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Things to Do on Mother's Day

Smell the roses on Mother's Day

Yes, you need to do Mother’s Day brunch and flowers. Still, why not think outside the “lunch box” and give mom some extra love and care with these great wine country activities that she'll cherish? Think gardens, wineries, treats and delicious food in Sonoma Wine Country.

Here are some ideas to make the weekend extra special, and as a bonus, these are things that will be great fun for you, too! For more ideas and overnight options see: Take Mom on a 3 day wine country getaway.

Gardens and Flowers

Mother’s Day Open Garden at Russian River Rose Co., Sunday, May 8, 2016

Present mom with a rose, or several thousand, found at this Eden where the collection includes more than 650 varieties, ranging from ancient strains to modern hybrids. From 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., the garden blooms with special must-sees like the "Rose Allee," decorated with huge rambling roses billowing down from a series of eight 12' x 12' arches. Then, stroll amid the Butterfly Garden, the fragrant Sweet Scent Seat display, and the Rose History Trail. Should you and mom fall in love with a particular type of flower, you can purchase plants in the nursery and show garden, stocked with hundreds of roses, irises and perennials (hint: help her plant the flowers later). And don’t forget to pick up some estate-produced rose water, to keep that fresh perfume wafting year-round. Admission is $2 requested donation.

Details: Russian River Rose Co., 1685 Magnolia Dr., Healdsburg. Event details here

Mother's Day Plant Sale at Luther Burbank Home and Gardens, Sunday, May 8, 2016

This charming cottage and park-like grounds is where world-renowned horticulturist Luther Burbank lived and experimented with plants for most of his 50-year career. Now a registered national, state and city historic landmark, it opens to the public for tours April through October, plus this particular Mother’s Day highlight when you can purchase gorgeous plants for your and mom’s gardens. Stroll in from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. for a docent-led tour, a visit to the gift shop, and views of the lovely daffodils, camellias and tulip trees and rose gardens now in bloom.

Details: Luther Burbank Home and Gardens, Santa Rosa


Winery Brunches, Sunday, May 8, 2016

Here are a few top places to treat mom to a memorable brunch, complete with sparkling wine and the extra gift of gorgeous views. Advance reservations.

Gloria Ferrer Bubbles & BBQ, noon to 2 p.m.

Make the day a full family gathering, with a slow-cooked BBQ party paired with sparkling wines. The menu is mouthwatering, including beef brisket, pork spare ribs, BBQ chicken, BBQ-style black beans, potato salad, mixed green salad and dinner rolls. Dancing is on the agenda, to tunes of live blues music.

Details: Gloria Ferrer Caves and Vineyards23555 Hwy. 121 (at Arnold Dr.), Sonoma

Mother's Day Brunch or Lunch at Larson Family Winery, 10 a.m. to noon or 1 to 3 p.m. 

Family-friendly Larson Family Winery hosts both brunch and lunch with live music. The brunch crowd can enjoy quiche, eggs, hash browns, pancakes, bacon, pastries, and fruit. For lunch, they’ll be serving up wood fired tri tip, smoked chicken, vegetable kabobs, choices of salad, fingerling potatoes, and asparagus, with homemade apple crisp and chocolate covered strawberries for dessert. Moms get complimentary mimosas. 

Details: Larson Family Winery, 23355 Millerick Road, Sonoma, 707-938-3031

Mother's Day Brunch with Comstock Wines, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m 

Enjoy a relaxing brunch at Comstock Wines' beautiful estate winery in Dry Creek Valley. They will have flowers for mothers.

Details: Comstock Wines, 1290 Dry Creek Road, Healdsburg, 707-723-3011

Mother's Day Brunch at Chateau St. Jean, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. 

Treat mom to a lovely brunch with wine pairings at Chateau St. Jean. Relax and enjoy the vineyard view from the Grand Lawn.

Details: Chateau St. Jean Winery, 8555 Sonoma Highway, Kenwood, 707-257-5784


Mother’s Day Sweet Treats, Sunday, May 8, 2016

Celebrations don’t have to be expensive. Here are some bargain priced experiences that are still entirely special.

Tricycle Wine Partners at Cornerstone Sonoma, complimentary tasting

Moms receive a complimentary tasting flight of reserve wine selections from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and you can round out the fun with a picnic purchased from neighboring Park 121 Restaurant, to enjoy on the Poseidon patio next to the sculpture gardens.

Details: Poseidon Vineyard and Obsidian Ridge Winery, 23568 Arnold Drive, Sonoma 

Dutton-Goldfield Winery, complimentary with wine purchase (also offered Sat. May 7, 2016)

Moms enjoy a complimentary wine flight and mini cheese plate that is complimentary with wine purchase (non-moms can add cheese to the regular wine tasting for $5). For a more elaborate treat, they will be offering their Sushi tasting experience at 12 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. for $40 per person.

Details: Dutton-Goldfield Winery, 3100 Gravenstein Hwy. North, Sebastopol, 707-827-3600


Korbel Champagne Cellars, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., free

The Guerneville property opens its doors for complimentary tasting and tours, a free rose for mom, and extra-special guided Garden Tours.

Details: Korbel, 13250 River Road, Guerneville, 707-824-7216



The menus are still being finalized, but you can count on delicious Mother’s Day brunches at Sonoma County favorites like John Ash & Co. (Santa Rosa), Village Inn (Monte Rio), The Fairmont Sonoma Inn (Sonoma), and Flamingo Conference Resort & Spa’s Champagne Brunch Buffet in the Grand Ballroom (Santa Rosa).


Play Time

Do something a little different this year, with a focus on bonding time together:

West Wines Vineyard Hike & Wine Tasting Mother's Day, Sunday, May 8, 2016

Enjoy some fresh air and sunshine in the Dry Creek Valley, with a gentle walk through the sustainably certified vineyard, followed by tasting the wines from those very vines. Scheduled for 11 a.m. to noon. Cost: $15

Detiails: West Wines, 1000 Dry Creek Road, Healdsburg, 707-433-2066

Relish Culinary Adventures Mother’s Day Brunch, Sunday, May 8, 2016

It’s bonding time galore at this hands-on cooking class, making a delicious brunch with mom, and guided by chef Jack Herron. With the freshest spring ingredients, you will get to make everything from scratch, including smoking the arctic char, making crab cakes, and learning how to make the perfect poached eggs - all while sipping mimosas and local wines. Then eat your work: spring green salad with local citrus and praline pecans, house-smoked arctic char on toasted brioche with chive cream cheese, Dungeness crab cakes with shaved fennel and classic remoulade, poached eggs with skillet potatoes and melted leaks, and toasted banana bread with bourbon butter caramel and vanilla ice cream. Cost: $108.

Details: Relish Culinary, 14 Matheson St., Healdsburg

For more ideas: Take Mom on a 3 day wine country getaway

Written by Sonoma Insider Carey Sweet.