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Grapes for Grads Scholar Pursues His Dream

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Student artists demonstrate their skills during the Grapes for Grads fundraiser.

Student artists demonstrate their skills during the Grapes for Grads fundraiser.

By Donna Furey | LB Indy

The Fifth Column Gallery in downtown Los Angeles owes its existence to the determination of Enrique Escobedo.

The Laguna College of Art & Design student, who had served eight years in Iraq and Afghanistan, was considering quitting school in 2008 because his budget was stretched too thin. His advisor counseled him to apply for a local scholarship, Grapes for Grads. “Without the scholarship, it would have taken longer to graduate; I might even have had to make a career change,” said Escobedo, who won the $2,000 award again in 2009.

Offered by the Rotary Club of Laguna Beach, the Grapes for Grads scholarship

LCAD President Jonathan Burke, center, with Kerri and Jeff  Redeker, ready to raise a glass at last year’s event.

LCAD President Jonathan Burke, center, with Kerri and Jeff Redeker, ready to raise a glass at last year’s event.

receives 160 applications a year. Through the club’s fundraising efforts, $160,000 has been awarded over 10 years to Laguna Beach High School graduates and LCAD students.

Billed as Laguna’s largest annual wine tasting event, Grapes for Grads takes place again from noon to 4 p.m. Sunday, April 26 at Tivoli Too, 777 Laguna Canyon Rd.

“We have been so fortunate to have the support of the wine industry for the past 10 years and a long list of wineries who wish to participate again this year,” said chair Jeffrey Redeker.

Grapes for Grads will feature wines from around the world including Argentina,

Susan Morrison and Ward Blackburn sample the goods.

Susan Morrison and Ward Blackburn sample the goods.

France, Italy, New Zealand and California. Attendees may taste as many wines as they like while enjoying live music by Magnolia Memoir, art demonstrations by LCAD students and food provided by KL Harker Events. There will also be an opportunity drawing for a nights stay at the Montage resort and other prizes.

Admission is $40 in advance and $45 at the door. Attendees must be 21 to enter. Tickets may be purchased online at www.GrapesForGrads.com or by contacting Redeker at 949-371-7595.

Escobido in his gallery, Fifth Column, in downtown Los angeles.

Escobido in his gallery, Fifth Column, in downtown Los angeles.

And Grapes for Grad recipient Escobedo now curates work by fellow LCAD students and other artists who share his style, influenced by his Hispanic roots and growing up in Santa Ana. His own oil paintings are on display at his gallery, 533 S. Los Angeles St. The DTLA Art Walk takes place on the second Thursday of each month.

 

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  1. Dan

    What a great thing to do for young artsits. 🙂

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