Lifestyle Philanthropy

RSF philanthropist helps bulldogs in need

Holli Lienau with Miss Matty, a rescue from Southern California Bulldog Rescue. Courtesy

Southern California Bulldog Rescue celebrated its 6th Annual “Bullies Uncorked” fundraiser hosted by Rancho Santa Fe resident and philanthropist Holli Lienau. The event venue was at Sundried Tomato in San Juan Capistrano.

Nearly 100 guests were in attendance for wine tasting, sangria, and signature appetizers from the chefs of Bueno Bueno Mexican Kitchen.

The afternoon soiree raised more than $11,000 to benefit and help bulldogs find their forever homes.

“We wanted to create a special afternoon for SoCal Bulldog Rescue,” explained Lienau. “I adopted one of my Bulldogs, Miss Matty, three years ago through SoCal Bulldog rescue after someone dumped her in a nighttime drop box at a Riverside County shelter when she was only a few months old.”

Skip Van Der Marliere, the co-founder and director of SoCal Bulldog Rescue, shared how it helps up to 400 to 450 dogs per year since the nonprofit opened its doors in 1997. The nonprofit helps dogs in situations of shelter rescues, owner relinquishment, and vet office surrenders. Van Der Marliere shared how they assist in other situations such as helping dogs stay in their homes and SoCal Bulldog Rescue pitches in with financial assistance for medical care, food, and more.

SoCal Bulldog Rescue is headquartered in Orange County and relies on fundraisers to ensure funding for bulldogs in the decades to come. While the nonprofit is centralized in Orange County, it reaches to San Diego, the border of Nevada and Arizona, and makes a beeline as far north as Fresno.

Throughout the afternoon, guests had the opportunity to bid on silent auction items. The afternoon concluded with a live auction. Lienau gifted three of those items from her organization, “Holli” Day…Any Day.

The first experience was for the highest bidder and three of their friends to experience something unique at Bueno Bueno Mexican Kitchen in San Juan Capistrano – a Baja California Wine Tasting and Food Pairing Party. Fernando Gaxiola, who is regarded as a Baja ambassador, will take guests on a wine tasting journey which will enhance the robust flavors of Bueno Bueno appetizers.

The last two auction items were highly sought after. Both were identical, with bids of more than $2,000. The highest bidder and a guest will spend the night at The Inn at Rancho Santa Fe after harvesting wine grapes at Lienau’s private vineyard at her Rancho Santa Fe estate. Following a Sangiovese, Cabernet Franc, and Petit Syrah grape harvest, Lienau will fire up the outdoor pizza oven and prepare gourmet pizza for a unique party experience.

“It means so much to me that I could turn a day of harvesting at my vineyard or Baja wine tasting experience into a special fundraising experience for SoCal Bulldog Rescue,” Lienau said. “It’s all about playing and paying it forward with food, fun, and friends.”

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