room and comes complete with wine for your enjoyment. This is an event not to be missed with stops at Carmel and Monterey as well. If you have additional questions, please feel free to e-mail me anytime.


Making it Happen!

Now is a great time to recognize some very important people. Who are these very important people? Why, they are the sponsors for Spousetivities 2010!

Thanks to our wonderful sponsors, the activities this year will be outstanding! So who are the companies that are reaching out beyond just the attendees but also to their families? So far I have three fabulous companies that have jumped on board to support Spousetivities.

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